Charles Simeon (1759-1836) argues that “it is under sufferings that the superiority of the Christian’s state is to be seen to the greatest advantage.” He comments on Romans 8:28:
“The Christian may be called to bear the heaviest afflictions; but they shall bring him to consideration, stir him up to prayer, wean him from the world, and lead him to seek his rest above — He maybe assaulted also with the most distressing temptations; but these will shew him the evil of his heart, and the faithfulness of his God: they will also teach him to sympathize with his tempted brethren: even death itself will be among the number of the things that shall prove beneficial to him. This is the most formidable enemy to fallen man: it cuts him off from all means and opportunities of salvation, and seals him up under endless and irremediable misery; but to a true Christian it is a most-invaluable treasure. It puts a period to all his sorrows and temptations, and introduces him to the immediate, everlasting enjoyment of his God.”
– Charles Simeon, Horae Homileticae Vol. 15, Discourse 1877.