Summary: Christians not only need to have the right attitude in church, but it’s important to have the right attitude out in the world; even when we face a Hostile Enviroment!
How to Handle a Hostile Environment
We’re looking at a text that comes from one of the “Pastoral Epistles”. These books of the New Testament are particularity useful to us because they are so practical and applicable to our everyday lives. Paul had just finished talking to the church about “Internal” relationships – vs. 2 “Let this mind be in you that was also in Christ Jesus”. Now Paul talks about “External” relationships. Christians not only need to have the right attitude in church, but it’s important that we have the right attitude as we face hostility in the world today! I want to talk to you today about “How to handle a Hostile Environment”. I believe that there are several things that we must realize from this passage in order to successfully handle our hostile environment ...
( A Reading of The Text )
How can you as a Christian handle a hostile environment?
I. Realize that God Allows You to be in the Hostile Environment:
Remember Job? God allowed him to be the target of the devil’s attack. Remember Paul? God allowed him to suffer a thorn in the flesh. You & I need to realize that nothing is going on in our life that God hasn’t allowed!!
( cf. Jn. 16:33; 17:15, I Pet. 4:12-16, Rms. 8:28 )
II. Realize that God Wants You to Maintain a Distinctive Lifestyle:
Remember Daniel? Remember Joseph? The list of bible characters goes on and on. They point out that even in the mist of hostile environments, true people of God maintained their godly lifestyle! If we are to handle our hostile enviroments, we must do the same.
( cf. Jms. 1:26-27, Matt. 10:16, I Jn. 4:4 )
III. Realize that God Gives You Strength Through Regular Worship:
In order to handle a hostile environment we need to “praise” God for his goodness! Now I know that sounds like strange logic. When going through difficulty, the last thing we feel like doing is praising God. Christians find strength in praising God in spite of the enviroment they face.
( cf. Heb. 10:23-25, Phil. 4:4-8, et.al. )
IV. Realize that God Rewards You for being Faithful to Him:
You and I can handle our hostile environment when we remember that God has the scales of justice in His hands and one day He’ll balance the books!
( Cf. Gal. 6:7-9, I Jn. 2:15-17, Col. 3:22-24 )
Today, you may be facing an enviroment of hostility and difficulty. If you are a Christian, I want to encourage you to hold on and trust God throughout your ordeal. If you are not a Christian, I want to urge you to become one today by simple obedience to God’s salvation plan as we stand and sing today!
*H- B- R- C- B*