Jay E. Adams’ booklet, Christ and Your Problems, offers a comprehensive look at how a Christian is supposed to deal with his or her problems in life. Adams writes this booklet from the perspective of a Christian overwhelmed by trials. Christ and Your Problems calls the reader out of his or her circumstances and back to the essential truth of Scripture to focus on the Lord who ordains and rules over the circumstances. Adams does so by unpacking the rich promises in the single verse of 1 Corinthians 10:13 – “No temptation has overtaken you but such as is common to man; and God is faithful, who will not allow you to be tempted beyond what you are able, but with the temptation will provide the way of escape also, so that you will be able to endure it.”
In this commonly quoted verse, Adams finds and expounds upon four key promises:
1. One’s problem is not unique. Rather, it is common to man;
2. God is faithful. He has our best interests in mind no matter how bad things may seem;
3. God will not allow His children to be tried beyond their ability to bear up under it; and,
4. God will provide a Christ-honoring way of escape from every trial.
Armed with these truths, one is able to see his or her problem with fresh eyes, knowing that the sovereign Lord has, in fact, prepared this trial for the believer’s good and God's own glory.
In spite of this fact, many people feel unable to work through their trials with a biblical view of those trials, much less counsel others about their trials. The author has written with one clear purpose; to teach the reader how to biblically deal with their problems. He does not want the person who is dealing with troubles in life to give up on overcoming the troubles and exhorts him or her to handle situations God’s way. The author begins this book by listing statements that are often heard by pastors and Christian counselors: ““But if you had to live with a wife like mine…” “Listen, pastor—no one has ever had to face anything comparable to this at work before.” “But the other kids’ parents don’t make rules like mine do.” “Well, you’d have done it too, if he had said that to you!””
Adams says that these reasons actually amount to someone saying, “Please excuse me from my responsibility to life like a Christian on the grounds that my problem is unique.” Adams is not being harsh here; he simply wants the Christian to understand that God has given us a responsibility to deal biblically with our trials and that God has provided the way to deal with every trial. Adams wants the reader to understand that they do not need to try and escape from their trials by giving up hope. He wants the troubled person to understand that their trials can be successfully dealt with and that the words “I can't deal with this problem” are not the biblical solution to a trial. Instead, the author teaches from 1 Corinthians 10:13 that God promises that He “will not allow you to be tempted beyond what you are able.” Therefore, he concludes that a Christian cannot run from a trial by using the excuse that “I can't deal with this trial.” Adams reminds us that God promises that He will not give us more than we can handle.
Adams also teaches from this verse that there is “no temptation has over taken you but such as is common to man…” (1 Corinthians 10:13). No matter what problems one has, Scripture says that he or she is not going to deal with any problems that some other person has not had to deal with. This is encouraging, because if other people have dealt with the same problems and survived through them, so can every other Christian!
Throughout the entire booklet, Adams consistently pulls out life changing truths. After the reader completes this text, he or she will have a clear understanding of how to deal biblically with trials in his or her life. As a result, this booklet has proven itself to be a valuable resource for the Christian who wishes to deal biblically with trials. It is biblically solid and can be applied to any trial that God brings into the Christian's life. It is a clearly written book that does not leave the reader questioning anything that the author said. The author has done a great job bringing God's word to the reader and showing the reader how to apply the contents to their lives and those around them.