ADMONISHMENT OF JESUS
A. To the Church undergoing tribulation Jesus withholds the admonishment and instead prepares them for further tribulation to come.
1. 23 except that the Holy Spirit solemnly testifies to me in every city, saying that bonds and afflictions await me. 24 But I do not consider my life of any account as dear to myself, so that I may finish my course and the ministry which I received from the Lord Jesus, to testify solemnly of the gospel of the grace of God. (NASB Acts 20:23-24)
B. Satan is mentioned in verse 9 as the one leading Jews into blasphemy. The devil is then mentioned in verse 10 as the one who will cast some of the Smyrneans into prison.
C. We can rest our hearts in the sovereignty of God, knowing that God wields Satan as an instrument of testing. Satan may believe he is working autonomously but there are divine boundaries set by God. Jesus states that the context of this particular tribulation and imprisonment is for testing.
1. 6 In this you greatly rejoice, even though now for a little while, if necessary, you have been distressed by various trials, 7 so that the proof of your faith, being more precious than gold which is perishable, even though tested by fire, may be found to result in praise and glory and honor at the revelation of Jesus Christ…(NASB 1 Peter 1:6-7)
D. Be faithful unto death – faithful to the point of death.
1. Hebrews 11
E. 8 Be of sober spirit, be on the alert. Your adversary, the devil, prowls around like a roaring lion, seeking someone to devour. 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. 10 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. 11 To Him be dominion forever and ever. Amen. (NASB 1 Peter 5:8-11)