Biblical Concept: Suffer
Genesis 3:17-19 17 Then to Adam He said, "Because you have listened to the voice of your wife, and have eaten from the tree about which I commanded you, saying, 'You shall not eat from it'; Cursed is the ground because of you; In toil you shall eat of it All the days of your life. 18 "Both thorns and thistles it shall grow for you; And you shall eat the plants of the field; 19 By the sweat of your face You shall eat bread, Till you return to the ground, Because from it you were taken; For you are dust, And to dust you shall return."
God’s curse on creation, because of volitional disobedience, is the genesis of the suffering concept. God used the collective curse /suffering to be able to provide a collective suffering Savior for volitionally disobedient humanity: 1 Corinthians 15:21-22 21 For since by a man came death, by a man also came the resurrection of the dead. 22 For as in Adam all die, so also in Christ all shall be made alive.
This creation, curse, Suffering Savior plan is what God chose to resolve the volitional rebellion toward God issue: 1 Corinthians 15:23-26 23 But each in his own order: Christ the first fruits, after that those who are Christ's at His coming, 24 then comes the end, when He delivers up the kingdom to the God and Father, when He has abolished all rule and all authority and power. 25 For He must reign until He has put all His enemies under His feet. 26 The last enemy that will be abolished is death.
This study focuses on the term / terms translated “suffer” as a summary vocabulary—because that is their purpose. There are many other Biblical-word-concepts which also describe this suffering life. The study of them prepares the Believer in the Eternal Christ of the Triune God of the Bible for their life of earthly suffering: Colossians 1:24 24 Now I rejoice in my sufferings for your sake, and in my flesh I do my share on behalf of His body (which is the church) in filling up that which is lacking in Christ's afflictions. 2 Corinthians 1:5 5 For just as the sufferings of Christ are ours in abundance, so also our comfort is abundant through Christ.
The Concepts from the Evidence: Shared national suffering, self-induced suffering, God takes on suffering (2nd most uses), the Creator suffers, Messianic Prophecy of suffering, the Superior Sufferings of the Messiah, the sufferings of Christ lead to glory, suffering reward (the most uses), suffering eternal loss, suffering in the Body of Christ: not alone, self-induced suffering versus suffering reward, wasted suffering, turning legitimate spiritual suffering to nothing, “suffer according to the will of God”, fear of suffering—do not, suffering dreams, supposing and suffering, Apostolic power over selected suffering, love over suffering, Messianic power over selected suffering, false prophets and teachers deserved suffering, suffering reaction = prayer, little suffering versus eternal glory, suffer worthy, suffering reward / future glory, suffering solution = through Christ, suffering solution = your personal relationship with God, Church mission suffering, Apostolic mission and suffering, the religious cause Believers to suffer, suffering because of angels. To whom much is spiritually given , much suffering is required.
The contrast of suffering is: The Best is Yet to Come.
(The parentheses are mine.)
NAS Numbers 14:33 'And your sons shall be shepherds for forty years in the wilderness, and they shall suffer for your unfaithfulness, until your corpses lie in the wilderness. (Israel’s shared national suffering.)
NAS Psalm 34:10 The young lions do lack and suffer hunger; But they who seek the LORD shall not be in want of any good thing.
NAS Psalm 88:15 I was afflicted and about to die from my youth on; I suffer Thy terrors; I am overcome.
NAS Proverbs 11:15 He who is surety for a stranger will surely suffer for it, But he who hates going surety is safe. (Self-induced suffering.)
NAS Proverbs 13:20 He who walks with wise men will be wise, But the companion of fools will suffer harm. (Self-induced suffering.)
NAS Proverbs 19:15 Laziness casts into a deep sleep, And an idle man will suffer hunger. (Self-induced suffering.)
NAS Matthew 16:21 From that time Jesus Christ began to show His disciples that He must go to Jerusalem, and suffer many things from the elders and chief priests and scribes, and be killed, and be raised up on the third day. (God takes on suffering.) (The Creator suffers.) (Compare Son of Man.)
NAS Matthew 17:12 but I say to you, that Elijah already came, and they did not recognize him, but did to him whatever they wished. So also the Son of Man is going to suffer at their hands."
NAS Mark 8:31 And He began to teach them that the Son of Man must suffer many things and be rejected by the elders and the chief priests and the scribes, and be killed, and after three days rise again.
NAS Mark 9:12 And He said to them, "Elijah does first come and restore all things. And yet how is it written of the Son of Man that He should suffer many things and be treated with contempt?
