Sheep Among Wolves

Blessed are you when men hate you, And when they exclude you, And revile you, and cast out your name as evil, for the Son of Man’s sake.

Hatred and exclusion aren’t things we like to experience, so we’ll do what we can to avoid them. However to what lengths will we go to maintain whatever acceptance, respect, security and comfort we may have?

Are we willing to compromise our Christian witness and the validity of the gospel we’ve been commanded to preach, just to maintain “freedoms” allegedly upheld by the political systems within our “western” societies?

And what if the hatred and exclusion leads to physical danger – even threatening our lives? Where would our priorities lie?

Do you not understand this parable? How then will you understand all the parables? The sower sows the word. And these are the ones by the wayside where the word is sown. When they hear, Satan comes immediately and takes away the word that was sown in their hearts. These likewise are the ones sown on stony ground who, when they hear the word, immediately receive it with gladness; and they have no root in themselves, and so endure only for a time. Afterward, when tribulation or persecution arises for the word’s sake, immediately they stumble. Now these are the ones sown among thorns; they are the ones who hear the word, and the cares of this world, the deceitfulness of riches, and the desires for other things entering in choke the word, and it becomes unfruitful. But these are the ones sown on good ground, those who hear the word, accept it, and bear fruit: some thirtyfold, some sixty, and some a hundred.


8 thoughts on “Sheep Among Wolves

  1. Carnal pragmatism. I’m not done with the video yet, but there are two things I want to mention (not to mention many others that really make one cry). This was an interesting thing for the man speaking then [something like 43 minutes in] (Dalton, I think) to share (as said to him). There are these canned responses. Another one I noticed is a different man earlier said he thanks God for making him less shallow. A response like that would often be met with making him out to be like the religious person thinking too much of himself. But, no, it’s IS good to reflect on the impact in every life, including oneself.

  2. I have to wonder, if I were to go to a place like that, would my time be well spent debating that Jesus “is not a prophet” rather than that he IS, but more (the son of God culturally — not carnally)? And I wouldn’t want to go tell people they should go to “church” and Jesus wants them to be part of the Church. This seems to be setting up age old problems. How about we focus on the things Jesus said, like about hypocritically laying heavy burdens on people without helping, or loving your neighbor (including women) instead, and Jesus being the Messiah who will come and establish the kingdom of heaven (without us needing to exterminate or otherwise oppress people around us before he will)? And there’s the matter of Jesus actually being put to death. I think the Muslim view is that it was an image that looked like him at the cross (or something along those lines, I might be a bit off the mark on what they say). There may be plenty of time if you live there, but deciding what doesn’t need to be (and shouldn’t be) said is as (or at least almost as) important as what to say.

  3. I thought about the portions where a husband said he asked his wife what she would want him to do… in a very dire situation against her. I would want my husband to punch the attacker. Tackle him, tackle them even. Something. I would want to take some mace along, but not a gun.

    And I don’t think any of that would be harmful, spiritually. I think it’s respectable.

  4. Marleen, If I recall that section correctly, I think the hypothetical case being spoken about would involve a situation with the local or national authorities – where physical and sexual violence are used to intimidate and denigrate perceived political and religious enemies.

    I’m currently re-reading The Morning They Came For Us by Janine di Giovanni. The book mentions many harrowing incidents of rape being used as a weapon (in Syria) during home invasions, interrogations and even at checkpoints throughout cities, and its not only women who are subjected to it, although they are the main victims.

    It wasn’t referring to a “common” criminal sexual assault, but one sanctioned by authorities.

    See here for an earlier “review” I wrote after my first reading:

  5. Marleen, in the previous article I quoted accusations against Muslims related to sexual assault that were made on another blog. The examples given in Janine di Giovanni’s book were all committed AGAINST everyday Muslims – the very kind of people who are fleeing their homeland to seek refuge in the “Christian” west. The kind of people who instead of being welcomed are being demonised by people like that other blog owner.

    Many of those refugees have experienced some of the very worst of things done in the name of Islam, so a genuine expression of love from those who claim to follow Jesus would offer them a significant contrast to what they’ve experienced from their own religion. But are they getting that?
    Mostly no!

  6. On your 10:46, yes that would be terrible (assault/rape sanctioned by authorities). I think if there’s a way to get to the perpetrators (even if sanctioned), there is a bit of honor in objecting and making some attempt. Even just to speak up (like if trapped behind a fence or something — not that it should be a rule). The video also said, you only die once, why not die for Jesus (if it comes to that). (Of course, there are worse things than death — for both a man and a woman.) I’m just saying it’s possible, it’s an option that isn’t morally wrong or even spiritually damaging on the face of it. I’ve heard people talk before like you really should not do anything. On your 19:53, very curious that “someone” (not “saying” who) posted about getting out of places that were bad or dangerous to be in, with the wording of “salvation” and pointing to salvation in the usual sense as well. Maybe that will be a new direction in his thinking (even per Muslims), to include new direction in “talking.” I’m too tired to look and see what’s going on there. But, yeah, I agree.

  7. { Random thought/memory: There’s a song by Beck in which he says something about not making decisions based on what is needed (the way it’s worded and delivered is impactful). The whole album is very good [made when he was sad about a break-up]. I think it’s the one called Sea Change. (There’s one album by him I especially wasn’t personally impressed with, the one he got a Grammy for.) }

  8. Coincidentally, considering some of the earlier discussion (warning, some content is quite graphic):

    A shocking lawsuit accuses the Washington, D.C., police of using sexual abuse as a form of punishment targeting people arrested during protests against President Donald Trump’s inauguration.

    And, no doubt disappointing as it may be for some, not one of those accused seems to be Muslim.

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