Many people did believe in him, however, including some of the Jewish leaders. But they wouldn’t admit it for fear that the Pharisees would expel them from the synagogue. For they loved human praise more than the praise of God. – John 42:43
Unfortunately, there is some of us who believe in Jesus but won’t admit it when called upon to express our belief. There were people who saw what Jesus did, believed what Jesus said and accepted the fact that He was the Messiah, but because of pressure from their habitats, they wouldn’t admit it. What were those pressures? Back then, they had the fear of being expelled from the synagogues or other places that denoted prestige. This fear placed them in pressurized situations which led to them seeking the approval and praises of humans over God.
There are a few hot, trending or hash tag topics today that can place us in these pressurized situations. Sure the seed of fear is planted when one of these topics comes up and we’re placed in under the spotlight to either stand on what we believe, or deny what we believe. Punishing our children, racism, adultery, abortion, gay lifestyles, so forth and so on. Sure we stand a chance of losing a job, friends, social status, even positions in a church organization because of our belief in Jesus and His teachings. It is my prayer that we can stand for Him no matter what the outcome will be.
Keep in mind what Jesus promised in Mark 10:29-30. He has promised whatever we lose we’ll regain it a hundred times over. So don’t worry about receiving human praises when you know your Father in heaven is with you every step of the way.
I have been in some pretty lonely situations because of my faith in the Lord. I was hurt because of rejection and I didn’t always do good under pressure. But now because of the power I’ve gained through the Holy Spirit, I have done better and will continue to represent my Lord and Savior with courage and deny myself what I might lose in the process.
One more thing. If by some chance someone has taken the less pressurized path, know that God is ready to forgive you if you ask.
Lord I pray for you to give us the courage, strength and the loving kindness to represent you under pressure. We realize you need some people who will stand and cry out against all sin while showing unconditional love to those who are lost. I pray that you will comfort us under the persecution that will come. In Jesus’ name – Amen.
Hebrews 13:5 | Matthew 10:32-34 | Mark 14:29-31 | Matthew 26:74-75