February 29
‘And at the sound of the trumpet, when the men gave a loud shout, the wall collapsed.’ Joshua 6:20b
Bible reading: Acts 16:19-40 (Go to the Bible passage)
We live in a time in which the wicked will continue to be wicked, but on the other hand many will be purified, made spotless and refined (Daniel 12:10).
When we sanctify ourselves for God, and His light shines from us into this world more and more, the evil one will try even more furiously to block this light.
Therefore Jesus said of the time just before His return: ‘But before all this, they will seize you and persecute you’ (Luke 21:12a).
How this might happen, we read in the passage of today: with terrific ferocity, hatred, and fear. Can you imagine? Why were these peace-loving people treated like hardened criminals, beaten and thrown in jail to be guarded carefully! This grimness is only to be understood because of the distress and anger of Satan, who loses territory where the preachers of the gospel appear, who have been purified of all the stains of darkness by the precious blood of the Lamb.
A preacher, who is still blemished by the darkness, will not meet such fierce resistance, for he is still useful for the plans of the evil one!
Therefore many preachers never see the word of Jesus fulfilled: ‘If they persecuted Me, they will persecute you also’ (John 15:20b). But if we will be wholly purified from all our sins, and face persecution from the false believers, then we may know that Jesus has set us an example and that He has told us beforehand that we will follow in His footsteps, also in this. This gave Paul the strength to praise God at such a time and then even all chains can come loose!
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