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Sunday Evening Evangelistic Message #174
TEXT: Matthew 10:17-22
What if I told you this morning that loving Jesus Christ more than you love anything else could cause you to lose your spouse, cause you to lose your job, and cause your children to hate you. Or cause you to lose your life. Of course, you would think that that is unreasonable. However, in our text for today, we see that such things are to be anticipated for the person who is truly committed to following Christ.
I hate to be the person to tell you this, but if things continue the way they are going in America, I truly believe that there are going to be some Christians who are going to die because of their faith and therefore, their stance against the abomination of homosexuality, homosexual marriage, and the homosexual agenda. That is how demonic this movement is. I know it sounds far fetched but I truly believe that I could die for preaching against this sin. Please remember what I told you from Christian history, the saints did not die just because of their belief in Christ, they died because their belief in Christ had so dramatically changed their lives, and they would not go along to get along with the world.
In this series on facing conflict as a Christian, we are exploring Jesus’ admonishment to His disciples just before He sent them out on their first missionary journey. Jesus tells them plainly that living the Christian life is not a bed of roses. It is not all fun and games. Instead, for those who are really serious about following Jesus, it will often mean a life of pain, suffering, and heartache. In light of our passage of Scripture today, I want us to consider three topics that are of importance when we are facing conflict as a Christian.
1. Devotion to Christ. Jesus tells His disciples that they will be arrested, jailed, and put on trial “for my sake,” that is for the sake of Jesus Christ. Last week, we touched a little bit on the idea that we ought to keep in mind that the difficulties we face in this life because of our Christian faith are all because of Jesus Christ and what He did for us on the cross. If we are truly devoted to Him, we should not shy away from suffering on His behalf because He already suffered for us.
2. We’ve talked about devotion to Christ. Now, let’s talk about division in life. Notice Jesus’ words: “And the brother shall deliver up the brother to death, and the father the child: and the children shall rise up against their parents, and cause them to be put to death.” I told you that loving Jesus supremely could cause some very unpleasant things to happen in your life. Here Jesus tells us that our own family members will turn against us on account of our devotion to Christ.
3. Finally, today, let’s look at determination amidst the strife. Verse 22 of our passage states, “And ye shall be hated of all men for my name’s sake: but he that endureth to the end shall be saved.” This is the point that separated the men from the boys. Who will persevere through the persecution? And who will fall by the wayside? Who will continue pressing on faithfully for Jesus? And who will turn aside in order to please a wife, or a husband, a parent, or a sibling? Who will lose money, favor, and prominence for the cause of Christ? And who will compromise what he says he believes in order to keep a job or maintain some kind of status?
A true Christian will continue on in the faith no matter what comes his way. God’s true children never lose their faith. They are always brought safely to their heavenly home, because it is Jesus who guarantees their salvation. If you are facing conflict because of your faith, it is not because you are doing something wrong as a Christian, but rather because you are doing something right. Jesus lets us know plainly that the Christian life is not easy.
MUSICAL SELECTION: “Lay It Down” by Troy Sneed and “Higher” by Regina Belle
Daniel Whyte III has spoken in meetings across the United States and in twenty-three foreign countries. He is the author of thirty-four books. He is also the president of Gospel Light Society International, a worldwide evangelistic ministry that reaches thousands with the Gospel each week, as well as president of Torch Ministries International, a Christian literature ministry which publishes a monthly magazine called The Torch Leader. He is heard by thousands each week on his radio broadcasts, The Prayer Motivator Devotional and the Prayer Motivator Minute, as well as Gospel Light Minute X, the Gospel Light Minute, the Sunday Evening Evangelistic Message, the Prophet Daniel’s Report and the Second Coming Watch Update. He holds a Bachelor’s Degree in Theology from Bethany Divinity College, a Bachelor’s degree in Religion from Texas Wesleyan University, and a Master’s degree in Religion from Liberty Baptist Theological Seminary. He has been married to the former Meriqua Althea Dixon, of Christiana, Jamaica for twenty-five years. God has blessed their union with seven children. Find out more at www.danielwhyte3.com. Follow Daniel Whyte III on Twitter @prophetdaniel3 or on Facebook.