The Ministry of suffering

“You have heard of the perseverance of Job and seen the end intended by the Lord– that the Lord is very compassionate and merciful” (Jas. 5:11 NKJ). No matter what God permits to come into your lives He always has the final word. That makes the story worth it all. God writes the last chapter of your life. So be patient along the way. Prophets Isaiah, Jeremiah, and Daniel went through great trials and sufferings, and they endured it with patience. If we want to be blessed, it is the only reasonable conclusion that we will be called upon to do the same.

Job was not an imaginary character. Both Ezekiel and James attested that he was a real man who had experience. Job can tell us what we need to know about life and its problems in the world.

Satan’s accusation against Job was really an attack on God. You protect him, you prosper him – you have made a contract as long as he obeys you, worships you, you will bless him, prosper him. You are not a God worthy of worship. You have to pay people to honor you.  So-called tragedies in the lives of God’s people may be a weapon of God to silence the accuser of God, Satan.

The Ministry of Suffering

In the climax of the book of Job, God called him, “my servant ” four times. How did Job serve God? By enduring suffering and not cursing God and thereby silencing the devil. Suffering in the will of God is a ministry.

The disciples asked Jesus Christ about the blind man – who sinned, this man or his parents? Jesus answered; neither this man nor his parents sinned, but the works of God should be revealed in him. The man’s blindness allowed for the works of God to be displayed in him and the display was multiplied as millions have read this story through the centuries.

One purpose of suffering is that the glory of God might be displayed both in the life of the sufferers and others. The man’s blindness also became the vehicle for leading him to faith in Christ.

The spiritual health of a believer is not determined by their wealth or poverty. Suffering can help lead believers to a deeper level of spiritual maturity and strengthen their integrity before God. Job grew spiritually because of the suffering he endured. He became even more godly.

Job was stretched and came to the brink, yet he refused to curse God and die. Therefore, his resolve was strengthened for spiritual good. God does not reveal his purpose to suffering believers. A truly righteous sufferer may declare like Job “though He slay me, I will hope in Him”.

The myth is that salvation is accompanied by instant health. People think that Christians suffering anything less either lack faith or are out of God’s will or maybe are not really Christians. But that idea was shown to fall far short of God’s infinite, incomparable, and often incomprehensible wisdom, which is on display throughout the book of Job. “It is not sin to be sick”. The Bible mentions over 30 reasons that believers suffer in this life.

Prosperity will not secure us from the calamities of life. Not all suffering is the direct result of sin in one’s life. Bildad says to Job; though your beginning was small, yet your latter end would increase abundantly. Little did Bildad realize that his words would come true, and Job’s latter end would be greater than his beginning.

God’s goodness to Job was not a reward for his upright behavior. It is important to understand that God was freely bestowing his goodness, not obligingly rewarding Job’s piety. Job’s latter blessings were not in payment of a debt that God owed to him.

To die after a long, full life, as Job did, is every person’s goal. More than merely living for a long time, this means experiencing a rich and full life that ends well. This is what Abraham, and Isaac experienced, and also King David. However long our lives may be, allowing God to make them full can be our worthy goal.

God writes the last chapter of your life

The Lord blessed the latter days of Job more than his beginning. Job ended up with twice as much as he had before. Man’s destiny is in the hand of the Almighty. God writes the last chapter of your life.


C.M. John has been in full time ministry of the Lord for more than thirty years as a bible teacher, elder, speaker and writer. His most recent book is a commentary on the Pastoral Epistles. He is also the co-founder and a core team member of the Renew In Knowledge Ministry.