Let my people go, that they may serve Me
These were the very words that God instructed Moses to say to Pharaoh when His people were in slavery in Egypt. Pharaoh was not ready to bow to this command, and as the plagues got worse, he came up with some kind of compromise…“Go you men and serve the Lord” (Exodus 10 v 11), and then in verse 24, “Go serve the Lord, only let your flocks and your herds be kept back: let your little ones also go with you,” but Moses said, “You must also give us sacrifices and burnt offerings, that we may sacrifice to the Lord our God. Our livestock also shall go with us; not a hoof shall be left behind. For we must take some of them to serve the LORD our God…” (v24) No compromise… No half measures!
Job and his dedication to God tested
Throughout the ages, the devil has never been happy to see the people of God serve Him in freedom and without compromise. He wanted to discredit Job in the eyes of God: “… stretch out Your hand and touch all that he has, and he will surely curse You to Your face!” (Job 1 v 11) and when that did not work, he challenged God again and said, “But stretch out Your hand now, and touch his bone and his flesh, and he will surely curse You to Your face!” (Job 2 v 5). Yet Job remained faithful to his God.
God’s people have always faced opposition when they wanted to serve Him without compromise. In the book of Acts, we see the same thing: when the apostles started to preach the uncompromising message of the gospel, the High Priest called them and rebuked them saying, “Did we not strictly command you not to teach in this name?” (Acts 5 v 28), and after beating them, they commanded that they should not speak in the name of Jesus. (Acts 5 v 40).
Paul not spared
Apostle Paul experienced persecution throughout his whole ministry. Yet, what an example of a given life! There was no limit to His service for the Lord. His life was a challenge and still speaks today. He was persecuted, rejected, misjudged and had enemies both within and outside the . He warned Timothy of what would happen in the last days; how believers would have itching ears and look for teachers to suit their own desires. Isn’t what we are seeing today?
The reaction to the gospel
What am I saying? Today, as the true and pure gospel of the cross is going forward, we see all kinds of opposition rising up. Not, as is said in the epistle of Peter (1 Peter 4 v 15 – 16), because we are murderers, or evildoers, but because of the stand we are taking as Christians, in our walk with the Lord: a separation from the world, denouncing all the false doctrines that have penetrated the Church today. And in our desire to walk uprightly before the Lord, we are encountering all kinds of opposition and criticism. We are even seeing Christians, pastors, join hands with groups consisting of unbelievers, to attack the of Jesus Christ as is the case of this small group of Concerned Parents. How sad… To see born again Christians, even pastors, take part in what is being done to slander the Church of Jesus Christ.
What wrong have we done? Have we stolen from someone? Are we condoning adultery in our midst? Have one or more of our leaders divorced and remarried? Are our children swallowed in this world, lost in the gothic move and not serving Jesus? Do we owe money to people and act as if we don’t? What wrong are we doing? What sin have we committed? Yet, all hell is being let loose and attacks are coming from every side.
When the Church and the world agree
Just as in the days of Jesus, when the Sadducees and Pharisees were, for once, in agreement over crucifying and slandering the Lord, we see today the worldly press opening its columns to a group of disgruntled parents, composed of several bitter Christians and non Christians who are furious because they have lost control of their grown up children to the Lord Jesus Christ. Where is Jesus in all this? It is true that He said the servant is not greater than the master and that if they persecuted the master, the servant will not be spared but will be persecuted, but didn’t he also say “… in as much as you did it to one of the least of these My brethren, you did it to Me” (Mat 25 v 40)?
When the religious leaders in the time of the early church no longer knew what to do to stop the zealous believers, having tried all kinds of things like putting them in prison, having them beaten, forbidding them to speak in the name of the Lord, being ready to do anything to stop them, Gamaliel, a man of great wisdom, stood up and said: “And now I say to you, keep away from these men and let them alone; for if this plan or this work is of men, it will come to nothing; but if it is of God, you cannot overthrow it—lest you even be found to fight against God.” (Acts 5 v 38 – 39).
Jesus is building His church
One thing is for sure, whatever man may do, with all he has at his disposal, nothing and no one will be able to prevent the gospel from spreading. No one will be able to stop young and old from giving their lives unconditionally to Jesus and serving Him with all their hearts. No one will be able to stop men and women giving their lives for the church, loving one another, opening their homes and practicing hospitality, as in the days of the early church. No one will be able to stop Jesus from calling people of every age, from every nation, changing their lives and setting them apart for Him. Fight it, if you want to! Call it ‘brain washing’, ‘manipulation’, ‘a sect’ (as it was called in Paul’s day), call it what you want: the gospel will still go forward. Jesus is building His church and in the days in which we live we are going to see more and more miracles happening, miracles of lives changed, of young and old being radical in their service for the Lord. Unfortunately, we will also see Christians who do not want to serve the Lord fully and who are not prepared to die to themselves and give up their lives, rise up and oppose that part of the church on many grounds, and strangely enough see the world joining hands with them in their endeavours.
Let my people go
As in the days of Moses, the Lord is saying again today, “Let my people go and serve Me” on my terms, as I have called them to, with their little ones, their flocks, and all that they have. God is calling men and women to serve Him in these last days wholeheartedly and without compromise. This is the Church He is raising up and will use to usher in the second coming of His Son Jesus Christ.
Where do you stand?
He is coming back soon… and will say to some, “Good and faithful servant, enter into the joy of the Lord,” and to others, “Depart from me…” Where do you stand today? With the scoffers? With the enemies of the cross? One with the world? Your answer to this question will determine what the Lord will have to say to you on that great day. There is still time to join the right camp!