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When Christians Are Persecuted

March 11, 2015 Save Article

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Matthew 5:10-12 (Program: 2234, Air dates: 1.4.2015 & 1.11.2015)

  1. INTRODUCTION
    1. Being a Christian means that we will be persecuted.
      1. 2 Timothy 3:12
    2. Bible-believing Christians may be the most widely persecuted people in the world.
    3. Joy is the thermostat in our life. It controls how we handle life.
    4. Persecution is the thermometer in our life. It measures our life.
  1. THE REASONS FOR PERSECUTION (Matthew 5:10)
    1. The lifestyle we show
      1. 1 Peter 2:9
        1. We are a peculiar people.
        2. We are salt that stings and irritates.
        3. We are light that reveals.
      2. We are persecuted for righteousness’ sake.
        1. We must make sure it is persecution we are receiving and not punishment.
          1. 1 Peter 4:14-16
      3. The world is going to be watching for us to make a mistake.
        1. Matthew 12:1-8
    2. The lies we suffer
      1. Matthew 5:11
      2. Mark 14:56
      3. John 5:20
      4. The world does not play fair.
    3. The Lord we serve
      1. Matthew 5:11
      2. The world hates Jesus.
        1. The world doesn’t hate the baby Jesus.
        2. The world doesn’t hate the Jesus who heals.
        3. The world hates the Jesus who reveals sin.
          1. John 15:19-22
          2. John 7:7
  1. THE RESULT OF PERSECUTION (Matthew 5:11)
    1. Personal insult
      1. We will be openly ridiculed for standing up for Jesus.
      2. We will be laughed at.
        1. Luke 8:53
    2. Physical intimidation
      1. There are Christians who are beaten and killed, even today, for believing in Jesus.
    3. Social injustice
      1. Matthew 5:11
      2. Mark 13:9-13
      3. There will be social injustice from:
        1. The religious world
        2. The government
        3. The world system
        4. The court system
        5. The home
          1. Mark 13:12
  1. THE REACTION TO PERSECUTION (Matthew 5:10)
    1. Reign with Jesus in life.
      1. There are three levels of living:
        1. The hellish level
          1. Repaying good with evil.
        2. The human level
          1. Repaying evil with evil and good with good.
        3. 3. The heavenly level
          1. Repaying evil with good.
            1. Matthew 5:43-45
    2. Rejoice in the Lord.
      1. Matthew 5:12
      2. If we are being persecuted, then we are truly living a godly life.
        1. Acts 5:41
        2. Matthew 5:12
        3. 2 Timothy 2:12
      3. If we displease Jesus, it doesn’t really matter whom we please. If we please Jesus, it doesn’t really matter whom we displease.
    1. Release love.
      1. Matthew 5:44
      2. Romans 5:8
      3. We are to treat our persecutors the way Jesus treated us.
  1. CONCLUSION
    1. The words “martyr” and “witness” are the same words in the Greek language.
    2. Stephen was the first martyr.
      1. Acts 7
    3. Stephen’s martyrdom bore witness to Paul, and the Lord used that witness to save him.
      1. Acts 26:14

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