This thought occurred to me yesterday… Is the fight to preserve and protect the “rights” of Christians helping or hindering the spread of the Gospel? I think it is obvious – it is hindering it. I would rather endure a violation of my rights in order to advance the spread of the Gospel. I’m reminded of Paul speaking in Philippians 1:12-14:
Now I want you to know, brothers, that what has happened to me [his imprisonment] has really served to advance the gospel. As a result, it has become clear throughout the whole palace guard and to everyone else that I am in chains for Christ. Because of my chains, most of the brothers in the Lord have been encouraged to speak the word of God more courageously and fearlessly.
When I read this, I do not have to wonder whether Paul was more concerned about his own rights or about the advance of the Gospel.
So, as we enter this age where our beliefs are going to tolerated less and less by “the world”, I really think that we need to be ready to endure persecution for the sake of the spread of the Gospel. As Paul said in 1 Thessalonians 2:2:
We had previously suffered and been treated outrageously in Philippi, as you know, but with the help of our God we dared to tell you his gospel in the face of strong opposition.
See these additional passages (Acts 4:29, Acts 9:27, Acts 18:9-10, 2 Tim 1:12, Acts 14:3, Acts 19:8, 2 Tim 1:7-10, Acts 18:4-6, Rom 1:16).
We, like Paul and the apostles, need to dare to tell the world the Gospel in the face of strong opposition!
I’ve been re-reading the fantastic book “Unsilenced: How to Voice the Gospel” for the 3rd time now, and I can’t help but wonder what the author James Boccardo would say about this. His main point in the book is that everyone needs to hear the Gospel. I think he would ask the very same question I’m asking here “Is the fight to preserve and protect the ‘rights’ of Christians helping or hindering the spread of the Gospel?” I think James Boccardo would probably be going down to the capitol and witnessing to those people that are demonstrating against the bill. He would show them that he cares more about their eternal destiny than his ‘rights’. And when they try to trap and divert him with red-herrings and one-liner slogans, he’d give one his famous one-liners to stop them in their tracks and then quickly get back to the Gospel – the glorious good news that Jesus died and rose again so that we could have our sins forgiven!
Let’s keep the focus on the Gospel Christian soldiers!