With Persecutions…

Mark 10:28-31–
28. Then Peter began to say unto him, Lo, we have left all, and have followed thee.
29. And Jesus answered and said, Verily I say unto you, There is no man that hath left house, or brethren, or sisters, or father, or mother, or wife, or children, or lands, for my sake, and the gospel’s,
30. But he shall receive an hundredfold now in this time, houses, and brethren, and sisters, and mothers, and children, and lands, with persecutions; and in the world to come eternal life.
31. But many that are first shall be last; and the last first.

The above passage is an exchange which takes place in Mark’s Gospel after the incident with the rich young ruler in Mark 10:17-27. Jesus had just told the disciples that it was very difficult for a rich man to enter the kingdom of God. It’s easy to become too attached to the present world and to cling to what it has to offer.

Peter chimed in to say he and the other disciples had left everything to follow Jesus. Perhaps he was implying that they deserved to enter the kingdom because of their noble forsaking of this world’s pleasures.

Jesus had another thought in mind. He makes it sound very appealing to forsake all for the Him and the Gospel. Family members and possessions left behind will be replaced a hundred times by better possessions and a family of God’s people. And that’s all in this world. How great is that? It’s wonderful, isn’t it?

But then there’s another part, which we like to leave out. The phrase that follows is “with persecutions.” Most of us know nothing of this, living as affluently as we still do. Oh, yes, family and friends might make fun of us for “getting religion” or some such thing. But is that what Jesus meant?

Presumably we live in a free country, and some debate whether it’s still a Christian nation. But for how long? And how shall those persecutions take place? Are we ready for that part of the equation?

I don’t mean to brush off persecution lightly. However, there’s more to what Jesus said. The last part of verse 30 says, “and in the world to come eternal life.”

So we see there’s a greater reward. Persecutions won’t last past death.

This promise of eternal life is better than any possessions or fellowship with the family of God we’ll have in this present world. Let’s not forget that part of Jesus’ words either.

And based on what He says in verse 31, those of us who are inclined to think we have great station in this present world may not have it in the world to come, as we might have expected. Those of us who have little will enter into eternal life with more than we could have ever hoped for.

Explore posts in the same categories: Christian Life, Thoughts from John

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