4th Retreat: The Fruitful Life Session 4

22 October 2006

4th YAG RETREAT – THE FRUITFUL LIFE
Session #4
Sunday, 22 October 2006
Evening Session
A Fruitful Life is a Result of Perseverance
INTRODUCTION

1. Basic Concept of Fruit-bearing

a) Sower

b) Seed

c) Ground

2. Concept of “Other Vital Factors”

a) Transition from agricultural concept to human-life context

b) Other factors must be brought in

c) These factors must be given due consideration

A. THE FACTOR CALLED “PERSEVERANCE”

1. Definition of Perseverance (“hupomone”)

a) Translated often as “patience”          (NKJV James 1:3; 1 Thessalonians 1:3)

b) Also translated as “endurance”          (NKJV Matthew 24:13; James 1:12)

i) In contrast to those who will be “offended”          Matthew 24:10

ii) Contrast to those whose love for God will become cold          Matthew 24:11

c) Possible synonyms (semantics)

i) Endurance

ii) Patience

iii) Steadfastness

iv) Perseverance

2. Extolling the virtue of Perseverance

a) Recognition of the role of Perseverance by the apostle Peter

But also for this very reason, giving all diligence, add to your faith virtue, To virtue knowledge; To knowledge self-control, to self-control perseverance (“hupomone”), to perseverance (“hupomone”) godliness, To godliness brotherly kindness, and to brotherly kindness love. For if these things are yours and abound, you will be neither barren nor unfruitful in the knowledge of our Lord Jesus Christ

2 Peter 1:5-8

b) Recognition of the role of Perseverance by the apostle Paul

Remembering without ceasing your work of faith, labour of love and patience (“hupomone”) of hope in our Lord Jesus Christ in the sight of our God and Father

1 Thessalonians 1:3

c) Recognition of the role of Perseverance by James, the Lords brother

Knowing that the testing of your faith produces patience (“hupomone”)

James 1:3

d) Recognition of the role of perseverance by the author of Hebrews

Therefore we also, since we are surrounded by so great a cloud of witnesses, let us lay aside every weight, and the sin which so easily ensnares us, and let us run with endurance (perseverance – “hupomone”) the race that is set before us.

Hebrews 12:1

3. Perseverance and Fruit-bearing          (Hebrews 12:1-15)

a) Christ as the Supreme Example of One who Persevered/Endured

Looking unto Jesus, the author and finisher of our faith, who for the joy that was set before Him endured (“hupomone”) the cross, despising the shame, and has sat down at the right hand of the throne of God

Hebrews 12:2

b) Enduring hostility

For consider Him who endured such hostility from sinners against Himself, lest you become weary and discouraged in your souls

Hebrews 12:3

c) Enduring the Chastening of the Lord

If you endure chastening, God deals with you as sons; for what son is there whom a father does not chasten?

Hebrews 12:7

d) The fruit of righteousness

Now no chastening seems to be joyful for the present, but painful; Nevertheless, afterward it yields the peaceable fruit of righteousness to those who have been trained by it

Hebrews 12:11

4. The Danger of the Root of Bitterness

Looking carefully lest anyone fall short of the grace of God; Lest any root of bitterness springing up cause trouble, and by this many become defiled

Hebrews 12:15

a) Root of bitterness

b) Fruit that causes trouble

c) Many are defiled by this root of bitterness

5. Challenge to Cultivate “hupomone”

a) With Understanding

b) With courage

c) With strength

d) With hope

B. OTHER VITAL FACTORS

1. Found in the Prayers of Paul for the Ephesians          (Ephesians 1:15-19; 3:14-21)
2. A quick listing of these other vital factors

a) Knowledge          Ephesians 1:17

b) Wisdom          Ephesians 1:17

c) Enlightenment          Ephesians 1:18

d) Power of God          Ephesians 1:18-19; 3:20

e) Inner-man strength          Ephesians 3:16

f) Faith          Ephesians 3:17

g) Love          Ephesians 3:17-19

h) Filled with God          Ephesians 3:20

C. CHALLENGE TO FACE CRIPPLING PROBLEMS

1. The Problem of Pessimism

a) Deep-seated

b) Long term

2. The problem of Despair

a) Emotional

b) Psychological

3. The Problem of Giving up

a) Attitude

b) Spirit

4. The Problem of Mediocrity

a) Acceptance of mediocrity

b) Excellence is set aside

D. EMPLOYING “PERSEVERANCE” TO TACKLE THESE PROBLEMS

1. Perseverance will see us devote “time” to resolving these long-term, deep problems
2. Perseverance will see us come up with “determination”
3. Perseverance teaches us to how to realistically deal with our problems
4. Perseverance will help us cultivate a strong character

E. EXAMPLES OF PEOPLE WHO PERSEVERED

1. Moses          Numbers 11
2. Elijah          1 Kings 19
3. Peter          John 21
4. Paul          Acts 18:9