But even if you should suffer for the sake of righteousness, you are blessed. And do not fear their intimidation, and do not be troubled, but sanctify Christ as Lord in your hearts, always being ready to make a defense to everyone who asks you to give an account for the hope that is in you, yet with gentleness and reverence; and keep a good conscience so that in the thing in which you are slandered, those who revile your good behavior in Christ will be put to shame.

1 Peter 3:14-16 (NASB)

Looking at the situations we find ourselves in from time to time, the modern, Western Christians can be tempted to cry persecution far too easily. I will not compare our situation to our contemporaries in this era because I don’t know what their experiences truly are but I will reference the Scriptures which are there for our edification. We do not experience beatings, public humiliation by mobs, jailing or the threat of death for our beliefs as the early Church did.

The passage that Peter references above is a message to Isaiah himself from the Lord, concerning the work Isaiah was doing.

“You are not to say, ‘It is a conspiracy!’
In regard to all that this people call a conspiracy,
And you are not to fear what they fear or be in dread of it.
“It is the Lord of hosts whom you should regard as holy.
And He shall be your fear,
And He shall be your dread.
“Then He shall become a sanctuary;
But to both the houses of Israel, a stone to strike and a rock to stumble over,
And a snare and a trap for the inhabitants of Jerusalem.
“Many will stumble over them,
Then they will fall and be broken;
They will even be snared and caught.”

Isaiah 8:12-15

The historical nature of this alleged conspiracy that Isaiah’s listeners was not to call a conspiracy has been the subject of speculation by commentators; we will not further speculate here.

The actual, practicable substance of the message in both Peter’s letter and Isaiah’s prophesy is this: whatever plans and coalitions form against God’s people, his faithful are not to indulge in them. It is not the concern of a modern Christian whatever secret plots there may be to destroy the Church or whatever other danger may come from the schemes of mortal man.

God will protect us from Spiritual danger, and we are capable of preparing to give a defense in good conscience. There is nothing in this world that can remove God’s promise from us.

Ethan Kirl