Written by cycleguy on September 20th, 2019

Persecution has dogged the tracks of the church ever since its beginning. From the first recorded “defense” by Peter and John in Acts 4 to the first imprisonment in Acts 5 to the all out attacks of the Sanhedrin and Saul in the early chapters of Acts, persecution has been part of being a follower of Christ. And I don’t believe it is going to “let up” in the ensuing years. Things are beginning to “amp up” toward the church and Christianity in our day.

The postcard written to the church in Smyrna relates to their persecution because of their faith. But the truth is persecution does not destroy the church; it makes it strong. Jesus promised persecution: “In this world you will have tribulation. But take heart; I have overcome the world.” (John 16:33)  He also said, “If they persecuted me, they will also persecute you.” (John 15:20)  The church at Smyrna is one of the two churches where nothing negative is said about them. In this case, persecution did make them stronger not weaker.

I’d appreciate your prayers as I preach this weekend. I’ve been fighting some head junk all week plus my Saturday will be spent at our table at the Apple Butter Festival (something our town has every year).


8 Comments so far ↓

  1. You have my prayers, Bill, and I do hope you feel better soon!

  2. Crystal says:

    Good morning 🌞 here in the mountains of AZ data is sometimes unpredictable so I read your blogs whenever I get adaquete service 🌞 that said – this is a timely post. There is a growing trend at the moment where the push is that “all roads lead to heaven” and “freedom of religion” BUT ironically the same ones that push that are very much against anyone who identifies as a Christian. One observation I have made is that the loudest advocates have been “burned”/abused by people who used the Bible in a way uncharacteristic of the true character of God and so they are speaking out of their own hurt and bitterness. So we have in many ways brought it on ourselves. Yet, it is becoming more and more difficult to live as “more than a fan of Jesus Christ”. Would love to hear your sermon today – encouraging to know that persecution for our Faith can yield strengthened faith.

    • cycleguy says:

      Good afternoon Crystal! Good to hear from you. After spending a week on a ship in Alaska I know what you are talking about with data being unpredictable. Only two places the whole week. I have to say it was divine! You are talking about what you have heard me say: those who want tolerance become the least tolerant when you don’t agree with them. The sermon is on the church’s website.

  3. floyd says:

    I’m late, but praying.