NAS Luke 9:22 saying, "The Son of Man must suffer many things, and be rejected by the elders and chief priests and scribes, and be killed, and be raised up on the third day."
NAS Luke 17:25 "But first He must suffer many things and be rejected by this generation.
NAS Luke 22:15 And He said to them, "I have earnestly desired to eat this Passover with you before I suffer;
NAS Luke 24:26 "Was it not necessary for the Christ to suffer these things and to enter into His glory?" (Earth = suffering, eternity = glory.)
46 and He said to them, "Thus it is written, that the Christ should suffer and rise again from the dead the third day;
NAS Acts 2:31 he looked ahead and spoke of the resurrection of the Christ, that He was neither abandoned to Hades, nor did His flesh suffer decay.
NAS Acts 3:18 "But the things which God announced beforehand by the mouth of all the prophets, that His Christ should suffer, He has thus fulfilled. (Messianic Prophesy of suffering.)
NAS Acts 5:41 So they went on their way from the presence of the Council, rejoicing that they had been considered worthy to suffer shame for His name. (Suffering reward.)
NAS Acts 9:16 for I will show him how much he must suffer for My name's sake." (Suffering reward.)
NAS Acts 17:3 explaining and giving evidence that the Christ had to suffer and rise again from the dead, and saying, "This Jesus whom I am proclaiming to you is the Christ." (Messianic Prophesy of suffering.)
NAS Acts 26:23 that the Christ was to suffer, and that by reason of His resurrection from the dead He should be the first to proclaim light both to the Jewish people and to the Gentiles." (Messianic Prophesy of suffering.)
NAS Romans 8:17 and if children, heirs also, heirs of God and fellow heirs with Christ, if indeed we suffer with Him in order that we may also be glorified with Him. (Suffering reward.)
NAS 1 Corinthians 3:15 If any man's work is burned up, he shall suffer loss; but he himself shall be saved, yet so as through fire. (Suffering eternal loss.)
NAS 1 Corinthians 12:26 And if one member suffers, all the members suffer with it; if one member is honored, all the members rejoice with it. (Suffering in the Body of Christ: not alone.)
NAS 2 Corinthians 1:6 But if we are afflicted, it is for your comfort and salvation; or if we are comforted, it is for your comfort, which is effective in the patient enduring of the same sufferings which we also suffer;
NAS 2 Corinthians 7:9 I now rejoice, not that you were made sorrowful, but that you were made sorrowful to the point of repentance; for you were made sorrowful according to the will of God, in order that you might not suffer loss in anything through us. (Suffering eternal loss.)
NAS Galatians 3:4 Did you suffer so many things in vain-- if indeed it was in vain? (Wasted suffering.) (Turning legitimate spiritual suffering to nothing.)
NAS Philippians 1:29 For to you it has been granted for Christ's sake, not only to believe in Him, but also to suffer for His sake, (Suffering reward.)
NAS 1 Thessalonians 3:4 For indeed when we were with you, we kept telling you in advance that we were going to suffer affliction; and so it came to pass, as you know. (Suffering reward.)
NAS 2 Timothy 1:12 For this reason I also suffer these things, but I am not ashamed; for I know whom I have believed and I am convinced that He is able to guard what I have entrusted to Him until that day. (Suffering reward.)
NAS 2 Timothy 2:3 Suffer hardship with me, as a good soldier of Christ Jesus. (Suffering reward.)
9 for which I suffer hardship even to imprisonment as a criminal; but the word of God is not imprisoned. (Suffering reward.)
NAS Hebrews 9:26 Otherwise, He would have needed to suffer often since the foundation of the world; but now once at the consummation of the ages He has been manifested to put away sin by the sacrifice of Himself. (The Superior Sufferings of the Messiah.) (See Christ and the Cup.)
NAS 1 Peter 2:20 For what credit is there if, when you sin and are harshly treated, you endure it with patience? But if when you do what is right and suffer for it you patiently endure it, this finds favor with God. (Self-induced suffering versus suffering reward.)
NAS 1 Peter 3:14 But even if you should suffer for the sake of righteousness, you are blessed. And do not fear their intimidation, and do not be troubled, (Suffering reward.)
17 For it is better, if God should will it so, that you suffer for doing what is right rather than for doing what is wrong. (Self-induced suffering versus suffering reward.)
