Our Bible Study teacher opened the lesson on Sunday by saying, “The feeling that comes with the salvation experience is awesome, but it isn’t always there. Then we take Salvation by faith in God’s Word and Trust.
Today we were considering persecution in the work place and temptation to do wrong.
In Bible days many households had servants. Servants might chose this life, of life chooses for them. Some were captured, others were taken as payment of a debt. There were some Masters who were cruel and would punish their servants with beatings. Many times the punishment was undeserved.
What happens to us when we are asked to lie, cheat or falsify something at work? Just the other day, a friend of mine was asked by a co-worker to illegally split a commission to avoid taxes. He refused to do so.
On our job, we may have a better idea, but we are under authority, and should do the work the way our boss wants it done. Timing is everything. Present your good idea later in private. It may help to write it out so your boss can think about it.
Our teacher told a story of an Islamic man witnessed to by an American soldier; who told the man that he was praying for him. The man said, “I don’t think anyone has ever prayed for me except my mother.” His heart was softened, and a few days later, he saw a vision; the figure of a man who spoke saying, “I AM the Light of the World, I will show you the way if you will follow me.”
There are many reports of people in other lands, seeing visions of Jesus and many times they secretly receive Jesus as Lord.
1 Peter 2:18-20 Servants, be submissive to your masters with all fear, not only to the good and gentle, but also to the harsh. For this is commendable, if because of conscience toward God one endures grief, suffering wrongfully. For what credit is it if, when you are beaten for your faults, you take it patiently? But when you do good and suffer, if you take it patiently, this is commendable before God.
Peter was comparing suffering wrongfully with the suffering of Christ. Jesus was buffeted and reviled, and was innocent, yet He submitted and bore our sins on His body.
1 Peter 2:24 Who Himself bore our sins in His own body on the tree, that we, having died to sins, might live for righteousness - - by whose stripes you were healed.
Jesus was silent when He was accused, and we must understand that Pilot the governor was just doing his job. He had authority to release Jesus, but the crowd swayed his better judgment. What if he had listened to his wife and had nothing to do with Jesus? It was not so, because the death of Christ was ordained to happen.
People can be cruel and stubborn and moved by others who protest. Anger, hatred caused refusal to accept Jesus as the Messiah, and He was crucified for you and me.
We process things that happen to us and try to avoid situations. The proper way is to act maturely.
If we are being troubled at the work place, or at school, it is more than sitting back and expecting God to intervene. We need to pray and expect intervention.
A member of our class commented, “Once burned in a relationship, we are cautious to make friends.
Our Teacher told a story about a well educated man, whose young wife died. His grief and deep sorrow caused him to make some bad decisions, and to drown his sorrow with the bottle. He did not know Jesus and took the world’s way to cope. Later like the prodigal son, he came to himself and changed his direction in life. God draws the line and says, “No More.”
Peter said, “We continued to stray, going our own way, but we are now returned, (turned around) and going in the direction to the Good Shepherd.”
There are situations in our life and the Holy Spirit nudges us. We need to ask, “What should I do about this?”
Each situation is different, so keep listening.