For my morning Bible reading time during the last month, I’ve been following a pre-made reading plan called “thirty days with Jesus.” I’m constantly looking for Jesus when I read the Bible but it’s been great to spend 30 days in passages that consist of His story on earth and His teaching.
As Jesus instructs His disciples near the end of His life on earth, He spends a lot of time encouraging them about the future. Now, if you’re reading passages like Luke 21, you may wonder how I can use the word, “encouraging.” But, the focus of Christ’s words, in my estimation, are not about the end times as much as that the disciples, and followers of Jesus, will be ok.
Here are a couple of encouragements that I see in Luke 21 as Jesus teaches:
1. The most difficult days of your life will be when God speaks through your life the most.
Jesus tells the disciples that they’re going to be arrested, imprisoned and some even killed because of the Gospel. But, His encouragement in all that bad news is found in these words: “This will be your opportunity to bear witness.” (Luke 21:13, ESV) In other words, Jesus is telling them, no matter their circumstances, they will be able to live the life to which He’s called them.
The same is true for you and me; difficult circumstances don’t mean that you can’t live your life in Christ today. Actually, Biblically, the opposite is true. Difficult circumstances mean you can live the life Christ has for you.
2. The Gospel is never bound by circumstances.
If you were to study church history, you would notice that the church flourished when persecution was the highest. There can certainly be an argument for the same today as it’s believed that one of the nations with the fastest growing church is China which is a country that is closed to the Gospel.
Just as it seems the proclamation of the Gospel may be stopped, Jesus’ words to His disciples rings true again. “For I will give you a mouth and wisdom, which none of your adversaries will be able to withstand or contradict.” (Luke 21:15, ESV)
Just when I think I can’t be a witness for the greatness of Jesus and His story, He gives me the words and wisdom to do just that.
This is the good news of Jesus’ teaching that can make all the difference for you today. If you’re having a difficult day, this is the greatest opportunity for God to work in and through your life.