“All men will hate you because of me, but he who stands firm to the end will be saved. Matthew 10:22” Christ spoke these words to His disciples as He was sending them out to spread the gospel. The next verse says this: “When you are persecuted in one place, flee to another. I tell you the truth, you will not finish going through the cities of Isreal before the Son of Man comes. Matthew 10: 23″.
Up to now the church in North America has not experienced much persecution, at least not by the standards of many other places in the world. Why do you think that is? If Christians are essentially out of step with the world’ systems and ideologies, and if the Word of God which we represent, stands opposed to those systems, you would think that we in America would also experience persecution. Could it be that we have become the Church of Laodicea that God said He would spit out of His mouth because they were lukewarm? Does it follow that if God’s people return to Him and submit to His authority that one result might be persecution similar to what many of our brothers and sisters in Christ experience on a daily basis?
Sunday, November 15th, is the International Day of Prayer for the Persecuted Church. This is a day when we pray for our fellow Christians who are in danger, sometimes for their lives, because they worship God. As we participate we need to remember that there are presecutors as well, who need our prayers that they would come to the knowledge of the truth and be saved. This is the same battle that has raged from the beginning pitting the lies of the devil against the truth claims of God. All who have ever walked on this earth are on one side or the other, there is no middle ground.