Sermons on Suffering


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Preaching on Suffering? Browse these sermons to find fresh ideas.

Persevering Through Suffering
Persevering Through Suffering

This sermon is part of the “More Than a Holiday” sermon series. See the whole series here.

Introduction

Isaiah 53, a very familiar chapter for ...


Knowing God is sovereign helps us persevere through suffering with peace in our hearts.


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Miraculous Births: Samuel
Miraculous Births: Samuel

This sermon is part of the “Miraculous Births” sermon series. See the whole series here.

Introduction

On December 1, 1863, Henry Wadsworth Longfellow ...


Sometimes it is in the midst of our troubles, when all hope seems gone, that God carries out his purposes.


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The Gain of Sacrifice
The Gain of Sacrifice

Introduction

I returned from a two-week trip to Nairobi, Kenya, and Jos, Nigeria, where we were visiting some of our dear friends and ministry partners ...


Jesus is the treasure that is worth sacrificing everything else for.


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Hope Through the Night
Hope Through the Night

Introduction

Let's consider the Psalm where our God tells us that lament is appropriate but never the final word—never the final word—as we ...


We can name our pain and pray in our pain before God.


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The Crack in Creation
The Crack in Creation

Introduction

(Read Mark 5:21-43)

Perhaps Jairus had taken his eye off of his little daughter for just a moment, never thinking she'd go near the edge of ...


Our response to evil, pain, and suffering can be a corridor through which you receive Jesus.


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Christmas Stories: A Dark Story
Christmas Stories: A Dark Story

This sermon is part of the “Christmas Stories” sermon series. See the whole series here.

Introduction

(Read Matthew 2:13-18)

The gun fired and ...


Even in the suffering surrounding Jesus' birth, Christ gave hope.


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Successful Suffering
Successful Suffering

Introduction

Give me an S.
Give me a U.
Give me a C.
Give me a C.
Give me an E.
Give me an S.
Give me an S.

What does that spell? "SUCCESS."

Success—that's ...


We all have pain in our lives—but where do we look for comfort?


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Hope in God
Hope in God

Introduction

The beautiful thing about the Psalms is that they are so applicable to our own lives, and they also give us guidance as we minister to others. ...


Let your cry of anguish be heard—and then remember.


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Suffering and the 'U-Curve' of Life
Suffering and the 'U-Curve' of Life

Introduction

A story that I think about from time to time may also be one that you are familiar with. There was a wise man who lived on the northern frontier ...


What we consider to be the worst can result in God's best for us.


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How God Works Through Tragedy
How God Works Through Tragedy

Introduction

Life can seem pretty vicious sometimes. As a church, over the last about five weeks we've had two major tragedies within our family here ...


Life may be messy, but Jesus is real.


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When Good Things Happen to Bad People
When Good Things Happen to Bad People

Introduction

One of the strangest lawsuits in US court history was filed on September 14, 2007. Nebraska Senator Ernie Chambers—one of the first ...


We need a new perspective—one that looks up.


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Death Is Not the End of the Story
Death Is Not the End of the Story

On the morning of October 1, 2015, a young man entered a classroom at Umpqua Community College (UCC) in Roseburg, Oregon, and began shooting people. Nine ...


We live in a broken, fallen world—but there's another chapter coming.


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Your Best Life Is Not Now
Your Best Life Is Not Now

Introduction

This room is full of hopes: fans hoping for a championship season, all of us hoping for another beautiful summer. Hopes can be more personal, ...


In the midst of hopelessness, there’s only one place where true hope can be found.


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God Uses Suffering for Our Good
God Uses Suffering for Our Good

Introduction

I remember standing next to the late Joan Rivers. It was May 2006, and I had been in Sydney, Australia, preaching in some Anglican churches ...


Suffering under the supervision of our good God should have good results in our lives.


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Christians Aren't Always Happy
Christians Aren't Always Happy

Introduction

You may have come here this morning seeking happiness. In one sense, how could you not? Seeking happiness is as natural for us as our desire ...


Following Jesus transforms our lives—but it doesn't mean we'll always have a smile on our face.


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Temptation
Temptation

Introduction

One of my favorite father-son stories in Western literature has to be story of Pip and Joe Gargery in Charles Dickens' novel, Great ...


It's a lie that you are fatherless; God will feed you, lead you, and abide with you.


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Weathering the Storms of Compromise

Introduction

People wonder, Is it really possible to be a Christian in today's world? So much of the values of this world are inimical to Christian values. ...


Is it possible to follow Christ without compromise? The Bible gives a resounding yes.


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Meditation for a Fallen Police Officer
Meditation for a Fallen Police Officer

Editor's Note: In the early morning hours of Christmas Eve 2012, police officer Jennifer Sebena was gunned down while on patrol. She was killed by ...


In times of deep crisis the Bible offers even deeper words of encouragement.


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Rachel Weeping
Rachel Weeping

The story behind the sermon (by Ken Langley)

Pastors struggle to find a fresh word at Christmas. We also struggle with expressing authentic sermonic lament ...


Inconsolable weeping meets Christ's unfathomable comfort.


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Mysterious Grace

Introduction

A few months ago my wife and I met with a woman who was telling us about her family. She told us that when her daughter was born she had big ...


Where's God when life goes horribly wrong? He might be a lot closer than you ever imagined.


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Where Do We Find Hope?

Introduction

On the hillsides and on the mountainsides along the ocean in Japan there are stone markers, some of them over six hundred years old, and on ...


The entire Bible declares the story of an unshakeable hope in the Living God.


