License

I have written an e-book, Does the Bible Really Say That?, which is free to anyone. To download that book, in several formats, go here.
Creative Commons License
The posts in this blog are licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial-ShareAlike 3.0 Unported License. In other words, you can copy and use this material, as long as you aren't making money from it, and as long as you give me credit.

Sunday, August 05, 2012

Prayer and Trouble, Part 4, by E. M. Bounds

Three words practically the same in the processes of Divine discipline are found, temptation, trial and trouble, and yet there is a difference between them. Temptation is really a solicitation to evil arising from the devil or born in the carnal nature of man. Trial is testing. It is that which proves us, tests us, and makes us stronger and better when we submit to the trial and work together with God in it “My brethren, count it all joy when ye fall into divers temptations; knowing this, that the trying of your faith worketh patience.” [James 1:2-3]

Peter speaks along the same line:
“Wherein ye greatly rejoice, now for a season, if need be, ye are in heaviness through manifold temptations; that the trial of your faith being much more precious than that of gold that perisheth, though it be tried with fire, might be found unto praise, and honor and glory at the appearing of Jesus Christ.” [1 Peter 1:6-7]
The third word is trouble itself, which covers all the painful, sorrowing, and grievous events of life. And yet temptations and trials might really become troubles. So that all evil days in life might well be classed under the head of the “time of trouble.” And such days of trouble are the lot of all men. Enough to know that trouble, no matter from what source it comes; becomes in God’s hand His own agent to accomplish His gracious work concerning those who submit patiently to Him, who recognise Him in prayer, and who work together
with God.

Let us settle down at once to the idea that trouble arises not by chance, and neither occurs by what men call accident. “Although affliction cometh not forth of the dust, neither doth trouble spring out of the ground, yet man is born unto trouble as the sparks fly upward.” [Job 5:6-7] Trouble naturally belongs to God’s moral government, and is one of His invaluable agents in governing the world.

When we realise this, we can the better understand much that is recorded in the Scriptures, and can have a clearer conception of God’s dealings with His ancient Israel. In God’s dealings with them, we find what is called a history of Divine Providence, and providence always embraces trouble. No one can understand the story of Joseph and his old father Jacob unless he takes into the account trouble and its varied offices. - From The Essentials of Prayer, by E. M. Bounds.

Although E. M. Bounds died in 1913, this book was first published in 1925, by an admirer of the author's life. Bounds was known for praying from four until seven each morning.

This post is one of a series, taken from The Essentials of Prayer, by Bounds. Found through the Christian Classics Ethereal Library, here. The Essentials of Prayer is in the public domain. The previous post in the entire series on the book is here. Thanks for reading. Read this book, and, more importantly, practice, prayer.

No comments: