Persecution



The deputy escorted one inmate to be evaluated for an injury he sustained to his left eye. He was housed with another mate who has a different race than his.

There was some contusion on that area, marked by swelling and ecchymosis and a small superficial laceration was visible on the upper lid.

“What happened, Sir?”

“I don’t know, Ma’am. I guess I fell with my face flat on the floor.”

“Hmmm. Were you sleeping then woke up or was dizzy?”

“No, Ma’am.”

“If you fell flat on your face, Sir, just wondering why there was no injury to your nose which is more prominent than your eye areas? Are you sure that no one had hit you because if you let me know, I can ask for an appropriate help from the deputy.”

“I don’t know, Ma’am. ...I fell. That’s all.”

Despite the sign of trauma that someone had assaulted him, this inmate was scared to tell the truth. Most of the time, even after altercations, no one wants to say anything against the aggressor, for fear of more assault and a threat to their lives. They would rather stick to playing “dumb” and denials than confront that fear. They would rather take the torment inflicted on them.

After cleaning his wounds, the deputy ended up bringing him back to his cell with that particular cell mate. I prayed that there would be no further assault on him as he was returned to that confined space with the one who hit him. It was sad that maybe it was a “race issue”, that was why the “cellie” [cell mate] had socked his eye. I prayed he wouldn’t face any more torments from the other man, just because they differed with their race.

Jesus had warned His disciples, too of persecution as they lived a life following Him. [Life Application Bible, Matthew 10:16-23]. I think whatever applied to the disciples still holds true for us who choose to follow Jesus this day. When we share the Good News, not every one will welcome what we share.

Conflicts and disagreements sometimes arise between us who follow Him and those who don’t. Our faith might separate us even from friends and loved ones. Our faith will set us apart from them and others. We don’t have to neglect them or fight with them, but our commitment to the Lord is much more important. He should be our first priority. Jesus calls us to a higher mission than to find comfort in this life. Like that inmate, we may face hostility, but we must not be afraid for we have God on our side.

To follow Jesus means not being afraid when we face persecutions, to be identified with Him and to face suffering, even death for His sake.

He challenges us for a higher mission. So, what is He calling you for?

Jesus said in Matthew 10:28 –“Don’t be afraid of those who want to kill you. They can only kill your body; they cannot touch your soul. Fear only God, Who can destroy both soul and body in hell.”

Matthew 10:32 –“If anyone acknowledges Me publicly here on earth, I will openly acknowledge that person before My Father in heaven.”

Matthew 10:33 –“But if anyone denies Me here on earth, I will deny that person before My Father in heaven.”

Matthew 10:38, 39 –“If you refuse to take up your cross and follow Me, you are not worthy of being Mine. If you cling to your life, you will lose it; but if you give it up for Me, you will find it.”



Please pray for all of our brothers and sisters in Christ being persecuted!

All posts/composed songs copyright by RCUBEs.



Encouragers

The Attacker (5/15/09)

The sun was just peeking from the Eastern skies. Ephesians 6:12 [37 kb]


Out in the prison’s yard, some huge Sheriff’s buses were illuminated by the soft glow coming from the lights all over from the tall lamp posts. Their engines were turned on, warming up, before the buses would take the inmates to the different courts where they would have their trials.


Orange-uniformed men were lined up in pairs, joined together with handcuffs and chained, forming a long line. They already had their breakfast and had their morning medications prior to going to courts. Some were fidgeting, as they waited to board those buses.


All of a sudden, all hell broke loose! Two men were engaged in a fight, using weapons they made secretly for a while. Deputies called for help on the radio, both for custody back-up and medical staff, as well.


When the air was cleared and the other inmates were secured, one man was down on the floor. He sustained multiple gashes but two of them were deep. One cut was vertically etched from his left ear going down to the jaw line. The other dangerous cut was horizontal on his left neck, close to the jugular vein. Pool of blood dripped all over the floor. Holding his bleeding neck, he was pointing at the other inmate few feet away, being guarded by the other deputies.


The other man being accused was not hurt. There were no lacerations nor any other signs of trauma. He was obviously very agitated as he was being questioned by those deputies, while the medical staff started treating the other man on the floor. They cleaned the wounds and controlled the bleeding. That man was sent to the nearby hospital.


When the investigation was finalized, it turned out to be that the “downed man who was accusing the other inmate” was the attacker and the other one who didn’t have injury was the one attacked. The deputies found out that it was the second attempt to attack the unhurt man. Both attacks on him failed. He was well-prepared after the first attempt on him, that when the second attempt was done, he was able to defend himseld and ended up injuring his attacker severely.


[Source: Life Application Bible]:


We also have an “accuser of the brethren.” Satan and his army of demons are the enemies of God and of everything good.


“Because God’s children are human beings – made of flesh and blood – Jesus also became flesh and blood by being born in human form. For only as a human being could he die, and only by dying could he break the power of the Devil, who had the power of death.” –Hebrews 2:14


Because of what Jesus had done [dying on the cross], we, who live in constant fear of death shouldn’t be afraid anymore. Jesus had freed us from that fear so we can live for Him. When we belong to God, we know that death is only the portal that leads into “eternal life”. [“Thank You Lord!].


Paul warned us, too that we also battle against the evil forces of Satan, who is a vicious fighter. But to be able to withstand their attacks, we must depend on God’s strength and use every piece of His armor. We face an army whose goal is to defeat Christ’s church. When we believe in Christ, they become our enemies. They will try any device to turn us away from the Lord.


Fear not! For God has provided His supernatural power to defeat Satan and his army, through His Holy Spirit within us. So, arm yourselves with God’s armor.


Let us be strong in the Lord's mighty power. Let's put on His whole armor to resist the enemy's attacks: put on the sturdy belt of truth and the body armor of God's righteousness. For shoes, put on the peace that comes from the Good News, so that we are well-prepared. We will need faith in every battle as our shield to stop the fiery arrows aimed by Satan and his army. Let us put on salvation as our helmet, not forgetting the sword of the Spirit, which is the Word of God. Let's pray at all times, on every occasion in the power of the Holy Spirit. We must stay alert and be persistent in our prayers for all Christians everywhere. [Ephesians 6:10-18].

Friends