The first amendment to the United States Constitution says, “Congress shall make no law abridging the freedom of speech.” However, as homosexuality and abortion are praised in the media, opposing voices are labeled as deviants and fools.
Public speech is no longer free as the founders intended. Efforts are under way to silence Christians from sharing what the Bible says. But this is really nothing new to God’s people. We have faced these challenges before.
“If the world hates you, you know that it hated Me [Jesus] before it hated you” (John 15:18, NKJV). The Apostles were told to stop preaching Jesus and they replied, “We must obey God rather than men” (Acts 5:29). Daniel, Shadrach, Meshach and Abed-Nego stood up to the authorities and refused to stop praying to God (Daniel 3:8-18; 6:10-23).
Paul faced a mob in Ephesus (Acts 19:21-30) and another in Jerusalem (Acts 21:26-40). He was stoned in Lystra (Acts 14:8-20) and faced a shipwreck in Acts 27.
Centuries later, we’re still facing the same powerful spiritual enemy (Ephesians 6:10-12).
Paul faced death on numerous occasions, but he refused to stand down against sin (2 Corinthians 11:22-33). He would not be cowed. In the last recorded chapter of his writings, he said to remain firm in the Word and face the afflictions that will come (2 Timothy 4:2-5).
“Yes, and all who desire to live godly in Christ Jesus will suffer persecution” (2 Timothy 3:12).
God has not “given us a spirit of fear, but of power and of love and of sound mind” (2 Timothy 1:7). With courage and resolve, we must be willing to give everything up to stand firm for God’s Word. He is watching and weighing our responses to the pressures of a pagan society.
Will we pass the test?