Dear Friends of "Dial Daily Bread,"
The last page of the Bible invites us to come if we are thirsty, and "take the water of life freely" (Rev. 22:17). And Jesus says, "Come to Me" if we're weary and heavy-laden, and He will give us "rest" (Matt. 11:28-30). So, we "come" and we are baptized, and we become members of the church. We are so happy at last to find fellowship in the Lord; heaven on earth.
And we continue to "read the Bible, and pray, and witness" like we're always told to do. And we believe the Bible and say so, but then opposition and controversy arise. We're tempted to wish that we had kept still. So, we are driven to our knees to pray, and we ask the Lord, "Why is this happening? I wanted peace, and now this 'war' has come!"
The Lord has indeed promised, "the one who comes to Me I will by no means cast out"! (John 6:37). As you wait quietly before Him in prayer, He answers your questions faithfully:
(a) If you keep your eyes on Jesus you will see a Man who was cruelly crucified because He told the truth. And He tells us all, "I did not come to bring peace but a sword" (Matt. 10:34). Deny self, take up your cross daily (Luke 9:23). But wait a moment--you never fight a battle alone! This is what you must believe.
(b) He faithfully promises, "'I will never leave you nor forsake you.' So we may boldly say, 'The Lord is my helper; I will not fear. What can man do to me?'" (Heb. 13:5, 6). You choose not to be afraid, in the Lord. Then … you're not afraid.
(c) Even in the church, the Lord's house, where we expect to find heaven on earth, we find conflict and even persecution. That's where the most severe and painful conflicts come! But the Lord still assures you, He won't forsake you.
(d) He loves the church for it is yet to become the Bride of Christ; and it does indeed have very severe problems within it, for Jesus tells the leadership of the church today that of all the "seven churches" of world history, you are the one outstandingly "miserable, poor, blind, and naked" (the little Greek word "ho" is there, the one; Rev. 3:17).
(e) Therefore do not give up on the church, the body of Christ, His Bride-to-be. The final victory in the "great controversy between Christ and Satan" comes at the very end and it requires that the church finally "overcome" and do what He says in Revelation 3:19--repent. It won't at last be fear that motivates her, but a deeper appreciation of what it cost Him to save us. That melted-hearted repentance will come, it has to come; hang on!
--Robert J. Wieland
From the "Dial Daily Bread" Archive: June 5, 2007.
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