I Never Liked Tests!
Ok, I admit it…I never liked taking tests in school. And when I think about it, I don’t like them now! I don’t want to pretend that I am “super spiritual” and like them….I don’t!
We all have been through personal trials. And like many of you, tried to learn from them. I am trying to be an encouragement to some loved ones dealing with specific trials right now.
John 6:5-6 “When Jesus looked up and saw a great crowd coming toward him, he said to Philip, “Where shall we buy bread for these people to eat?” He asked this only to test him, for he already had in mind what he was going to do.”
The King James Version says: “When Jesus then lifted up his eyes, and saw a great company come unto him, he saith unto Philip, Whence shall we buy bread, that these may eat? And this he said to prove him: for he himself knew what he would do.”
Look at the words test and prove. In these particular scriptures the Greek translation of the word is peirazo. This means “to try, to prove in a good sense.” This is in direct contrast to the Greek word dokimazo which means “proving that one has been evil or to make him evil.” The intent of the first, peirazo is to prove someone good and acceptable.
James 1:13 tells us that God does not “tempt” us. Things that are evil were sent to destroy us. But from my very humble, layman’s understanding, the tests we often endure will refine us and prove who we are in Christ! God is allowing us to be “approved, to be tried as metals by fire and thus purified.” We are becoming more and more like Him! He knows where we are spiritually and how He has equipped us to be worthy and approved. What a good, affirming word for us today!
Think of it this way: A student is tested to see what he/she has learned in a certain subject area. He is given a test and somehow in someway it proves what he/she knows. Now if he fails the test, it looks as though nothing was learned. It could have been a bad day for a test, or he/she may have really not learned anything. If he passes it might be that learning took place, or he had the ability to guess well!
The Father knows where we are and when we are tested and proved. He is trying to show us what we have learned from Him and His word. Do we believe that, do we trust Him? This strengthens our faith and indeed teaches us. He is never tempting us with “evil”. He cannot do that, be He can take what the enemy intended for evil and make it good, if we choose to see the life and love of the Savior.
I do not claim to understand God’s ways…but I do know that we are to filter it all through His tender nail scared hands of love….life it tough, but He will pull us through and teach us along the way.
IN CHRIST ALONE
*google image, Strong’s Concordance, NIV/King James Bible