Acts 12:3 – And because he saw it pleased the Jews, he proceeded further to take Peter also. (Then were the days of unleavened bread.)
Take a moment and read our Text for Today again. The fact that it was the days of unleavened bread seems to be almost an afterthought, inserted by the writer. Still, because it was inspired by Holy Spirit, there must truly be some significance to it. I believe it is this. At the time of this writing, the majority of those in the church had just recently come from the Jewish faith to embrace Christianity (the Way). So, it was a time in which those opposed to Christianity were enjoying their on holy days; special days to them. And therefore, it is likely that this was a time when they were wearing their religion on their sleeves, so to speak. So, when Herod chose to vex the church, his action pleased the Jews, so he took it further.
My friend, the times have changed, but the basic elements that stir in our lives have not. In our world today, we are seeing the same kind of scenario; even in America. While I cannot speak to all of history, I can speak to my lifetime, in in my lifetime I have never seen the kind of hatred, bitterness, railing, and intended evil coming against the church, especially as it can be seen through many people who are supposed to be serving us in government. When Christians are cursed, assaulted, spat upon, ridiculed, mocked, and threatened on the streets, we see it plainly. Think of what I say. This is NOT political talk. It is plain truth that the church needs to see and understand. Elements of American society hate Christianity. America is called a melting pot of ethnicities. And there are religious elements that would love to see the church destroyed. And when we view this situation as it relates to some governmental elements, we must be wary. There are segments of government at every level that will protect the rights of certain religious groups while they attack the church and its faith, and at the same time, attempt to restrict the free flow and function of the church. What am I saying? I am indicating that we are living once again in “the days of unleavened bread.” Because persecution and restriction of the church across the globe seems to please so many that oppose the church, many elements of the political system, worldwide, seem to cater to their wishes to see the church hindered, bound, weakened, and ultimately made completely irrelevant.
This is the current state of affairs in the world today. Wake up, church. The world hated Jesus; it will hate you. The world killed Jesus; they will do the same to you. Strengthen your faith, put on the armor, walk in love, and having done all, STAND! Jesus is coming soon, and we ARE living in “the days of unleavened bread.”
Manna for Today – Acts 12:1-5; Matthew 5:11-12; 1 Peter 4; John 15:18-27