Vintage message from July 27, 1997.
Is it fair for God to use us as He so desires? Ah! That’s another question, isn’t it? What if it’s even with bad things happening in our life? What if it means even having to sit in a jail for something we did not do? Is it fair? If it’s for God. Anything is fair if we love God. We are His vessels. We are filled with the power of His Holy Spirit… And do you realize that any one of us in this room today can face the unfairness of life just as Paul faced the unfairness of this trial… Paul endured that and never once complained… He did this through the power of the Holy Spirit. Any one of us today in this room, just as Paul did, can be filled with the power of the Holy Spirit and endure through the trials that are brought our way…
This is the point for us today…I believe very much…that we could be persecuted. We could see our government turn against us as Christians, and many of us might stand trial before our government. What was Paul’s attitude here? Paul’s attitude was, “I don’t mind standing trial if I’ve done something wrong. And you know what? I don’t even mind dying.” Paul didn’t argue. Paul didn’t fight. He didn’t become belligerent or disrespectful. He’s standing before this governor, he knows this governor is in charge, and he does everything to show respect to that governor. What does that tell us today? Do we have the right to be disrespectful even to a corrupt government that’s over us? No. God very clearly tells us that we must pray for those that are in authority over us. And as we have opportunity, if we are brought before them, to share the gospel just as Paul did with Felix….
God wants to use us as His vessels. God wants us to be as Paul saying, you know what, I’m not afraid to die. I’m not afraid to face this world and what the world wants to throw at me. If the world wants to kill me, I hope they have enough evidence to do it. If they hate me because I’m a Christian, I hope they have enough evidence that when they stand up and say, “We’re killing you because you’re a Christian,” that they can actually do it because I’ve showed my life to [belong to] Jesus Christ, allowing the Holy Spirit to work through me, allowing my God Who created me to have control of my life.
Pastor Dave Elkins