Now, Lord, consider their threats and enable your servants to speak your word with great boldness. (Acts 4:29)
What you do in the face of opposition speaks significantly of what you believe. People who are uncommitted to a belief system rarely stand up for what they believe when pressure comes because they don’t want to face pain or difficulty from something they’re not sure they believe in the first place. However, when people stand of for their beliefs in the face of threats to their lives, we can conclude that little would shake that person’s foundation of faith.
I think one of the aspects of Christianity that speaks to its veracity is the prayers of the disciples in the face of opposition. Remember that these guys lived, walked, and breathed with Jesus. They knew him as intimately as anyone else on earth, and they witnessed his crucifixion. Then they started staking their lives on the claim that Jesus came back to life. As I have mentioned on here in the past, people don’t willingly die for a story that they’ve made up. At some point they tuck their tail between their legs and move on. But rather than silencing themselves, the disciples prayed for something very odd if this was all just a hoax: they prayed for boldness to continue speaking God’s word. Isn’t that remarkable?
Let’s juxtapose what happened with the disciples with what happened with the Mormons. The majority of Americans considered taking multiple wives perverse, and it resulted in persecution of the Mormon people. The Mormons claim that God told them to march out West and to settle there. In other words, rather than praying for God to give them boldness that they might continue spreading the message of Mormonism; they ran west to Utah.
If you’re not willing to die for what you believe, then perhaps you need to find something that’s worthy of believing in.
Father, continue giving me boldness in proclaiming Your word to those who have never heard it before and to those who need to hear it again. Keep me from being afraid of what others may say or do, but let my trust rest in You and Your character.