NAS 1 Peter 4:15-19 15 By no means let any of you suffer as a murderer, or thief, or evildoer, or a troublesome meddler; 16 but if anyone suffers as a Christian, let him not feel ashamed, but in that name let him glorify God. 17 For it is time for judgment to begin with the household of God; and if it begins with us first, what will be the outcome for those who do not obey the gospel of God? 18 And if it is with difficulty that the righteous is saved, what will become of the godless man and the sinner? 19 Therefore, let those also who suffer according to the will of God entrust their souls to a faithful Creator in doing what is right. (Self-induced suffering versus suffering reward.) (“Suffer according to the will of God.”) (The amazing cost of freewill—a Savior and a Lake of Fire.) (Recall Freewill Theorem and Sin, Eternity, and Freewill.
NAS Revelation 2:10 'Do not fear what you are about to suffer. Behold, the devil is about to cast some of you into prison, that you may be tested, and you will have tribulation ten days. Be faithful until death, and I will give you the crown of life. (Suffering reward.) (Fear of suffering—do not.)
NAS Matthew 27:19 And while he was sitting on the judgment seat, his wife sent to him, saying, "Have nothing to do with that righteous Man; for last night I suffered greatly in a dream because of Him." (Suffering dreams.)
NAS Luke 13:2 And He answered and said to them, "Do you suppose that these Galileans were greater sinners than all other Galileans, because they suffered this fate? (Supposing and suffering. To this day, across many cultures, when bad things happen to people or individuals, divine curse is assumed. See Job 3:20, page 6, below.) (NAS John 11:4 But when Jesus heard it, He said, "This sickness is not unto death, but for the glory of God, that the Son of God may be glorified by it.") (See Biblical Concept: Sickness.)
NAS Acts 28:5 However he shook the creature off into the fire and suffered no harm. (Apostolic power over selected suffering.)
NAS 1 Corinthians 13:5 does not act unbecomingly; it does not seek its own, is not provoked, does not take into account a wrong suffered, (Love over suffering.)
NAS Philippians 3:8 More than that, I count all things to be loss in view of the surpassing value of knowing Christ Jesus my Lord, for whom I have suffered the loss of all things, and count them but rubbish in order that I may gain Christ, (Suffering reward.)
NAS 1 Thessalonians 2:2 but after we had already suffered and been mistreated in Philippi, as you know, we had the boldness in our God to speak to you the gospel of God amid much opposition. (Suffering reward.)
NAS 1 Timothy 1:19 keeping faith and a good conscience, which some have rejected and suffered shipwreck in regard to their faith. (Self-induced suffering.)
NAS Hebrews 2:18 For since He Himself was tempted in that which He has suffered, He is able to come to the aid of those who are tempted. (God takes on suffering.) (The Creator suffers.) (Compare Son of Man.)
NAS Hebrews 5:8 Although He was a Son, He learned obedience from the things which He suffered. (God takes on suffering.) (The Creator suffers.) (Compare Son of Man.)
NAS Hebrews 13:12 Therefore Jesus also, that He might sanctify the people through His own blood, suffered outside the gate. (God takes on suffering.) (The Creator suffers.) (Compare Son of Man.)
NAS 1 Peter 2:21 For you have been called for this purpose, since Christ also suffered for you, leaving you an example for you to follow in His steps, (Suffering reward.)
NAS 1 Peter 4:1 Therefore, since Christ has suffered in the flesh, arm yourselves also with the same purpose, because he who has suffered in the flesh has ceased from sin, (Suffering reward.)
NAS 1 Peter 5:10 And after you have suffered for a little while, the God of all grace, who called you to His eternal glory in Christ, will Himself perfect, confirm, strengthen and establish you. (Suffering reward.) (Little suffering versus eternal glory.)
NAS Matthew 8:6 and saying, "Lord, my servant is lying paralyzed at home, suffering great pain." (Messianic power over selected suffering.) (Mark 6:1-6 1 And He went out from there, and He came into His home town; and His disciples followed Him. 2 And when the Sabbath had come, He began to teach in the synagogue; and the many listeners were astonished, saying, "Where did this man get these things, and what is this wisdom given to Him, and such miracles as these performed by His hands? 3 "Is not this the carpenter, the son of Mary, and brother of James, and Joses, and Judas, and Simon? Are not His sisters here with us?" And they took offense at Him. 4 And Jesus said to them, "A prophet is not without honor except in his home town and among his own relatives and in his own household." 5 And He could do no miracle there except that He laid His hands upon a few sick people and healed them. 6 And He wondered at their unbelief. And He was going around the villages teaching.)
