1 Peter 4:12-13 “Beloved, think it not strange concerning the fiery trial which is to try you, as though some strange thing happened unto you: But rejoice, inasmuch as ye are partakers of Christ’s sufferings; that, when his glory shall be revealed, ye may be glad also with exceeding joy.”
At the time of this writing, it is still unknown which candidate has won our Presidential election here in the United States of America. The time leading up to this election has been a tumultuous one. Faith and people of faith have been under fire for their beliefs. Views have been polarizing, and there are stark differences in the fabric of our country.
Some would consider the election process here a fiery trial of sorts. Yet, it pales in comparison to those whose lives are in constant peril for standing up for the gospel of Jesus Christ.
In many Muslim countries, it is a death sentence to stand and declare Christianity. Yet, many Muslims are coming to faith in Jesus Christ because they have heard the good news and trusted Jesus Christ as their personal Savior.
The fiery trials can come from without and within. Our ability to share the gospel with those around us may be hindered. But, the inner turmoil and temptation to sin will be with every child of God until we die.
Peter knew a bit of suffering for Christ’s sake.
Acts 5:40-41 “And to him they agreed: and when they had called the apostles, and beaten them, they commanded that they should not speak in the name of Jesus, and let them go. And they departed from the presence of the council, rejoicing that they were counted worthy to suffer shame for his name.”
Would we be able to do the same here in the 21st century? There are truly modern-day martyrs among us—those unwilling to bend to the pressures of recanting their faith in the face of certain death.
Our Savior stood to declare His love for us on the cross. He did so to purchase us from the punishment and penalty of sin. In accepting His free gift, we become His purchased possession. We are no longer in control of this vessel.
1 Corinthians 6:19-20 “What? know ye not that your body is the temple of the Holy Ghost which is in you, which ye have of God, and ye are not your own? For ye are bought with a price: therefore glorify God in your body, and in your spirit, which are God’s.”
The fiery trials we may face are nothing compared to what Christ suffered for us. We ought to welcome the opportunity to show our love in return. I would hope you feel as I, never wanting to appear ungrateful for the price paid for my sin.
So, if called upon to suffer for His name, may we rejoice being counted worthy to suffer for His name.