23 November 2009

How are you being treated?

John 15:18-20

"If the world hates you, keep in mind that it hated me first. If you belonged to the world, it would love you as its own. As it is, you do not belong to the world, but I have chosen you out of the world. That is why the world hates you. Remember the words I spoke to you: 'No servant is greater than his master.'If they persecuted me, they will persecute you also. If they obeyed my teaching, they will obey yours also. They will treat you this way because of my name, for they do not know the One who sent me.

How's the world treating you, Christian?

Take a walk with me back in time a couple thousand years ago. Christians were routinely put in an arena with blood thirsty lions that were waiting to tear their limbs apart while spectators went crazy with delight. Why did these Christians allow this to happen? They could have simply renounced their faith and would have been set free. Backsliding wasn’t as common then as it is now so what was the motive to let a lion rip you apart?

How about trying to translate a Bible into the modern English language of the day as William Tyndale did in the 16th century? Tyndale’s final words as he was about to be burned at the stake? “Oh Lord, open the King of England’s eyes”.

Fast forward to July, 2005 - When 34-year old Jiang Zongxiu went to her neighboring market last June in Guizhou Province, China. Along with her mother-in-law, Jiang went through the marketplace, taking opportunities to hand out Bibles and Christian literature and telling people about Jesus. Only this day they had an encounter with the Chinese police.

The two Christian women were handcuffed together and brought to the police station. They were interrogated throughout the evening of the 17th. The next morning they were sentenced by the Public Security Bureau (PSB) to 15 days incarceration for "suspected spreading of rumor and disturbing the social order."

Jiang and her mother-in-law knew the risk of spreading Christian literature in communist China. Both had been active in their church for more than 10 years and dared to go forth. Even when they were arrested, interrogated and sentenced to serve 15 days, they were willing to accept the consequences of their actions - all from a government that claims to have "freedom of religion."

But it was not enough for the PSB to arrest and beat these two Christian women for the crime of passing our Christian literature. In the afternoon of June 18th, Mrs. Jiang Zongziu was pronounced dead by the PSB office of Tongzi County. They claimed she died of "natural causes." The fact is she was beaten to death.

Christian, when was the last time you shared your faith? No, I'm not talking about that fish on the back of your car. I'm talking about walking up to that friend, co-worker, brother, grandmother that you know is not saved and sharing the Gospel.

Have you resided yourself to just showing up to church on Sunday and keeping to your own little world? Has your witness become non-existent because at the mere mention of the name of Jesus a sinful world would stop smiling at you? Are you reluctant to mention the word ‘sin’ to a sinner because he might be offended? Are you afraid to mention the bloodstained cross because the world might laugh and spit in your face?

150,000 people will die worldwide today and a vast majority of those people are going to hell.

Who do you know in your own little world that needs a Saviour?

How's the world treating you, Christian?


  1. Interesting commentary. I'm with you. Why are we so afraid to witness? Time is getting short, isn't it?
    Wendy Ellis

  2. Thanks Wendy, time is short indeed!

    Why are we afraid to witness?

    Different reasons for many Christians. The most prominent, I would say, is the fear of man.

    The easy way to conquer that fear is to remember that there are people dying and going to Hell all around us and we have the Word of life.

    Let compassion swallow our fears!!

  3. Yes, fear of man is definitely the most prominent reason why Christians are reluctant to share their faith. Frankly, I quite know what that's like.

    But I'm living proof that fear of such is conquerable. Not through any power of my own or through any self-help ideology, but only through the power of God the Holy Spirit.

    When you boil that particular "fear of man" down, you are left with a residue of human pride. I have come to understand that self-pride is really what our battle is against. It threatens our reputation as "normal" people. "What will people think of me?" is the fear at heart.

    My attitude quickly changed when I was taught that. It humbled me pronto. It helped me to conquer that silly fear and place my trust in God no matter how foolish I looked or sounded.

    Not that I don't get butterflies everytime I get up to open air preach or anything. I still do. But I'm glad about that. The day I don't feel nervous before opening up the gospel in public is the day I have relinquished the Spirit of God to work through me and am left relying on my prideful self to get the job done.

    No thanks! May the Lord always be our confidence in our evangelism. Good post, brother!