Persecution. That seems to be the word for this season.
Jesus promised that we would would face persecution for His name sake. Let me reiterate that, we will suffer for preaching Jesus and Jesus alone.
The early church experienced that. Peter healed a man who was known as an invalid. His reward? Arrest and an overnight jail stay. Then he was admonished to not preach the conspiracy theory that Jesus was raised from the dead.
But Peter’s response was a prayer:
“And now, O Lord, hear their threats, and give us, your servants, great boldness in preaching your word. Stretch out your hand with healing power; may miraculous signs and wonders be done through the name of your holy servant Jesus.””
Acts of the Apostles 4:29-30 NLT
Let’s all pray Peter’s prayer today. And then let’s do what Peter did next.
1. PREACHED the word of God with boldness.
2. Was UNITED in heart and mind with other believers.
3. Made sure there were NO NEEDY person among them.
4. Reached across the isle to people who are different and sought RECONCILIATION.
The early church’s persecution led to the early church growing. It led to soul’s being saved, people healed, the hungry fed, the Gentiles hearing the Gospel.
If you are being persecuted let it be for preaching Christ! And then get excited because Jesus promised:
“Blessed are those who are persecuted because of righteousness, for the kingdom of heaven is theirs. “You are blessed when they insult you and persecute you and falsely say every kind of evil against you because of me. Be glad and rejoice, because your reward is great in heaven. For that is how they persecuted the prophets who were before you.”
Matthew 5:10-12 CSB