" I urge you, brothers, by our Lord Jesus Christ and by the love of the Spirit, to join me in my struggle by praying to God for me. Pray that I may be rescued from the unbelievers in Judea and that my service in Jerusalem may be acceptable to the saints there, so that by God's will I may come to you with joy and together with you be refreshed. The God of peace be with you all. Amen." Romans 15: 30-32
In 1980, while completing Seminary, I worked in a treatment center for emotionally disturbed adolescents as a senior counsellor, therapist and Chaplain. When the new head of counselling arrived, he pulled me aside. "Don, I hear that you are a Christian. I just want you to know that I feel that there is no place for Christians in this organization and will be doing everything I can the remove you completely." I said, "Well thanks for letting me know where you stand", and continued doing the job as before. About four months later I heard from him again. He came to me and said, "Don, I just want you to know that I have changed my mind about you and intend to support you as much as possible." I was no different before or after the events.
Those who serve Christ wholeheartedly face resistance from unbelievers and sometimes from Believers as well. The Apostle Paul asked the people he felt he could trust to pray for him. He faced resistance from non-believers and believers in Christ in going to Jerusalem to give them money. He knows that his ability to accomplish anything is 100% dependent on God in Christ preparing the way.
Many Christians suffered at the hands of Saul (now Paul) when he persecuted them by leading a campaign against them. Now he worked day and night to repay his error by serving Christ with all his life. Many Christians were sceptical, suspicious and cautious thinking that Paul might return to his old ways.
The Jewish leaders were furious with
Paul. Several plots to kill him had failed. Unbelievers wanted him dead
because he threatened the Jewish religious belief system, the economic
structure, the political positioning and preached heresy by saying 6the
Jesus Christ is God! Truly, his worked had to be blessed by God just to
keep him alive!
Those who make a stand for the Gospel of Christ will confuse and threaten those who live by the principles of this world. The worldview is completely different.
Chaplain Don Russel
Appearing Thursday, Nov. 14, 2002