TOPIC: Standing Firm To The End
SCRIPTURE: And you will be hated by everyone because of [your association with] My name, but it is the one who has patiently persevered and endured to the end who will be saved. – Matthew 10:22, AMP
Seeds of the Kingdom 13 January 2022 Daily Devotional Message
I think most of us want to be liked or loved by others. We wouldn’t choose to be hated or rejected, and yet Jesus has warned us that we will, at some stage, experience that, when we follow Him wholeheartedly. There is not an opt-out clause, where we can negotiate the terms and conditions. He has ‘promised’ this persecution as an aspect of being His disciple.
Mark 10:29-30 (NIV) states “Truly I tell you,” Jesus replied, “no one who has left home or brothers or sisters or mother or father or children or fields for me and the gospel will fail to receive a hundred times as much in this present age: homes, brothers, sisters, mothers, children and fields—along with persecutions—and in the age to come eternal life.”’
Amazingly, the Lord promises us abundance when we leave things behind for His sake to follow Him, plus persecutions! Isn’t it an eye-opener to think that, along with all the listed blessings in verse 29-30, that persecutions are included as part of the package! The beatitude named in Matthew 5:10 backs that up by stating, ‘“Blessed [comforted by inner peace and God’s love] are those who are persecuted for doing that which is morally right, for theirs is the kingdom of heaven [both now and forever]’” (AMP).
We’ve entered a phase in history like never before, where bits of the bible are being chucked away as being irrelevant, or rephrased to make them politically correct, just to appease the culture within which we live. Jesus encourages us to stand firm in our faith and remain in Him and His love (John 15). He has been tempted in every way as we have, yet without sinning, and knows the challenges we face as His followers (Hebrews 4:15).
He knows what it feels like to be rejected and spurned. We can be heartened by His words, ‘“I have said these things to you, that in me you may have peace. In the world you will have trouble. But take heart, I have overcome the world”’ (John 16:33, NIV). We are called to be salt and light, and continue to display His love, turn the other cheek, and stand firm and unwavering in our convictions, no matter what comes our way.
I write an encouragement to each of you to stand firm. We’re in this together, and we can encourage one another daily as the bible exhorts us to do (Hebrews 3:13). If you don’t have an encouraging Christian friend, I pray that the Lord sends one to you.
PRAYER: Dear heavenly father, help me to stand firm, regardless of what comes my way. I am aware there are worldly things which could bring the temptation to compromise. I choose to go Your way, even if it means it costs me. Thank You that You gave a hundred per cent of all that You had and all that You were so that I could experience freedom now. Help me to stand firm and show You to others. In Jesus’ name, Amen.
TODAY’S AUTHOR: Gilly Mathiesen; Gilly has a heart to see broken lives healed. She got involved in Christian ministry at a young age, working as a missionary for some years, as well as teaching at a Christian school. She has been involved with Ellel Ministries for the past 10 years and trained and worked on the team in Northern Ireland before moving to Denmark in 2016. She and her husband Steen have been pioneering an Ellel work there since early 2018. They long to see people healed and set free to be all that God has designed them to be.