Filling up the Suffering of Christ; Part 1
Col 1:24 – Who now rejoice in my sufferings for you, and fill up that which is behind of the afflictions of Christ in my flesh for his body’s sake, which is the church: Do we embrace our suffering as a means of fulling this scripture as Apostle Paul did to fill up that which is behind of the afflictions of Christ in his flesh for His body’s sake, which is the church. God never intended our sufferings, of grief and sorrow, afflictions, persecutions and tribulations to be squandered on self pity, questioning God why we are going through such things, or complaining. I have only seen this from one perspective, how it effects me, not in questioning why or complaining, but with unquestionable confidence that suffering opens the way for the mortifying of the flesh through the Holy Spirit and all that is contrary to God’s will and purposes in our lives. Rom 8:13 – For if ye live after the flesh, ye shall die: but if ye through the Spirit do mortify the deeds of the body, ye shall live.
Matt 5:11-12 – Blessed are ye, when men shall revile you, and persecute you, and shall say all manner of evil against you falsely, for my sake. 12) Rejoice, and be exceeding glad: for great is your reward in heaven: for so persecuted they the prophets which were before you. This confirms Col 1:24, as we rejoice in our sufferings for anothers sake we affirm and fill up that which is behind of the afflictions of Christ in our flesh for his body’s sake, which is the church. This we must remember when these circumstance arise in our lives we embrace them knowing that this advances the building up of the body of Christ which is the church.
On Monday of last week the Spirit of God gave me revelation on this and compelled me to go to Col 1:24, It has helped me to embrace the grief and sorrow coming from the passing of my wife of 49 years to be with the Lord. We must allow this suffering to be directed to the filling up that which is behind of the afflictions of Christ in our flesh for his body’s sake, which is the church. Also in this revelation from the Spirit it was said, “embracing our sufferings for Christ and the body and the church is a “deposit” for a greater reward in heaven, which is being stored up for us! (Matt 5:12)
Ps 56:8 – Thou tellest my wanderings: put thou my tears into thy bottle: are they not in thy book? In this case David was fleeing from His own country. However, the word wanderings are connect to suffering of any kind.
(Barnes) Psalms 56:8 – (Are they not in thy book?) It is speaking of book of remembrance and they are numbered and recorded so that they will not be forgotten? This expresses strong confidence that our tears “would” be remembered; that they would not be forgotten. All the tears that we shed “are” remembered by God. If “properly” shed-shed in sorrow, without murmuring or complaining, they will be remembered for our good; However, if “improperly shed” – if with the spirit of complaining, and with a want of submission to the divine will, they will be remembered against us. It is not wrong to weep. David wept; the Saviour wept; nature prompts us to weep; and it cannot be wrong to weep if “our” eye “poureth out” its tears “unto God”; that is, if in our sorrow we look to God with submission and with earnest supplication. Job 16:20 – My friends scorn me: but mine eye poureth out tears unto God.
Rom 5:3-5 – And not only so, but we glory in tribulations also: knowing that tribulation worketh patience; 4) And patience, experience/maturity; and experience, hope: 5) And hope maketh not ashamed; because the love of God is shed abroad in our hearts by the Holy Ghost which is given unto us.
* Tribulations means pressure; afflicted (-tion), anguish, burdened, persecution, or trouble. Much of these words defining tribulation are also directly connected to the loss of a spouse or a loved one. Eph 3:13-15 – Wherefore I desire that ye faint not at my “tribulations for you”, which is your glory. 14) For this cause I bow my knees unto the Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, 15) Of whom the whole family in heaven and earth is named. (Tribulations no matter what kind results to anothers glory, we acknowledge it for that purpose.)
Phil 2:17-18 – Yea, and if I be offered upon the sacrifice and service of your faith, I joy, and rejoice with you all. 18) For the same cause also do ye joy, and rejoice with me. Think about this, if most Christians had this perspective of suffering, what would the church as a whole be like today!
2 Cor 1:5-7 – For as the sufferings of Christ abound in us, so our consolation also aboundeth by Christ. 6) And whether we be afflicted, it is for your consolation and salvation, which is effectual in the enduring of the same sufferings which we also suffer: or whether we be comforted, it is for your consolation and salvation. 7) And our hope of you is steadfast, knowing, that as ye are partakers of the sufferings, so shall ye be also of the consolation. (Partakers, as beneficiaries of Paul’s sufferings.)
* Consolation means solace, comfort, a calling near, or summons.
* Partaker means a sharer, an associate, companion, fellowship, or partner.