"We must obey God rather than men!" Acts 5:29
Biblical examples of human cowardice far outnumber the accounts of courageous behavior. The Israelites feared the Egyptian army at the Red Sea, even though a loving God had just rescued them from 400 years of slavery. Peter confessed undying loyalty to Jesus shortly before denying Him three times. Unwarranted fear has always been a major flaw in the lives of God's people.
We Christians are no different than the people mentioned above. When trapped in places where allegiance to Christ might bring us ridicule or harm, we find it safer to deny Him. A national magazine recently demonstrated that most people lie constantly to protect jobs, reputations, and themselves. Fear of opposition may weaken us spiritually and hinder our positive actions.
Jesus always told the truth, even though it gained Him enemies and cost Him His life. It took courage to chastise the religious leaders of the day and the Roman government itself. It took immense courage to face suffering for the world's sin and an agonizing death on the cross.
Christ's courage gained Him the victory of His resurrection on Easter, and we now share that prize. His example becomes our own as bold confession erases fears. With Christ beside us, we dare confidently boast that even the gates of hell cannot overcome us!
PRAYER: Lord, grant me courage to stand at Your side; in Your name, Jesus. Amen.
(Devotions from "The Abundant Life" copyright 1998, CPH. All Rights Reserved. No part of this publication may be printed, reproduced, stored in a retrieval system, or transmitted, in any form or by any means, electronic, mechanical, photocopying, recording or otherwise, without prior written permission of Concordia Publishing House. Permission is granted for one-time e-mailing of this link to a friend. For information on other devotional material, please contact CPH at 800-325-3040 or visit CPH at www.cph.org.)
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