(August 14, 2015)
Absolute language, of course, draws my attention. So you can imagine what I thought when I read Paul that all those who live godly lives shall suffer persecution. In my experience, this is true. When I was consumed by sin, my life was fairly easy and peaceful (externally). When the Lord interceded and I was converted and resolved to give away my sins, the world around me turned to chaos. Those I thought would support me instead engaged in calumny, lies, and fierce persecution. From talking to others, it seems this is a common experience for anyone seeking to give away their sins.
It makes it difficult, of course, to give away our sins when we know that by so doing we invite persecution into our lives. But, in the end, it will only matter if we stand on the side of the Lord and the persecution, I imagine, is something we must endure in order to properly refine us and empower us (through Grace) with the capacity to fully repent and give away our sins.