Open heaven 24 May 2019 Friday – PERSECUTION AND NOT PROSECUTION
Open heaven 24 May 2019 Memorise: Blessed are ye, when men shall revile you, and persecute you, and shall say all manner of evil against you falsely, for my sake. Matthew 5:11
Read: Daniel 3:16-23 Open heaven 24 May 2019
16 Shadrach, Meshach, and Abednego, answered and said to the king, O Nebuchadnezzar, we are not careful to answer thee in this matter.
17 If it be so, our God whom we serve is able to deliver us from the burning fiery furnace, and he will deliver us out of thine hand, O king.
18 But if not, be it known unto thee, O king, that we will not serve thy gods, nor worship the golden image which thou hast set up.
19 Then was Nebuchadnezzar full of fury, and the form of his visage was changed against Shadrach, Meshach, and Abednego: therefore he spake, and commanded that they should heat the furnace one seven times more than it was wont to be heated.
20 And he commanded the most mighty men that were in his army to bind Shadrach, Meshach, and Abednego, and to cast them into the burning fiery furnace.
21 Then these men were bound in their coats, their hosen, and their hats, and their other garments, and were cast into the midst of the burning fiery furnace.
22 Therefore because the king’s commandment was urgent, and the furnace exceeding hot, the flames of the fire slew those men that took up Shadrach, Meshach, and Abednego.
23 And these three men, Shadrach, Meshach, and Abednego, fell down bound into the midst of the burning fiery furnace.
Open heaven 24 May 2019
Bible in one year: Leviticus 1-3, Jeremiah 41:9-42:6
Hymnal: Sing hymn 10
Message: – Open heaven 24 May 2019 Friday Daily Devotional
Persecution is being mistaken for persecution nowadays. There is a whole lot of difference between the persecution of a believer and his or her prosecution for evil deeds.
As defined by the Lord Himself in today’s memory verse, it is persecution when men rise up against a Christian for the reason of his or her faith in Jesus Christ or choice to live by His principles. Standing firm in the face of persecution attracts blessings from the Lord (Matthew 5:12). When a child of God is undergoing a period of persecution, it is not because he or she has done anything wrong to warrant it. In fact, the Holy Spirit says in 1st Peter 4:15:
“But let none of you suffer as a murderer, or as a thief, or as an evildoer, or as a busybody in other men’s matters.”
It is unfortunate that this meaning of persecution is gradually being eroded by those who compromise their faith and get indicted for it, who then whips up religious sentiments in order to garner sympathy and escape punishment.
Open heaven 24 May 2019 Friday
A lot of people who compromise their faith abound in the Body of Christ today. Gone are the days when Christians suffered persecution in their places of work due to their uncompromising stand. Today, Christians connive with unbelievers to swindle their employers, or simply look away from the shady deals being perpetrated under their watch, for fear of persecution. They forget that they are actually the salt of the earth and the light of the world.
Their salt is gradually losing its saltiness and their light is growing dimmer by the day. When Shadrach, Meshach, and Abednego were brought before King Nebuchadnezzar, it was as though they were enemies of the state. Some of their brethren who had compromised their faith in that foreign land would have seen them as being proud, showy or acting holier-than-thou. It is very painful when members of a righteous man’s household turn out to be enemies or join forces with enemies to slander and persecute him.
I encourage you to recognise the difference between being punished for righteousness sake and being punished as an evil doer. Once you know this, and you are sure you are on the same page with God, you will receive an internal boldness and peace that surpasses human understanding whenever persecution arises. This boldness was present in the three Hebrew young men, and it was also manifested by the early apostles (Daniel 3:16-18, Acts 4:19-21). As the light of the world, I admonish you to never do anything that would justify your being prosecuted as a criminal. If you must suffer prosecution for anything, let it be for upholding the cross of Jesus Christ, which you should never be ashamed of. May God continue to help you.
Prayer Point – Open heaven 24 May 2019
Father, please help me comport myself in a way that always glorifies You, and let me never have cause to suffer as an evil doer.