gripping his promise in persecution



2 Peter 3:1-7, Psalm 55:19, Matthew 5:10-12

BY Diana Stone

 Text: 2 Peter 3:1-7, Psalm 55:19, Matthew 5:10-12

Many of us in our Christian walk will be challenged in our faith by another. It might be a well-intentioned inquiry of why we believe the way we do, or a direct attack on our beliefs spurred by something we’ve done or said.

Christianity is not a placid faith. It does not take the form of a belief that most are willing to let slide or stand up for. It’s uncomfortable. It makes people mad. It stirs up anger. We read many times in the Bible about persecution of Christians who walk with our Lord – yet, we are encouraged to keep walking with our eyes focused on God. Not to lose focus on the “poor me” complex.

“Blessed are you when others revile you and persecute you and utter all kinds of evil against you falsely on my account. Rejoice and be glad, for your reward is great in heaven, for so they persecuted the prophets who were before you.” (Matthew 5:10-12 NIV)

My pastor told us the other Sunday in church that he often gets requests from the city to come and open events with a prayer. First comes the praise: “We know you would do such a wonderful job” and  “You come so highly recommended.”  Then the request turns to apparent fear of the power of our Lord:

“We’d prefer when you pray if you not mention the name Jesus. God is fine.”

He then tells them they have the wrong pastor.

It’s been a long time since the Bible initially made the promise of Jesus’ return. As a people of instant gratification and quick results, we tend to forget that God keeps His promises on His time.

He will come.

We know in the meantime to expect the questions, the mockery, the unbelief of others. We are challenged to stand firm in the face of this. Even when our faith seems on the wild side of reality. Even when the world’s offerings make more sense than what our God says. Even then, we know God is who He says He is, He does what He says He will.

Forever.

“God, who is enthroned from of old, who does not change, he will hear them and humble them, because they have no fear of God.” (Psalm 55:19 NIV)

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34 thoughts on "gripping his promise in persecution"

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  2. Oh, I love how Peter puts this! "I want to develop a genuine understanding with a reminder" (HCSB). It's so easy to develop an entry-level faith. But Peter desired for Christ's followers to truly understand his words.

    In all this waiting, I think even as Christians we can start to doubt His return. Maybe YOU never have … but occasionally I wonder, WHAT IF? But then I remember His power and how I believe the Truth of His Word. And so, I trust. I think every generation in time since His first coming has probably thought it was the end times. (Think: Crusades. Black Plague. The Renaissance. The Holocaust. Genocides. Persecution. Wars.) It's easy to become convinced we're SO right that this is the End Times. Maybe it is, maybe it's not. But we wait with patience and endure mockery by our culture even so. Beautiful promises in Psalm 55:19, too.

    1. Diana_Stone says:

      I have these thoughts. It's hard not to – in an age where so much is done by us. Created by us. Dictated by us. There are times it seems crazy to think of a "Higher Power" holding it all together, and yet when it all comes down to it, I can't be led to any other answer than God.

      Thank you for your honesty in this – it helps to know others wonder at times too.

  3. Bullzeye316 says:

    The sad thing is in this time, in this world, is if you believe in JESUS and he is your all the light the way your called a JESUS FREAK. Your judged way to harshly, and you know what, I've never doubted my faith but I have let those non-believers and false teachers make me think that maybe religion is a keep it to yourself kinda thing. Well not anymore! Especially this past year I have been 100% more dedicated to JESUS. I want to actually learn HIS word. I want to read the bible. I know Jesus is the light, he is the way, he is the KING OF KINGS, and I will fight to follow. I will fight for his love. I thank you for this community because it's given me the opportunity to start understanding the word. I read the bible and I understand it, but it's amazing because I come to this site and to instagram and see all the ladies post and get SO much more then I got myself when I read it alone. This is absolutely amazing! I'm so thankful!

    1. Bless you Bullzeye! I love how you said: "I will fight to follow. I will fight for His love." How beautiful!! How inspiring Sister! Keep fighting the GOOD fight! :)

    2. Catherine says:

      Thank you for this post! Took the words right from my mouth and the encouragement was much needed. I'm fresh out of high school and have struggled this past year as being labled the Jesus Freak. Made me think I was doing something wrong in being vocal about God's love & power. But your words were SO empowering and just the reminder I needed. Thanks!!!

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