Prevailing Under Pressure To Compromise
This should come as no shock to you, but it’s increasingly difficult to be a Bible-believing Christian in our culture. There is constant pressure to compromise our faith. More and more Christians are being labeled as “bigots” for even voicing convictions contrary to the cultural norm.
Gone are the days when our culture held to at least some standard of Biblical morality. Gone are the days when when your faith may not lead to conflict. Gone are the days when being a Bible-believing Christian was socially acceptable.
This pressure leaves us with two options: We can compromise our faith, or we can contend for it. Jude 3 calls all Christians to...
“Contend for the faith that was once for all delivered to the saints.”
While a number of factors influence our ability to contend for the faith, one is more necessary than ever. Here is the key to prevailing under pressure to compromise:
Boldness is what the early church in the book of Acts possessed. Peter and John were known for the boldness (Acts 4:13). In the face of opposition the church prayed for greater boldness (Acts 4:29). God granted this prayer and they continued to proclaim the gospel with greater boldness (Acts 4:31). The book even concludes with the Apostle Paul at the end of life still preaching the gospel with boldness (Acts 28:31).
Boldness was key to the mission of Jesus in Acts and it’s key to the mission of Jesus now. Unfortunately, many preachers and Christians are confused about what constitutes boldness.
Boldness is NOT abrasive.
Some people stand up for the right things, but fail to do it the right way. They have no love for the people around them and no concern for the way they come across. Love must always be the primary motive in our fight for the faith - love for God and love for the people around us.
Boldness is NOT arrogant.
Is there any greater irony than an arrogant Christian? Our entire worldview is based on our complete inability to ever be good enough to earn God’s forgiveness. We are recipients of underserved, unearned grace. Yet somehow, many of us are still smug and walk around like we’re the smartest people in the room. Humility must mark the tone of our fight for the faith.
Boldness is NOT abusive.
It’s not bold to use truth to beat people up - that’s cowardly and insecure. This is especially important for pastors. We can’t preach, shepherd, or lead in a harsh, hurtful, or controlling manner. We can be bold and not be bullies. We must labor to boldly serve those God entrusts to our care.
So, if boldness is not abrasive, arrogant, or abusive, what is it. Here it is -
Boldness is the courage to say what God says the way God says it.
It will take strength and courage to say what God says in a culture that has no ears to hear it. But it will take humility and love to say it in a way that reflects God’s heart.
Will you boldly contend for the faith? Will you love and serve the people around you in a way that reflects the gospels transforming work in your heart? Will you pray with me today that God would grant us the courage to continue to say what He says, the way that He would have us to say it?