- “All who desire to live godly in Christ Jesus will suffer persecution” – 2 Timothy 3:12 (ESV)
Every now and again, I meet new believers and see clearly the peace of God upon them. What a beauty? The joy of sins and a past forgiven, the knowledge of a king up there who remembers their names. However, many of them haven’t become too familiar with the scripture above and as life happens and trials come, they are ill prepared to deal the challenges, even when the grace to overcome has been freely offered. As I look through my walk in faith, several years down the line, I acknowledge that Christianity isn’t easy. It’s a great life, but it has its trials. There are potholes in the road and thorns on the rose bushes, however, there are great and everlasting rewards and a life of joy and peace in the Holy Ghost if we abide. These considered, this piece is borne out of a desire to be brutally honest, I sense that as believers, we need to lay the chips down when we share this glorious gospel like Jesus did. He was never delusional. “Foxes have holes and birds of the air have nests, but the Son of Man has nowhere to lay his head” (Matthew 8:20).
I’ve been thinking about God-Abuse over and over again and I believe that part reason is that Christianity is presented to us as ‘feel good, everything is okay’ deal so in response, we see God as that big guy up there that should meet our needs and be on call to attend to our every whim. But the Bible says, “All who desire to live godly in Christ Jesus will suffer persecution” (2 Timothy 3:12). Matthew chapter 10 is all about that. We need to share the whole truth and let the chips fall where they may. Yes, we should be sensitive and share the wholesome love of Jesus and His omnipotence, but we should never have a false appeal or create unreasonable expectations out of our faith when we share.
In many circles, the false appeal is that when you accept Christ you will have financial prosperity and you’ll be free from any disease and hardship–and that anything else only shows your lack of faith. If that were true–and it’s not–you would have people coming to Christ for that reason alone. That’s Jesus as a “free lunch” or a “health insurance plan.”. That’s the entire concept of God abuse. But Jesus did not want those types of disciples. He wouldn’t commit Himself to them; (John 2:23-25). A Christ life guarantees joy and peace in the spirit, even amidst trials but the package is inclusive of trials. Little wonder the word says we must count the cost. Is there a desire to live a godly life for Christ? That’s all the invitation you need for trials and persecution. I’m sorry but it is non negotiable. People will tempt you, misunderstand you, judge you and ridicule you, but the grace of God will always be available to deliver you and grant you peace.
Yes, trials come to everyone, believers and non-believers alike. The difference is this: In all things, for the believer, God will weave it together for your highest good–so that life is not a series of experiences with no meaning, but God will have a plan and a purpose for them. And isn’t that what we all really want? Don’t get me wrong, this is in no way related to being perscuted for bad character. Paul said in 1 Peter 4:15, 2007, ‘If you suffer, however, it must not be for murder, stealing, making trouble, or prying into other people’s affairs. (NLT).
Do you desire a godly life in Christ? Prepare for persecution…
Have a lovely weekend y’all
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