SUNDAY 6 December, 2015
Persecuted: Not Destroyed
We are hard-pressed on every side, yet not crushed; we are perplexed, but not in despair; persecuted, but not forsaken; struck down, but not destroyed— 2 Corinthians 4:8-9
Today at sundown, the Jewish people will begin celebrating Hanukkah, also known as the Feast of Dedication. Hanukkah is a celebration of the purification of the Temple, after the altar and scrolls of God’s Word were defiled with pig blood by the invading Greeks. You will not find this Feast in the Old Testament, because the battle between the Maccabees and the Greeks took place during the 400 years of silence, between the Old Testament and the New Testament.
This battle was another event in Jewish history, when great persecution came against God’s people. From the beginning, people have come against the children of Israel, persecuting them and trying to destroy them, but God has been faithful to His people. No matter what nation came against them, God preserved His remnant. He did not even allow their own periods of disobedience to cause their destruction.
As Christians, followers of Christ, we need to recognize and celebrate the faithfulness of the Lord. Paul the Apostle faced great persecution, so he was able to write the words above to the church in Corinth. He was persecuted but not destroyed, because his hope and trust was in the Lord. He knew nothing could destroy him without the Lord’s permission.
When we are going through trials and tribulations, we must realize God is on our side. He is in control and He will preserve His people. We are His people, so celebrate His faithfulness.
The fire of God can’t be damped out by the waters of man’s persecution.
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