“So then, just as you received Christ Jesus as Lord, continue to live your lives in him, rooted and built up in him, strengthened in the faith as you were taught, and overflowing with thankfulness. See to it that no one takes you captive through hollow and deceptive philosophy, which depends on human tradition and the elemental spiritual forces of this world rather than on Christ” (Colossians 2:6-8).

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We live in a time of tolerance. Of course, I’m referring to tolerance as in the movement of don’t offend me, and this hollow and deceptive philosophy has crept its way into the church and taken root. But I am glad Jesus spoke up, that Peter and Paul spoke up, that Stephen spoke up, among others. They caused civil unrest, were thrown in prison and even killed, and most undoubtedly, offended people; lots of people. I am glad people like Mother Teresa and Martin Luther King spoke up; they were both not without controversy. The account I will give to Christ for what I have done concerns me far less than the account I will give him for what I have failed to do. In whatever we do, or don’t do, let it be God’s will. No secular issue falls outside God’s purview; God is sovereign over all.

“Consequently, just as one trespass resulted in condemnation for all people, so also one righteous act resulted in justification and life for all people. For just as through the disobedience of the one man the many were made sinners, so also through the obedience of the one man the many will be made righteous” Romans 5:18-19). If God finds fault with nothing, and accepts everything, then Jesus is irrelevant, because there is no need for a savior where there is no trespass. On the other hand, if God condemns as the result of any single trespass, then, again, Christ is irrelevant, because there is no need for a savior where grace does not abound. Finally, a god that finds fault with nothing, except for acts reserved as especially grievous by a society, is nothing more than an idol created out of collective norms. The human incarnation of God, Christ Jesus, demonstrates the true manifestation of the character and love of God.

The Holy Spirit works most mightily in times of persecution and great hardship. No doubt, God is at work. Better to rejoice. Christians overcame the Roman Empire with evangelism and martyrdom, not revolution. My mind says to rise up and fight, but my heart says to pick up my cross and follow. My witness for Christ is more precious to me than even my own religious liberty. Perhaps it will be my privilege to one day bear witness to God’s love in chains. There’s a time to be angry and a time to let your voice be heard, but there’s also a time to fast and a time to pray. “So then, just as you received Christ Jesus as Lord, continue to live your lives in him, rooted and built up in him, strengthened in the faith as you were taught, and overflowing with thankfulness. See to it that no one takes you captive through hollow and deceptive philosophy, which depends on human tradition and the elemental spiritual forces of this world rather than on Christ” (Colossians 2:6-8).

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