Romans 1:16 “For I am not ashamed of the gospel of Christ: for it is the power of God unto salvation to every one that believeth; to the Jew first, and also to the Greek.”
You will agree that these are unprecedented times for any who have lived for any period. We have not seen such things in our lifetime. Yet, with God, He has seen it all.
The rise and fall of governments and nations. The growth and decline of churches, and the success and failure of marriages, families, and relationships.
If we could get a glimpse of the future to see how a thing would turn out, we could take heed and turn from what seems to be a failed path.
The Bible is full of stories, factual accounts, of the lives of those gone before us. We see repeated mistakes and similar attitudes and perspectives. You would think we would be all the wiser for it.
We continue on in ignorance and rebellion, thinking we can ‘beat the odds’ as if it were a gamble to defy God’s sure promises.
Numbers 32:23 “But if ye will not do so, behold, ye have sinned against the LORD: and be sure your sin will find you out.”
We will surely reap what we sow. We cannot plant one seed expecting the fruit of another.
Galatians 6:7-8 “Be not deceived; God is not mocked: for whatsoever a man soweth, that shall he also reap. For he that soweth to his flesh shall of the flesh reap corruption; but he that soweth to the Spirit shall of the Spirit reap life everlasting.”
Why is it that we hold onto those things God warns us will fail? Do we think ourselves insignificant that God does not see us nor care? That could not be further from the truth.
Matthew 10:29-31 “Are not two sparrows sold for a farthing? and one of them shall not fall on the ground without your Father. But the very hairs of your head are all numbered. Fear ye not therefore, ye are of more value than many sparrows.”
God’s watchful eye is not to punish but love and protect.
With that in mind, why do we not stand and proclaim our heritage, our lineage, our salvation before those who truly need to hear?
Our enemy, Satan, lulls us to sleep to keep us from upsetting those who are blinded to the truth. His tricks are many and varied and aren’t elaborate at all.
For centuries, the devil has watched mankind to see what of the world interests us. A turn of the head, a glance toward exposed flesh, a lingering look, is all it takes to formulate a plan to lure us away from a close, personal relationship with our God.
But when affliction turns to persecution and there becomes a price to standing up and being counted a Christian, this is where real Christianity abides.
When there is a cost associated with making ourselves known, often we look at what we may lose in the process. This is short-sighted and selfish.
I try to remind myself of these things when those feelings arise in me.
- I am the property of the Living God. I am not my own. I am bought with a price. 1 Corinthians 6:19-20
- The price paid for my salvation was the ultimate sacrifice for me, personally. If Jesus Christ can lay down His life for me to be in Heaven with Him, I must return in kind. Hebrews 2:3-4; 1 Corinthians 7:22-23
- Christ was willing to suffer the humiliation of all that He suffered for me. He asks of that which He will do through me. No matter the task, He’ll help me if I but ask.
- I have the indwelling of the Holy Spirit of God. If yielded to Him, I will follow a path set up from before the beginning of time. Ephesians 2:10; John 16:13
These truths and many more can embolden us to stand for Christ.
When we think with eternity in view, we can look forward to the day we will stand before Him to be rewarded for our work here on earth. 1 Corinthians 3:11-15 tells us of building materials we are gathering for our position in Heaven. Gold, silver, precious stones, and wood, hay, and stubble are mentioned.
All will pass through the fire.
We can discern what will burn and what will remain.
When it is all said and done, what is left will be laid at Jesus’ feet as the fruits of our labor. No excuses will need to be given because God saw it all and will know what we did and didn’t do, what we did and didn’t say, and where we did and didn’t go.
We will feel shame for not having done more, said more, given more, and gone where He led that will burn on our face and in our hearts. We will be exposed for our selfishness or our generosity, our laziness or our service, our silence or our witness.
If there are tears to be wiped away in Heaven, it will be for the failed things we should have done here on earth.
Revelation 7:17 “For the Lamb which is in the midst of the throne shall feed them, and shall lead them unto living fountains of waters: and God shall wipe away all tears from their eyes.”