Friday, February 25, 2011
A Sign of Godly Living
Yes, and all who desire to live godly in Christ Jesus will suffer persecution. —2 Timothy 3:12
If you are a Christian, you will experience tribulation and persecution. There are no free passes here. No believer is exempt. I am not speaking of the normal hardships of life, but those that come because of God's Word. Jesus spoke about this in the Parable of the Sower when He said, "But he who received the seed on stony places, this is he who hears the word and immediately receives it with joy; yet he has no root in himself, but endures only for a while. For when tribulation or persecution arises because of the word, immediately he stumbles" (Matthew 13:20-21).
When you become a Christian, it is not well-received by many people. If you have family members who are unbelievers, you will face opposition. If you have unbelieving friends, they will wonder what happened to you. Jesus said, "Do not think that I came to bring peace on earth. I did not come to bring peace but a sword. . . . ‘a man's enemies will be those of his own household' " (Matthew 10:34-36). When you believe in Jesus, it will cause friction with some people, and that will produce tribulation.
Now sometimes we face tribulation because we are lacking in tact. Let's not forget that Jesus was called the friend of sinners. In fact, He was criticized for being friendly toward sinners. We need to be friendly, winsome, and caring, but not compromising. Stand your ground, but make sure you are being persecuted for being righteous and not for being obnoxious.
The Bible says, "All who desire to live godly in Christ Jesus will suffer persecution" (2 Timothy 3:12). So if you are being persecuted in some way, shape, or form, it is probably an indication that you are living a godly life.
Scripture taken from the New King James Version. Copyright © 1982 by Thomas Nelson, Inc. Used by permission. All rights reserved.
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