Monday, July 22, 2013

Popularity contest?

Recently someone wrote on the side of a building here in Ljubljana.  It said...

"Kristjani – klali smo vas 1945 – klali vas bomo 2013" 

Basically it says - Christians, you were slaughtered in 1945 and you will be slaughtered in 2013.

This is most likely referring to the time when Socialism/Communism Regime came into power here in Slovenia and somewhere between 100,000 - 130,000 people were slaughtered in an estimated 600 mass grave sites.  Click here to read more.  Many of the resistance to the communists were democratic Christians.

There is good chance that whoever wrote this had some bad experiences with the church and is reacting to the hypocrisy and brokenness they see.  But there is also a spiritual reality at work here too.  The Bible talks about it in  2 Corinthians 2:14-16.  It says,

14 But thanks be to God, who in Christ always leads us in triumphal procession, and through us spreads the fragrance of the knowledge of him everywhere. 15 For we are the aroma of Christ to God among those who are being saved and among those who are perishing, 16 to one a fragrance from death to death, to the other a fragrance from life to life.Who is sufficient for these things?

There is a reality that as the true followers of Jesus in Slovenia model their life around His, and talk about His heart and message to the world there will be some who are attracted to Him.  Conversly, some will despise it.

But instead of living in fear (and even if this graffiti were to become a reality), we always need to remember these words of Charles Spurgeon:

"Never did the church so much prosper and so truly thrive as when she was baptized in the blood. The ship of the church never sails so gloriously along as when the bloody spray of her martyrs falls on her deck. We must suffer and we must die, if we are ever to conquer this world for Christ."

My point simply is this: stories such as the one above often lead to fear.  But as followers of Jesus, who know the end of the story, we do not need to live in fear.  

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