Positive Results of Persecution Against Christians
There is no doubt that Christians are facing dreadful persecution throughout the world. In some places they are being murdered daily because of their faith. As usual the helpless are attacked. Cowardly conduct is the way of life for the persecutors.
In the USA Christians are currently being persecuted politically, socially, and economically. As the liberal population demands that Christians affirm immoral action all Christians are beginning to feel the pressure to embrace wicked behaviors regardless of what God Almighty has to say about the matter.
In the military Christians Chaplains, who were hired to represent Christian soldiers are being persecuted for simply telling people what the Bible says on particular topics. (one example – there are more)
People are being fired from their jobs for proclaiming Jesus Christ as the way of salvation.
http://www.foxnews.com/opinion/2015/01/13/christians-rally-to-defend-fire-chief-who-wrote-anti-gay-book/ (only one example)
Christians speaking about what God calls sin are in danger of losing their jobs. This all sounds like persecution to me, but it is excused without any reason except Christian belief based on the Bible is not politically or socially acceptable to many who are in power either politically or socially. http://radio.foxnews.com/2011/08/18/teacher-opposed-to-gay-marriage-could-be-fired/
I could post links to real persecution of Christians all day long, but the evidence is so overwhelming that it isn’t necessary to do that. If someone refuses to admit Christians are being persecuted from the point of literal murder and torture to being ostracized socially and economically they are willingly ignorant.
Knowing that Christian persecution is growing calls for a response from Christians and the entire world.
It is disappointing to watch physical persecution grow around the world. From the slaughter of Christians in communist nations during last century to the slaughter of Christians by Islamic terrorists right now the response of the world has been basically non-existent. This is heartbreaking to say the least. Islam plans to murder all the Christians who don’t convert and thus rid the world of followers of Jesus Christ. The opposition to their efforts has been minimal.
Do not misunderstand what I am going to say. I abhor and hate what is happening to fellow believers in Jesus Christ. It is a tragedy. However, historically there has been a consequence of persecution of believers. That consequence has been more believers. Persecution destroys lives and murders people with the plan to utterly destroy Christ. People who may not want to murder Christians still want to marginalize them and ridicule their beliefs. It appears they want Christians to have less respect socially and politically than those who believe in the Great Pumpkin.
Christians have security that these deniers of Christ do not have. Here are some things to consider:
Persecution of the saints throughout history has not silenced the New Testament Church of Jesus Christ. In fact just the opposite has occurred. Persecute the saints and the church grows in number.
The reaction of the church has not been to mount a physical war. The crusades were sanctioned by the Catholic church – but they were specifically to STOP the invasion of the Moslems. They were literally self-defense. As any thinking person is well aware Islam is a religion with tendencies of extreme violence and slaughter. Obviously not all followers of Mohammad practice violence. However, persecution even to death is taught in their book. Christians are allowed self-defense against such terrible actions.
Christians have traditionally fought persecution collectively and individually by preaching Jesus Christ as the Son of God and the way to heaven. Shut up one preacher and God will raise up another to take his place. The game plan of Christians today to combat the rising tide of persecution of Christians should be more evangelism.
I do want to point out that legal recourse is allowed. We aren’t to take our Christian brothers and sisters to court, but we are allowed legal defense that is available to other citizens. Paul went to great lengths to stand before Caesar in Rome. He was illegally mistreated and he refused to simply be set free and go on his way. The Biblical account of Paul’s journey to Rome is amazing! The shipwreck is just astounding. Paul was a single minded fellow. Christians of lesser faith would have decided that God didn’t want them to go to Rome after the shipwreck. Paul’s determination did not falter. Making use of the courts for legitimate reasons is not a sin. Within the boundaries set by the Bible for Christian behavior it would be up to the individual Christian whether to take something to court. Sadly the courts seem to be stacked against Christians regardless of the law. Never the less, sometimes legal action may be the right thing to do.
On the other hand evangelism is always right regardless of its popularity or even legality. There may be consequences for taking the gospel to the lost. In some countries you can get jail time – notably Iran at this time. China is also a dangerous place for an evangelist as well as many other countries. Christianity can get you tortured and murdered in many places. Evangelism is still the best answer to persecution. Those who oppose Christianity on any level don’t realize that their opposition is the fertilizer that will cause Christianity to stand out even more. The way to God the Father is through Jesus Christ the Son. Our God who is the God of creation, has the power and authority to make the rules. He has been very clear regarding the rules and that He does not change. The end of the story is that God wins and non-believers spend eternity in hell.
It is the duty of Christians in both times of peace and times of war to proclaim the way to heaven through Jesus Christ. There is no other way. Some people will hear and be saved. Then their voice will be one of many proclaiming Jesus is the way, the truth, and the life along with other Christians. This is the best victory against those who hate Christ. But the consequences of Christian persecution will ultimately not be what the persecutors intend. Jesus saves. Tell the world.
Something else to consider is this. Evangelism is the one size fits all cure. Rejection of Jesus leads to every sin and immorality. Right now there are so many anti-god activities going on that it would take a book to comment on the main ones. There is no great benefit on cataloging each of them as everyone knows what is going on. We may not know the extent of the deviations from godly normal behavior, but we know what is going on. We don’t have to become an expert on pornography to know it is rampant in society and that it is pure evil. Each sin could be attacked on its own wicked ‘merits’. Certainly we should speak out against sin when necessary. Do take a side in some of the agenda’s being pushed on society today. But the cure for all sin is Jesus Christ. The best help for the world in general and for the individual is through telling the truth about Jesus.
One example that I absolutely love in the Bible is the story of Paul getting kicked out of town after town for preaching and just going on to preach at the next town. (Acts chapter 14) He didn’t change his message to ‘reach people where they live’. Of course he did take into consideration the background of the people to whom he was speaking. If people had no concept of the God of creation he wouldn’t start his preaching by expounding on the doctrine of the trinity.
What Christians need to remember and thank God for daily is the sure knowledge that the end of earthly history is that Jesus wins. Every knee shall bow and every tongue confess that Jesus Christ is Lord. It is going to happen. Pray that many will confess Jesus before it too late. Heaven is waiting for God’s children. Hell is waiting for those who refuse His offer of peace with God through Christ’s own blood.