Patient Endurance, A Disciple’s Invitation for Turbulent Times

Scripture Resource Passage: Revelation 14of course, please read the passage before, or as you read the post.

Thunderous Super-naturals, forceful images amidst dramatic scenes flow from the Book of Revelation—God’s message forecefully proclaimed. During turbulent times disciples of Jesus find revealed truths meant for all of life’s seasons.

Accompanying the descriptions of universe-changing events come careful clear calls for faithfulness. “This [meaning the conditions of which John writes] calls for patient endurance on the part of the people of God who keep his commands and remain faithful to Jesus” (Revelation 14:12). John has repeated and doubled down with this emphasis.

Previously, in Revelation 13:10 John reported, “This [a clear attachment to the truths being conveyed] calls for patient endurance and faithfulness on the part of the saints.” We remember that John is serving as Christ’s secretary in writing Revelation. These are clearly the words of our Lord (Revelation 1:1). 

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During Jesus’ life of teaching, the close disciples were called to faithfulness with an agricultural figure of speech. “Jesus…‘No one who puts a hand to the plow and looks back is fit for service in the kingdom of God.’”(Luke 9:62).

Friends, patience endurance, perhaps especially in turbulent times, is always a disciple’s challenge. Consider this passage found in the Book of Hebrews 10:36: “Patient endurance is what you need now, so that you will continue to do God’s will. Then you will receive all that he has promised.”

Our brother James once wrote “Be patient, then, brothers and sisters, until the Lord’s coming….be patient and stand firm, because the Lord’s coming is near…Brothers and sisters, as an example of patience in the face of suffering, take the prophets who spoke in the name of the Lord. As you know, we count as blessed those who have persevered. You have heard of Job’s perseverance and have seen what the Lord finally brought about. The Lord is full of compassion and mercy” (James 5:7-11)—beautiful words: compassion and mercy.

Recently, I confessed to limited convictions for precise meanings of the forceful images and dramatic scenes revealed to God’s people in the Book of Revelation. However, my limited conviction of such does not apply to Christ’s instructions for the life of His disciples—patient endurance wraps our faith into a gift for the King; and, I take heart in Christ’s welcome to those with limited understanding (Luke 18:16). 

Life Applications

  1. During the months of a pandemic, during the multiple weeks of political discord in North America what practices of faithfulness do you pursue in daily life? Or simply: what spiritual disciplines keep you moving forward in faith?
  2. Are you a person able to encourage others in their quest for patient endurance?

Published by Andrew Simkins

Dr. Andrew Simkins provides spiritual direction for individuals and small groups through the regular blog posts found on this site. He resides in northwest Indiana with his beloved, along with nearby children and grandchildren who are the adornment of his life.

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