KJV Dictionary Definition: Complain
To complain is to utter expressions of grief; to lament. To utter expressions of resentment; to murmur; to find fault. To utter expressions of uneasiness, or pain. To charge; to accuse of an offence; to present an accusation against a person or a person/leader in charge (Webster’s Dictionary). Complaining or murmuring is one of the besetting sin that will ensnare us and will take us away from the path of God; slowly but surely. That is why the Bible tells us “And do not complain as some of them did and were destroyed by the destroyer”(1 Corinthians 10:10). Complaining can come across like this picture above just a stroll along a path but this path that seem harmful will lead to death, ruin and ultimate destruction in the end.
The Sin of Complaining
Are you a complainer? Do you complain? How do you feel and what or your comments when you want things to happen a certain way and it does not. How do you feel when you look at others life. Do you think that you should have what they have or do you think that God is keeping something from you. Do you allow things in your heart to steal your joy and contentment. The apostle Paul was in jail when he wrote “Not that I speak in respect of want: for I have learned, in whatsoever state I am, therewith to be content” (Philippians 4:11). “Paul demonstrates the proper attitude to have: He was content whether poor or prosperous, whether weak or strong, whether people loved him or hated him. It is not easy to do sometimes, but he says, “Whatever state I’m in, I’m going to be content because, when I have Christ in me, I can do anything that He wants me to do. So I can’t think about those other things. I have to be content with what God has given. A person’s condition or his position does not need to matter a whit as long as Christ is working through him.” Frustration and bitterness were not Paul’s companions. He did not make what he considered to be his needs absolutes in order to determine his sense of well-being. By faith, he believed that God was watching over his life and would provide. Paul followed the example of Jesus, and this is the example that we too are to follow. We are to learn not to make frustration, bitterness, and hostility be regular parts of our lives” (Richard T. Ritenbaugh).
The Illogic of Complaining A.W. Tozer
“Among those sins most exquisitely fitted to injure the soul and destroy the testimony, few can equal the sin of complaining. Yet the habit is so widespread that we hardly notice it among us. The complaining heart never lacks for occasion. It can always find reason enough to be unhappy. The object of its censure may be almost anything: the weather, the church, the difficulties of the way, other Christians or even God Himself. A complaining Christian puts himself in a position morally untenable. The simple logic of his professed discipleship is against him with an unanswerable argument. Its reasoning runs like this: First, he is a Christian because he chose to be. There are no conscripts in the army of God. He is, therefore, in the awkward position of complaining against the very conditions he brought himself into by his own free choice. Secondly, he can quit any time he desires. No Christian wears a chain on his leg. Yet he still continues on, grumbling as he goes, and for such conduct he has no defense.”
Complaining Brings Death
In 1 Corinthians 10 we read about the Israelites after they had been delivered from Egypt. In verse 10 we read that some of the Israelites complained and that God was angry enough to destroy them. Under what circumstances did the Israelites complain? On one occasion they went without water for three days. One time they found water, but it was bitter. They complained when they didn’t have food. They complained when they had manna, but no meat. Put yourself in their situations. Do you think that you would have a right to complain about lacking water for three days or eating the same food day after day after day? God sent severe judgments for complaining even in situations that we might think it justified to murmur. These things happened to them as examples and were written down for warnings for us. The bible tells us, “In everything give thanks, for this is the will of God in Christ Jesus concerning you.” God’s command is – In everything give thanks; and the command is emphasized, for this is the will of God in Christ Jesus concerning you. It is an actual positive command; and if we want to obey God, we have simply got to give thanks in everything. There is no getting around it. Let us look at the story of Joseph told in Genesis 37; where is brothers first cast him into a pit and then sold him. We also see what he when through from Potiphar’s house to Jail. He had a lot to grumble or complained about but he did not and look at how God rewarded him in the end. Nothing could have seemed more utterly contrary to the will of God than his being sold to the Ishmaelites by his wicked envious brothers; and it would not have seemed possible for Joseph, when he was being carried off into slavery in Egypt, to give thanks. The fact of his having been sold into slavery was the direct doorway to the greatest blessings of his life. And, at the end, Joseph himself could say to his wicked brothers; “as for you, ye thought evil against me, but God meant it unto good.” When we look at what happened to Joseph through the eyes of feelings and what was done to him we would see the wickedness of his brothers. However, if we look at it through God’s point of view and the way Joseph responded to his brother through the eyes of faith. Joseph could see that it was God’s will for him to go to Egypt. God send him there because God an incredible destiny planned out for him and an incredible purpose for his life.
