Persecution Will Come
“Behold, I am sending you out as sheep in the midst of wolves, so be wise as serpents and innocent
as doves. Beware of men, for they will deliver you over to courts and flog you in their synagogues, and you will be dragged before governors and kings for my sake, to bear witness before them and the Gentiles. When they deliver you over, do not be anxious
how you are to speak or what you are to say, for what you are to say will be given to you in that hour. For it is not you who speak, but the Spirit of your Father speaking through you. Brother will deliver brother over to death, and the father his child, and
children will rise against parents and have them put to death, and you will be hated by all for my name’s sake. But the one who endures to the end will be saved. When they persecute you in one town, flee to the next, for truly, I say to you,
you will not have gone through all the towns of Israel before the Son of Man comes.
My favorite passage in today's reading is "But the one who endures to the end will be saved." This
begs the question of "What will happen to those who do not endure?" Many denoinations teach "Once saved, always saved." This sounds great, but it does not hold up to the full counsel of all the scriptures. You are saved if you endure to the
end. This also sounds like we are saved by our actions. When you measure it against all scripture, that is not true in that we are saved by grace. But this does fit into James's teaching of faith without works is dead. We are saved
by grace, but we are still to endure until the end. We will be persecuted and we should expect it.
I pray: O Lord, help me to keep my eyes focused on you and to endure until the