For you yourselves know, brethren, that our coming to you was not in vain. But even after we had suffered before and were spitefully treated at Philippi, as you know, we were bold in our God to speak to you the gospel of God in much conflict. For our exhortation did not come from error or uncleanness, nor was it in deceit. 1 Thessalonians 2:1-3 NKJV
Have you ever noticed when the Christians were persecuted how the gospel spread further? God uses the foolishness of His message, to shame the wise.
First Corinthians 1:20-22 says “For since, in the wisdom of God, the world through wisdom did not know God, it pleased God through the foolishness of the message preached to save those who believe.”
From human standpoint, it is foolishness to speak God’s word if all you get is difficulties along the way. Yet, look at verse 2 above “after we had suffered” and “were spitefully treated at Philippi,” Paul suffered persecution. He knew what suffering was. Despite that he still spoke the gospel of God. Even through much conflict. Can you say that of yourself?
The Bible tells us how God’s Word spreads through persecution. Acts12:5-7 says “Peter was therefore kept in prison, but constant prayer was offered to God for him by the church.” Peter’s capture lead the believers to pray and when the angel set Peter free, can you imagine how the story of God freeing him was probably spread everywhere!
How about the Paul and Silas example in Acts 16:24-26: “But at midnight Paul and Silas were praying and singing hymns to God, and the prisoners were listening to them.” Reading the whole story you find out that the prison guard and his entire family come to believe in Christ! Through imprisonment, the gospel was furthered. Look at Paul, had he not been imprisoned we might not have had much of the New Testament.
Our enemy, who is a liar, wants to plant seeds of doubt in our walk with Christ. Look at what John 8:44 says about the devil: “He was a murderer from the beginning, and does not stand in the truth, because there is no truth in him. When he speaks a lie, he speaks from his own resources, for he is a liar and the father of it.” Just the tiniest sprinkling of doubt can have devastating effect on our witness. Don’t believe his lies.
God is able to complete the good work He started in you (Philippians 1:6). God wants you to be bold with the treasures He has revealed to you. As you share with others, you are bringing God the glory He deserves and quite possibly opening the door for others to believe in Him as well!
Father God, who graciously bestows the ministry of His Word on us, lead us this day to share your treasures with those around us. By your Spirit may others come to know and love you. In Jesus’ name Amen.