JESUS FIGHTS FOR YOU

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JESUS FIGHTS FOR YOU

“Now it came to pass, when the time had come for Him to be received up, that He steadfastly set His face to go to Jerusalem, and sent messengers before His face. And as they went, they entered a village of the Samaritans, to prepare for Him. But they did not receive Him, because His face was set for the journey to Jerusalem. And when His disciples James and John saw this, they said, “Lord, do You want us to command fire to come down from heaven and consume them, just as Elijah did?” Luke 9:51-54

This is a common scene for many of us. We suffer persecution, wronged by those around us, despite our best actions and intentions. Sometimes, we see this happening to a brother or a sister, sometimes it happens to us. But whenever it happens, we always feel like unleashing fire from heaven upon them, don’t we?

Persecution is all around us, for any and every reason conceivable to man. And Jesus knows this. In fact He prepared us for this. He tells us,

“Behold, I send you out as sheep in the midst of wolves. Therefore be wise as serpents and harmless as doves. But beware of men, for they will deliver you up to councils and scourge you in their synagogues. You will be brought before governors and kings for My sake, as a testimony to them and to the Gentiles.” Matthew 10:16-18

“Now brother will deliver up brother to death, and a father his child; and children will rise up against parents and cause them to be put to death.” Matthew 10:21

“A disciple is not above his teacher, nor a servant above his master. It is enough for a disciple that he be like his teacher, and a servant like his master. If they called The Master of the house Beelzebub, how much more will they call those of His household! Matthew 10:24-25

Yes indeed. There is much hatred in this fallen world and especially towards the beloved children of God. Perhaps it is because the world is jealous of the blessings that we receive. Perhaps because when they see us, they still see the imperfect sinner that we used to be in the flesh and cannot fathom just how it is possible that a righteous God can love such imperfect man.

But surely it is because they have yet to experience the love of our Father and of Jesus. They still have yet to understand just how great our Father’s love for us can be, that though we were yet sinners, the Father sent His only begotten Son to die for us, that is so doing, He sanctifies us completely and makes us righteous before God. For Jesus tells us that,

“… “Because it has been given to you to know the mysteries of the kingdom of heaven, but to them it has not been given. For whoever has, to him more will be given, and he will have abundance; but whoever does not have, even what he has will be taken away from him.
Therefore I speak to them in parables, because seeing they do not see, and hearing they do not hear, nor do they understand. And in them the prophecy of Isaiah is fulfilled, which says:
‘Hearing you will hear and shall not understand,
And seeing you will see and not perceive;
For the hearts of this people have grown dull.
Their ears are hard of hearing,
And their eyes have closed,
Lest they should see with their eyes and hear with their ears,
Lest they should understand with their hearts and turn,
So that I should heal them.’
But blessed are your eyes for they see, and your ears for they hear; for assuredly, I say to you that many prophets and righteous men desired to see what you see, and did not see it, and to hear what you hear, and did not hear it.” Matthew 13:11-17

So what exactly makes us so special? What have we seen? What have we heard?

Beloved child of God, we have seen Jesus. When we realize that the miracles that happen in our lives are not because of chance or happenstance, we see Jesus. When we realize what wretched sinners we used to be and how unfathomable it is that we can still have peace and boldness to come before God’s throne to worship and receive from God, we see Jesus. If you look back on your life, at every trouble and trial that has ever gone, and ask yourself, just how you made it through, if you are really honest, you will see Jesus and that is what we have seen. Jesus.

And what have we heard? We have heard of His grace and His mercy. We have heard of His love. And when we accept after we have heard, it changes our lives and opens our eyes to see.

It is very much like how when we go home, we find it spic-and-span, food on the table, beds made and laundry done. Now it is very easy to pass over these things and take them for granted. But when we truly pay attention to how much the home is in order, we start to see the huge role that our mothers and wives, and in some cases fathers and husbands, play in keeping the house in order.

In the same, it is easy to overlook the portions of our lives that are smooth sailing. But if we pay attention to the breaks that we get, the doors that are opened, we realize the awesome role Jesus has in making sure that our lives are in order.

But don’t go away thinking that this revelation was the result of some great deed that you done. No. Pay attention to where it came from.

“Because it has been given to you to know the mysteries of the kingdom of heaven, but to them it has not been given.” Matthew 13:11

Our insight is a gift. From God. Through no effort on our end. What a blessing and revelation!

So when persecution comes, how then shall we respond? Jesus sets for us the example.

“Behold, I send you out as sheep in the midst of wolves. Therefore be wise as serpents and harmless as doves. But beware of men, for they will deliver you up to councils and scourge you in their synagogues. You will be brought before governors and kings for My sake, as a testimony to them and to the Gentiles.” Matthew 10:16-18

Chapter 19 of John’s gospel tells us that when Jesus was scourged, he kept silent. When He was brought before the governor, He made no move to clear His name. He left it to His Father.

And that is what Jesus is telling us today. Leave it to Him and to our Father.

“… for it is written, “Vengeance is Mine, I will repay,” says the Lord.” Romans 12:19

And beloved, God is not impractical. His vengeance is not ethereal. It is real. For he tells us,

“But when they deliver you up, do not worry about how or what you should speak. For it will be given to you in that hour what you should speak; for it is not you who speak, but the Spirit of the Father who speaks in you.” Matthew 10:19-20

For remember that what God promised Abraham, we also can claim.

“I will bless those who bless you,
And I will curse him who curses you;
And in you all the families of the earth shall be blessed.” Genesis 12:3

So when we face persecution, what shall we do?

“And you will be hated by all for My name’s sake. But he who endures to the end will be saved. When they persecute you in this city, flee to another. For assuredly, I say to you, you will not have gone through the cities of Israel before the Son of Man comes.” Matthew 10:22-23

“Bless those who persecute you; bless and do not curse.” Romans 12:14

“Repay no one evil for evil. Have regard for good things in the sight of all men. If it is possible, live peaceably with all men. Beloved, do not avenge yourselves, but rather give place to wrath; for it is written, “Vengeance is Mine, I will repay,” says the Lord. Therefore
‘If your enemy is hungry, feed him:
If he is thirsty, give him a drink;
For in so doing you will heap coals of fire on his head.’
Do not be overcome by evil, but overcome evil with good.” Romans 12:17-21

We are taught to first, flee; and if that is not on the cards, then repay evil with good. But this is not some passive subservience. No. The apostle Paul tells us to give place for God’s wrath for it is written,

“Vengeance is Mine, and recompense:
Their foot shall slip in due time;
For the day of their calamity is at hand,
And the things to come hasten upon them.” Deuteronomy 32:35

The Lord hastens His judgment when we leave it to Him. Just like a father will run to his child’s rescue when he is bullied so too does our Heavenly Father run to our rescue. And when He does…

Beloved child of God, the world is fallen and will persecute us whom have been set apart for God. But take heart. Jesus fights for you. Give place for God wrath. There is no need to carry that burden on your own any more.

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