Monday, May 30, 2016

Being Uncompromising with the Truth as a Christian

“But we did not give up and submit to these people for even an hour, so that the truth of the gospel would be preserved for you” (Galatians 2:5 HCSB).

Vision of Economic Hardship in South Africa

Given to Brother Glenn on May 19, 2016

On the 19 May 2016, I (Brother Glenn) was shown a vision in which I saw that some economic hardship was going to hit some poor South African consumers (I knew it was South African because people spoke one of our local languages). I was in a big room with people and I heard how two women were complaining about food and transport costs that have gone up saying that they can't afford it. After listening them to the women, the vision changed and I saw a young man buying goods but he did not have enough money. I heard how he negotiated with the shop assistant for a discount but with no success. I also saw a letter been given to this young man by a young lady and I knew that it was a retrenchment letter. End!

Interpretation: The Lord is saying that some belt-tightening times are lying ahead and many households will be severely affected here in South Africa. Now, exactly when this will happen and how long it will last I don’t know! We would like to encourage the brethren to pray and those who are not saved to come to the Lord for refuge, for He will provide for those who trust in Him in trying times (2 Peter 2:9; Psalm 91:1-2).

Have you seen lately how Christians are being pressured to conform to the wicked ways of the world? As Christians, we are often faced with an uncomfortable challenge of living up to the truth of the Gospel. I mean uncomfortable because telling lies, slander, gossip, complaining and insulting others are almost ever-present phenomena which seem to follow us around. Furthermore, the Lord has purposely allowed Christians to co-habit with unbelievers to test and grow our fellowship with Him (Matthew 13:30). We also read that Lot’s righteous soul was tormented by the ungodly and wicked living of the people around him (2 Peter 2:8). It is a common fact the world over that not everybody embraces our Christian values and way of life. With Christianity being continuously marginalized, this further leads some Christians into isolation for fear of being insulted and mocked (Matthew 5:11).

How to Confidently Overcome the World as a Committed Christian

In our lead Scripture above, the apostle Paul assertively expressed his confidence in the gospel and the truth it represents. As a matter of principle, the apostle Paul was not swayed by people’s opinions and nor could their opinions alter or influence the truthfulness of the gospel (2 Corinthians 10:5). Instead, he fearlessly and unashamedly challenged ideas, beliefs and values which offered no hope (Acts 17:22-34; Romans 1:16). For the gospel, the Apostle Paul’s boldness was evident amongst the peoples of the known world the Jews, Greeks and non-Greeks (Romans 1:14). We may confidently say that the preaching of the gospel by the Lord’s witnesses was a declaration of the gospel’s power and truth as a solemn victory over myths, Satan and false religions (Acts 4:12; 1 Corinthians 8:4). The power of truth in Jesus name not only unmasked demonic influence over people’s lives, but it also displays its dominance over the power of Satan and evil (Acts 8:9-24;13:9-11).

In addition, the apostle John said “For everyone who has been born of God overcomes the world. And this is the victory that has overcome the world—our faith” (1 John 5:4 ESV). Therefore, from the actions and faith of the Lord’s witnesses, we observe how they demonstrated their faith by overcoming their own weaknesses and the various opposition from demons and unbelievers (Galatians 2:4; 1 Corinthians 2:4). Their faith was closely connected to their love for God and the joy of the Good News being discharged by the Holy Spirit. As it is, their discouragement and sufferings were absorbed by their love for the truth, their fear of the Lord, and their hope in the Lord and His promises (Romans 8:18; Colossians 3:4; 2 Corinthians 4:17).

Standing Firm in Defence of Your Faith

Younger and new Christians often find it difficult to overcome the temptation of lying and leading compromising lives to please their friends. If you often feel oppressed and obligated to please your friends, colleagues, and non-believers, you may be certain that your faith is cold and inactive. This shows a distant relationship with the Lord. Our love for Him must be everywhere and present in what we do and say. Our attitudes and active faith overcomes feelings of inadequacy and being ashamed (John 14:23). As freed Christians we must resist such demonically oppressive feelings, which are vices that cause enslavement.

When the Apostle Peter's love for the Lord was tested, he responded in fear and denied that he knew the Lord and, as a result, he compromised his faith in the Lord (John 18:13-27). Years later, Peter was rebuked by Paul for compromising the truth of the gospel, highlighting that the gospel message is one and applicable to all people (Galatians 2:11-21). Whenever we do not want to take responsibility for something or help somebody, we sacrifice the truth and lie. We learnt this from a rebuke the Lord gave to a brother whose assistance was requested by a sister. The brother was not willing to help, so he lied. The Lord told him that he should not have lied. He thus compromised the truth!

In a vision to Jaydeen in December 2015, the Lord showed her how a young man who served in our ministry led a compromising Christian life when he was among his friends. Although he initially denied the evidence of the vision, his works came to light and he was sadly exposed for leading a double life. The Lord added that it greatly displeases Him if His children live double lives because this is misleading to the unbelievers and those who are weak in faith. Remember, we Christians are the light of the world and the salt of the earth and should "let your light shine before others, that they may see your good deeds and glorify your Father in heaven" (Matthew 5:13-16 NIV). As we shared in a previous message, we are the Bible that Unbelievers Read.

The Lord has often led me, against my expectations, to address groups of people locally who were not saved. Being hesitant at times, I would first boldly declare my faith in the Lord as authority to present my message. Now whether they agreed with my message or not, I wouldn’t know but the power of conviction hitting those present is evident from their expressions and uneasy behaviour. Additionally, in my experience, people have often responded positively to the gospel when, as a Christian, I present the truth uncompromisingly. Occasionally, we would have to endure mockings with people rejecting the gospel, but this should not discourage us and lead us to take a compromising position or even give into feelings of guilt or inferiority.

We have had brethren being insulted and attacked by some unbelievers and people of other faiths. Knowing how that experience affected their confidence and faith, the Lord would give a message of STRONG encouragement to lift the brethren’s spirit while acknowledging their love for Him and their faith in Him. This served as an endorsement from the Lord to us to remain uncompromising and steadfast in our faith.

In terms of our union with the Lord and our relation to the gospel, a Christian should never feel or be led to feel that we owe the ungodly worldly answers to explain the state of the world or the state of suffering in the world. Such depressive questions and arguments are baseless and motivated by anger against God (2 Timothy 2:24). After having being born again, we unconditionally accepted the gospel truth and this is how we should be identified by the world.

To receive Jesus as your Lord and Savior, please start by praying this Prayer of Sincere Repentance. For any questions or comments on this article or our ministry, please contact us.

Blessed regards in uncompromising Christianity,

Brother Glenn.