“And you, son of man, neither fear them nor fear their words, though thistles and thorns are with you and you sit on scorpions; neither fear their words nor be dismayed at their presence, for they are a rebellious house.” Ezekiel 2:6
I was watching a news story about the Christians who were beheaded in Iran and it was a troubling sight to see. As they marched out onto the beach in orange jumpsuits with their executioners wearing all black walking beside them, I couldn’t help but wonder what was going through their minds.
For the Christian man…were there any second thoughts? Did he contemplate what if heaven wasn’t real or if Jesus wasn’t the way the truth and the life. Did he think to himself what if to be absent from the body isn’t to be present with the Lord? And how did he feel knowing that this moment of truth would be the last moment he ever experienced here on earth? It takes a special kind of strength to not only walk by faith, but to stand in the face of persecution, and having done all to stand…stand some more. Although they were kneeling at the time execution, I‘m sure the holy spirit within them was standing tall.
For the masked executioners…Do they really believe that taking the lives of innocent people in the name of God will bring glory to his name, or that when their time come to pass from this life to the next, that the all-knowing, all-seeing God will be standing at the gates of heaven saying…well done? I just had to wonder what kind of sleep does a person get after cutting someone’s throat and watching them die.
But the hour is coming, and is now here, when the true worshipers will worship the Father in spirit and truth, for the Father is seeking such people to worship him. John 4:23
God is seeking true worshipers in this hour- they that will worship him even in the face of their fears. We all have a choice to make in this life. We have to choose to run this Christian race and to go against the grain and preach Jesus in a world that is constantly trying to erase his name, but with every story of terror I’m starting to see the faces of God’s people change – from pride to fear. We fear the things of this world so much that we are given it power over the living God. Failing to realize that the only way we truly lose is if we allow fear to cause us to deny him.
Don’t be bluffed into silence by the threats of bullies. There’s nothing they can do to our soul, our core being. Save your fear for God, who holds our entire life, body and soul, in his hands. Matthew 10:16-17.
Don’t be deceived, Jesus still has all power in his hands, and he has not lost control or given it up to those who claim to have all power in theirs. If we read the book of revelations and the warnings of the prophets we will begin to understand that these things must happen in order for the scriptures to be fulfilled.
So what does it mean to be a bold warrior for Jesus?…it means to take a stand for righteousness sake. To not let the threat of danger cause you to shrink back in fear from all he is calling you to be. It means to run on and see what the end is going to be – knowing that he will never leave you nor forsake you.
A time is coming where even Christians in America will be persecuted because of our faith. The question becomes, will you stand in the face of persecution or shrink back in fear. Are you a bold warrior for Jesus… or do you just go to church?
Stay alert! This is hazardous work we are being assigned too. We’re going to be like sheep running through a wolf pack, so don’t call attention to yourselves. Be as cunning as a snake, inoffensive as a dove. Don’t be immature. Some people will point the finger at our motives; others will smear our reputation, just because you believe in me.
When people realize it is the living God we are presenting and not some idol that makes them feel good, they are going to turn on us, even people in our own family. There is a great irony here: proclaiming so much love, experiencing so much hate! But don’t quit. Don’t cave in. It is all well worth it in the end. It is not success we are after in such times but survival. Be survivors! Before we’ve run out of choices, the Son of Man will have arrived. – Matthew 10:16-23
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