Summary: What will we answer when we are confronted with confessing our belief in Christ?
Drifting from the Love of God
The film that you will see will last only about 6 minutes but it will make you think. To set the scene let me tell you about it before we start. The man and woman in van are a Pastor and his wife who are on vacation. He has preached about Jesus all of his life and proclaimed his love for God from the pulpit time and again. On this day, they stop to pick up a hitchhiker, but as the video begins, things have gone terribly wrong. The hitchhiker has pulled out a gun and is threatening the pastor. Now we will begin the video and watch what happens. Pay close attention for we never know when we will be confronted with a similar decision.
(Play the Video) (For those who read this message, the video is titled “Drifting” and can be purchased at Sermonspice.com)
Like the preacher in the video, many people have been pushed into a corner concerning their confession of faith and love for Jesus, and many have given their lives for the cause of Christ.
Every day, somewhere in the world, Christians are still being persecuted greatly. Some are cast into prison for preaching the gospel. Some are exiled to labor camps, never to be seen again. And some will pay the ultimate price for their faith and give their lives for the Lord.
You might think that this can’t happen to you, not here in the United States of America. Don’t be fooled, it can happen even here.
Let me give you a few examples:
Judge Roy Moore was the Chief Justice of the Alabama Supreme Court. But because of religious persecution against Christians, he is no longer a member of the Alabama Supreme Court, and there’s a good chance that he will no longer be allowed to practice law at all. Why? It all resulted from his stand for Christ by refusing to remove a statue of the Ten Commandments from a public building in Alabama. The freedom of religion is no longer a freedom for Christians and any of us could face similar persecution anytime that someone wants to come against us for our testimony in Christ.
On April 20, 1999, our nation was shocked by the massacre of high school students at Columbine High School in Littleton, Colorado. Many people believe that the two students who did the shooting were specifically targeting Christians. Not all those killed or injured were Christian but many were.
One eyewitness said, "I saw them shoot a girl because she was praying to God."
It is known as fact that at least three of those targeted for death were devout Christians.
At one point the terrorists asked a roomful of trapped and panicked students if there were any Christians present. One brave young woman named Cassie Bernall, who was only 17, stood and declared her faith in Christ. The killer smiled and then shot her dead. Cassie never expected to die for her faith, but when the time came, that’s what she did.
John Tomlin was a 16-year old who attended church with his family every Sunday. He had recently completed a missions trip into Mexico, witnessing and working for the Lord. He had even helped do build a house for a poor family who had been living in a shack. He was killed because he confessed Christ as his Lord and stood for his belief.
Rachel Scott, only 17, had thought about graduating early to travel with a Christian drama team and become a missionary or work with troubled young people. She let her light shine everywhere she went. On this fateful day, her faith and love for Jesus was recognized, and she was rewarded for her confession of faith with a bullet that took her life. Today she is with the Lord that she loved so much, killed for her testimony in Christ.
None of these people expected the persecution and death that awaited them, but it came. When those three young Christians woke up that morning and dressed for school, just like they had done for years, I’m sure that they never thought that this day would be their last and that they would have to die for their faith.
Not one of us is exempt from persecution. I hope that none of us will face it, but I expect that some of us will.
Perhaps it won’t come as a threat with a gun in your face, but it could come in other ways as well.
A lady in Houston, Texas was ordered by local police to stop handing out gospel tracts to children who knocked on her door during Halloween. Officers informed her that such activity is illegal (not true), and that she would be arrested if she continued.