Sunday, February 05, 2023
2 TIMOTHY 2:3 NKJ 3 You therefore must endure hardship as a good soldier of Jesus Christ.
We are involved in a battle for the hearts and minds of people. Our enemy, the devil, has forces arrayed against us.
But our Lord Jesus has defeated the devil and stripped him of all authority. The Lord is our Helper and He has promised to never leave us. But Jesus never promised that we would never face opposition or persecution. In fact, He told us we would.
JOHN 16:33 NKJ 33 "These things I have spoken to you, that in Me you may have peace. In the world you will have tribulation; but be of good cheer, I have overcome the world."
2 TIMOTHY 3:12 NKJ 12 Yes, and all who desire to live godly in Christ Jesus will suffer persecution.
God is our Father and He is good. Therefore we can always expect good to come from Him.
But Scripture also alerts us to the fact that on earth we are in the midst of a struggle involving evil. While the ultimate victory of Love is assured, people are still making decisions which are not the best for all concerned. This can at times result in us facing persecution, trouble, or hardship.
People make bad decisions because they are in spiritual darkness. We are God's representatives to bring them Light.
So there will be times, in order to help others, that we will need to endure things that are not pleasant for us.
God promises us ultimate victory (and even rewards for our service for Him), so we need to always remain steadfast in our faith, never wavering in our conviction that God is good and He is working on our behalf -- no matter what we may be facing in life.
God loves all people, even those who are causing us distress. Yet most of those people have been blinded to the reality of God's love for them.
God is not happy about you suffering, any more than He was happy for His Son Jesus Christ to suffer on the cross.
But God is pleased when we, just like Jesus, willingly "endure" without striking back when people do us wrong. Why? Because it may be the only way for these people to see there is a reality to God's love -- when they see it in you.
2 CORINTHIANS 3:3 NLT 3 Clearly, you are a letter from Christ showing the result of our ministry among you. This "letter" is written not with pen and ink, but with the Spirit of the living God. It is carved not on tablets of stone, but on human hearts.
SAY THIS: In response to God's great love, I am willing to endure hardness as a good soldier for my Lord Jesus Christ, in order to help people.
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