>The Word promises, “All those who desire to live godly in Christ Jesus will be persecuted.” Not those who are (only), but those who desire!
That being said, some of the “persecution” Christians suffer is, well, rather deserved than, ah, earned.
Bragging about how we don’t do this or do this may well spawn persecution…and probably should.
Here’s some wise words:
As Chrisitans, we should expect persecution for our faith. For most of us in the West, that takes the form of being ostracized and rejected in fairly minor ways (compared to being beaten or killed or imprisoned).
But I think sometimes the world rejects us not because we are like Jesus, but because we’re jerks or weirdos. If we go out of our way to remind people of our moral superiority, if we always insist that people who don’t love God should be expected to act like they do… then we deserve whatever rejection we get. They’re really not rejecting Jesus, they are rejecting us.
So I sometimes talk to my church about the “ministry of being normal”. As believers, we are necessarilly going to have a lot of distance between us and those who don’t follow Christ. We live differently, love differntly, hope differntely. We’re citizens of a different country.
But it might be helpful if we limit the distance between us and the world in a lot of other ways. We don’t have to flaunt our lack of a TV and be weird and preachy about grinding your own grain. That only serves to put unnecessary distance between us and the people we’re trying to reach. Instead, we should try to engage the world around us, know what our neighbors care about, and try to inhabit the same universe they do.
If they are going to persecute us, let us at least be for things that really have something to do with being a Christian.