Rejoice and Be Glad When You Are Persecuted

Daily God Walk for Wednesday, August 3, 2011

 Blessed are you when people insult you, persecute you and falsely say all kinds of evil against you because of me. Rejoice and be glad, because great is your reward in heaven. – Matthew 5:11-12

 I get emails from a group which monitors the persecution of Christians around the world and it is moving to read of the way believers in Christ are treated in some countries. What is most amazing about this is the attitude of the believers.

Persecuted believers are not bitter toward their persecutors but rather they pray for them and bless them. Sometimes their persecutors are even converted because of the love shown them.

Jesus told us to rejoice when we are persecuted. That is hard if we are thinking about the ones who persecute us, but when we think of our great example, Jesus himself, how he not only accepted severe persecution with grace but hanging on the cross he cried out, “Forgive them, for they don’t know what they do.”

Jesus is also our example in how we should endure hardship and persecution. Hebrews 12:2 instructs us, “Let us fix our eyes on Jesus, the author and perfecter of our faith, who for the joy set before him endured the cross, scorning its shame.” Even in his pain Jesus saw the joy.

None us have endured what Jesus endured and we should rejoice because of the joy which is before us. Those enduring circumstances in countries which persecute, torture and kill believers will tell you that persecution isn’t fun and it isn’t easy, but endured with grace and the hope of eternity, there is joy.

We have often heard the quote, “The joy of the Lord is my strength,” but few know the source of that quote. It comes from the book of Nehemiah when the people of God were under extreme persecution. Read Nehemiah 8.

The enemies of the kingdom of God are deliberately trying to hinder God’s work and our attitude will have an affect on how successful he will be. I challenge you to rejoice because we’ve read the last chapter and we know how the story ends.

 Prayer: Lord, help me to rejoice even in suffering and grant me the grace to bless those who persecute me. In Jesus name, amen.

 We would love to hear from you. Send email to: paul@newhopeministryresources.org

Would you like a printed copy of the Daily God Walk? Visit us at: www.newhopeministryresources.org/dgw-orderinfo.html

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Paul ”Hope Preacher” Smith

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