Never Be Ignorant of The Enemies Devices
Many time we are in situations or suddenly something happened and we began to complain. What is God saying? He already told us to give thanks in everything and he showed us through the apostle Paul that it is humanly possible to give thanks even if we are jailed and chained. A few days ago upon learning something unexpected – I got so hurt by what was said about me. I thank God that he was so gracious to reveal it today. What is God saying when the unexpected happened which life is full of do not complain Vanessa still give me thanks not in your strength but in Mine. If I had looked at what happened through the eyes of faith; through the eyes of Joseph who went through hundred times worst, through the eyes of God; I would see that when the enemy has God’s people he does not want to let them go and that he will raise up the Korah’s, the Miriam’s and many more but once we do as God said He will fight for us every time. Throughout the bible whenever God raised up a deliver for His people there was always strong opposition both physical and spiritually. God send ten judgment upon Egypt including deaths and still the enemy did not want to let God’s people go and even when he let them leave; he followed after them trying to pull them back into Egypt, which is a type of the world, the flesh and the devil. We must rest assured that God will fight the battles and that he will always make the way through the red seas; destroying the Pharaoh’s and his host. When God fights for us, we have no need to murmur and complain. Rather we must do and say what Moses said to the complaining Israelites when he called upon God and God ask him what do you have in your hand. Moses then stretched out the rod and said to the people, “Stand back and see the Salvation of the Lord.” Moses had his rod and we have even greater; the spirit of God living inside of us – revealing Jesus the word, who is Salvation and our Saviour. God wants us to not be ignorant of the enemies devices and stand on His words that will never change. God words tells us that we must pull down every high things that try to exalt itself against the knowledge of God. Father, help us all to remember in all the situations and circumstances; whatever they may be – not to grumble, murmur or complain. Remind us that whether the challenges come from within or without that You will indeed fight all our submitted battles and that You will never give us more than we can bear. You asked us to cast all our cares upon You who cares for us. Father, remind us through Your holy Spirit that once ask Your help and truly surrender them to You we must trust You in it. However, when we complain when the unexpected happened, like I did instead of giving thanks then You are not able to work through and deliver us from what was not given or submitted to You.
Scriptures Verses About Complaining
Philippians 2:14 – Do all things without murmurings and disputings:
Ephesians 4:29 – Let no corrupt communication proceed out of your mouth, but that which is good to the use of edifying, that it may minister grace unto the hearers.
James 5:9 – Grudge not one against another, brethren, lest ye be condemned: behold, the judge standeth before the door.
1 Peter 4:9 – Use hospitality one to another without grudging.
1 Thessalonians 5:18 – In every thing give thanks: for this is the will of God in Christ Jesus concerning you.
Numbers 11:1-4 – And [when] the people complained, it displeased the LORD: and the LORD heard [it]; and his anger was kindled; and the fire of the LORD burnt among them, and consumed [them that were] in the uttermost parts of the camp.
1 Corinthians 10:10 – Neither murmur ye, as some of them also murmured, and were destroyed of the destroyer.
Exodus 16:8 – And Moses said, [This shall be], when the LORD shall give you in the evening flesh to eat, and in the morning bread to the full; for that the LORD heareth your murmurings which ye murmur against him: and what [are] we? your murmurings [are] not against us, but against the LORD.
Philippians 4:11-12 – Not that I speak in respect of want: for I have learned, in whatsoever state I am, [therewith] to be content.
Philippians 2:12-16 – Wherefore, my beloved, as ye have always obeyed, not as in my presence only, but now much more in my absence, work out your own salvation with fear and trembling.
Romans 12:2 – And be not conformed to this world: but be ye transformed by the renewing of your mind, that ye may prove what [is] that good, and acceptable, and perfect, will of God.
Psalms 106:25 – But murmured in their tents, [and] hearkened not unto the voice of the LORD.
Isaiah 53:7 – He was oppressed, and he was afflicted, yet he opened not his mouth: he is brought as a lamb to the slaughter, and as a sheep before her shearers is dumb, so he openeth not his mouth.
Philippians 2:14-16 – Do all things without murmurings and disputings:
Proverbs 17:22 – A merry heart doeth good [like] a medicine: but a broken spirit drieth the bones.
Numbers 21:4-6 – And they journeyed from mount Hor by the way of the Red sea, to compass the land of Edom: and the soul of the people was much discouraged because of the way.
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