Remember life on the 5th and 6th grade playground? One child was the opinion leader and others followed along. Another child would become the outcast. If you were friends with the outcast, then the opinion leader refused to be your friend, and so did all the followers.
Now that we are adults, not much has changed! I often reflect that politics today is nothing more than the power games of the playground! And if you follow the despised one, then you will be despised as well. You may think I’m talking about a former President. I’m not. I’m talking about Jesus.
Jesus told his apostles in Luke 21:17 that “All men will hate you because of me.”(NIV) He warned them they would be betrayed and persecuted, even by family. On the night before his death, Jesus warned them again with these words in John 15:18-19: “If the world hates you, keep in mind that it hated me first. If you belonged to the world, it would love you as its own. As it is, you do not belong to the world, but I have chosen you out of the world. That is why the world hates you.” (NIV)
This helps us understand Matthew 5:11, “Blessed are you when people insult you, persecute you and falsely say all kinds of evil against you because of me.”(NIV) So, commit yourself to follow Jesus. And don’t be surprised if you are despised for your choice.
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Bumper music “Landing Place” performed by Mark July, used under license from Shutterstock.