The Berean Expositor
Volume 20 - Page 164 of 195
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The second boasting of the structure must next be examined. Meanwhile let us not
forget that those who have been thus "made nigh" should "draw near", and let us glory in
the completeness of our acceptance in Christ which gives us "boldness and access with
confidence by the faith of Him" (Eph. 3: 12).
Patience and proof (5: 1-11).
pp. 78 83
To quote, detachedly, the words of Rom. 5: 3, "we glory in tribulations", is to
misrepresent Scripture: at the very least we must go on to say, "we glory in tribulations
also". No sane man boasts in tribulations for their own sake; this boasting depends upon
the earlier one:--
"We boast on hope of the glory of God."
"We boast in tribulations also."
The hope is our foundation and rock upon which we stand secure. Tribulation is but
an environment, the storm that tests but never moves us from our strong tower.
In II Cor. 12: 9 Paul says that he boasts in his infirmities, but again such a statement,
apart from its context, does not convey the truth. Paul was not a man who nursed his
misery, who was only happy when he was ill or sad; the context reveals the reason of his
strange boast:--
"He said unto me, MY grace is sufficient for thee; for My strength is made perfect in
weakness. Most gladly therefore will I rather boast in my infirmities, that the power of
Christ may rest upon me."
In Rom. 4: 18 hope resting upon the flesh is placed over against hope that trusts in
the God that quickeneth the dead: "Who against hope believed on hope." In Rom. 5:
we start with hope securely fixed in the grace of God, and then, by tribulation and trial,
make that hope experimentally ours. "We boast on hope of the glory of God . . . . .
tribulations . . . . . patience . . . . . experience . . . . . hope." Hope is depicted as an anchor,
and the storms of tribulations test and prove that true hope "enters into that within the
veil" (Heb. 6: 19). An anchored ship stems the current; the unanchored ship drifts.
It will be necessary to survey the teaching of Scripture as to tribulation. Thlipsis is
translated "tribulation", "affliction", "persecution", etc., and comes from a word
meaning to squeeze or press. The contrast between tribulation and peace, seen in the two
aspects of teaching in Rom. 5:, are found in John 16: 33: "in Me ye might have peace.
In the world ye shall have tribulation."