PERSECUTED FOR HIS SAKE.
Wherein they think it strange that ye run not with them to the same excess of riot, speaking evil of you (1 PETER 4:4)
In 1 Peter 4, the Apostle Peter emphasizes that living in accordance to God’s Word comes with a price of being ridiculed. Many will be surprised when you don’t join them in the same wild and reckless living; and so they’ll insult, vilify and speak evil of you.
The Amplified Classic translation of the opening text tells us, “They are astonished and think it very queer that you do not now run hand in hand with them in the same excesses of dissipation, and they abuse [you].” Irrespective of the evil or abuses they haul at you because you ‘follow’ Jesus, never be ashamed. Your association with Christ is the greatest honour ever.
The Bible says, “For it is better to suffer for doing good, if this should be God’s will, than for doing evil” (1 Peter 3:17). So, distinguish yourself for the Lord. Arm yourself with the same mind—the mind of Christ. Don’t be ashamed to stand up for the Lord no matter the persecutions. He stood up for you, and saved you; so, you must stand up for Him. Don’t be concerned that you may be isolated or ostracized.
Jesus loves you even if all others forsake you, and according to the Word, He won’t forsake you. He’s in you and always with you: “…lo, I am with you alway, even unto the end of the world. Amen” (Matthew 28:20). Read His words in Luke 21:33-36: “Heaven and earth shall pass away: but my words shall not pass away. And take heed to yourselves, lest at any time your hearts be overcharged with surfeiting, and drunkenness, and cares of this life, and so that day come upon you unawares. For as a snare shall it come on all them that dwell on the face of the whole earth….”
We’re in the end times, and the current happenings around the world are a fulfilment of these prophecies, right before our eyes. But here’s a question you must answer in Hebrews 2:3: “How shall we escape, if we neglect so great salvation?….” Live according to God’s Word and let nothing cause you to ignore or neglect your salvation. Jesus said in Matthew 5:11-12, “Blessed are ye, when men shall revile you, and persecute you, and shall say all manner of evil against you falsely, for my sake. Rejoice, and be exceeding glad: for great is your reward in heaven: for so persecuted they the prophets which were before you.”
I’m undaunted and unmoved at the vilifying or slanderous words of the wicked, as I walk on in the Word, by the Spirit. I’m the righteousness of God in Christ Jesus, His workmanship, created to produce fruits of righteousness. I’ve crucified the flesh with its passions and desires; Satan has nothing in me! Hallelujah!
2 CORINTHIANS 7:1 NIV
Therefore, since we have these promises, dear friends, let us purify ourselves from everything that contaminates body and spirit, perfecting holiness out of reverence for God.
Blessed are ye, when [men] shall revile you, and persecute [you], and shall say all manner of evil against you falsely, for my sake. 12 Rejoice, and be exceeding glad: for great [is] your reward in heaven: for so persecuted they the prophets which were before you.
DAILY SCRIPTURE READING
1 Year Bible Reading Plan:
Luke 2:1-20;Deuteronomy 11-12
2 Year Bible Reading Plan:
Matthew 24:1-11;Exodus 27