“For we have found this man a plague, one who stirs up riots among all the Jews throughout the world and is a ringleader of the sect of the Nazarenes.”
Acts 24:5, ESV
The true faith that proclaims the message of our Triune God and teaches of Jesus Christ and all that He has done for us is a threat to the faith of this world. When confronted with Christ, there will be all kinds of misrepresentations and lies formulated to distract and deter others from hearing the truth about the faith we hold. As Paul was being falsely accused, a term was put out that was meant to be a derisive term, the sect of the Nazarenes. We have seen this term come to life once again as we saw the letter N placed on the homes of Christians by ISIS in the Middle East, and with this term are the same accusations stirred up that try to bring struggle and strife into the world. As those that wish to silence the Word, they accuse those of us that proclaim it as stirring up the struggle. Yet, we will find it is they who create the violence and the riots. The truth of the Word troubles their minds and enrages their spirits that they become riotous, and the darkness in their hearts is revealed. But like any hidden thing in a darkened soul, they react when exposed to the light. To protect their own dark interests, they will accuse others of the actions that they themselves are doing. The abuser accusing the abused of the violence done to them. Yet, we find Paul’s answer with truth, and this is the model we are called to follow in our journey. It is a pattern that has continued throughout history. Yet, we know that the truth will come to light and that we will all one day have to face our own tribunal. For those of us who belong to Christ, we will be guided into the Eternal Kingdom, and those who are not will meet their ends separated from God for eternity. Until that time, let us carry the light out and shine into those dark places to set free those who have been bound in the lie and bring them to Christ.
Let us pray. I thank you, my heavenly Father, through Jesus Christ, your dear Son, that you have kept me this night from all harm and danger, and I ask you to protect me this day also from sin and every evil, that in all I do today, I may please you. For into your hands, I commend myself, my body and soul, and all that is mine. Let your holy angel watch over me, that the wicked foe have no power over me. Amen.