Stand Up For Jesus

It was a great week. It is a blessing to me when I see people come out for the special church days. Our Good Friday service was attended by 30 people. There were 20 for brunch on Easter morning, followed by 48 for Resurrection Day services. God is up to something in our community, and it is exciting to be a part of it.
It seems the culture and our society is bent upon silencing Christians and our message. Every day I hear of more pressure on believers to abandon their faith and beliefs. I can only think it is going to get worse. If you read a newspaper or magazine, watch any news on television or listen to it on the radio, you know this already We should not be surprised at all this, we only have to read the words of the Lord to understand this is the way it is going to be as his return draws near.
Jesus said, “When (not if) you are brought before synagogues, rulers and authorities, do not worry about how you will defend yourselves or what you will say” (Luke 12:11). He is saying that opposition will come even from “religious” groups, along with government and other authorities. He says even families will be divided on these issues (Luke 12:51-53).
The apostle Peter wrote this to Christians: “Dear friends, do not be surprised at the painful trial you are suffering, as though some strange thing were happening to you…If you are insulted because of the name of Christ, you are blessed, for the Spirit of glory and of God rests on you” (1 Peter 4:12-14).
This is not the time to be silent. We who claim the name of Jesus need to be ever watchful, remembering that we are called to be faithful to God and to His truth. We must be willing to defend our faith, even when it is unpopular with those around us. The Resurrection of our Lord, which we celebrated yesterday, gives us hope. It tell us we have a home in heaven someday. That hope allows us to persevere in the face of difficulty and even persecution.
Sometimes we need to be reminded of the beginning words of the old hymn– “Stand up, stand up for Jesus!”

Standing on His Word,
Pastor Jerry

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