Yoked in Suffering
Posted on October 17, 2019 by America's Keswick in Freedom Fighters
“I find no better cure for that depression than to trust in the Lord with all my heart, and seek to realize afresh the power of the peace-speaking blood of Jesus, and His infinite love in dying upon the cross to put away all my transgressions.” ~Spurgeon
When Christ invites us to come to Him and share His yoke, He is inviting us to a permanent relationship by which we will know His experiences. It is to this end that Paul writes, “I consider everything a loss that is gained to me, because of the surpassing worth of knowing Christ Jesus my Lord, for whose sake I have lost all things (having chosen to share His yoke). I consider them garbage, that I may gain Christ and be found in him, not having a righteousness of my own that comes from the law, but that which is through faith in Christ—the righteousness that comes from God on the basis of faith” (Phil 3:8-9). But this yoke is just not something to wear; No, His yoke is meant for a task and He intends for us to learn from His example how to effectively accomplish His work of reconciliation. Peter tells us that it is for this purpose “God called you to do good, even if it means suffering, just as Christ suffered for you. He is your example, and you must follow in his steps. He never sinned, nor ever deceived anyone. He did not retaliate when he was insulted, nor threaten revenge when he suffered. He left his case in the hands of God, who always judges fairly. He personally carried our sins in his body on the cross so that we can be dead to sin and live for what is right. By his wounds you are healed.” (1 Peter 2:21-24)
Although sharing His yoke may be ‘easy’ for those who have submitted to the authority of His Word, entrusted their lives into God’s care, and come to know Jesus and the power of His resurrection, sharing His yoke is also a life of knowing the fellowship of His sufferings, being conformed to His death; this in order that we may attain to the resurrection from the dead. Those who have chosen to share in His yoke must forget what is past and what we can do nothing about, and press on so as to lay hold of that for which also we were called to by Christ Jesus. I pray you press on toward the goal for the prize of the upward call of God in Christ Jesus and obtain a faith that is more precious than gold. (Phil 3:10-14; 1 Peter 1:7)
What is holding you back from knowing Christ and abundant life? What is weighing you down that you need to let go of? What are you ‘yoked’ to that is causing you harm? I pray you still have the eyes to see that you are bound up by sin and able to grasp hold of Christ’s offer to “come to Him with your burden’s and sins and find rest. I pray you allow the Spirit to strengthen you to ‘take His yoke upon you and learn from Him, for He is gentle and humble in heart, and His grace is able to sustain you in any circumstance, providing you a reprieve. I pray you choose wisely…
“Rejoice in the Lord always. I will say it again: Rejoice! Let your gentleness be evident to all. The Lord is near. Do not be anxious about anything, but in every situation, by prayer and petition, with thanksgiving, present your requests to God. And the peace of God, which transcends all understanding, will guard your hearts and your minds in Christ Jesus.” (Phil 4:4-7)
Praying 4 U
Written by David Brown: David Brown is a husband, father, and grandfather with a Masters of Religious Studies and a Professor of Philosophy and Comparative Religions. Dave is a member of Pemberton’s First Baptist Church.
Think About This: The gospel is called a burden and a yoke, lest we presume; yet light and easy, lest we despair. – Assorted Authors
This Week’s Verse to Memorize: The sacrifices of God are a broken spirit, a broken and a contrite heart— these, O God, You will not despise. – Psalm 51:17
Disclaimer: The views and opinions expressed in this article are those of the author and do not necessarily reflect the doctrinal and theological views held by America’s Keswick.