When being hated means being blessed
What a difference there is between the early church and the Americanized church today. The early church was not out to make friends, but converts. It was not about making people comfortable, but saved. It was not afraid to be different from the world even if it meant persecution.
Blessed are you, when men shall hate you, and when they shall separate you from their company, and shall reproach you, and cast out your name as evil, for the Son of man's sake. Rejoice in that day, and leap for joy: for, behold, your reward is great in heaven: for in like manner did their fathers to the prophets. (Luke 6:22-23)
What a difference there is between the early church and the Americanized church today. The early church was not out to make friends, but converts. It was not about making people comfortable, but saved. It was not afraid to be different from the world even if it meant persecution. On the contrary, it rejoiced in suffering for the cause of Christ. When the apostles were threatened and beaten, they rejoiced, because they knew who they believed and served, and that they were partakers of His suffering.
Today many who profess Jesus Christ try to fit into the world. This never works, nor can it. True Christianity cannot mix with the world. You cannot mix holiness and sin, life and death, light and darkness. This is why God says, "Come out from among them and be separate.
There is a fervent hatred of the church today. God is hated and that hatred is being cast at the church. This hatred is growing and becoming more open and vocal. It is seen in the young to the politician, and in the apostate church. It is waiting to burst forth like a flood, and we know it will because the Word has shown us what it will be like just before Christ returns.
Are we ready? Is our relationship with Christ true? Are we already obeying and serving Him out of a deep love for Him? Is He our everything?
We will either be loved by God and hated by the world, or hated by God and loved by the world. May we throw caution and fear to the wind, and choose God's love and the hatred of the world.