Scripture: 1 Peter 3:13-14
Who is there to harm you if you prove zealous for what is good? But even if you should suffer for the sake of righteousness, you are blessed. And do not fear their intimidation, and do not be troubled,
Insights: This week we will be examining how our worship gives us confidence in Jesus and the first part of our confidence is found in our courageous lifestyle of worship. Notice with me in today’s verses how Peter asks a simple question regarding harm. Is it really possible for someone to harm a Christ-follower? To answer this question that Peter is posing, let us examine the apostle Paul’s life for just a moment. If Paul faces prison, what is his response? He would say, “Prison, I like prison, there are some men there I have been witnessing to and I am needing to follow up with them.” If Paul is stoned, what is his response? He would say, “Stoning, I like stoning, the last time I actually died and the Lord rose me again and I walked right back into that town and continue preaching that Christ Jesus is Lord. You ought to have seen the faces of those men that threw the stones when I walked back into town.” If Paul is ship wrecked, what is his response? He would say, “Ship wrecks, I like ship wrecks, it gives me more time with the sailors I have been telling about Jesus.” If Paul were to be put to death, what would his response have been? He would say, “You want to kill me, I would like to die, because if I were to die I would be present with Jesus and oh how I long for that day.” Beloved, do you understand the point I am making with these fictional responses (though based on the Scriptures) of Paul. He courageously lived life because he knew where His strength was found. It was found in Christ Jesus who lived inside of him. Because his focus was heavenward he was not intimidated by the pressures of this world. He really did understand that he suffered for righteousness sake and was blessed of the Lord. It is my prayer that we all grow in the grace of the Lord and face the coming persecution well. The days of Christian oppression are coming and in those days we will all need to be like Peter and Paul. May the strength of the Lord give us courage to stand for Jesus and bear witness to His name.
1. Has something happened in your past that has developed a pattern that is less than courageous for the Lord?
2. What is the Lord currently calling you to that will require courage?
Prayer: Father, in and of myself I am cowardly. I know, however, in You I am more than a conqueror. Strengthen me to walk courageously with You. Amen.