Monday, July 03, 2006

Fear Not

Recently we heard the story of a Christian man who escaped out of his country where he had been beaten and tortured for the cause of Christ.

But when he came to America something different happened to him. He experienced the emotional pain of being misunderstood, gossiped about and treated badly by those with whom he had come to fellowship.

Amazingly, when he shared these stories with others he said that he would much have preferred the physical abuse to the verbal and nonverbal abuse.

Why is this story significant? Would people rather endure physical pain than undergo emotional suffering? In many cases, yes.

Group Operations

Much of the subtle power of the new movements, theologies and agendas of neoevangelicalism relies upon this basic fact of human nature. The leaders of these movements have been well-trained in the arts of human manipulation.

The social scientists and psychologists have researched this aspect of the human personality for decades. They developed tools with which to manipulate behavior that rely upon the fear of rejection, ostracization, alienation, ridicule, and scorn. They conducted experiments which told them that humans would engage in behaviors to avoid these types of stressful situations. They discovered that humans would compromise their beliefs and values and activities just to fit into a pressure-filled group situation. The nature of man is such that he would rather "go with the flow" than risk suffering rejection.

The scientists learned that people would want to fit in, to be accepted, to feel normal, and to adapt to a group. And that this group could then hold sway over people, exercising a power over them, causing them to make changes in their life.

The business psychologists incorporated a philosophy of change into these methods. They learned that if people came to believe that every aspect of life is in a state of constant fluctuation and inconstancy, they are easier to manipulate in groups.

The Truth:

Brothers and sisters, have you felt the terrible weight of rejection, mocking, and alienation from these neoevangelicals? Don't be discouraged or dismayed. The Scriptures contain many verses of encouragement on this point.

"Who is among you that feareth the LORD, that obeyeth the voice of his servant, that walketh in darkness, and hath no light? let him trust in the name of the LORD, and stay upon his God." (Isaiah 50:10)

"Hearken unto me, ye that know righteousness, the people in whose heart is my law; fear ye not the reproach of men, neither be ye afraid of their revilings.…
I, even I, am he that comforteth you: who art thou, that thou shouldest be afraid of a man that shall die, and of the son of man which shall be made as grass;
And forgettest the LORD thy maker, that hath stretched forth the heavens, and laid the foundations of the earth: and hast feared continually every day because of the fury of the oppressor, as if he were ready to destroy? and where is the fury of the oppressor?" (Isaiah 51:7, 12-13)

"The LORD is on my side; I will not fear: what can man do unto me?…
It is better to trust in the LORD than to put confidence in man." (Psalm 118:6, 8)

"But let every man prove his own work, and then shall he have rejoicing in himself alone, and not in another." (Galatians 6:6:4)

"Examine yourselves, whether ye be in the faith; prove your own selves. Know ye not your own selves how that Jesus Christ is in you, except ye be reprobates?" (2 Corinthians 13:5)

"Blessed are ye, when men shall revile you, and persecute you, and shall say all manner of evil against you false, for my sake. Rejoice, and be exceeding glad: for great is your reward in heaven: for so persecuted they the prophets which were before you." (Matthew 5:11-12)

"For God hath not given us the spirit of fear; but of power, and of love, and of a sound mind. Be not thou therefore ashamed of the testimony of our Lord, nor of me his prisoner: but be thou partaker of the afflictions of the gospel according to the power of God.… For the which cause I also suffer these things: nevertheless, I am not ashamed: for I know whom I have believed, and am persuaded that he is able to keep that which I have committed unto him against that day. Hold fast the form of sound words, which thou hast heard of me, in faith and love which is in Christ Jesus." (2 Timothy 1: 7-8, 12-13)

"How that they told you there should be mockers in the last time, who should walk after their own ungodly lusts. These be they who separate themselves, sensual, having not the Spirit. But ye, beloved, building up yourselves on your most holy faith, praying in the Holy Ghost, Keep yourselves in the love of God, looking for the mercy of our Lord Jesus Christ unto eternal life." (Jude 18-21)

"But that which ye have already hold fast till I come." (Revelation 2:25)