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To be a Follower of Christ will Bring Persecution

Updated on July 16, 2017
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PlanksandNails' goal is to be a catalyst in encouraging the followers of Christ to pursue Biblical truth for themselves.

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 to some. In western society, it is more spiritual than physical in nature, but nonetheless, it effects who we are in Christ.

The largest persecutor of true believers are those within the man-driven church system. Their pride has been well established within the traditions of the great religious institutions. Anyone that threatens, or exposes their lies are considered divisive, heretical and unloving. Today, the bearer of truth will most likely will be deemed an adversary.

Many are afraid of those who are called to expose the religious elite who have usurped the headship of Christ for their own. They will defend their status with any means necessary to maintain their lofty positions over others.

Many fail to realize that being a true follower of Christ and persecution will be 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 who profess Christ are in love with the world. They love to hang on to their man-made traditions willfully choosing to conform to the ways of the world rather than the principles of the Kingdom of God. Those in the modern church system do not want the truth and will persecute anyone 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 really they are doing the opposite. When they are confronted on their behaviours of rebellion and disobedience to God, they turn the tables around and make the messenger out to be the liar.

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?

This is an indicator of whether you desire to live a godly life, or not.

Following Christ will repel the religion of attendance and self-righteous behaviours. Truth is a sword and will be recognized by those who are living a lie. It will cause demonic manifestation in many because it cuts to the status of their hearts. We must understand that it is a given that those who are 'the called out ones,' the ekklesia of Christ will face hostility from others who desire to live in deception.

Why?

God does not want His children to run and hide to avoid persecution, but learn to be confrontational at times when He calls them to do it. If we don’t, we will keep others from hearing the truth and the opportunity for them to eventually repent of their ways. God will do His work through us and sometimes it requires that we boldly call those to repentance.

We are called to be representatives of the Gospel of the Kingdom to be a shining light to the world. We cannot be a light unless we no longer partake of the counterfeit antichrist system called 'church.'

The Captains

The epitome of what church is are man-made templates in man-made temples where people believe they represent God. Unfortunately, they are far removed from Him because they require hired men to be the 'captain of the temple' to be over them rather than Christ.

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

In this verse, the religious leaders became angered, provoked and annoyed at Peter and John who were teaching. It greatly bothered them that they did not need to have their professional certificates or high ranking titles to do so.

It is no different today where pompous religious leaders believe that they were the only ones who were are qualified to teach.The oxymoronic salaried-to-serve despise those who preach the true Gospel that is contrary to their man-made 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 that sometimes we will have the opportunity to expose man-made religion that behaves 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 counterfeit gospel of the modern church, it will expose the inverted and perversion of the antichrist religion that opposes the testament of Christ and the apostles.

When we are persecuted for righteousness, it has a great effect. Although it may seem like a losing battle personally, it actually does quite the opposite as it exposes the professing religious dead weights for who they are and also an opportunity to plant seeds for the Kingdom. Tares have committed their lives to the way of world, but the true follower of Christ separates from those ways. For many, separation is often the hardest, but this is when God is able to do His greatest work of purification, not only in our own lives, but in others as well. Seeds can take time to grow and bring forth fruit and that is why we must walk in faith in obedience, even when we may not see the final outcome.

When we commit to Christ, it means confronting a dying world with the Gospel.

If you are not facing persecution in your life right now, then you haven’t committed yourself yet. It is through trials and tribulations for righteousness sake that tests our faith, but through it we grow in our relationship with God, but also are an example to others. Suffering persecution should be considered a blessing because it reveals who we are. Many don’t think of it this way, but there are many throughout history who have suffered much more than the possibility of losing friends or offending someone.

“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 were 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 church clergy are the 'rulers of the people and elders.' They have usurped the role of High Priest and Head that is now exclusively for Christ.

Preaching the true Gospel message will be your submission to persecution because it requires walking in obedience to the word of God. Yielding to the will of God in persecution will bring us closer to Him and allow us to grow in our maturity in Christ.

Victory

Churches are full of people who run away and hide because they are afraid they may face persecution. They will never yield to the the way of Christ because it is their fear of man that they are afraid to displease and bring offence to others. Unfortunately, they are worthless in expanding, or spreading seeds for the Kingdom of God.

Standing boldly on what is right will be in disagreement with the ways of the world if we consider ourselves to be followers of Christ. 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 of the truth.

The leaven of religious spiritual hypocrisy has thoroughly infiltrated the world; therefore, we must proclaim the truth and not walk in fear. Our hope is to want to be an instrument of God to help set other free from their religious oppression and spiritual bondage.

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

Are you being persecuted?

We are not called to just say things that are deemed pleasing and acceptable, but to stand on and contend for the standard of truth. Yes, we will be persecuted for it. It is not if it happens, but when it happens. We must submit to it and let God work through us. It is an opportunity, but many don’t see it this way and run. The fear of being ridiculed, slandered and the loss of friendship keeps many mouths shut.

However, if we are not willing to speak up for truth, then it reflects how much our personal feelings take precedence over doing the will of God.

The church Pastor will always avoid certain truths in Scripture because they do not want to ruffle any feathers. They are either self-serving or in fear of offending others. God cannot use them nor anyone else to bring conviction and repentance in the lives of others. They are useless for the Kingdom.

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 truth will bring the glory of God upon you. You cannot claim to identify with Christ unless we are suffering with him and walking as he walked.

Satan leaves alone those who are already helping his cause of worshipping mammon.

True freedom and peace comes when we fear God more that we fear men. It is only then that our eyes will open to understanding that persecution can be a blessing. It shows that we are walking the narrow road and that God is using us.

Imagine the audience who first heard these words,

Then they will hand you over to be PERSECUTED and KILLED, and you will be HATED by all nations on account of My name. - Matthew 24:9

Have you been persecuted or hated?

Many have been killed on the account of the name of Christ. They did not fear man, but God.

Oh FEAR YAHWEH, you his saints, for there is no lack with those who fear him. - Psalm 34:9

Are you being persecuted for the truth?

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    • PlanksandNails profile image
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      PlanksandNails 3 years ago from among the called out ones of the ekklesia of Christ

      Liberty,

      Thanks for the affirmation. God Bless.

    • profile image

      Liberty 3 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
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      PlanksandNails 3 years ago from among the called out ones of the ekklesia of Christ

      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.

    • celafoe profile image

      charlie 3 years ago from From Kingdom of God living on 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
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      PlanksandNails 3 years ago from among the called out ones of the ekklesia of Christ

      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.

    • PlanksandNails profile image
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      PlanksandNails 3 years ago from among the called out ones of the ekklesia of Christ

      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
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      PlanksandNails 3 years ago from among the called out ones of the ekklesia of Christ

      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
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      PlanksandNails 3 years ago from among the called out ones of the ekklesia of Christ

      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
      Author

      PlanksandNails 3 years ago from among the called out ones of the ekklesia of Christ

      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

    • Johan Smulders profile image

      Johan Smulders 3 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.

    • lifegate profile image

      William Kovacic 3 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.

    • profile image

      graceinus 3 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

    • Lowdown0 profile image

      Robbie Newport 3 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.

    • freeradicalsteve profile image

      freeradicalsteve 3 years ago

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