STANDING UP FOR TRUTH
"'I BELIEVED THEREFORE I SPOKE,' we also believe, therefore also we speak."
2 Corinthians 4:13
The Christian life of the Apostle Paul is a story of grace, glory, and suffering. God worked miracles in and through Paul as He used him to speak the truth in love, plant churches, and lead multitudes to faith in Christ.
As Paul presented the truth of man's utter sinfulness and the Savior's sacrifice and victory over sin, death, hell, and the grave, many people had their feathers ruffled. In fact, both Jews and Gentiles alike often reacted to the gospel message with violence. Paul was beaten and imprisoned on numerous occasions for preaching the truth and obeying the Lord. His unwavering commitment to Christ and His Word resulted in his beheading under the persecution of Emperor Nero.
ANY WAY TO AVOID THE SUFFERING?
Why did Paul receive such brutal treatment? Could he have done anything to avoid all the suffering? Yes! He could have easily quit preaching the unadulterated truth. He could have dialed down his message to tickle the ears and fit in with the sinful culture. He could have bowed to the demands of Rome and played ball with the corrupt Jewish religious leaders. He could have turned his back on his Lord and his calling and saved himself a ton of grief and pain. He could have wilted under the pressure, but he did not! He truly believed that Jesus died and rose again, therefore he spoke the truth without stutter, stammer, apology, or equivocation. He was faithful to Jesus Christ all the way to the finish line, regardless of the circumstances and the backlash. Aren't you glad?
THE DAY IN WHICH WE LIVE
I believe we are living in the last of the last days. The signs of Christ's soon return are all around us. One of the telltale signs is the hatred we will receive for standing up for the Lord and His Word. America used to value Christianity and uphold the authority of the Word of God—but those days are gone. Today, faithful followers who lovingly hold to the clear teachings of Scripture are vilified, mocked, scorned, marginalized, and attacked. Can physical violence be far behind? I think not.
What is the answer? Should we water down the message to make it more palatable to a sin-sick world? Never! If we really believe, we will speak up and speak out, just as 2 Corinthians 4:13states. And if we grow silent in the face of persecution, moral decay, and social lunacy, did we really ever believe at all?
Let me encourage you to keep holding up the banner of truth. If we truly believe, we cannot help but speak. Those fighting for the right to glory in sin and depravity will never find peace and happiness. Sin always brings guilt, shame, death, and despair, regardless of how many people argue otherwise. Wrong is wrong, even if everyone is doing it ... and right is right, even if no one is doing it.
May we be found faithful to lovingly stand up and speak up for the Lord, all the way to the end.
Pastor Jeff Schreve
From His Heart Ministries
Dr. Jeff Schreve believes that no matter how badly you may have messed up in life, God still loves you and has a wonderful plan just for you. From His Heart provides real truth, love and hope on over 700 radio stations each day, in 149 countries each week on TV, and is always available online. Pastor Jeff takes no income from this ministry. All donations go to furthering the broadcast outreach. As a listener/viewer supported ministry, we thank you for joining with us to help speak the truth in love to a lost and hurting world. Go to www.fromhisheart.org for more information.
The Christian life is a walk with God. And the only way to please God in our walk with Him is to exercise faith. Paul said, "We walk by faith, not by sight." (2 Corinthians 5:7) In this five-message series Dr. Jeff Schreve gives practical, biblical encouragement to help you take God at His Word and step out on His promises, regardless of the circumstances.