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Heshimu Colar | Lagos, Nigeria
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THEY BEAT HIM (Acts 18:4-17)
WEDNESDAY, JUNE 12, 2019
Posted by: The Gospel Fellowship Africa | more..
250+ views | 30+ clicks

“At this, the crowd seized Sosthenes the synagogue leader and beat him in front of the judgment seat. But none of this was of any concern to Gallio.” vs17

You must suffer to follow Christ. There is no way around it. You are going to have to give up everything, but you'll gain so much more.

The question was asked, "How do we tell people they must suffer for Christ?" The answer is, They either suffer in hell or suffer a little while for following Him. They're either persecuted, or the wrath of God punishes us for doing evil.

The true hedonist loves the pleasures of God that last forever, rather than short lived riches. We read, “Moses chose to suffer oppression with God’s people rather than to experience the fleeting enjoyment of sin. He valued disgrace for Christ above the treasures of Egypt, for he was looking ahead to his reward (Heb 11:25-26).” We must suffer, but He'll give us joy, and then heaven. He'll be with us, as we forsake all.

Do not look to what you must give up or the beating that you must take. Look to the reward. Look to the hope and the promises. Look to Christ.

First, we see that God saves people in community (Acts 18:8). “Crispus, the synagogue leader, and his whole household believed in the Lord. And many of the Corinthians who heard the message believed and were baptized.” He doesn't leave us lone rangers, but He gives us brethren. Crispus and his whole household believed, along with many Corinthians, and others will stand with you, as you stand with Christ. We get a new family, and He saves families [Ps 68:6]. Be faithful to what is true.

Secondly, Paul receives confidence (vs9-11). Our Lord says, "Don't be afraid, but keep speaking and don't be silent. For I am with you, and no one will lay a hand on you to hurt you, because I have many people in this city." We know that He is with us, and they can kill the body but never the soul. Our Lord, says, “Do not be afraid of those who kill the body but cannot kill the soul. Instead, fear the One who can destroy both soul and body in hell [Matt 10:28].”

We know that He'll give us peace, and He'll never forsake us. We know it is better to suffer for doing good. We know blessed are the persecuted, and our light affliction is working an exceedingly great eternal reward, as we see others blessed by our tears [2 Cor 4:17]. We know it's worth it in every way.

We don't know how many people He has in a particular city, but we know His purpose shall not fail. When I thought I might not be able to stay in Nigeria, I wept, but I knew that God would save His people here, and nothing would stop Him, not even our death. He'll use it to fulfill His plan, and we only have to do our part!

Thirdly, the trouble that comes upon us is because of religious people, particularly the law mongers, who have the scriptures but don't know them (Acts 18:12-17). “While Gallio was proconsul of Achaia, the Jews coordinated an attack on Paul and brought him before the judgment seat. ‘This man is persuading the people to worship God in ways contrary to the law,’ they said.” They chased Paul and terrorized him, because he's a terror unto them, preaching Jesus, free grace, and power over sin - not by will power, but by union with Christ in His death and resurrection... not by human power but by the Spirit, freely given for Christ's sake. These things drove the religious crazy, and as power comes that they've never had - freedom, joy, and love - they will attack hatefully. But, we must endure. We have truth and can't let go of it. We can't cower and go back.

→ Brothers, be thankful that YOU'VE been appointed to suffer for serving God rather than Satan [Phil 1:29]. Choose to stand with the godly, and taste and see that your Lord is good. Stand. It is worth it.

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