Posted by: missionventureministries | August 22, 2019

WHAT IS BIBLICAL PATIENCE? – James 1:4

“But let patience have its perfect work, that you may be perfect and complete, lacking nothing.” (James 1:4)

 What is patience? Patience is commonly defined as the capacity to accept or tolerate delay, trouble, or suffering without getting angry or upset.

The opposite of patience is agitation, discouragement, and a desire for revenge. God does not want His children to live in agitation but in peace as Jesus told His disciples: “Peace I leave with you, My peace I give to you; not as the world gives do I give to you. Let not your heart be troubled, neither let it be afraid” (John 14:27). He wants to dispel discouragement and replace it with hope and praise (Psalm 42:5); and we are not to avenge ourselves; rather, we should love each other (Romans 12:19; Leviticus 19:18).

God is patient, and His Spirit produces the fruit of patience in us. When we are patient, we leave room for God to work in our heart and in our relationships. We need to let go of our agenda and trust in God’s; and thank the Lord for what He brings into our life; simply, we let God be God.

Let’s see what the Bible says about patience; since the Bible has much more to say about it than its normal definition: 

Patience originates from God: 

  • For whatever things were written before were written for our learning, that we through the patience and comfort of the Scriptures might have hope. Now may the God of patience and comfort grant you to be like-minded toward one another, according to Christ Jesus, that you may with one mind and one mouth glorify the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ. (Romans 15:4-6)

Patience is part of the fruit of the Spirit:  

  • But the fruit of the Spirit is love, joy, peace, longsuffering (patience), kindness, goodness, faithfulness, gentleness, self-control. Against such there is no law. (Galatians 5:22-23)

Patience helps us grow during trials:  

  • Be kindly affectionate to one another with brotherly love, in honor giving preference to one another;  not lagging in diligence, fervent in spirit, serving the Lord; rejoicing in hope, patient in tribulation, continuing steadfastly in prayer; distributing to the needs of the saints, given to hospitality. (Romans 12:10-13);
  • My brethren, count it all joy when you fall into various trials, knowing that the testing of your faith produces patience. But let patience have its perfect work, that you may be perfect and complete, lacking nothing. (James 1:2-4)

Patience allows us to be strengthened and be blessed by God:  

  • Rest in the Lord, and wait patiently for Him. (Psalms 37:7);
  • I waited patiently for the Lord; and He inclined to me, and heard my cry (Psalms 40:1);
  • Now may the Lord direct your hearts into the love of God and into the patience of Christ (2 Thessalonians 3:5);
  • And we desire that each one of you show the same diligence to the full assurance of hope until the end, that you do not become sluggish, but imitate those who through faith and patience inherit the promises (Hebrews 6:12).

Patience is pleasing to God:  

  • The end of a thing is better than its beginning; the patient in spirit is better than the proud in spirit (Ecclesiastes 7:8);
  • My brethren, take the prophets, who spoke in the name of the Lord, as an example of suffering and patience (James 5:10);
  • I know your works, your labor, your patience, and that you cannot bear those who are evil. And you have tested those who say they are apostles and are not, and have found them liars; and you have persevered and have patience, and have labored for My name’s sake and have not become weary (Revelation 2:2-3).

As we clearly see, patience is a virtue from God. Like all the other aspects of the fruit of the Spirit, patience is yet another indicator of our relationship with God. 

We must listen, obey Him, and at times give up our own personal desires and opinions in order to wait for His direction. Unfortunately, lack of patience has led to many situations where poor decisions have been made and injustices have taken place. It is therefore essential that we cooperate with the Spirit as He develops patience within us, because the virtue of having patience can save us from the inevitable grief that comes when we refuse to wait for His direction.   

In conclusion, patience is commonly defined as “the capacity to accept or tolerate delay, trouble, or suffering without getting angry or upset.” Patience, sometimes referred to as longsuffering, originates from God, and is part of the fruit of the Spirit. It is a product of self-control and a part of godliness, which was demonstrated to us by Christ. Patience is an important part of helping us grow and become stronger in our faith during trials. Our patience pleases God and results in His blessing. Finally, lack of patience demonstrates ungodly thinking that is without God’s protection and knowledge and leads to injustices and unmerciful treatment of others. 

The greater the blessing God has for us, the more patience He requires. This means we have a choice. We can either learn how to be patient and see what God will do in our life, or we can work it out ourselves and watch it turn into disaster. What will you choose?

Remember that the wisest action is to patiently trust in God, wait, and watch to see what He will do; and as we let the Spirit produce patience in us, He makes us more like Christ.

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