"Suffering is the badge of all our tribe" are the words of Shylock, the Jew, in Shakespeare's play The Merchant of Venice. Although he spoke insincerely, what he said was not devoid of truth. But now that Jesus, the Messiah, has come all who believe in him are the people of God in a world of fallen mankind, and suffering is their badge, too. Jesus said that this would be the case when he called on all would-be disciples to take up their cross (Matt. 16:25). As Jesus "learned obedience through what he suffered" (Heb. 5:8), so do they-although he had a unique task which is not passed on to them. But "no servant is greater than his master" (John 13:16; 16:20).
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Issue: "The Blue Note: Can Your Faith Face The Music?" Jan./Feb. 2005 Vol. 14 No. 1 Page number(s): 25-29, 37
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