Adversity and trouble is what causes us to consider our place and our need. How we handle suffering is an indicator of our spiritual maturity. If we turn to others, things, or philosophies, we prove we are not a child of God. If we turn to God alone, casting ourselves on Him for strength and guidance, then we demonstrate where our true hope lies, and we grow deeper spiritually.

So, adversity is a good thing, and a requirement in this life. However, there is the element of adversity that is different, because it is the kind of adversity that comes from over-extending ourselves and trespassing into areas we do not belong. This adversity was experienced by Balaam and his talking donkey that crushed Balaam’s leg into a wall rather than obeys Balaam’s command. The donkey could see the angel that wanted to kill Balaam, and so was saving Balaam’s life. Balaam was trespassing and going where he was not to go.

Solomon did the same thing. King Saul first attacked Edom, but Saul was not a good king. King Saul had a violent hatred and cared more about the solidification of his family power than about the country or what was right. God set the boundary of Israel at Edom. Israel could defend their border, but they were to be careful not to overstep their bounds. Moses had the whole nation march in a very discouraging and roundabout way to avoid confrontation with the Edomites. This not only was a lesson to the nation, it was because God had not given Israel that land.

King Saul began a national program of trespass by entering Edom and subduing the Edomites. King David made matters worse and put military bases in Edom, and spent six months there to make sure they killed all the males of Edom. In other words he went out of his way to meddle with Edom and control them. King Solomon went a step further and built a navy there in Edom that was deployed from the Red Sea.

So was there a cost to this trespass? The answer is given to us in Scripture in such a way that we cannot blame anyone but Solomon. God caused there to be an adversary of Solomon in the very person of Hadad, the exiled prince of Edom, who found protection in Egypt.

The question is quite simple: How much adversity do we bring into our own lives because God is forced to bring adversity into it in order for us to be uncomfortable enough to reach the point of repentance? What does it say about a person that refuses to repent, but instead clings to the evil that brings adversity, and refuses to obey God’s Word? It gives our biggest Adversary, the Devil, a really good case that we are not saved, and have no place in Heaven. In other words, it really is a sure sign that we are children of sin, and never have honestly made Christ our Master and Leader. Any decision was a matter of convenience and not a matter of a changed life and becoming a new person in Christ.

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Discipline, Lacking


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One Response to “Adversity”

  1. Cheryl Says:

    This post was real encouraging–Adversity sent to draw us closer to God. Lately I was just reading that even personalities or people of an undisciplined nature or whatever bothers us are situations sent from God to give us the opportunity to respond in a way that glorifies the Lord. All of it is to cause us to look to Him for help and seek Him more. I liked that idea!