Why Do Accusers Try to Discredit the People of God?
Sermon shared by Paul Fritz
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1. Accusers find pleasure in trying to find fault with someone or their ideas. In this passage we read about men who tried to discredit Peter and the apostles who had just received the Holy Spirit on the day of Pentecost. Peter said, "These men are not drunk as you suppose." (Acts 2:15) Ignorant people mock that which they do not understand. We all know that some people are not happy unless they are in an accusing mood. Let us remember that there is a difference between accusations - indicting someone of a fault or a crime and allegations - an unproven assertion of wrong doing. Ask the Lord to help you understand that some people are merely expressing their own bitterness, anger and ignorance when they accuse you of something that is false.
2. Accusations often begin with devilish intent. The devil was an accuser from the beginning. It is evil to accuse someone falsely without having solid proof. When the apostles received the Holy Spirit and spoke in tongues many of the religious Jews of that day suspected that the apostles were drunk with wine and had loss control of their thinking. Just as Mozart could not explain the processes the he went through to write such glorious music, so a Spirit filled person may not entirely understand how the Spirit endows them with the wisdom to speak a message from God. Ask the Lord to give you the tolerance to appreciate that there will be people who will falsely accuse you because of their limited understanding of the way God‚s communication works.
3. Accusations often come when people like Peter declare something new. In this passage, Peter refers to the words spoken by the prophet Joel (Joel 2:28-32). Rejoicing in the outpouring of the Spirit, Peter explains how we have entered into a new age of grace. Peter taught that no longer are people to seek justification through the law, but through God‚s unmerited favor. When you find yourself under attack by people, take a tip from Peter and refer to the great scriptural messages of Godly men. Ask the Lord to help bring to mind passages that are appropriate explanations for your ideas, actions and ministries.
4. Accusations come because some people prefer to live in the past rather than the present. Many of the Jews in the first century refused to believe that Jesus was the Messiah. They rejected Christ‚s offer of spiritual deliverance from their sins. Instead, the Jews scoffed at Jesus and His apostles because they expected a Kingdom that would overthrow the Roman authorities and install them to positions of political, social and economic greatness. Remember that many people will be skeptical of the truth because they are reflecting an ulterior motive in their accusations of you and your message. Ask the Lord to give you the faith, love and confident hope that God will fight on your behalf and give victory.
5. Accusations come because many people fall into the traps of the following kinds of temptations:
a). Cynics - Nathaniel said of Jesus, "Can any good thing come from Nazareth?" (Jn 1:45-47)
b). Whiners - The disciples who woke Jesus and said,"Teacher, don‚t you care if we drown?"(Mk 4:38)
c). Wrong Priorities and Jealousy - Martha said to Jesus, "Do you not care that my sister has left me to do all the work?" (Luke 10:38-42)
d). Dictators & Controllers - "The chief priests said, "By what authority are you doing these things?"
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