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20 August 2007

God "Tries" the Righteous

The psalmist David wrote, “The LORD trieth the righteous: but the wicked and him that loveth violence his soul hateth.”[1]

In this passage, when we read that God “trieth” it simply means that this is God’s way of “examining, scrutinizing, proving, and testing” the hearts of those who are His people, and these tests are for the purpose of preparing us for greater responsibility and spiritual growth.[2]

The apostle Paul makes it quite clear that the process of being approved by God follows a particular process: “Therefore being justified by faith, we have peace with God through our Lord Jesus Christ: By whom also we have access by faith into this grace wherein we stand, and rejoice in hope of the glory of God. And not only so, but we glory in tribulations also: knowing that tribulation worketh patience; And patience, 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 unto us.”[3]

As this process takes place we witness the varying degrees of preparation God places us in as they accomplish, work out, and achieve God’s purpose for our lives. Therefore, in the end, what we think of as pressures, stressors, or trials are tools God uses as a means to bring about a patient, enduring, sustaining, perseverant, and steadfast quality to our Christian character. When this quality is part of our spiritual nature we have become God-proven because our character has been tried and He can then trust us for greater measures of responsibility and authority.

This experience results in the establishment of hope in our lives, which is the “joyful and confident expectation of eternal salvation” and the understanding that because I came through previous trials intact then I’ll make it through this one as well because God is with me.[4]


[1] Psalm 11:5

[2] Brown, Driver, Briggs and Gesenius. "Hebrew Lexicon entry for Bachan". "The KJV Old Testament Hebrew Lexicon".

[3] Romans 5:1-5

[4] Thayer and Smith. "Greek Lexicon entry for Elpis". "The KJV New Testament Greek Lexicon".

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