What the Bible Says About Perseverance
According to the dictionary, perseverance is the act of continuing to do something even though the task is difficult. It is having the endurance and patience to do or achieve something despite difficulties, failure, or opposition.
Persistence is a mental strength that helps a person continue to strive to reach his goals even though there might be obstacles and setbacks. Some people fail at persevering because it requires dedication, determination, consistency, focus, and lots of patience.
Paul describes perseverance as being "steadfast, unmoveable, always abounding in the work of the Lord, forasmuch as ye know that your labor is not in vain in the Lord" (1 Corinthians 15:58). He also encouraged his followers in Galatians 6:9, "And let us not be weary in well-doing; for in due season we shall reap, if we faint not."
Nehemiah Exhibited Perseverance
A good example of perseverance in the Bible is Nehemiah who showed genuine commitment. He was instrumental in rebuilding the wall of Jerusalem that had been in ruin for many years.
Nehemiah had never been to Jerusalem, but while he was a cupbearer for King Artaxerxes he heard about the ruined wall. It disturbed him so deeply that he asked for time off from his job to go to Jerusalem to rebuild the wall.
Nehemiah was met with opposition, but he and his team never gave up. They practiced perseverance and the wall was rebuilt in only 52 days.
David Exhibited Perseverance
David was anointed to become king long before he sat on the throne. He was just a lad at the time when Samuel went to David's house to anoint a king. The young boy was outside tending sheep while all his older brothers lined up thinking one of them would be anointed. However, Samuel was there to bestow the honor on David.
At the time, Saul was king. Therefore, David had to wait until Saul's reign was over. King Saul was very jealous of David and tried to kill him, but he didn't. God was not pleased with Saul as the first king of Israel. After his death, none of Saul's relatives became king. So, David took his place on the throne after many years of persevering.
The Church at Ephesus Persevered
Perseverance is a virtue that some people have and some people lack. Jesus commended the Church at Ephesus for persevering. He said, "And you have persevered and have endured hardships, and have labored for my name's sake and have not become weary" (Revelation 2:2).
Jesus commended the church at Ephesus for their hard work, their perseverance, their endurance without becoming weary, resisting sin and being aware of false prophecy. Every church and every individual should exhibit those characteristics to please God.
The Church at Smyrna Persevered
Jesus informed the Church at Smyrna "not to be afraid of what they were about to suffer." He also encouraged them to be faithful even to the point of death because He would give them a victor's crown for enduring (Revelation 2:10).
Disciples of Christ Exhibit Perseverance
Disciples of Christ exhibit perseverance when they possess genuine faith. They exhibit perseverance when they endure to the end. Those who believe in Jesus are not exempt from suffering. However, their faith will carry them a long way and allow them to persevere and be a witness for those whose faith is weak.
Therefore, perseverance is not only important for the person who has it, but it is also important for those who are witnesses to it.
Why Everyone Should Persevere
It is not easy to persevere, but it can be done. Perseverance involves genuine commitment and patience no matter how difficult the assignment might be. People must set their hearts and minds on accomplishing whatever God has called them to do.
They must not lose heart and give up just as Nehemiah, David, the Church of Ephesus and the Church of Smyrna didn't give up. Instead, they were steadfast and determined to finish the work God had given them. For that reason, they will receive a crown of life that awaits them.