To follow Christ will mean Persecution

The followers of Christ have always been persecuted throughout history. The fact is that it will always be a part of a true believers walk until his return. Today, the persecution of believers may not be as obvious. In western society, it is more spiritual than physical in nature, but nonetheless, it effects the body of Christ.

The largest persecutor of true believers are the religious “church” members who desire to be accepted among men. Their pride has been well established in their traditions that manifest in their complacent, rich and socially oriented religious institutions. Anything that threatens their watered down “gospel” is considered divisive an unloving, which makes the bearer of truth the adversary.

Many are afraid of jeopardizing their status among their peers, not wanting to bring offense to maintain their lofty positions that they desire.

Many fail to realize that being a follower of Christ and persecution are synonymous with each other.


“If the world hates you, know that it has hated me before it hated you. If you were of the world, the world would love you as its own; but because you are not of the world, but I chose you out of the world, therefore the world hates you. – John 15:18-19



Confrontation

Most professing “Christians” are in love with the world. They continue to hang on to their man-made traditions choosing to take the side of Satan. The modern “church” does not want the truth and will persecute any individual that gets in the way of their counterfeit agenda.


They will put you out of the synagogues. Indeed, the hour is coming when whoever kills you will think he is offering service to God. – John 16:2


Many believe they are offering a service to God, but they are doing the opposite. When they are confronted because of their rebellion and disobedience to God, they turn the tables around on the messenger of truth.


Indeed, all who desire to live a godly life in Christ Jesus will be persecuted, while evil people and impostors will go on from bad to worse, deceiving and being deceived. – 2 Timothy 3:12-13


Do you suffer persecution?


Following Christ will repel the religious “church” attenders because their truth is a sword. It will cause many negative demonic manifestations because it is a confronter of people’s egos. There will always be hostility towards those who oppose the systems of the world.

God does not want His followers to hide and try to avoid persecution, but learn to be confrontational. If we don’t, we will keep others from hearing the truth and deter them from coming to salvation. God does His work through us as we boldly share the Gospel to the world, which includes all modern “churches.” People need to know that we are representatives of the Gospel of the Kingdom of God, not of the buildings called “churches.”


The "Captains"

The clergy of the modern “church” in their man-made temples believe they represent God, but they are far removed from Him because they have always persecuted the true believer. They want to preserve their ambitious titles as “captains” over the people.


And as they were speaking to the people, the priests and the captain of the temple and the Sadducees came upon them, greatly annoyed because they were teaching the people and proclaiming in Jesus the resurrection from the dead. – Acts 4:1


The religious leaders became angered, provoked and annoyed at Peter and John. They were the ones speaking truth and did not need to have professional certificates or high ranking titles to do so. The pompous religious leaders believed that they were the only ones who were qualified to teach. Today, it is no different, the salaried-to-serve despise those who preach a different Gospel contrary to their traditions.


Now when they saw the boldness of Peter and John, and perceived that they were uneducated, common men, they were astonished. – Acts 4:13


Speaking truth requires exposing the religious man-made liturgies that are contrary to the standard of Scripture.


For I have not spoken on my own authority, but the Father who sent me has himself given me a commandment—what to say and what to speak. – John 12:49


Submission to Persecution

When the true Gospel confronts the easy man-made “gospels” of the modern “church,” it is considered blasphemy. Many fail to understand that their religious activities are an inverted, perverted “gospel” of Satan.

When we are persecuted for righteousness, it has a great effect. Although it may seem like a losing battle, it does quite the opposite. In fact, it exposes the professing religious dead weights for who they are. They are tares because they have committed their lives to the world, not to Christ. When a true follower of Christ pays the price for truth, they discard the waste through separation. Separation causes purification, and at this point, this is when God is able to do His greatest work through His people.

Committing yourself to Christ means confronting the world with his Gospel. If you are not facing persecution, then you haven’t committed yourself yet. It is only through trials and tribulations for righteousness sake that we grow in our relationship with him. Suffering persecution should be considered a blessing because it helps us grow into beacons of light to the hurt and the lost.


Blessed are those who are persecuted for righteousness’ sake, for theirs is the kingdom of heaven. – Matthew 5:10


In the midst of persecution, there is an opportunity to proclaim Christ and trust God to do what He wants to do in the situation. When Peter and John allowed themselves to be persecuted, it was an opportunity to come face to face and preach truth to the Sanhedrin.


And when they had set them in the midst, they inquired, “By what power or by what name did you do this?” Then Peter, filled with the Holy Spirit, said to them, “Rulers of the people and elders – Acts 4:7


Today, the clergy are considered rulers over the people, but how wrong they are in usurping the role that is exclusively for Christ.

