Thursday 7 November 2013

Monday of Week 33 Year 1

Nowadays, most of us would have not experienced major persecution for practicing our faith. Perhaps we may experience persecution in one form or another but not yet to the point of being put to death. as we generally live in a peaceful and civilised society. However, if we were one day challenged to renounce our faith or be executed, would we be willing and happy to do so?

In today's reading, king Antiochus Epiphanes "issued a proclamation to his whole kingdom that all were to become a single people, each renouncing his particular customs. All the pagans conformed to the king’s decree, and many Israelites chose to accept his religion, sacrificing to idols and profaning the sabbath." However, the reading also states that: "Yet there were many in Israel who stood firm and found the courage to refuse unclean food. They chose death rather than contamination by such fare or profanation of the holy covenant, and they were executed."

If we were told to give up our faith and become a single people practicing another faith, would we do so to save our skin, or would we joyfully go to our deaths for the glory of God? Would we allow ourselves to be easily converted to another faith, possibly just for the sake of temporary benefits and wealth, or would we be enthusiastic about dying for our faith? If and when such a situation happens, let us pray that we would be brave and committed to do what is right and glorify God.

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