Friday, March 3, 2017
Blessing and Persecution
Today’s Bible Reading: Numbers 32-33, Mark 10
SCRIPTURE: Mark 10:29-30
29 So Jesus answered and said, “Assuredly, I say to you, there is no one who has left house or brothers or sisters or father or mother or wife or children or lands, for My sake and the gospel’s, 30 who shall not receive a hundredfold now in this time—houses and brothers and sisters and mothers and children and lands, with persecutions—and in the age to come, eternal life. (Mark 10:29-30 NKJV)
I am struck in this passage by the inclusion of two words in v. 30, “with persecutions.” This is a wonderful promise by Jesus that in return for whatever we give up for Him and the Gospel, we will receive multiplied blessings in this lifetime. However, in this lifetime will also come “persecutions.” Then, “in the age to come,” when this earthly life is over, will come the blessing of “eternal life.”
I’m certainly grateful for the gift of eternal life in the age to come, and the promise of blessings this side of heaven is certainly appealing. If the Lord could have just left out the part about persecutions, most Christians would probably make this one of the memory verses they quote often.
The truth is that with increased dedication to the Lord will come multiplied blessings and multiplied persecutions. This begs us to ask the self-reflective question: Am I serving the Lord to receive the blessings or because I am whole-heartedly sold out for Him regardless of the consequences?
Lord, thank You for Your unmatched love and Your gracious blessings. May I serve You with a pure and sold out heart. May persecutions never dampen my resolve to serve You, but rather strengthen my determination.
For Your glory and Your kingdom. Amen. -AP