Affliction

Lesson Purpose: The design of this lesson is not to provide a complete answer to why mankind suffers afflictions.  Many of the terrible afflictions that come upon us have no answer but many do and to those this lesson is addressed. Having experienced the loss a 16 year old son, for no explainable reason, and a loving spouse of 46 years, I know what it is to suffer affliction. A friend asked me how did you get through that and I answered because the center of my life is not my wife or my sons but Jesus Christ.  Keep your life centered on Him and He will give you the strength to endure, grace to continue, power to overcome and joy to live by.

Lesson Outline:

1. Affliction as Retribution

2. Affliction as Loving Chastisement

3. As Followers of Christ

4. The Ministry of Affliction

5. Consolation of the Afflicted

6. Enduring Affliction

7. Prayer in Affliction

 

Defined – Noun affliction 1. A state of pain, suffering, distress or agony. 2. The cause of such a state.

1. Affliction as Retribution

Ge.3.16-17 Then he said to the woman,” I will sharpen the pain of your pregnancy, and in pain you will give birth. And you will desire to control your husband, but he will rule over you.” 17 And to the man he said, “Since you listened to your wife and ate from the tree whose fruit I commanded you not to eat, the ground is cursed because of you. All your life you will struggle to scratch a living from it.

La 1.5 Her oppressors have become her masters, and her enemies prosper, for the Lord has punished Jerusalem for her many sins. Her children have been captured and taken away to distant lands.

Ac. 12.23 Instantly, an angel of the Lord struck Herod with a sickness, because he accepted the people’s worship instead of giving the glory to God. So he was consumed with worms and died.

2. Affliction as Loving Chastisement

De. 8.5 Think about it: Just as a parent disciplines a child, the Lord your God disciplines you for your own good. 

2 Sam.7.14 I will be his father, and he will be my son. If he sins, I will correct and discipline him with the rod, like any father would do.

Pr.3.11-12 My child, don’t reject the Lord’s discipline, and don’t be upset when he corrects you. 12 For the Lord corrects those he loves, just as a father corrects a child in whom he delights.

Re.3.19 I correct and discipline everyone I love. So be diligent and turn from your indifference. 

3. As Followers of Christ

Mat.24.9 “Then you will be arrested, persecuted, and killed. You will be hated all over the world because you are my followers.”

4. The Ministry of Affliction

Job 23.10 “But he knows where I am going. And when he tests me, I will come out as pure as gold. 

Psalms 94.12 Joyful are those you discipline, Lord, those you teach with your instructions.

Ec. 7.3 Sorrow is better than laughter, for sadness has a refining influence on us. 

Ro.5.3-4 We can rejoice, too, when we run into problems and trials, for we know that they help us develop endurance. 4 And endurance develops strength of character, and character strengthens our confident hope of salvation.

2 Co.4.17 For our present troubles are small and won’t last very long. Yet they produce for us a glory that vastly outweighs them and will last forever! 

Jam. 1.12 God blesses those who patiently endure testing and temptation. Afterward they will receive the crown of life that God has promised to those who love him. 

5. Consolation of the Afflicted

Ps.23.4 Even when I walk through the darkest valley, I will not be afraid, for you are close beside me. Your rod and your staff protect and comfort me. 

Ps.119.143 As pressure and stress bear down on me, I find joy in your commands.

Is.41.10 Don’t be afraid, for I am with you. Don’t be discouraged, for I am your God. I will strengthen you and help you. I will hold you up with my victorious right hand. 

1 Co.10.13 The temptations in your life are no different from what others experience. And God is faithful. He will not allow the temptation to be more than you can stand. When you are tempted, he will show you a way out so that you can endure. 

6. Enduring Affliction

Pr.24.10 If you fail under pressure, your strength is too small.

2 Ti.2.3 Endure suffering along with me, as a good soldier of Christ Jesus. 

7. Prayer in Affliction

Ps.18.3 I called on the Lord, who is worthy of praise, and he saved me from my enemies.

Mat.26.39 He went on a little farther and bowed with his face to the ground, praying, “My Father! If it is possible, let this cup of suffering be taken away from me. Yet I want your will to be done, not mine.”

 

Outline is from the Dixon Analytical Bible

Scripture is from the New Living Bible courtesy of www.biblegateway.com

Arranged and modified by HKM 02/14/2009