April 7, 2022 — Becoming an Enemy

“Not only does the Bible have all the answers for what’s really important,” Stan commented one morning, “it seems to me that it has a lot of great questions as well.”

“Great questions as well as all the answers?” I said. “What kind of questions?”

“There are lots of examples,” Stan replied, “but let me give you just a couple, followed by one I saw earlier today that reflects what happened to me when I first became a Christian.”

“Okay,” I said. “I like to hear good examples. What you got?”

“The first great question that comes to mind is when Jesus asked His disciple who they thought He was.”

“Fabulous question we all have to answer,” I replied.

“Absolutely right,” Stan said. “Eternal destinations depend on getting right the answer to that question!“

“A second example almost equally important,” he continued, “is where the fellow described as the ‘rich young ruler’ asked Jesus what he had to do to inherit eternal life.”

“That’s another great question for everyone,” I commented, “one that affects eternal destinations and lives on this side of eternity.” What about the question you said reflects what happened to you when you first became a Christian?”

“That was a question I saw that the apostle Paul asked in his letter to the church in Galatia,” Stan replied. “He asked them if he had become their enemy by telling them the truth.”

“Becoming an enemy by telling the truth,” I repeated. “How’s that apply to you and your faith walk?”

“Well,” Stan replied, “when I first became a Christian, I spent a lot of time talking with friends and members of my family about my conversion, coming to faith, and what had happened with me by surrendering my life to Christ.”

“How did your family and friends react to that?”

“Unfortunately,” Stan continued, “most, if not all, of my family and friends did not like what I had to say about Christ, Christianity, and what it meant to me, and, in essence, I became their enemy.  They no longer wanted to be around me or have anything to do with me.”

“Sad,” I responded.

“Yes,” Stan said, “but there was also a blessing.”

“A blessing? How could there be a blessing out of being seen as an enemy by your family and friends?”

“The blessing of having a whole new set of friends who seek to know the truth and to serve the same Lord, the one who is really the Great Friend, who described Himself as the truth.”

“But,” he concluded, “the really valuable lesson for me in Paul’s question is that I am not to fear losing relationships with family and friends by telling them the truth.  I am to tell them the truth and leave the results to God. If I don’t tell them, maybe no one will and they will never know.”


Bible verses to consider:

Have I therefore become your enemy by telling you the truth?”  Galatians 4:16.

They hate him who reproves in the gate, and they abhor him who speaks with integrity. Amos 5:10.

I have called you friends, for all things that I have heard from My Father I have made known to you. John 15:15.

Greater love has no one than this, that one lay down his life for his friends. You are My friends, if you do what I command you. John 15:13-14.

I am the way, and the truth, and the life; no one comes to the Father, but through Me. John 14:6.

Prayer:  Thank you, Father for the truth of who you are, and for giving your Son, who is the truth, so that all who believe will spend eternity in your presence when it’s time. Thank you for those who brought me to the truth (and the truth to me) so I could accept your free and gracious provision of all you have for me. I confess that too often I am reluctant to tell others about the truth of you and your provision. I do that because I am fearful of how those people may react to me. Please forgive that foolish approach to living and telling the truth you have for me. Please help me to always remember that I am where I am with you because someone went out of the way to tell me the truth, without being afraid of being rejected. Help me follow every step of your lead in telling everyone you bring before me the truth so they have the opportunity to accept it. Thank you I can and do bring these prayers before you in the name of Jesus. Amen.

Think on this: Have you accepted the truth of God’s free and gracious provision of life with Him for eternity when your time here is completed? If no, why? If you are a Christian, how are you doing in telling other people the truth so they also have the opportunity to accept it? Are you reluctant out of fear of rejection? If so, what is that all about? If you sense the need for change in how you view telling others the truth of God’s provision, how is that change going to happen? Is that what you want? Why or why not?

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