Think about this question for a moment. Will you stand strong for Jesus Christ in the face of opposition? The question is; will you stand even if the crowd you started with are no longer there? Will you still be standing even after the crowd changes from cheering to jeering? Will you still be shouting Hosanna when all around you are shouting crucify him? Are you standing because of the crowd or standing because you believe in the Lord God Almighty and are prepared to stand with him till the very end no matter what happens. We see this all the time at sporting events. There is always that person wearing red in a sea of blue, standing strong for their team. It is amazing what the fan will do for their favourite team but how about standing strong for Jesus Christ. Sadly people will stand strong for the world but fail to stand for our Saviour.
Yesterday we looked at the fear that was more worried about what people think than what God thinks. John 12:42 “Yet at the same time many even among the leaders believed in him. But because of the Pharisees they would not openly acknowledge their faith for fear they would be put out of the synagogue; 43 for they loved human praise more than praise from God.” Many do not even realize the consequences of rejecting the saviour because they fear what other people think or might even say. They are so afraid to loose the praise of those around them that they will remain quiet. Even though these people may not be shouting crucify him, they are doing so with their lives. Telling people you go to church is not much of a testimony and neither is telling people I’m a pastor. Even your nice and tidy salvation story or not so tidy story becomes meaningless if we will not stand for Jesus. A true testimony is one where you will stand on the word of God and for it no matter what, even if all think you have lost your mind and lost all of your senses. You see that is what people who do not know the word of God will do. They will ridicule you hoping to bring you down to their level. Don’t fall for it.
Think about Job who Job 12:4 “became a laughingstock to his friends, though he called on God and he answered— a mere laughingstock, though righteous and blameless!” 2 Chronicles 36:16 “But they mocked God’s messengers, despised his words and scoffed at his prophets until the wrath of the Lord was aroused against his people and there was no remedy.” Psalm 89:46 “How long, Lord? Will you hide yourself forever? How long will your wrath burn like fire? 47 Remember how fleeting is my life. For what futility you have created all humanity! 48 Who can live and not see death, or who can escape the power of the grave? 49 Lord, where is your former great love, which in your faithfulness you swore to David? 50 Remember, Lord, how your servant has been mocked, how I bear in my heart the taunts of all the nations, 51 the taunts with which your enemies, Lord, have mocked, with which they have mocked every step of your anointed one.” Matthew 27:41 “In the same way the chief priests, the teachers of the law and the elders mocked him.” Mark 15:20 “And when they had mocked him, they took off the purple robe and put his own clothes on him. Then they led him out to crucify him. Mark 15:31 “In the same way the chief priests and the teachers of the law mocked him among themselves. “He saved others,” they said, “but he can’t save himself! Luke 23:11 “Then Herod and his soldiers ridiculed and mocked him. Dressing him in an elegant robe, they sent him back to Pilate.” Luke 23:36 “The soldiers also came up and mocked him. They offered him wine vinegar.” But Galatians 6:7 “Do not be deceived: God cannot be mocked. A man reaps what he sows.” These men will be accountable for this mocking just as they will be accountable for mocking you.
Will you be prepared to stand strong even if you are mocked for your beliefs? Will you stand even if it costs you everything? Will you stand even if those around you think you have lost your mind? Remember what Jesus said in Matthew 10:25 “It is enough for students to be like their teachers, and servants like their masters. If the head of the house has been called Beelzebul, how much more the members of his household!” So if our teachers, Jesus and the Apostle Paul were accused of this, then be prepared to be mocked also. Mark 3:21 “When his (Jesus) family heard about this, they went to take charge of him, for they said, “He is out of his mind.” Acts 26:24 “At this point Festus interrupted Paul’s defense. “You are out of your mind, Paul!” he shouted. “Your great learning is driving you insane.” Or like the servant girl who answered the door and said Peter’s here and the ones praying for his release did not believe her. Acts 12:15 “You’re out of your mind,” they told her. When she kept insisting that it was so, they said, “It must be his angel.”
Paul tells us 2 Corinthians 5:11 “Since, then, we know what it is to fear the Lord, we try to persuade others. What we are is plain to God, and I hope it is also plain to your conscience. 12 We are not trying to commend ourselves to you again, but are giving you an opportunity to take pride in us, so that you can answer those who take pride in what is seen rather than in what is in the heart. 13 If we are “out of our mind,” as some say, it is for God; if we are in our right mind, it is for you. 14 For Christ’s love compels us, because we are convinced that one died for all, and therefore all died. 15 And he died for all, that those who live should no longer live for themselves but for him who died for them and was raised again.” Do you fear the Lord enough to stand for Jesus Christ even though you are mocked and ridiculed? Will you stand even when no one believes you? Will you stand strong when you have become a laughingstock for Jesus Christ? Will you still be standing even though no one is standing with you? The answer had better be yes because you will be judged accordingly. If you cannot stand for Him now you will not stand before him later.
Are you convinced enough to stand no matter what? 2 Timothy 1:12 “That is why I am suffering as I am. Yet this is no cause for shame, because I know whom I have believed, and am convinced that he is able to guard what I have entrusted to him until that day.” In order to stand like this make sure you are standing on the word of God and not on tradition reason and experience. There is a difference. Many will make their stand on earthly things thinking they are standing for truth but they are not. 1 Corinthians 15:58 “Therefore, my dear brothers and sisters, stand firm. Let nothing move you. Always give yourselves fully to the work of the Lord, because you know that your labor in the Lord is not in vain.”