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What to Do When Your Fig Tree Doesn’t Blossom

Introduction

Picture Calvin from Calvin and Hobbes. He's swinging on a swing in the school playground. Picture a bully named Mo, twice as big as Calvin. ...


We can trust the person of God even when we can't grasp the plan of God.


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God Is Trustworthy

Introduction

I began this series by quoting A. W. Tozer's famous contention that "What comes into our minds when we think about God is the most important ...


Resting in the refuge of God


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Finding God in the Dark

Introduction

Surely you know the Chronicles of Narnia movies, right? Well, those movies actually come from children's novels written by C. S. Lewis. The ...


By bringing our laments to God, we engage God and declare our trust in him.


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We Can Do This the Easy Way or the Hard Way

Introduction

For most of my time in college, I attended a small church in Chicago with my now wife, Jamie. The pastor of this church had been commissioned ...


God chooses to fulfill his promises in a variety of ways.


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The Divine Legacy

Introduction

I'll never forget walking into the Smithsonian's National Museum of American Art in Washington, D.C., maybe 20 years ago. Just inside the ...


We are being built up as the temple of God.


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Amazing Faith

Story behind the sermon (from Steve Mathewson)

Every so often, a particular sermon stirs a congregation—and their pastor!—in stronger ways ...


By trusting God's goodness, ordinary people can have amazing faith.


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God Is Still Loving

There are times in our lives when it seems like God is against us. I mean, we know that God is for us, but there are times when it seems like God is treating ...


God's Love is still with us, even in life's darkest seasons.


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The Undefiled
The Undefiled

When I was in seminary, the wife of one of my classmates worked as a quality control inspector at a pharmaceutical company downtown in order to support ...


God desires and rewards holiness.


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When the Bottom Falls Out

I remember the events that led to her tears. My wife, Kathy, had come home from a weekly grocery trip with more than groceries to be concerned about. ...


Daniel shows us a godly response in the face of great suffering.


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Faith in the Furnace

How do you win the World Series? A few decades ago, when the New York Mets were the underdog darlings of the National League, two young pitchers told ...


Daniel shows us how to truly trust God through great trial.


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Looking Up to Heaven

A shattered Colossus

The poet Percy Bysshe Shelly tells of meeting a traveler from an "antique" land who describes the ruins of a great statue in the desert. ...


God is in control and can soften the hardest of hearts.


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The Judgment of Grace

Chapter five of Daniel addresses the question of what would happen if you gave a party, and God crashed it. Nebuchadnezzar was no longer on the throne. ...


In the fate of King Belshazzar, we see God's righteous judgment.


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The Song of a Broom

Sunday school pictures of a ruddy faced lad in a lions' den have scant resemblance to the actual situation described in this sixth and last chapter of ...


God's call through Daniel to trust and live


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The Crook in the Lot

Introduction

One of the first people that I hope to meet in heaven is the Scottish theologian Thomas Boston, who was the subject of my doctoral research ...


Trusting in the sovereign will of God


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The Gloria in Excelsis Deo

Introduction

Today we're going to look at Luke chapter 2. There is a Christmas song tucked within this Christmas story that I want to uncover—a song ...


Christmas reminds us that Jesus provides the answers to all our fears.


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Heart Burn

The man's name was Toby. He was the youngest son of a lawyer from Cleveland who'd struck it rich and moved his family to the upscale community of Rancho ...


What does God do with a selfish heart?


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Heart Attack

If I asked you to take your finger and point to yourself, where would you point? Most of us, I imagine, would not point to our heads. That's interesting ...


The importance of the heart


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Heart Scan

I'm going to talk today about the most important thing there is about you or me or anyone else we are ever going to meet. To get there, I want to take ...


What is your heart, and why is it important?


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Heart Ache
Heart Ache

More than 3,000 years ago, near the city of Shechem, in the land we know today as Israel, an unknown seeker began digging a hole in the crusty soil where ...


What does God do with a thirsty heart?


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The Dark Side of Grace

Introduction

In the structure of John's gospel, John 11 serves as a hinge between two halves. The first 10 chapters are concerned with the ministry of ...


The dark side of God's grace is that a sovereign God who is in control sometimes uses the things he allows as much as he uses the things he directs.


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How Did the World Get So Messed Up?

Introduction

Not everything in the world is good. Not everything in the world is happy. Not everything in the world is beautiful. In fact, real evil does ...



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Loss, Loyalty, & Lament

Introduction

I've never been one to read romance novels, but lately I've been reading one. It's been a good one, too. Believe it or not, it's a book I ...



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God in Our Sorrows
God in Our Sorrows

The Advent is where God meets us in our sorrow.

The word advent means an arriving or an appearing. It's the arrival of something we hoped for, something ...



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A Christian's Happiness
A Christian's Happiness

Introduction

If you're a Christian, you know that Christianity is supposed to be about joy. You probably also know that you're supposed to experience ...


Paul offers three principles for finding joy in suffering.


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When God "Doesn't Come Through"

When I'm in trouble and I ask specifically for God to relieve me of that trouble, most of the time he doesn't. I wonder why that is. Is it because God ...


God works to accomplish his purposes.


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Victory for Us

Introduction

There are two things we discover at Easter. They both have to do with the victory of Jesus Christ, the victory he won on this the first day ...



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How Does God Keep His Promises?

Introduction

Several years ago, my father passed away at 88 years of age. During his last adult years, my father lived with us in Texas. Before that he ...



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Captured by the Word

Introduction

I knew I would be changing this message when just last week twelve jurors in the state of Michigan decided that Jack Kevorkian did not break ...



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Suffering

Introduction

One summer Stuart and I had a ministry experience that took us literally around God's world. I learned many significant lessons. First, I ...



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