Thursday's Bible Exploration is titled "LONGSUFFERING" for August 6th, 2020.
I greet you all in the name of Jesus Christ. I pray that each of you are filled with the joy of the Lord. Our study will focus on "Standing on Faith's "R" Pillars" . I look forward to sharing the Word of God with you as we rightly divide the word of truth..
In His Service,
Pastor Willie J. Holley, Th.D.
Pathways Christian Fellowship, Inc.
1. In discussing "the fruit of the Spirit", the nine graces listed in
Galatians 5:22-23 are often divided into three groups:
a. The first group contains those graces which turns one's thought
1) Love (for love is of God)
2) Joy (for we rejoice in the Lord)
3) Peace (for from God comes the peace that surpasses
b. The second group contains those graces that directs our attention
to our fellow man...
c. The third group of graces refer more directly to oneself...
8) Gentleness (meekness)
2. We have often examined those graces in the first group (love, joy, peace),
But seldom do we study the first one in the second group...
a. The grace is "longsuffering" ("patience" in the NASV)
b. The Greek word is makrothumia
1) Literally, it means being "long-tempered" (the opposite of
2) It is defined as "patience, forbearance, longsuffering,
slowness in avenging wrongs" (THAYER)
3) "Longsuffering is that quality of self-restraint in the face
of provocation which does not hastily retaliate or promptly
punish. It is the opposite of anger and is associated with
mercy, and is used of God." (VINE)
c. If God is longsuffering, we should not be surprised that those
who "walk in the Spirit" are also longsuffering!
[As we seek to work in conjunction with the Spirit of God to develop
His fruit in our lives, it might be helpful to nurture longsuffering by
I. EXAMPLES OF LONGSUFFERING
A. THE LONGSUFFERING OF GOD...
1. God has been longsuffering toward man
a. He was in the days of Noah - 1Pe 3:20
b. He was in His dealings with the nation of Israel - Nehemiah 9:
c. And He is longsuffering today as well - 2Pe 3:7-9; see,
2. The purpose of His longsuffering:
a. That we might have salvation! - 2Peter 3:15
b. That we might be led to repentance! - Romans 2:4
c. That those who fear Him and keep His commandments might
delight in His lovingkindness, even though they have sinned
- See Psalm 103:8-18
B. THE LONGSUFFERING OF DAVID...
1. Is best seen in his dealings with King Saul
a. Saul had made several attempts to kill David
b. David had several opportunities to kill Saul
1) In the cave - 1Samuel 24:1-22
2) In the camp - 1Samuel 26:1-25
2. Out of respect for the Lord's anointed king (Saul), David
demonstrated the true meaning of longsuffering: "slowness
in avenging wrongs"
[So from both God Himself, and one who was "a man after God's own
heart" (1Samuel 13:14), we learn what the quality of longsuffering
involves. Now let's consider its necessity in the life of the Christians]
II. THE NECESSITY OF LONGSUFFERING
A. NECESSARY IF WE WISH GOD TO BE LONGSUFFERING TO US...
1. As Jesus illustrated in "The Parable Of The Unmerciful
Servant" (note particularly Matthew 18:32-35)
2. Compare also the following verses: Colossians 3:12-13
a. Christ has forgiven us
b. Therefore we must be longsuffering and willing to forgive
B. NECESSARY TO MAINTAINING THE UNITY OF THE SPIRIT...
1. A task we face, in keeping with a walk that is worthy of our
calling - Ephesians 4:1-3
2. Without longsuffering, the sins we commit against one another
will quickly destroy the unity for which Christ died!
C. NECESSARY FOR PREACHERS AND TEACHERS OF THE GOSPEL...
1. As Paul charged Timothy - 2Timothy 4:2
2. As Paul had demonstrated by example - 2Timothy 3:10
3. No servant of the Lord can faithfully correct those in
opposition, without the quality of longsuffering (patience in
the NKJV) - 2Timothy 2:24-26
[So to be "useful for the Master, prepared for every good work" (see
2Timothy 2:21), and even to ensure God's longsuffering toward us (see Matthew
18:35), we need to develop the virtue of longsuffering. Here are a
couple of thoughts on how...]
III. DEVELOPING LONGSUFFERING
A. THROUGH LOVE...
1. It is love that "suffers long" - see 1Corinthians 13:4-8a
a. Unless we love those who have wronged us, there will not be
sufficient motivation to bear with them
b. Therefore love (active good will) is fundamental to being
slow to avenge wrong
2. By growing in love (to remember how, see 1Thessalonians 4:9; 1John 3:16),
we will grow in patience!
B. THROUGH PRAYER...
1. Paul evidently believed prayer would help the Colossians to
have "all patience and longsuffering with joy" - Colossians 1:9-11
2. Certainly the God who is longsuffering (see Psalm 145:8) will
strengthen those who desire to be like Him!