I fear if people in the Bible were like we modern day Christians, we wouldn't have some of the great Bible stories that we have.
There are people who claim there is no persecution of Christians here in the USA. It is true we have no persecution on the level of many Christians in other nations, but it is creeping in. All you have to do is pay attention to news stories. People losing their jobs because they dared stand for their beliefs, people being sued because they dared stand for what Biblical values.
There are countless stories of the atheists suing and winning in all kinds of cases from murals being covered up in schools, posters being taken down, crosses removed, city emblems being covered because they had a cross on them. And we step aside and let it happen.
Sometimes it seems inevitable. They seem to have better lawyers, more money, but still...... are we wimping out too easily?
I hear the excuses. We shouldn't offend people. It isn't really important. And other things we say.
When the proclamation was made that no one could pray to anyone but the king, what did Daniel do? He did as he always did. He opened his windows and prayed in the open. Do you know what we would have done? Left the windows closed and prayed where no one could see. He could have. Really, why do it the way he did and make trouble?
And when Shadrach, Meschach, and Abednego were among the people ordered to bow to the idol, would it really have hurt to bow? They wouldn't have had to verbally disavow God. How many of us would have bowed? It wasn't that big of a deal, and it would have saved trouble. Plus, I am sure the king was offended, and we should never offend people.........
There are other examples in the Bible. People told they couldn't do something for God, and they did it anyway. Why don't we? Peter, Paul, Stephen, and others were ordered not to preach..... they could have done it inside where no one would have known, but they kept doing it in public.
There seems to be this idea that Christians should never offend, but we should just love, love, love. Don't say anything is a sin, don't do anything to stick out. That if we are told not to put up a poster, pray somewhere, preach somewhere..... we should obey and do as we are told.
What if we were more like Cameron Franks? He is a senior from a school in Texas. A teacher had a Christian poster up and was ordered to take it down by the anti-Christian crowd. He did so, but Cameron decided not to take that sitting down, that it was time the Christians were heard from. He created and started selling t-shirts for Christians to wear at school. What a courageous young man. (story here)
And here is what I think is so awesome: the anti-God people got what they wanted. They got one poster taken down, but those posters were replaced by several t-shirts with a Christian message being worn by several kids. Imagine if that always happened. If the atheists got the nativity scene taken down from a public building, and several more would pop up at surrounding buildings. If they got one cross taken down, and Christians all around the location would put crosses up. I think after a while, they would quit fighting so hard if their attempts that eradicating Christian symbols resulted in more coming up.
But we wimp out.
The way our nation is headed with godless politicians and judges running it, the day will come when we are persecuted here in America. It isn't if, but when. It is starting in small ways, but it will worsen as time goes by and we keep putting evil men in power. If we can't stand up to what we are facing now, how on earth will we stand when it means our life or our children's lives if we are ordered to deny Christ? Now it is posters in school, crosses on public land, but the day will come when it will cost us to even be a Christian. Will we stand, or will we wimp out?
The following song is an awesome song, but it makes me sad. The writer and singer, Ray Boltz, secretly struggled with same-sex attractions for much of his life. He reached a point that he decided since God didn't take them away, God was OK with it. He left his wife and with her blessing (weird), dove into living the gay lifestyle. How sad. The thought has come to my mind that if he denied Christ for his sexual desires, how on earth could he have stood up to the persecution his song talks about. That should be a warning to all of us.
Pledge Allegiance To The Lamb
Words and music by Ray Boltz
I pledge allegiance to the Lamb
With all my strength
With all I am
I will seek to honor His commands
I pledge allegiance to the Lamb
I have heard how Christians long ago
Were brought before a tyrants throne
They were told that he
Would spare their lives
If they would renounce
The name of Christ
But one by one they chose to die
The Son of God, they would not deny
Like a great angelic choir sings
I can almost hear their voices ring
Now the years have come
And the years have gone
And the cause of Jesus still goes on
Now our time has come
To count the cost
To reject this world
To embrace the Cross
And one by one let us live our lives
For the One who died to give us life
Till the trumpet sounds on the final day
Let us proudly stand and boldly say