And let us not be weary in well doing: for in due season we shall reap, if we faint not.
As we have therefore opportunity, let us do good unto all men, especially unto them who are of the household of faith.
We live in a world today where people look for instant gratification. Especially, in the United States people want things NOW: fast food, rapid transit, instant this and instant that. We need to learn patience and to wait on God.
When describing the justice of God in the Power for Abundant Living class, Dr. Victor Paul Wierwille said that "the wheels of God grind slowly, but they grind finely." Receiving that which God promises requires us to wait patiently for the Giver to fulfill His promise.
Cast not away therefore your confidence, which hath great recompence of reward.
For ye have need of patience [hupomone], that, after ye have done the will of God, ye might receive the promise.
For yet a little while, and he that shall come will come, and will not tarry.
The Greek word translated patience in this verse is the word "hupomone." Hupomone means to hold up under pressure - to endure - to be constant. Patience in the Word of God is always tied to hope. We continue doing God's Word day after day after day looking forward to the day when Christ shall return. We endure the pressures of life and hold up under the tribulations that would have us quit because we know that we will receive the promise of God.
Let's look at some examples of believers in the Old Testament. These men had promises from God and they continued faithfully day after day after day for many years before they saw the promise come to pass in their lives.
And Noah was five hundred years old . . .
And Noah was six hundred years old when the flood of waters was upon the earth.
the Word of God begins to tell us of the record of the flood and Noah it
states that Noah was five hundred years old. Right after this God
tells Noah to build the ark. Then, the Word of God tells us that
Noah and his family entered the ark and the flood came when Noah was six
hundred years old. Now, I do not know specifically how old Noah was
when God said build the boat, but the Word of God specifies a one hundred
year period in which this record takes place.
During this time the Word of God also indicates (in Genesis 6:5) that "the wickedness of man was great in the earth, and that every imagination of the thoughts of his heart was only evil continually." In 2 Peter 2:5 the Word of God says that God "saved Noah the eighth person, a preacher of righteousness, bringing in the flood upon the world of the ungodly;" Noah continued patiently doing God's Word and speaking it to ungodly men for close to 100 years because of the promise made to him. Not one of the evil men he spoke to believed; yet he continued under pressure and he received the promise.
Now the Lord had said unto Abram, Get thee out of thy country, and from thy kindred, and from thy father's house, unto a land that I will shew thee:
And I will make of thee a great nation, and I will bless thee, and make thy name great; and thou shalt be a blessing:
And I will bless them that bless thee, and curse him that curseth thee: and in thee shall all families of the earth be blessed.
So Abram departed, as the Lord had spoken unto him; and Lot went with him: and Abram was seventy and five years old when he departed out of Haran.
And Abraham was an hundred years old, when his son Isaac was born unto him.
For when God made promise to Abraham, because he could swear by no greater, he sware by himself,
Saying, Surely blessing I will bless thee, and multiplying I will multiply thee.
And so, after he had patiently endured, he obtained the promise.
Abraham received the promise from God when he was 75 years old. The promise was fulfilled and obtained by Abraham when he was 100 years old. For 25 years he patiently endured and waited on God.
Genesis 37:2, 10
. . . Joseph, being seventeen years old, was feeding the flock with his brethren; . . .
And he told it [revelation he had received from God] to his father, and to his brethren: and his father rebuked him, and said unto him, What is this dream that thou hast dreamed? Shall I and thy mother and thy brethren indeed come to bow down ourselves to thee to the earth?
Genesis 41:46a, 53-54a,
And Joseph was thirty years old when he stood before Pharaoh kind of Egypt. . .
And the seven years of plenteousness, that was in the land of Egypt, were ended.
And the seven years of dearth began to come . . .
And Joseph was the governor over the land, and he it was that sold to all the people of the land: and Joseph's brethren came, and bowed down themselves before him with their faces to the earth.
Joseph received this revelation from God when he was
17 years old and it was fulfilled when he was more than 37. Twenty
years he patiently continued to do and speak God's Word in the face of
great tribulations before he saw the promise of God come to pass.
Noah continued faithfully for nearly 100 years, Abraham for 25 years, and Joseph for at least 20 years before the promise of God was obtained. We sometimes have trouble believing God for 10 minutes!
But that on the good ground are they, which in an honest and good heart, having heard the word, keep it, and bring forth fruit with patience [hupomone].
If we want to see the fruit of God's Word we must hold it fast and continue faithfully day after day.
And not only so, but we glory in tribulations also: knowing that tribulation worketh patience[hupomone];
And patience[hupomone], experience; and experience hope:
And hope maketh not ashamed; because the love of God is shed abroad in our hearts by the Holy Ghost which is given to us.
We endure tribulation by continuing in the Word while looking toward the hope of Christ's return. It is our focus on the hope and patient continuance in the walking the Word that gets us through the tribulations of this world.
Rejoicing in hope; patient[hupomone] in tribulation; continuing instant in prayer.
We rejoice in hope with our eyes on the return of Christ. We endure tribulation continuing in God's Word until the day we receive the promise. And if you still want "instant" . . . how about instant in prayer.
That ye might walk worthy of the Lord unto all pleasing being fruitful in every good work, and increasing in the knowledge of God;
Strengthened with all might, according to his glorious power, unto all patience[hupomone] and longsuffering with joyfulness;
We walk worthy by continuing faithfully in God's Word day after day after day. We may face tribulation and longsuffering, but we can do it with joyfulness knowing that we will receive the promise from God.
1 Thessalonians 1:3
Remembering without ceasing your work of faith, and labour of love, and patience[hupomone] of hope in our Lord Jesus Christ, in the sight of God and our Father;
Work comes from believing God. Hard work (labor) comes from the love of God. Patience comes from hope. We can continue to endure the tribulations of this world because we have hope for the return of Christ.
Rest in the Lord, and wait patiently for him: fret not thyself because of him who prospereth in his way, because of the man who bringeth wicked devices to pass.
We wait patiently for the promise from God in the face of the wicked around us by resting silently in the Lord. We continue faithfully day after day and allow God to take care of the tribulation around us. We rest silently in God's arms. We do not fret about the situation around us.
I waited patiently for the Lord; and he inclined unto me, and heard my cry.
He brought me up also out of an horrible pit, out of the miry clay, and set my feet upon a rock, and established my goings.
God will establish our goings and set us on solid ground as we wait patiently for Him. Yes, we may find ourselves in miry clay; yes, we may find ourselves in a horrible pit; but, God will hear our cry and deliver us as we continue to walk on His Word and wait patiently for Him.