It is not an easy road to follow Him, but what a blessing to know Him better.
EXPERIENCE SOME OF HIS SUFFERINGS.
The Bible calls it, “the fellowship of His sufferings.”
That I may participate in the same kind of sufferings that He endured; that is, that I may in all things be identified with Him. Paul wished to be just like Jesus. He felt that it was an honour to live as He did; to show the spirit that He did, and to suffer in the same manner. All that Christ did and suffered was glorious in His view, and he wished in all things to be like Him.
He did not desire only to share His honors and triumphs in heaven, but, regarding His whole work as glorious, he wished to be wholly conformed to Christ and, as far as possible, to be just like Him.
Listen, many are willing to reign with Christ, but they would not be willing to suffer with him; many would be willing to wear a crown of glory like Him, but not the crown of thorns; many would be willing to put on the robes of honor which will be worn in heaven, but not the scarlet robe of contempt and mockery.
They would desire to share the glories and triumphs of redemption, but not its poverty and persecution. This was not the feeling of Paul. He wished in all things to be just like Christ, and therefore he counted it an honour to be permitted to suffer as He did.
Peter says, “rejoice, inasmuch as ye are partakers of Christ’s sufferings,” 1 Peter 4:13.
Paul says Colossians 1:24, “Who now rejoice in my sufferings for you, and fill up that which is behind of the afflictions of Christ in my flesh for his body’s sake, which is the church:”
The idea is, that it is an honour to suffer as Christ suffered; and that the true Christian will regard it a privilege to be made just like Him, not only in glory, but in trial.
To do this is one evidence of godliness; and we should ask ourselves whether these are the feelings of our hearts.
Are we seeking only the honors of heaven, or should we count it a privilege to be reproached and reviled, as Christ was?
Would we be willing to have our names ruined, as His was; to be made the object of reproach and ridicule, as He was?
Are we willing to be hated by the world, as He was? If so, it is evidence that we love Him; if not so, and we are just seeking the crown of glory, it is doubtful whether we have ever known anything of the nature of true faith and suffering. Banes Notes
WATCH FOR HIS COMING Acts 1:6-11.
He will come the same way He went: personally, visibly, in the twinkling of an eye, and on the Mount of Olives.
He may come today, or He may not come for fifty years or more; but, we are to watch for His coming. Are you watching?