Challenges For Christians

Challenges for Christians | I don’t need to tell you that as a Christian we are in peril. There are many challenges for Christians to overcome each day. | #podcast #christianpodcast Challenges For Christians Episode 83

I don’t need to tell you that as a Christian we are in peril. There are many challenges for Christians to overcome each day. We are a persecuted people worldwide but currently, in our own world, the things we held dear are slowly being eroded.

In the scriptures, Jesus challenges us again and again that following Him is not an easy road but it is one that is eternal. In the last episode, we read the Sermon on the Mount and how the Lord challenged us in the beatitudes. Today we are going to read about a further challenge that seems so applicable to our world today.

In the Scriptures, Jesus challenges us that it is not enough to be his disciples and to be blessed when we are persecuted but then we must turn the other cheek. I want to read the Scripture and have you process this and what it means for our lives because I feel the Lord has revealed something special in this passage and I will use it in my life. If you believe He wants you to use it in your lives as well then I invite you to think and pray.

Challenges For Christians

Matthew 5:38-40 New International Version (NIV) — Eye for Eye

This lesson from our Lord and Savior was to show us that the Kingdom of God does not operate as our world operates. Jesus characterized unfailing truth, mercy, forgiveness of sinners, and finally sacrificial love by his dying on the cross.

We are told to go above and beyond what is expected – but this verse does not mean we sit there and be abused. Not at all – we do not put ourselves in danger by allowing someone to hurt us. That would be against all that is good and holy. This verse shows us that in a world of mediocracy, of doing the least amount, of caring only about ourselves to the detriment of others we are to be a light in a hurting world. Recently on the news, I saw a story of a man who walked five or ten miles to work and had to get up super early to get there and was always on time. Someone saw this and purchased him a car so that he could drive instead. This is an example of what the Lord is showing us. The news received national attention and the donor was hailed as a “good Samaritan,” synonymous with the Scriptures intent.

Jesus is the one who challenges – and there will always be challenges for Christians

What Jesus says to us in the Scripture is that we should not retaliate – we should forgive, we should in essence “turn the other cheek.” The world expects us to retaliate, in fact, it is instinctive. We want to get back to insult, to hate. All of these things make the enemy rejoice while good suffers. So many people are held in bondage of guilt and unforgiveness and it will eat away at your health and eventually your soul if you let it.

Jesus is the perfect example of silence before his accuser when he was sentenced to death on the cross. We all know he could summon the angels of heaven or freed Himself with just one word but he did not. As I share this message we approach the Lenten season. It is a time of reflection, the 40 days before Easter. Friends, even if you are not Catholic, spend this time in prayer before the Lord daily and pray. Think about how the Lord did not avenge His death, instead He used it to set us free and what a heavy price. Something we should be grateful for and rejoice!

In the Old Testament, we see a similar example of acting counter culture with the sparing of Saul’s life by David. Even though Saul wanted to kill David, David showed that God was in charge of his life. And, Saul had been chosen by God.

We are told to be merciful as God is merciful. Jesus isn’t only teaching He is showing us a glimpse of himself and His mission. Where there was hatred Jesus came to bring us love. We are called to imitate Christ. Can we do that in our daily lives? Can we be a gateway of love and joy to those in our families, to those we encounter every day, to the random person on the street?

As Christians, we can show that when we are slandered and persecuted that we will pray for them. I once ended a conversation with someone that was pro-abortion that I would pray for them. They were taken aback. We should not say it in a way that is condescending but in a way that is heartfelt!

God does not call everyone but those He calls He equips. He has given us all the tools we need by the power of the Holy Spirit, by the grace from on high, by His words in Scripture. We have everything we need and yet we fall short. We must pray to be the light and to bring the light of Jesus to others and that should be our goal as we approach the 40 days of Lent.

Let’s Pray!

Lord, I want to imitate You, your goodness, your mercy, and your forgiveness but I fall short. I cannot do this on my own. I need the Father. I need You, Jesus. I need the Holy Spirit. I need help! Please, Lord, hear my prayers and help me in this time of persecution to place you first. If I put you first I know that everything else will work out. I put all of my trust in you, Jesus. Help me to be a light for a hurting world. Help me to forgive those who have hurt me. Help me to let go of the things that I have carried for many days, weeks or even years. I give all of my needs to you and I am free in the precious Name of Jesus. You died so that our sins could be forgiven and I praise Your Name!

Thank you for hearing my prayers for answering my prayers and for being ever faithful. Thank-you for this time to dwell on your words, to place them in my heart and to learn from your lessons even though it is many years later it still makes sense. Dear Lord, please listen as I pray for the following intentions… thank-you for hearing and answering my prayers. Dear Jesus I ask a special blessing on all of the listeners of this podcast, I ask that you bless them 100-fold for their faithfulness in listening and studying your Word in Holy Scripture and I pray this in Jesus Name. Amen.

 

 

 

 

 

 

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