Facing hostility?

Heb. 12:3
“For consider Him who endured such hostility from sinners against Himself, lest you become weary and discouraged in your souls.  You have not yet resisted to bloodshed, striving against sin.”

This verse follows on “looking unto Jesus, the author and finisher of our faith, who for the joy that was set before Him endured the cross, despising the shame,”

There is a place for resisting sin which will lead to hostility and even the moments when shame will try to come on you. You will be tempted to give up and think, why did I enter this battle? But Hebrews says what you are going through is little compared to what Jesus endured.

When you are a friend of the world rather than a follower of Jesus, you don’t want to resist sin, you don’t want to challenge lies, you don’t want to disturb the peace. And so evil festers and increases like a tumour. And when it has grown to become painful and you realise it is time to address it, the pain of removing that tumour is much greater.

There is collateral damage. Innocent people get maligned. The wicked fabricate stories to cover their wickedness, to deflect attention from themselves and they try and intimidate you with shame and hostility. And the undiscerning hear the rumours and are thrown, or they see the anger against you and think you yourself must be the problem because you are upsetting people, rocking the boat or disturbing the sleeping dog.

But the writer of Hebrews is saying – Look at Jesus – he rocked the boat, he challenged the religious lies and provoked the liars. And look how much hostility he endured. And look he endured it because there would be joy on the other side. And joy in the process. If he had to suffer to overcome sin and sickness, take hope when you suffer hostility because you are standing for his truth and extending his kingship in your field of influence.

So my sisters and brothers be encouraged. It is worth it to strive against sin. Jesus did it all, theologically-speaking. So that we can be free and forgiven. We don’t have to earn our salvation. But that does not mean we don’t have a job to do or some commands to follow. And being obedient to truth – to him – is not always easy. But he said – don’t think you will have it easier than I did. If people hated me, how much more will they hate you.

Bodygaurd & preacher

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