NAS Matthew 9:20 And behold, a woman who had been suffering from a hemorrhage for twelve years, came up behind Him and touched the fringe of His cloak; (Messianic power over selected suffering.)
NAS Luke 4:38 And He arose and left the synagogue, and entered Simon's home. Now Simon's mother-in-law was suffering from a high fever; and they made request of Him on her behalf. (Messianic power over selected suffering.)
NAS Luke 14:2 And there, in front of Him was a certain man suffering from dropsy. (Messianic power over selected suffering.)
NAS Acts 1:3 To these He also presented Himself alive, after His suffering, by many convincing proofs, appearing to them over a period of forty days, and speaking of the things concerning the kingdom of God. (God takes on suffering.) (The Creator suffers.) (Compare Son of Man.)
NAS Philippians 4:12 I know how to get along with humble means, and I also know how to live in prosperity; in any and every circumstance I have learned the secret of being filled and going hungry, both of having abundance and suffering need. (Suffering reward.)
NAS 2 Thessalonians 1:5 This is a plain indication of God's righteous judgment so that you may be considered worthy of the kingdom of God, for which indeed you are suffering. (Suffering reward.) (Suffer worthy.)
NAS 2 Timothy 1:8 Therefore do not be ashamed of the testimony of our Lord, or of me His prisoner; but join with me in suffering for the gospel according to the power of God, (Suffering reward.)
NAS Hebrews 2:9 But we do see Him who has been made for a little while lower than the angels, namely, Jesus, because of the suffering of death crowned with glory and honor, that by the grace of God He might taste death for everyone. (God takes on suffering.) (The Creator suffers.) (Compare Son of Man.) (Suffering because of angels.)
NAS James 5:10 As an example, brethren, of suffering and patience, take the prophets who spoke in the name of the Lord. (Suffering reward.)
13 Is anyone among you suffering? Let him pray. Is anyone cheerful? Let him sing praises. (Suffering reaction = prayer.)
NAS 1 Peter 2:19 For this finds favor, if for the sake of conscience toward God a man bears up under sorrows when suffering unjustly. (Suffering reward.)
23 and while being reviled, He did not revile in return; while suffering, He uttered no threats, but kept entrusting Himself to Him who judges righteously; (God takes on suffering.) (The Creator suffers.) (Compare Son of Man.)
NAS 1 Peter 5:9 But resist him, firm in your faith, knowing that the same experiences of suffering are being accomplished by your brethren who are in the world. (Suffering reward.) (Suffering because of angels.)
NAS 2 Peter 2:13 suffering wrong as the wages of doing wrong. They count it a pleasure to revel in the daytime. They are stains and blemishes, reveling in their deceptions, as they carouse with you, (False prophets and teachers deserved suffering.)
NAS Exodus 3:7 And the LORD said, "I have surely seen the affliction of My people who are in Egypt, and have given heed to their cry because of their taskmasters, for I am aware of their sufferings. (Suffering reward.)
NAS Romans 8:18 For I consider that the sufferings of this present time are not worthy to be compared with the glory that is to be revealed to us. (Suffering reward, future glory.) (The best is yet to come.)
NAS 2 Corinthians 1:5 For just as the sufferings of Christ are ours in abundance, so also our comfort is abundant through Christ. (Suffering reward.) (Suffering solution = through Christ.) (Suffering solution = your personal relationship with God.) (See Philippians 3:10 below.)
6 But if we are afflicted, it is for your comfort and salvation; or if we are comforted, it is for your comfort, which is effective in the patient enduring of the same sufferings which we also suffer; (Suffering reward.)
7 and our hope for you is firmly grounded, knowing that as you are sharers of our sufferings, so also you are sharers of our comfort. (Suffering reward.)
NAS Philippians 3:10 that I may know Him, and the power of His resurrection and the fellowship of His sufferings, being conformed to His death; (Suffering solution = your personal relationship with God.)
NAS Colossians 1:24 Now I rejoice in my sufferings for your sake, and in my flesh I do my share on behalf of His body (which is the church) in filling up that which is lacking in Christ's afflictions. (Church mission suffering.)
NAS 1 Thessalonians 2:14 For you, brethren, became imitators of the churches of God in Christ Jesus that are in Judea, for you also endured the same sufferings at the hands of your own countrymen, even as they did from the Jews, (Church mission suffering.)
