These words are found in 2 Timothy 2:12, right after “if we suffer with Him, we will reign with Him.”
Suffering is no fun.
In the Parable of the Sower, Jesus describes seed that falls on stony ground. A little green shoot pops up, but when the sun rises to its peak, the little shoot gets scorched, withers, and dies.
This seed represents people who believe for a short time until it gets hard, a little suffering comes their way, and they quit.
Suffering has a way of weeding out the pretenders. A little persecution will show who truly believes and who is playing a game.
When you are healthy and wealthy, faith is pretty easy. But when things get tough and life falls apart, what will you do then?
For the believer, suffering increases faith and leads to spiritual growth. For the unbeliever, suffering drives them further from God, they may even blame God and resent Him.
Peter said many confident things in company with like-minded people, but when Jesus was arrested and things turned bad, Peter denied Christ.
Jesus says in Matthew 10:33, “But whosoever shall deny me before men, him will I also deny before my Father which is in heaven.”
Jesus Christ was/is consistent on this issue. Paul reiterates what Christ said by saying it again in 2 Timothy.
So, what happened with Peter? Has Christ denied him?
Well, Peter repented and came back. The rest of Peter’s life shows that he did not completely disown Christ. He came back. God is always willing to forgive.
But if you deny Christ and never come back, Christ will deny you too. Stern words, but I see no aspect of Christ’s character that makes Him say things that aren’t true.
Jesus Christ always does what He says, which is Paul’s final point in this section of 2 Timothy 2.