Friday, September 15, 2006


II Timothy 1:16 The Lord give mercy unto the house of Onesiphorus; for he oft refreshed me, and was not ashamed of my chain:
Paul wrote these words from Rome, where he was in prison. He was grateful for the help which was given to him by his friends. But the outstanding feature of the statement is his appreciation for Onesiphorus not being ashamed of his chain. At this point, Paul's friends were few and far between. Prisoners were not a popular breed in those days.
II Timothy 1:8 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;
Though Paul was a prisoner of Rome, he discounted that aspect of his bonds. His bondage to God was of much greater importance to him. He considered himself a prisoner of the Lord.
Ephesians 3:1 -- I Paul, the prisoner of Jesus Christ-
Ephesians 4:1 I therefore, the prisoner of the Lord,-
Philemon 1:1 Paul, a prisoner of Jesus Christ,--
Philemon 1:9 -- and now also a prisoner of Jesus Christ.
Paul had been a "prisoner of the Lord" for a long time before he landed in any prison. His life had been surrendered to Jesus on the Damascus road. It is doubtful if many of us realize the depth of his committment there that day. He knew he had met his Master, and he addressed Him as "Lord".
I wonder sometimes if we fully understand the walk of a Christian. We are programmed with "Prosperity", "Health", etc., to the point that we consider any type of suffering or difficulty an intrusion of Satan into our lives. This is not always the case. In fact, it is rarely the fault of Satan, when we are walking with God. He "scourgeth every son whom He receives." "Flogs" is the word that could have been used instead of "scourge". Heb 12
We seem to have lost sight of II Timothy 3:12 Yea, and all that will live godly in Christ Jesus shall suffer persecution.
Acts 14:22 -- and that we must through much tribulation enter into the kingdom of God.
I Peter 4:12 Beloved, think it not strange concerning the fiery trial which is to try you, as though some strange thing happened unto you:
It seems to be part of our natures to shrink away from all uncomfortable situations - both because of unpleasantness, and for fear of what others may think of us. A friend of mine, when having to go through a very painful experience, said, "When we are called upon to go through a fiery trial, the hottest part of the flame is the attitude of other Christians toward us in our trial.
In view of James 4:7 Submit yourselves therefore to God. Resist the devil, and he will flee from you, I believe I am safe to say that if the devil is "on the attack" in our lives, we would do well to take personal inventory. He is afraid of the Spirit of God.
I am convinced that most of what we call the attack of Satan is but another "link" in the "chain" of the Lord in our lives.
Frankly, I am weary of hearing so much about the activities of the devil, and not enough about the what God is accomplishing in the lives of the believers.
Can it be possible that some of us are in the wrong "prison"? Who, exactly, is our "jailer"?

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