“So what!” That was my initial flippant reaction to reading a national news article that reported the following:
56% of voters say Christianity is under attack (in America).
81% of surveyed evangelical Christians believe Christianity is under attack (in America).
I completely believe that stat. My quipped “so what” reply was in response to that faceless American Christian I envisioned in my mind reading that same article. I could hear this guy in my head saying, “Well, it shouldn’t be like this in ‘Merica!”
Now, don’t worry about me. I’m always conjuring responses to imaginary people I’ll most likely never encounter. There goes the daydreamer in me again. But as you realize that faceless person isn’t faceless, that it’s really you, and now you’ve decide to view me as sacrilegious, unpatriotic, blasphemous, disrespectful or just purely ignorant, take a moment to listen to the words of Jesus.
John 15: 18-25 (NLT)
18 “If the world hates you, remember that it hated me first. 19 The world would love you as one of its own if you belonged to it, but you are no longer part of the world. I chose you to come out of the world, so it hates you. 20 Do you remember what I told you? ‘A slave is not greater than the master.’ Since they persecuted me, naturally they will persecute you. And if they had listened to me, they would listen to you. 21 They will do all this to you because of me, for they have rejected the one who sent me. 22 They would not be guilty if I had not come and spoken to them. But now they have no excuse for their sin.23 Anyone who hates me also hates my Father. 24 If I hadn’t done such miraculous signs among them that no one else could do, they would not be guilty. But as it is, they have seen everything I did, yet they still hate me and my Father. 25 This fulfills what is written in their Scriptures: ‘They hated me without cause.’
If I go back and read those statistics again, then compare them to scripture, a more appropriate response would be, “What else are we to expect?” I would venture to say we as Christians should not be worried when we are under attack but when we are not.
19 The world would love you as one of its own if you belonged to it, but you are no longer part of the world. I chose you to come out of the world, so it hates you.