I’ve been struggling with icky feelings, knowing I’m being laughed at, scorned, and ridiculed by some who I thought were friends. Yesterday a friend shared with me that these people feel confronted when I don’t go along with their lies, and I am bold in my response. This morning I woke up super early and the Lord took me to a Scripture that I need to let in.
“Blessed are you when they revile and persecute you, and say all kinds of evil against you falsely for My sake. Rejoice and be exceedingly glad, for great is your reward in heaven, for so they persecuted the prophets who were before you.” (Matt 5:11-12) I still hadn’t had my coffee yet, so I pondered that along with a question someone we know asked the other day.
The question was “can’t we all just get along?”. Those who aren’t Christ followers must think that those of us who are should be tolerant of sin and be fine with how someone else chooses to live. But we are called to live God’s truth by walking in the Spirit, and to speak God’s truth. And God’s Word is clear that we can’t all just get along, because we are to stay away from the scoffers and blasphemers. “If you are reproached for the name of Christ, blessed are you, for the Spirit of glory and of God rests upon you. On their part He is blasphemed, but on your part He is glorified.” (1 Pet 4:14)
Jesus said, “Do not think that I came to bring peace on earth. I did not come to bring peace but a sword. For I have come to ‘set a man against his father, a daughter against her mother, and a daughter-in-law against her mother-in-law’; and ‘a man’s enemies will be those of his own household.’ He who loves father or mother more than Me is not worthy of Me. And he who loves son or daughter more than Me is not worthy of Me. And he who does not take his cross and follow after Me is not worthy of Me. He who finds his life will lose it, and he who loses his life for My sake will find it.” (Matt 10:34-39)
When we submit to the Lord He will add things to our lives and He will remove things that need to go, and many times that is people in our lives. “And we know that all things work together for good to those who love God, to those who are the called according to His purpose.” (Rom 8:28)
The reason Christ followers are ridiculed and persecuted is because those who choose to ignore His call do not want to hear God’s absolute truth; they want to believe what they want and think that their own form of godliness is just fine. We are told from such people to turn away (2 Tim 3:1-5).
God’s truth cuts through the world’s lies, giving people the opportunity to repent and receive God’s grace and mercy. “For the Word of God is living and powerful, and sharper than any two-edged sword, piercing even to the division of soul and spirit, and of joints and marrow, and is a discerner of the thoughts and intents of the heart. And there is no creature hidden from His sight, but all things are naked and open to the eyes of Him to whom we must give account.” (Heb 4:12-13) But those who don’t accept Him, will eventually be given up to the sin they want instead of God (Rom 1:18-32).
So no, we can’t all just get along. But as some are weeded out of our lives, others are brought in because we are to encourage and be encouraged by fellow Christ followers. “And let us consider one another in order to stir up love and good works, not forsaking the assembling of ourselves together, as is the manner of some, but exhorting one another, and so much the more as you see the Day approaching” (Heb 10:24-25). I’m so thankful to the Lord for waking me early this morning, and showing me that things aren’t falling apart, they’re falling into place.