Pacifying Theology
In the Western church today, intimacy with Jesus has become a sweet and often-heard phrase echoing in church halls as believers quote from Philippians 3:10 "That I may know Him and the power of His resurrection." But many don't finish the verse: ". . .and the fellowship of His sufferings, being conformed to His death."
This irony is a powerful revelation - that intimacy comes THROUGH SUFFERING! That is why the Holy Spirit chose to use Paul, not only to pen these words, but also to demonstrate them through his own life of suffering for the gospel.
The Western church has developed a pacifying theology of telling herself that suffering is not the will of God, but that it is Satan having his way in the life of a believer. Accusations rise up in our hearts against a sovereign God's inability to alleviate pain and suffering in our lives, preventing us from embracing the Cross.
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