After writing yesterday’s blog, I thought of the few, and you might be in that number, persons serving the Lord who only want His approval, not man’s. It can feel like a very lonely place. If that is where you are, this blog is for you.
Paul knew this place very well. From the very beginning of his ministry, most in church leadership spoke against him and even became severe critics of Paul and what he preached. We see how he felt as he looks back on many people and events in his ministry that were a challenge to him.
“At my first defense no one came to stand by me, but all deserted me. May it not be charged against them! But the Lord stood by me and strengthened me, so that through me the message might be fully proclaimed and all the Gentiles might hear it. So, I was rescued from the lion’s mouth” (2 Timothy 4:16–17). Jesus promised this in a vision to Paul in Corinth (Acts 18:9-10).
To the eleven disciples, Jesus made this promise; “And behold, I am with you always, to the end of the age” (Matthew 28:20). They would all face opposition to the point of sacrificing their lives.
We must never build our confidence on what people say about us. Our confidence must stand alone in the Lord. No wonder Paul gives this strong advice; “Be watchful, stand firm in the faith, act like men, be strong” (1 Corinthians 16:13). This attitude gives confidence to finish our work.
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