Scripture presents the preparation of the servant as having first to be proved (Phil. 2:22, 1 Ti. 3:10) to then be approved (Rom. 16;10, 1 Thes. 2 :4(JND version), 2 Tim. 2 :15). It is in the tests that the true character of the believer is manifested and formed; faithfulness in times of adversity demonstrates the reality of the inward life. The approbation of the Lord and the confidence of the brethren is for the one who goes through the trial patiently with the help of the Spirit of Jesus Christ. The same One Who is powerful to keep the servant from falling, is equally able and graciously willing to raise up one who has fallen through his own carelessness (Rom. 14:4, Luke 22:32). Failing a test does not make one reproved, but it allows the exercise of one’s soul to find therein the source of the failure; the weakness perhaps ignored up to this time and now revealed by the light of the Word, can be addressed and remedied in the presence of the Lord. As for the reproved, repeated testing has manifested that no usefulness could be had from the subject; reproved metal is one which after many attempts to purify it, still contains an unacceptable amount of impurities and for which it would be useless to pursue any further refining and it is thus rejected (Jer. 6:29-30, 2 Cor. 13 :5-6).
NOTE: All Bible references are from the King James Version unless otherwise specified. All unsigned material is in the spirit of Ecc. 12:11. Send all correspondence, comments, suggestions to: firstname.lastname@example.org
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