Preaching the true Gospel message is submission to persecution. It comes from walking in obedience to the Word of God by the empowerment of the Holy Spirit. Yielding to the Holy Spirit in persecution will bring victory because it will bring us closer to God and helps us grow in maturity.


Victory

The “churches” of men are full of people who run and hide in the midst of persecution. They will not yield to the Holy Spirit out of fear that they will displease and bring offence to others. Unfortunately, they are worthless to God working anything through them.

Standing boldly on what is right is always victory. We must disagree with the world if we are to consider ourselves a true believer. The world is immoral, selfish, prideful, greedy, materialistic, etc... When we face these things head on in our walk with Christ, it is an opportunity to be a shining light in the darkness by testifying truth.

The leaven of spiritual hypocrisy has infiltrated the world; therefore, we must proclaim the truth to counter it.


And there is salvation in no one else, for there is no other name under heaven given among men by which we must be saved.” – Acts 4:12


We are not called to say things that are deemed pleasing and acceptable, but to stand on and contend for the standard of truth, God’s Word. We will be persecuted for it. As it happens, submit to it and let God work through you. It is an opportunity to boldly proclaim the true Gospel.

Most often, it is fear of being ridiculed and slandered that many keep their mouths shut, but the truth is that if we are not willing to speak up for truth, it reflects how much we are willing to put our personal feelings aside and serve God. Most “pastors” avoid certain truth in Scripture because they do not want to ruffle any feathers. They are self-serving in their worry of offending others; therefore, the “gospel” they preach will not bring conviction. It is useless.


If you are insulted for the name of Christ, you are blessed, because the Spirit of glory and of God rests upon you. – 1 Peter 4:14


Being persecuted for the sake of Christ will bring the glory of God upon you. We cannot identify with him unless we are suffering with him.


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Comments Appreciated 14 comments

freeradicalsteve profile image

freeradicalsteve 2 years ago

I haven't been persecuted as such, but I have been told I am delusional.


Lowdown0 profile image

Lowdown0 2 years ago from Eugene, Oregon

Great article, I agree. The persecution is getting more and more overt and obvious in America. I can imagine soon how most people here will allow the persecution against the fundamentalist who believe in John 14:6. The New age religion hates Christians who will not compromise to this wicked NWO. It is coming, and you're right, it will come from the religious, those who say they are Christians, because true believers expose their hypocrisy.


graceinus 2 years ago from those of the Ekklesia

PandN- Regarding persecution you said; " In western society, it is more spitiual than pysical in nature, but nonetheless, it effects the body of Christ." at the begiinning of your Hub. This is important to note. First, many, if not all, of those who are in man made churches do not realize the difference between the spiritual and physical persecution. And don't realize or even understand what the true church of Christ is. Therefore when the true followers mention what is the true gospel they are fast to condemn those whom speak truth. Because it doesn't fit in their little box of belief. One good example of this false understanding of truth. One fine example is Christ church itself. What is the name of Christ's church? If the church is in spirit (which it is), then it has NO name. Nowhere in God's word does the true church have a name. True followers of Christ realize and understand that Christ church in spirit is known simply as Church.

Starting in Revelation Chapter 2 Jesus begins to speak to the Angels of the seven churches. The seven churches are then mentioned throughout reminder of the chapter. What most so called christian don't realize is that in this whole chapter Jesus wants John to write down what is said to the SEVEN ANGELS, not directly at the churches ( followers) themselves. You will note also that the names such as Epheus, Smyrna, Pergamos, Thyatira, Sardis, Philadelphia and Laodiceans are all location or cities in which Christ true follower of His Church are located. But these are not the names of His church. And what is odd is that Christ told John to write down what He want said, TO THE SEVEN ANGELS, not directly to the church (followers) themselves.

Did you also notice as Jesus addressed each Angel He made the same comment to each ANGEL " I know your works."

Notice in Rev2: 5 "Remember therefore where you have fallen; repent and do the first works, or else I will come to you quickly and remove YOUR lampstand (church) from its place- unless YOU repent." Now remember Jesus was addressing this TO THE ANGEL of the church Ephesus, not the church. Remember Christ's spiritual church were in all seven places at the same time in which the seven cities are named. Ephesus is just one of them. But this also included the seven Angels.

So, what it boils down to is John, by instructions from Jesus, wrote Rev: chapter 2 for the Seven Angels. We must never forget that the Lampstand (church), those who follow Christ, belong to Christ. And those seven Angels ALSO belong to Christ.

It boils down to this, all the names of different churches out there that give themselves names like Baptist, SDA, LDS and so on are not Christ's church. But when you point out such thing to these false churches, they (members) will persecute you in spirit by condemning you.

Great Hub PandN, I'm always glad to read them.

