Beyond the Gospels: Acts

Today’s Scripture: Acts 23:23-35
(Just click on the link if you don’t have a Bible handy.)

The governmental officials didn’t seem to think Paul had done anything wrong. The letter said he’d done nothing remotely criminal. The governor put Paul up in Herod’s quarters and decided to wait to see if the accusers even showed up. The only people really upset were the religious ones. It was the same with Jesus.

I would like to think we are different now. Somehow more sophisticated in our disagreements. The reality of another college shooting reveals something different. It also reminds me of people all over the world being persecuted because of their beliefs. Not one of the disciples lived a “happily ever after” life.

Cassie and I were talking about persecution Wednesday as she prepared to teach our youth. One question kept rolling around in her mind, “Would I claim Jesus in the face of death?” The question hung in the air between the two of us as reality sank in. On the surface the answer seems easy, but deep down there is another question lurking… What if I didn’t have enough faith to claim Jesus?

It leads me to an even deeper thought… Even without the threat of death, there are times I deny Him. Times I choose anger over love, and chaos over peace. Times when I choose my own way instead of The Way. May we never forget each and every moment is an opportunity to choose Him.

Father God, I pray for the faith to choose Jesus each and every day,
no matter the cost.
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