“So in the present case, I say to you, stay away from these men and let them alone, for if this plan or action is of men, it will be overthrown; but if it is of God, you will not be able to overthrow them; or else you may even be found fighting against God.” They took his advice; and after calling the apostles in, they flogged them and ordered them not to speak in the name of Jesus, and then released them. So they went on their way from the presence of the Council, rejoicing that they had been considered worthy to suffer shame for His name. And every day, in the temple and from house to house, they kept right on teaching and preaching Jesus as the Christ.”
Acts 5:38-42 NASB
The disciples went about proclaiming the Gospel despite the threats against them. The powers that be were in the open conspiring to stop them, to take away their rights, to possibly go so far as to kill them. For them, this was no mystery or fodder for conjecture. The authorities wanted to stop them from preaching the name of Jesus, for they feared the His blood would be upon them.
The leader Gamaliel warned them that if this was a move of God, they would be in the ultimate holy war, facing off with the Lord himself. Though flogged and further threatened, they continued on and further spread the Gospel.
I learned early on that speaking the name of Jesus can bring much trouble. I remember teaching in the local district years ago and having a prayer posted on a bulletin board near my desk. I was stunned when my principal ordered me to take its down. It didn’t stop me. I still spoke of Jesus, and became even more bold, to her chagrin.
Dear brothers and sisters, there is no hidden conspiracy working in secret to rob you of your rights, rather they are working openly! Satan has inspired the powers that be to destroy the people of God from the beginning. They shut down the churches be use they thought it would shut off the divine spigot of the word of God, instead it spread like wild fire. After the stoning of Stephen, the church was dispersed. The message of the Gospel spread far and wide, and turned the world upside sown. When you feel your heart drawn to chasing after hidden agendas, remember the first conspiracy: the serpent in the garden of Eden asking Eve, “did God really say that?”
There is no doubt, my people, that our rights are on the chopping block, the question is, are we here to fear man, or serve the Lord. When I look at the suddenness of the events of the past few months, I am filled with an urgency to be about the Father’s business. Knowing that our enemy is always against us, I don’t have to sit and give energy and space in my head to the hidden meaning of things going on, instead I double down seeking the Sovereign God in control of it all.
Brothers and sisters, dark times are on the way! Before the Lord takes us out, the heat of the flames of the tribulation will be felt. Now is the time to focus on the things of God. Satan in His cunning has managed to distract the people of God and cut them off from their power source, as they go chasing the ghosts of conspiracy. He has done this with the click of a link.
Embrace the persecution as the early church did. They did not go about worrying about rights, they had none. Believe it or not, what we have is rare. The believers under Nero had no rights. They watched as their sisters and brothers had beams rammed through their bodies, via their orifices, as they were impaled, wrapped in cloth, dipped in wax and set afire, to light the Nero’s garden. They witnessed the mocking as he walked amongst the burning Saints, saying “you are the light of the world!”
Dear brothers and sisters, fear and worry will not fix the situation, but we know the God who can, and will. Ultimately, those dark powers are going to lose. Devote more energy to the Lord. Begin searching the Lord. Instead of looking for signs amongst the tea leaves of conspiracy, look for the signs of God’s working. I am seeing them everywhere!
The Lord has laid before us opportunity and a curse. We have the choice between getting lost and despaired or blessed in abundance as we seek the Lord in victory.
It all comes down to whether we really trust the Lord or not.
THE PRAYER CHAIR IS OPEN! Send me your requests!