God Bless


lifegate profile image

lifegate 2 years ago from Pleasant Gap, PA

Hi PandN,

Well, another one on the mark. It makes me wonder how many will actually stand when physical persecution comes. I liked the video as well. Thanks for the post.


Johan Smulders profile image

Johan Smulders 2 years ago from East London, South Africa

Good point that I have been teaching on here in South Africa. We as "Christians" are much to comfortable to stand up for the truth and then have to face persecution in what ever way it may come.


PlanksandNails profile image

PlanksandNails 2 years ago from among the called out of the ekklesia of Christ Author

freeradicalsteve,

Those that persecute you will believe you are delusional because their relative "truth" takes precedence over the strong evidence of Scripture to the contrary. I believe double-mindedness is the worst delusion of them all.

No one can serve two masters, for either he will hate the one and love the other, or he will be devoted to the one and despise the other. You cannot serve God and money. - Matthew 6:24


PlanksandNails profile image

PlanksandNails 2 years ago from among the called out of the ekklesia of Christ Author

Lowdown0,

As long as there are true believers being persecuted, it is evident that that God is working in His people. If there isn't, we are all in big trouble.

You are right, the Antichrist agenda is in full force. We must continue to contend for the pure doctrine of Jesus Christ because time is running out.

God Bless.


PlanksandNails profile image

PlanksandNails 2 years ago from among the called out of the ekklesia of Christ Author

Graceinus,

A removal of a lampstand means that Jesus Christ’s Spirit has departed and left the people to their own devices. We can see this today, and the results are Laodicean "churches." The opinions of men and their traditions rule in place of God. The masses have become loyal to an organization called "church" with "captains" at the helm that rule over others dispensing a "Frankenstein gospel" that has been hacked and butchered and made up of new rules and interpretations. Loyalty to Jesus Christ has been replaced with that of men.

Laodicea is here and evident because it has kept people from becoming temples of the Holy Spirit. The modern "church" has no effect on society because it is run in the the same manner as the world society and has allowed the abominations of the world to enter in their midst. The ecumenical "church" has no salt or conviction, but excuses sin to please others.

There is a distinction, the true Church is an influence IN the world, but the counterfeit "church" is an influence OF the world.

Worldly methods and techniques to attract people to "church" is an abomination to God. The lukewarm masses have no conviction, or boldness for the truth. What we can see is that most are well on the way to the total abandonment of Jesus Christ and what He taught.

Loving people requires confronting them with the truth.

But I have this against you, that you have abandoned the LOVE you had at first. - Revelation 2:4

Thank-you for adding you thoughts as it adds more depth to the theme. God Bless.


PlanksandNails profile image

PlanksandNails 2 years ago from among the called out of the ekklesia of Christ Author

Lifegate,

No matter what form of persecution comes , it is a blessing.

But if when you do good and suffer for it you endure, this is a gracious thing in the sight of God. For to this you have been called, because Christ also suffered for you, leaving you an example, so that you might follow in his steps. - 1 Peter 2:20-21

Thanks for your thoughts.


PlanksandNails profile image

PlanksandNails 2 years ago from among the called out of the ekklesia of Christ Author

Johan Smulders,

The kingdoms of men have all their membership comforts. Remember, you have to pay for them from the air conditioning to the VIP sections. It is called pampering. A true believer is not a pompous pampered "church" member, but a humbled persecuted citizen of the Kingdom of God until the return of their King.

God Bless.


celafoe profile image

celafoe 2 years ago from Planet earth. between the oceans

Mark 10:41-45 But Jesus called them to Himself and said to them, "You know that those who are considered rulers over the Gentiles lord it over them, and their great ones exercise authority over them. 43 Yet it shall not be so among you; but whoever desires to become great among you shall be your servant. 44 And whoever of you desires to be first shall be slave of all. 45 For even the Son of Man did not come to be served, but to serve, and to give His life a ransom for many."

This last series of yours needs to be put into a book and offered free on the internet. I would be to honored offer it on my new website when it is finished. All who profess Christianity need to read them.


PlanksandNails profile image

PlanksandNails 2 years ago from among the called out of the ekklesia of Christ Author

Celafoe,

Let me know when your website is finished. It would be a blessing to accommodate a written format that would best serve the needs of your web page.


Liberty 2 years ago

Celafoe wrote, "This last series of yours needs to be put into a book and offered free on the internet. I would be to honored offer it on my new website when it is finished. All who profess Christianity need to read them."

I was just thinking this and you have confirmed this ought to be. :-)


PlanksandNails profile image

PlanksandNails 2 years ago from among the called out of the ekklesia of Christ Author

Liberty,

Thanks for the affirmation. God Bless.

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