Persecution & Suffering: 26

In Romans 5:3-5 Paul says, “Not only so, but we also glory in our sufferings, because we know that suffering produces perseverance; perseverance, character; and character, hope.  And hope does not put us to shame, because God’s love has been poured out into our hearts through the Holy Spirit, who has been given to us.”

This is an exceptionally encouraging list of the results of suffering. It brings about perseverance, character, and hope that will be fulfilled and will not disappoint. That hope is assured because of God’s Holy Spirit and the love He has poured out within us. As a result, Paul tells us that the suffering is a cause to glory in it, or take pride in it.

We see an example of that when Paul is defending his apostleship in 2 Corinthians 11:16-33. He lists all the suffering he underwent as a basis for boasting and an evidence that he has authority.

Also, the character that is developed is something that will benefit us for all eternity. This is yet another example of how temporary pain produces eternal benefits by God’s grace.