Online Bible Verses - Philippians 1:29 Persecution may come our way
“For it has been granted to you on behalf of Christ not only to believe in him, but also to suffer for him,”
Sometimes these verses come in and I pause, not immediately seeing how I can relate or comment. The verse set seems a bit non-applicable in terms of personal experience. Reason being, I have not endured any serious persecution on account of being a follower of and believer in Christ. Have not suffered for Him in the classic sense. Sure, I’ve been told I am crazy for believing in a resurrected and living Christ, a young earth, coming tribulation and such; been labeled by some and faced some strong disagreement. I’ve heard the “you ****ing Christians are the worst hypocrites in existence..” lectures as well. It pretty much rolls off my back, as I am, actually, a major league hypocrite at times. No need for Jesus otherwise.
We do become well aware of the fact that there are people today who willingly accept horrible persecution on account of Christ. They will not abandon their faith in Him even under terrible threats. Much like cases we see in scripture; Stephen and Paul just to name a couple.
Day might come when I have to stand up in the face of threats as well. What scripture tells me, God will not put anything on me other than what I can handle. Stephen was stoned to death by an angry crowd (Book of Acts). Scripture tells us he prayed during the stoning, even requesting that God forgive his tormentors. Just as Jesus had while on the cross. So here was a mortal man, empowered by God to handle something so fearful and terrible in a brave and even loving way. What we draw from this, that God empowered Stephen; and, consistent with what scripture tells us, He would enable and empower us as well.
Given today’s discussion, I think it a good day to praise Him for blessing me with freedom to worship and claim Him as my Lord, God and friend. As already discussed, a day is gradually approaching when that privilege will no longer exist.