There are times when I just have to share the Sunday message I receive, and this is one of those times.
Often when I’m out and about with Christians, I get the “what can we do, it all seems so hopeless” line. And folks I gotta tell ya, noting upsets me more than to hear Christians talk about a situation being termed as hopeless.
Many believe there’s nothing that can be done against the progressive socialist and secular humanist left’s assault on religious freedoms and liberty. Case in point: look what’s happening in North Carolina because they have a law stating that you’ll use the bathrooms and facilities corresponding to the gender on your birth certificate. We know what’s happened to Christian bakers in Oregon, Christian florists in Seattle, Christian photographers in New Mexico — all because they honored their faith.
The state, meaning the progressive socialist ideological government, has declared that you can have your faith, your religious belief, but THEY will determine the level of your freedom.
As a matter of fact, ask the Little Sisters of the Poor how the government is determining how, where and when they can practice their religious beliefs. The government has decided religious beliefs are discriminatory, in their opinion. And any opposition to the opinion of the liberal progressive left, especially from Christians, is met with economic persecution, tyranny, terrorism — just ask the folks in Oregon and New Mexico — and look at the actions of the NCAA and ACC in North Carolina.So, perhaps in the face of this onslaught, Christians are warranted in having a feeling of hopelessness. However, remember this simple fact from the 2012 presidential election: some 30 million Christians did not vote. Some were registered to vote and did not, others didn’t even register. Therefore, if there’s a feeling of “hopelessness” it is by thine own hand!
Funny, have you ever asked yourself why all these black ministers embrace the progressive leftists who back in 2012 had to vote to put God back into their Democrat party platform — and booed?
Enter our Teaching Pastor Jonathan “JP” Podluka at Watermark who delivered a powerful message yesterday that must be shared. Pastor JP told us to share his sermon with one person — well, being the overachiever that I am, I am sharing with 2.4 million. JP took his message to us on Sunday from Acts 5:20-42.
It’s the story of how the early apostles, post-Pentecost, took to the streets of Jerusalem inspired by the Holy Spirit, to “speak to the people of the temple the whole message of this new Life.”
Now, of course the progressive socialist left of that day, the Sadducees, weren’t exactly happy about this. And so they conspired and had Peter, John, and others imprisoned for speaking God’s word. Well, an Angel of the Lord came and opened the prison door and released them…and they went right back to preaching in the court of the temple.
Now, the Sadducees were really torqued, so they called all the branches of the liberal progressive left together which formed the Sanhedrin. These cheeky fellas decided they needed to stop Peter and Company, and demanded they be brought back to stand inquisition.
Once again, they were told not to teach in “this name,” to wit Peter responded, Acts 5:29-32, (NIV) “We must obey God rather than human beings! The God of our ancestors raised Jesus from the dead—whom you killed by hanging him on a cross. God exalted him to his own right hand as Prince and Savior that he might bring Israel to repentance and forgive their sins. 32 We are witnesses of these things, and so is the Holy Spirit, whom God has given to those who obey him.”
Now, you can imagine the anger of the Sanhedrin, the leftists, when faced with this bold, indignant, response from Peter. But, as they plotted to kill them, or unleash the IRS on them, instead they dismissed the Apostles and conversed among themselves. And there was one named Gamaliel who was a well respected member of the Sanhedrin — I actually think Chuck Schumer may be a descendant — who said something so very profound, Acts 5:38-39 (NIV), “Therefore, in the present case I advise you: Leave these men alone! Let them go! For if their purpose or activity is of human origin, it will fail. But if it is from God, you will not be able to stop these men; you will only find yourselves fighting against God.”
And so it was, the Apostles were freed — after the Sanhedrin leftists flogged them. Today they just denigrate, demean, disparage and condemn you as being in the “basket of deplorables.”
But the point is simple: this infantile movement was one of God, and it has not been stopped, and NEVER will. As stated in Isaiah 54:17 (NIV) “No weapon forged against you will prevail, and you will refute every tongue that accuses you. This is the heritage of the servants of the LORD, and this is their vindication from me.”
JP articulated three points for us never to forget:
1. The body of Christ grows stronger in opposition…we thrive and expand, not wither and fade.
2. The Gospel of Christ will not be stopped…as long as we are strong and of good courage, Joshua 1:5-9.
3. The Gospel of Christ moves forward through YOU…God uses our suffering for sharing His word
This is not a situation of “hopelessness” for Christians. Imagine what the early Church must have thought as members were being fed to the lions, burned at the stake, and suffered many other horrific trials, tribulations, and persecutions. Then as now, the message was this belief, this movement may exist but it must not be able to be shared, spread — but it has!
To my Christian brothers and sisters in America and all across the globe, I leave with this short video, which should embolden you and let you know that you are on the winning team.
And here is a closing verse, John 16:33, (NIV),”I have told you these things, so that in me you may have peace. In this world you will have trouble. But take heart! I have overcome the world.”
We have nothing to fear…and oh by the way, that leftist Sanhedrin member, Gamaliel? He converted to Christianity after the one he mentored did. He was the mentor of Saul, who was converted on the road to Damascus and became Paul. Folks, we are indeed, more than conquerors, and can do ALL things through Christ Jesus who strengthens us. Thanks JP for a tremendous message!
And if any of you modern day members of the secular humanist Sanhedrin don’t like this missive, well, God told me to tell you to “pound sand.”