Do You Feel Discouraged By Negative Reactions To The Gospel ?

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John 17:14-19 NKJV
I have given them Your word; and the world has hated them because they are not of the world, just as I am not of the world. [15] I do not pray that You should take them out of the world, but that You should keep them from the evil one. [16] They are not of the world, just as I am not of the world. [17] Sanctify them by Your truth. Your word is truth. [18] As You sent Me into the world, I also have sent them into the world. [19] And for their sakes I sanctify Myself, that they also may be sanctified by the truth.

Do you feel discouraged by negative reactions to the gospel?

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You shouldn’t be. According to the Gospels, the religious leaders tried to kill Jesus ten times.

Let’s look to Scripture, in the Book of Acts, and see what happened to Paul when he preached the Biblical Gospel.

1) The crowd began contradicting and blaspheming.

Acts 13:44-45 NKJV
On the next Sabbath almost the whole city came together to hear the word of God. [45] But when the Jews saw the multitudes, they were filled with envy; and contradicting and blaspheming, they opposed the things spoken by Paul.

2) Paul and Barnabas were persecuted and thrown out of the region.

Acts 13:50-52 NKJV
But the Jews stirred up the devout and prominent women and the chief men of the city, raised up persecution against Paul and Barnabas, and expelled them from their region. [51] But they shook off the dust from their feet against them, and came to Iconium. [52] And the disciples were filled with joy and with the Holy Spirit.

3) The crowd plotted to stone them, forcing them to flee.

Acts 14:4-7 NKJV
But the multitude of the city was divided: part sided with the Jews, and part with the apostles. [5] And when a violent attempt was made by both the Gentiles and Jews, with their rulers, to abuse and stone them, [6] they became aware of it and fled to Lystra and Derbe, cities of Lycaonia, and to the surrounding region. [7] And they were preaching the gospel there.

4) Paul was stoned and left for dead.

Acts 14:19-20 NKJV
Then Jews from Antioch and Iconium came there; and having persuaded the multitudes, they stoned Paul and dragged him out of the city, supposing him to be dead. [20] However, when the disciples gathered around him, he rose up and went into the city. And the next day he departed with Barnabas to Derbe.

5) Both Paul and Silas were beaten with many stripes, and thrown into prison.

Acts 16:22-24 NKJV
Then the multitude rose up together against them; and the magistrates tore off their clothes and commanded them to be beaten with rods. [23] And when they had laid many stripes on them, they threw them into prison, commanding the jailer to keep them securely. [24] Having received such a charge, he put them into the inner prison and fastened their feet in the stocks.

6) Pauls hearers opposed themselves,  and blasphemed.

Acts 18:6 NKJV
But when they opposed him and blasphemed, he shook his garments and said to them, “Your blood be upon your own heads; I am clean. From now on I will go to the Gentiles.”

7) Pauls hearers were full of wrath and seized Pauls companions.

Acts 19:26-29 NKJV
Moreover you see and hear that not only at Ephesus, but throughout almost all Asia, this Paul has persuaded and turned away many people, saying that they are not gods which are made with hands. [27] So not only is this trade of ours in danger of falling into disrepute, but also the temple of the great goddess Diana may be despised and her magnificence destroyed, whom all Asia and the world worship.” [28] Now when they heard this, they were full of wrath and cried out, saying, “Great is Diana of the Ephesians!” [29] So the whole city was filled with confusion, and rushed into the theater with one accord, having seized Gaius and Aristarchus, Macedonians, Paul’s travel companions.

8) The Holy Spirit warned Paul that bonds and afflictions awaited him wherever he preached The Gospel.

Acts 20:22-24 NKJV
And see, now I go bound in the spirit to Jerusalem, not knowing the things that will happen to me there, [23] except that the Holy Spirit testifies in every city, saying that chains and tribulations await me. [24] But none of these things move me; nor do I count my life dear to myself, so that I may finish my race with joy, and the ministry which I received from the Lord Jesus, to testify to the gospel of the grace of God.

9) Pauls listeners called for his death.

Acts 22:21-22 NKJV
Then He ( Jesus ) said to me, ‘Depart, for I will send you far from here to the Gentiles.'” [22] And they listened to him until this word, and then they raised their voices and said, “Away with such a fellow from the earth, for he is not fit to live!”

10) As soon as Paul began to speak he was smacked in the mouth.

Acts 23:1-2 NKJV
Then Paul, looking earnestly at the council, said, “Men and brethren, I have lived in all good conscience before God until this day.” [2] And the high priest Ananias commanded those who stood by him to strike him on the mouth.

11) After Paul spoke there was great dissension in the crowd and he was nearly pulled in pieces.

Acts 23:10-11 NKJV
Now when there arose a great dissension, the commander, fearing lest Paul might be pulled to pieces by them, commanded the soldiers to go down and take him by force from among them, and bring him into the barracks. [11] But the following night the Lord ( Jesus ) stood by him and said, “Be of good cheer, Paul; for as you have testified for Me in Jerusalem, so you must also bear witness at Rome.”

12) More than forty Jews conspired to murder Paul. They took an oath to not even eat before they killed Paul, they vowed to each other a hunger strike.

Acts 23:12-14 NKJV
And when it was day, some of the Jews banded together and bound themselves under an oath, saying that they would neither eat nor drink till they had killed Paul. [13] Now there were more than forty who had formed this conspiracy. [14] They came to the chief priests and elders, and said, “We have bound ourselves under a great oath that we will eat nothing until we have killed Paul.

13) Paul was called a pestilent fellow, a mover of sedition, and the ringleader of a sect.

Acts 24:5-6 NKJV
For we have found this man a plague, a creator of dissension among all the Jews throughout the world, and a ringleader of the sect of the Nazarenes. [6] He even tried to profane the temple, and we seized him, and wanted to judge him according to our law.

Paul was persecuted, just as Jesus Promises.

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John 15:18-25 NKJV
“If the world hates you, you know that it hated Me before it hated you. [19] If you were of the world, the world would love its own. Yet because you are not of the world, but I chose you out of the world, therefore the world hates you. [20] Remember the word that I said to you, ‘A servant is not greater than his master.’ If they persecuted Me, they will also persecute you. If they kept My word, they will keep yours also. [21] But all these things they will do to you for My name’s sake, because they do not know Him who sent Me. [22] If I had not come and spoken to them, they would have no sin, but now they have no excuse for their sin. [23] He who hates Me hates My Father also. [24] If I had not done among them the works which no one else did, they would have no sin; but now they have seen and also hated both Me and My Father. [25] But this happened that the word might be fulfilled which is written in their law, ‘They hated Me without a cause.’

Therefore, expect to be persecuted when proclaiming The Gospel. If you are not being persecuted, you may be preaching a false Gospel…Jesus said many false teachers will come.

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Matthew 24:24-25 NKJV
For false christs and false prophets will rise and show great signs and wonders to deceive, if possible, even the elect. [25] See, I have told you beforehand.

Luke 6:26 NKJV
Woe to you when all men speak well of you, For so did their fathers to the false prophets.

Matthew 7:13-15 NKJV
“Enter by the narrow gate; for wide is the gate and broad is the way that leads to destruction, and there are many who go in by it. [14] Because narrow is the gate and difficult is the way which leads to life, and there are few who find it. [15] “Beware of false prophets, who come to you in sheep’s clothing, but inwardly they are ravenous wolves.

When You Preach and proclaim The Gospel of Jesus Christ…Expect persecution. In Jesus Name…Amen.

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