The Ultimate Yes
Is there a fire burning in you that will give you boldness in the face of a real threat? If someone gives you an escape from fatal harm if you will only denounce your faith, would you still say, “Yes, I believe that Jesus Christ is Lord?”
The times in which we live require us as believers to ask ourselves these sobering questions. I have had these discussions with my teen children, alerting them that there will be occasions requiring them to stand firm in the faith. My counsel always ends with, “You make a determination to hold fast to your faith in Jesus, and He will supply you with the grace needed in that hour so you may stand fast!”
Let’s follow the apostle Peter’s path:
- In a comfortable church setting, Peter, inspired by the Holy Spirit, declared Jesus to be the Christ (See Matthew 16:16).
- Peter professed his readiness to follow Jesus even unto death (See Matthew 26:35).
- In an uncertain, public setting Peter denied knowing Jesus three times (See Matthew 26:69-74).
- Peter received the baptism of the Holy Spirit and boldly proclaimed Jesus the Messiah to Israel (See Acts 2:1-4, 36).
- Peter could not stop declaring Jesus regardless of the threats against him (See Acts 4:8-12, 18-21).
- The apostles were flogged and ordered “not to speak in the name of Jesus” (Acts 5:40), but “they never stopped teaching and proclaiming the good news that Jesus is the Christ” (Acts 5:42).
- Peter was martyred on account of Jesus’ name (See John 18-19).
According to the revelation given to the apostle John, Jesus desires that we be either all cold or all hot. He says, “…because you are lukewarm – neither hot nor cold – I am about to spit you out of my mouth” (Revelation 3:15-16). This is a frightening outcome, in my opinion.
Today is the day of decision – making! Will you ask God for power to be His witness so that you will not cower in the face of man’s threats?
Do not be afraid of what you are about to suffer. I tell you, the devil will put some of you in prison to test you, and you will suffer persecution for ten days. Be faithful, even to the point of death, and I will give you the crown of life. He who has an ear, let him hear what the Spirit says to the churches. He who overcomes will not be hurt at all by the second death” (Revelation 2:10-11).