Blessed are you when people insult you, persecute you and falsely say all kinds of evil against you because of me.
Persecution comes in many ways. It can be everything from a snide look to a firing squad. If I am the target of persecution because I am trying to live out my love for Jesus, then I am in good company.
In my current lifetime, persecution could come at any time and from any source, and frankly, for any reason. All persecution is wrong as it is not only abuse but the opposite of love. In a nutshell it is the result of a fallen world that we torture and torment one another. But not every form of persecution comes with the promise of the kingdom of heaven. This is reserved for the one who is targeted because of their relationship with Jesus.
Frankly I think some may receive abuse because of their Christian name tag rather than their relationship. I don’t know how this plays out in God’s economy. Do I get the kingdom because I was attacked sitting in a church pew? The verdict is unclear.
This I do know. If I live for Jesus by trying to demonstrate each of the beatitudes then I’m going to be swimming upstream, maybe gets some sideways glances or a poke in the eye. In that moment I will chose. Will I keep going or flip and go with the flow?
Fixing our eyes on Jesus, the author and perfecter of faith,
who for the joy set before Him endured the cross, despising the shame,
and has sat down at the right hand of the throne of God.
For consider Him who has endured such hostility by sinners against Himself,
so that you will not grow weary and lose heart.