Have you ever felt you were persecuted for your Christian stance? Have you ever felt you were criticized for doing what you felt was God’s command? This is something every Christian will experience at some time. Of course it hurts, but it hurts even more when it is done by those professing to be Christian and feel they are in a position to be judgmental.
Matthew 5:10-12 New International Version (NIV); “Blessed are those who are persecuted because of righteousness, for theirs is the kingdom of heaven. Blessed are you when people insult you, persecute you and falsely say all kinds of evil against you because of Me. Rejoice and be glad, because great is your reward in heaven, for in the same way they persecuted the prophets who were before you.”
Often people become jealous or guilty as they see you stand for Jesus Christ. They try to tear you and often your family down with unfavorable judgment. They want you weak in your faith often using the words of the flesh, not of God.
2 Corinthians 12:10 New International Version (NIV); “That is why, for Christ’s sake, I delight in weaknesses, in insults, in hardships, in persecutions, in difficulties. For when I am weak, then I am strong.”
It is imperative that you stand strong in your own personal commitment. Being called by God to share His message is frequently difficult. It remains our duty as Christians to put on the Armour of God and to love as Jesus Christ first loved us. If you are feeling animosity or resentment toward or from another, it certainly isn’t of Christ. If you fail to forgive, it certainly isn’t of Christ. For Christ Himself said:
Matthew 5:44 New International Version (NIV); “But I tell you, love your enemies and pray for those who persecute you.”
Those in authority either as teachers, Pastors or other Christian and church leaders are held to a higher standard of accountability. This accountability is not only as you live, but also as you witness and judge others. If you are going to judge, then you need to realize you will be judged as well. Do not be pompous or a hypocrite as the Pharisees and Sadducees but loving and kind as Jesus Christ.
Matthew 7:1 New International Version (NIV); “Do not judge, or you too will be judged.”
John 15:19-21 New International Version (NIV); “If you belonged to the world, it would love you as its own. As it is, you do not belong to the world, but I have chosen you out of the world. That is why the world hates you. Remember what I told you: ‘A servant is not greater than his master.’ If they persecuted Me, they will persecute you also. If they obeyed My teaching, they will obey yours also. They will treat you this way because of My name, for they do not know the one who sent Me.”