We had previously suffered and been treated outrageously in Philippi, as you know, but with the help of our God we dared to tell you his gospel in the face of strong opposition. For the appeal we make does not spring from error or impure motives, nor are we trying to trick you. On the contrary, we speak as those approved by God to be entrusted with the gospel. We are not trying to please people but God, who tests our hearts. 1 Thessalonians 2:2-4 (NIV)
Read: 1 Thessalonians 2
Consider: Have things really changed? I often hear people longing for the good old days when things were easier and there was regard for Christian values in society. Of course society has changed and become more liberal and we have seen within even one lifetime people turning away from God. But is it purely our recollection that gives us the impression that things were once better? Was society really ever more Christian in the first place?
In 1 Thessalonians 2 Paul makes it clear that the gospel met fierce opposition in his time. Read Acts 16:11-40 for an account of Paul’s visit to Philippi and Acts 17:1-9 for his time in Thessalonica. It would be very easy for us to think that the opposition was only because the Christian faith was new and the Jews opposed it, seeing it as a sect. It would also be easy for us to think that we should have it easier in our time.
Let be honest, sharing the gospel requires as much boldness today, as it did in Paul’s day. Like Paul we have a choice to make. Do we choose to keep quiet when faced with ridicule and opposition, or do we ‘dare to tell’ the gospel?
Pray: Father, give us the boldness to dare to tell the gospel in a society that has turned its back on you. Having been entrusted with the gospel, help us to share its life-changing message. Amen