The Christian has always faced the potential of hatred for sharing the gospel.
Paul was beaten for his message. Many of the apostles were martyrs for the gospel. (A martyr is one who dies because His message is hated.)
Is the American church willing to be hated by some? It seems we have such a desire to be cool, to fit in, to be relevant that we have lost our compass.
Does Stephen look the picture of a cool, relevant Christian?
Look at Acts 7 and the words of Stephen:
Acts 7:51-58 – ‘“You stiff-necked people! Your hearts and ears are still uncircumcised. You are just like your ancestors: You always resist the Holy Spirit! Was there ever a prophet your ancestors did not persecute? They even killed those who predicted the coming of the Righteous One. And now you have betrayed and murdered him— you who have received the law that was given through angels but have not obeyed it.”
When the members of the Sanhedrin heard this, they were furious and gnashed their teeth at him. But Stephen, full of the Holy Spirit, looked up to heaven and saw the glory of God, and Jesus standing at the right hand of God. “Look,” he said, “I see heaven open and the Son of Man standing at the right hand of God.”
At this they covered their ears and, yelling at the top of their voices, they all rushed at him, dragged him out of the city and began to stone him.’
I have news for you. Not everyone likes our message. Not everyone wants what Father offers. But the only way to get the message of forgiveness and freedom from the bondage of sin out is take the risk of sharing it.
Romans 10:14-15 – How, then, can they call on the one they have not believed in? And how can they believe in the one of whom they have not heard? And how can they hear without someone preaching to them? And how can anyone preach unless they are sent? As it is written: “How beautiful are the feet of those who bring good news!”
After the recent supreme court decision our president tweeted “love wins.” But this is a very twisted kind of love. If “love” has closed its mouth to right and wrong, then does it really love people? Or are we deceived?
Is love allowing people to walk into a fire, or stay in the burning building?
Will love call wrong right so it doesn’t offend?
Will love call sin good and ignore wrong?
Does love lie about bondage in a wasteland and call it a picnic in a park?
Will you no longer try to save people from the judgment of sin, because it is no longer sin at all?
This is not love. No matter what accusation is spoken, true love will take the risk to rescue.