1 Peter 2; Jeremiah 33-34; Psalm 135
“For this is the will of God, that by doing good you may put to silence the ignorance of foolish men–as free, yet not using liberty as a cloak for vice, but as bondservants of God” (1 Peter2:15-16 KJV)
No matter what you do, people are going to find ways to attack you. This is especially true if you’re trying to follow God’s plan for life in obedience to His word. God’s teaching is always counter culture to society – sometimes especially when we think we have “Christian” laws. Christians have been oppressed since the day the church was born, if not before. They weren’t oppressed because they tried to get along with society; they were oppressed because their lifestyles spoke truth to power. We could speak of how Christians saved babies set out to die in ancient Rome; we could talk about sexual purity in an age when most Romans had no concept of the idea of one man and one woman married for life. Early Christians were criticized for those stands. Peter made it clear that while we have liberty, we have liberty to live as God wants us to, and just as that went against cultural norms in the first century, it goes against them today.
Hear this loud and clear: if you are living for Christ; if you are living according to God’s plan, foolish, ignorant people will say all kinds of evil against you. Let them. Don’t stop doing what’s right to win the applause of the world, because the applause of this world is temporary and it won’t be long before your critics attack you for not doing enough to satisfy them. At the same time, don’t start attacking other Christians because they believe and act a little differently than you and be like those foolish, ignorant men Peter spoke of. God has given His people different calls and different gifts and as long as they’re using their liberty as His servants, pray for and support them.
Lord, I want people to like me. Sometimes I want that more than I want to follow You. Forgive me when I give in to popular culture and follow the world instead of following You. Let my life, my actions, my words, everything about me show the joy of serving You.