2 Timothy 3:12 and indeed, all the ones desiring to live Godly in Christ Jesus will be persecuted.
Living a life that expresses godliness is such a wonderful thought; however, this type of lifestyle can bring persecution into our lives. When persecution comes to mind, we tend to think of physical suffering. However, the word “persecution” comes from a Greek word that also has the meaning of “pursue” or “harass”, along with causing on to run or flee. It has both good and bad meanings, that is, we can pursue something good such as peace. We as Christians are to pursue peace among ourselves, maturity in Christ, the mark of the price of the upward call of God in Christ, doing that which makes others happy not just for other Christians but for all people, righteousness, godliness, faith, love, patience, and meekness, fighting the good fight of the faith. On the other hand, we can suffer persecution; both physical and mental suffering caused by another. When we even desire to pursue a life of Godliness, the bad side of persecution is coming our way. At the very least we will be harassed by those who do not want to see God’s quality of life that we are living out.
In addition, persecution not only comes from other people, our three enemies can cause persecution also. Anytime we choose to live a life that glorifies God over doing something that lacks in character we have an internal battle. Within our minds, there is a battle for the control of our thoughts. Do we give in and focus on the flesh, or take the way of escape and continue to live godly?
There are periods in our lives when the trials brought on by doing what is right are overwhelming. Every time we turn around the sin nature, Satan, or the world system is causing us grief. Whether it is through stimulating our own desires to act independently from God of causing others to harass or trouble us because we will not get involved with their evil deeds, the resulting persecution can be intense; however, persecution and suffering should not to be feared. Actually, suffering persecution is an expression of grace; it is a thing of grace that we partake in suffering for doing righteousness.
Are you tired today because of the battles you have been fighting? Are the attacks from Satan beginning to wear you out? Are you tired of constantly dealing with the thoughts in your mind from the sin nature, thoughts that you do not want, but nonetheless continue to overwhelm your thinking? Take a moment to see things as they really are and let the Spirit refresh your mind. Focus on who you are in Christ, because this is reality. You are free from the sin nature, Satan cannot touch you and will flee when you resist him, and the world is passing away. Do not fear the persecutions, rather, live a life that expresses God’s opinion of you in spite of them. Take the time to consider, how you can glorify God in the situations that you face today, because regardless of what you are facing God has given you everything you need to live a life that truly glorifies Him.
Romans 14:19; Philippians 1:29; 3:12, 14; 1 Thessalonians 5:15; 1 Timothy 6:11, 12; 2 Timothy 2:22; 1 Peter 2:20; James 4:7