“For last night an angel of the God to whom I belong and whom I serve came to me and said, ‘Do not be afraid, Paul! You must stand before Caesar, and God has graciously granted you the safety of all who are sailing with you.’ Therefore keep up your courage, men, for I have faith in God that it will be just as I have been told.” Acts 27:23-25 NET https://bible.com/bible/107/act.27.23-25.NET
Paul identified himself as a servant of God, a possession of the One True God. In an age of identity confusion, Christians identifying themselves as the property of Jesus to do His will would change the world as Paul changed his world. We are very self-centered in our culture. Everyone is encouraged to do what is right in their own eyes. Jesus says His disciples must deny themselves, die to themselves, and do His will. Paul later clarifies that the blood of Jesus was His payment for our lives so that we might live forever with God in His eternal kingdom, justified from all the disobedience we have ever done. Christians are not their own. They belong to Jesus. We fear making this identity statement in our hostile marketplace. We love money more than God, for we are not willing to risk our jobs to make known our Christian values or the Christ we serve. We fear men more than God. The result is a culture increasingly hostile to Jesus and His ways. Our cowardice doesn’t make us better but weaker. We need courage, courage to believe that God’s word is accurate. He will prevail and be present with us despite what evil men do to us when we identify with Him and seek His will. Today the worst that can happen to an American Christian is losing their job. Tomorrow could be our lives unless we rise up, share the gospel, and disciple to obedience the saved until we all are no longer ashamed of Jesus, walking instead in obedience to everything He has commanded.