Sunday, December 25, 2016


Rev. 2:9-10 "Don't be afraid of what you are about to suffer. The Devil will throw some of you into prison and put you to the test. You will be persecuted for 'ten days.' Remain faithful even when facing death, and I will give you the crown of life.

Some believers know very well what it is to suffer and be persecuted for their faith, while for others there is very little knowledge of what it is like. The early church lived in a very hostile world towards Christianity. Christ changed everything; He made enemies of the Jewish community that did not accept Him as the promised Messiah and He was deemed to be the enemy of the Roman world who was threatened by His claims of kingship over mankind. As a result, Christians were the target of much persecution, even to the point of death for many. In many parts of the world today, the same thing holds true. Many religions of the world despise Christians and often will persecute them, even to the point of death. The world in general despise Christians because of Christ's standards of holy living that they refuse to accept, let alone live by.

On the other hand, in many parts of the world, suffering for Christ is not very well known. There may be public scorning for one's beliefs and ridicule, but that would be pretty much it. What needs to be understood though is that the closer we get to the Lord's coming, the more likely it is that the body of Christ everywhere will be subject to persecutions and sufferings.

Jesus reminds us here to remain faithful. We need to strengthen our faith every chance we get so that we will be strong enough to remain faithful when the tough times come upon us. If we are able to remain faithful, even if it is in the face of death itself, great will be our reward in heaven. The time to grow strong in faith in today, tomorrow may be too late. Draw near to God and stay there. If you do, you will be able to stand up and be faithful regardless of what you may face in the days ahead.

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