We are commanded to be fruitful and multiply. God’s people were starting to do that in Egypt. It finally started happening when they were in Egypt. Egypt is a foreign land, a place of false gods and false worship. This is where God’s people multiply.
What does this look like for the New Testament believer? We are told to be fruitful and multiply, to make disciples. The more we do, the more persecution we will face. But God’s good intensions will overrule it all. Listen to this verse from Exodus 1 and think about it applying to the church.
“But the more they were oppressed, the more they multiplied and the more they spread abroad.”
There were places in China that had no Christians whatsoever. Then officials started arresting and killing Christians and persecution sent the church out, scattering them far and wide and taking the truth with them. Whole villages came to Christ because of the evil of the world they were living in. God used for good what Satan intended for evil.
There’s nothing so evil that God can’t use it for good!
In Acts 8:1, we read that there was a great persecution against the church in Jerusalem, and it caused them to be scattered throughout the region. Those who had been scattered went preaching the word. God used the evil for the good of everyone!
Can you see your troubles as being for the good of others? Do you wake up each day not to live for yourself, but for others? Do you wake up each day willing to lay down your life, willing to be crushed, like Jesus was, for God’s glory and to bring others to righteousness? (ref. Isaiah 53:5)
Is your heart set on loving the Lord and laying down your life for your friend, Jesus? Or is your heart set on getting from God what you want to make your life “better,” whatever you define that as?
Those praised for their faith in the book of Hebrews willingly gave up their lives, not just to physically be put to death for their faith, but to go through all the hardships that following Jesus entailed.
We’re not only to lay down our lives, but to do it with joy, with rejoicing. What did you wake up this morning for?