Blessed are ye, when men shall revile you, and persecute you, and shall say all manner of evil against you falsely, for my sake. 12 Rejoice, and be exceeding glad: for great is your reward in heaven: for so persecuted they the prophets which were before you.
Often when we read these verses of the Bible, it seems to come across as discouraging, but in all reality it is not provided for discouragement, but rather for encouragement. It is for us to understand and equip ourselves for the task ahead, and one more thing to show we are not of this world, but of the world and kingdom to come.
Often when we are zealous for Christ spreading the word in a loving way, the world may kick at us; Jesus said we are to turn the other cheek lay down our armaments and allow him to defend our position. Paul told us to be kind to our enemies, providing water, when they are thirsty, food when they are hungry, and shelter when they are shelter-less. As we do those things we are told coals of fire will be heaped on their heads.
What does this mean? It means as we are genuinely showing love toward our enemies, God on account of their response will bring their acts of evil against them in judgment. Our calling and purpose is to bring the gospel of salvation to the world, and to pray for them that their eyes may open to the truth.
We can do only those things God has given into our power, and one of those things is to minister the gospel and to show love. We can love those who hate us, as we come to realize we are the children of God, the ones with the benefit of eternal life, a life we wish to share with those we meet each day. Upon their rejection, they are not rejecting you, they are rejecting Jesus the Christ who came and die for you.
Matthew 10:16-22”Behold, I send you forth as sheep in the midst of wolves: be ye therefore wise as serpents, and harmless as doves. 17But beware of men: for they will deliver you up to the councils, and they will scourge you in their synagogues; 18 And ye shall be brought before governors and kings for my sake, for a testimony against them and the Gentiles. 19But when they deliver you up, take no thought how or what ye shall speak: for it shall be given you in that same hour what ye shall speak. 20For it is not ye that speak, but the Spirit of your Father which speaks in you”.
21 And the brother shall deliver up the brother to death, and the father the child: and the children shall rise up against their parents, and cause them to be put to death. 22And ye shall be hated of all men for my name’s sake: but he that endures to the end shall be saved.
So we are sheep, meaning there is a need for us to depend on our shepherd, and once we come to the place where we understand this reality we will not walk by our own power, but by the power of our shepherd. He instructs us to be wise as a serpent, and to come up with ways to minister as in a stealthy manner, not always through speech, but in deed and kindness.
Sometimes working through the means of good works will drive people, even our enemies to ask us questions about our lives, and at that moment we will have an open door to their heart that we might share God’s truth and love. Be as a serpent, wait patiently for the enemy, and keep busy in good works, in the end God will provide a way for you. Don’t be discourage you are a child of the king; your father is the Creator of the universe.
Matthew 10:40-42 He that receiveth you receiveth me, and he that receiveth me receiveth him that sent me. 41He that receiveth a prophet in the name of a prophet shall receive a prophet’s reward; and he that receiveth a righteous man in the name of a righteous man shall receive a righteous man’s reward. 42And whosoever shall give to drink unto one of these little ones a cup of cold water only in the name of a disciple, verily I say unto you, he shall in no wise lose his reward.
- SOUNDING THE SHOFAR- Satan, the Cause of Church Woes (vineoflife.net)
- Rosh Hashanah–A Celebration of Beginnings! (bluemountain.com)
- Yom Kippur, the “Day of Atonement” (bluemountain.com)