NAS 2 Timothy 3:11 persecutions, and sufferings, such as happened to me at Antioch, at Iconium and at Lystra; what persecutions I endured, and out of them all the Lord delivered me! (Apostolic mission and suffering.) (To whom much is spiritually given , much suffering is required.)
NAS Hebrews 2:10 For it was fitting for Him, for whom are all things, and through whom are all things, in bringing many sons to glory, to perfect the author of their salvation through sufferings. (God takes on suffering.) (The Creator suffers.) (Compare Son of Man.) (Suffering because of angels.)
NAS Hebrews 10:32 But remember the former days, when, after being enlightened, you endured a great conflict of sufferings, (Church mission suffering.)
NAS 1 Peter 1:11 seeking to know what person or time the Spirit of Christ within them was indicating as He predicted the sufferings of Christ and the glories to follow. (God takes on suffering.) (The Creator suffers.) (Compare Son of Man.) (The sufferings of Christ lead to glory.) (1:12, Suffering because of angels.)
NAS 1 Peter 4:12-14 12 Beloved, do not be surprised at the fiery ordeal among you, which comes upon you for your testing, as though some strange thing were happening to you; 13 but to the degree that you share the sufferings of Christ, keep on rejoicing; so that also at the revelation of His glory, you may rejoice with exultation. 14 If you are reviled for the name of Christ, you are blessed, because the Spirit of glory and of God rests upon you. (Church mission suffering.) (Suffering reward.)
NAS 1 Peter 5:1 Therefore, I exhort the elders among you, as your fellow elder and witness of the sufferings of Christ, and a partaker also of the glory that is to be revealed, (The sufferings of Christ lead to glory.)
NAS Job 3:20 "Why is light given to him who suffers, And life to the bitter of soul; (Job’s suffering. Job 42:1-10 1 Then Job answered the LORD, and said, 2 "I know that Thou canst do all things, And that no purpose of Thine can be thwarted. 3 'Who is this that hides counsel without knowledge?' "Therefore I have declared that which I did not understand, Things too wonderful for me, which I did not know." 4 'Hear, now, and I will speak; I will ask Thee, and do Thou instruct me.' 5 "I have heard of Thee by the hearing of the ear; But now my eye sees Thee; 6 Therefore I retract, And I repent in dust and ashes." 7 And it came about after the LORD had spoken these words to Job, that the LORD said to Eliphaz the Temanite, "My wrath is kindled against you and against your two friends, because you have not spoken of Me what is right as My servant Job has. 8 "Now therefore, take for yourselves seven bulls and seven rams, and go to My servant Job, and offer up a burnt offering for yourselves, and My servant Job will pray for you. For I will accept him so that I may not do with you according to your folly, because you have not spoken of Me what is right, as My servant Job has." 9 So Eliphaz the Temanite and Bildad the Shuhite and Zophar the Naamathite went and did as the LORD told them; and the LORD accepted Job. 10 And the LORD restored the fortunes of Job when he prayed for his friends, and the LORD increased all that Job had twofold.) (1:12 and 2:6, wealth and health suffering because of angels.)
NAS Matthew 11:12 "And from the days of John the Baptist until now the kingdom of heaven suffers violence, and violent men take it by force. (Religion versus Kingdom of Heaven.) (The religious cause Believers to suffer.)
NAS Romans 8:22 For we know that the whole creation groans and suffers the pains of childbirth together until now. (Adam’s fall = a cursed 4du.) (Freewill is an amazing thing.) Romans 8:18-23 18 For I consider that the sufferings of this present time are not worthy to be compared with the glory that is to be revealed to us. 19 For the anxious longing of the creation waits eagerly for the revealing of the sons of God. 20 For the creation was subjected to futility, not of its own will, but because of Him who subjected it, in hope 21 that the creation itself also will be set free from its slavery to corruption into the freedom of the glory of the children of God. 22 For we know that the whole creation groans and suffers the pains of childbirth together until now. 23 And not only this, but also we ourselves, having the first fruits of the Spirit, even we ourselves groan within ourselves, waiting eagerly for our adoption as sons, the redemption of our body. (The best is yet to come.) (Suffering because of angels.)
NAS 1 Corinthians 12:26 And if one member suffers, all the members suffer with it; if one member is honored, all the members rejoice with it. (Suffering in the Body of Christ: not alone.)
NAS 1 Peter 4:16 but if anyone suffers as a Christian, let him not feel ashamed, but in that name let him glorify God. (Suffering reward.) (See Job 3:20 above.)