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When Others Revile & Persecute You

Christians in the U.S. have seen a few unnerving situations in the past couple of years. Most recently, preachers in Idaho are being threatened with punishment if they do not perform weddings for same-sex couples. Here in Houston, our mayor, Annise Parker, who openly practices homosexuality, went after 5 Houston preachers demanding to have all sermons or any material they owned pertaining to gender identity and homosexuality. There is more to the story and fortunately she has backed off.


But even if this was a complete misunderstanding, how we respond matters. This culture we live in with massive religious freedoms is a blessing from God, but it is a complete historical anomaly. Historically, the offspring of the serpent has always actively sought to obliterate the children of God and times of peace have been short windows. We should thank God and pray for this peace to continue, but assuming this will be the case is foolish. Both history and God’s word say otherwise.


We spoke recently in 2 Corinthians about the need to “not lose heart” when enduring affliction for the gospel. But how should we react towards those who persecute us? I’ll be frank. The Bible clearly teaches God’s children how to respond to persecution, but the responses of many Christians in the U.S. to even the smallest threats is often unChristlike. Affliction is our opportunity to prove to God, Satan, and the world that we truly admire Christ’s character. So today we are going to study how God teaches his children to react to being hated and harmed for their faith.

  • When Persecuted, Don’t…
    • Do not curse them (Romans 12:14; 1 Peter 2:20-23)
    • Repay no one evil for evil (Romans 12:17-19; Matthew 5:38-39, 26:51-52)
    • Do not fear them (Revelation 2:10; Matthew 10:28)
  • When Persecuted, Do…
    • Overcome evil with good (Romans 12:20-21; Matthew 5:43-48)
    • Pray for them (Matthew 5:43-44)
    • Honor those with authority (Romans 13:17; 1 Peter 2:17)


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