At TGC21, Darryl Williamson explains how Hebrews 12 uncovers the purpose of opposition in the Christian life. Spiritual conflict has been our defining reality since the fall of man, and God has used the church—people—to show himself to the world.
Williamson says as we consider Christ, we cannot miss the cross and the way of suffering. Jesus doesn’t tell us to avoid suffering. Instead, he says to not be afraid about what we are about to suffer. The purpose of this suffering, Williamson explains, is to endure and remain faithful through it. We’re to share in Christ’s afflictions and therefore share in his glory and rejoice in his faithfulness.
The following is an uncorrected transcript generated by a transcription service. Before quoting in print, please check the corresponding audio for accuracy.
Darryl Williamson: Good afternoon friends, excited to be here to be a part of this very vital. This is a poignant conversation to share with my brother that for those of us who in Christ, that there’s really no more urgent, the essential conversation to one and we’re going to have today I greatly wish this could be a kind of bi directional kind of exchange. But it’s still a very poignant focus for us today. So excited about it. My name is Darryl Williamson. And I’ve been married to my wife for 32 years, approaching 33 years. I say to folks all the time, I don’t know what I said to her. I’m not sure how I convinced her. But she bought it. So I got it the right moment. And, and so but I’m very thrilled for the life Lord has given us we have two adult children, our son Jason is with the Lord. And, and so he was killed in an skateboarding accident about two and a half years ago. And what the Lord saved him about a year prior to that it’s been a real encouragement to hear the testimony of his friends, who were part of his little kind of discipleship community. And, and so that’s been very encouraging to our souls. Our daughter lives in Bristol, Connecticut. And so she works for ESPN. So if you’re looking at ESPN digital, and you’re an NBA basketball fan, or a college basketball fan, you might see her give some some pregame, pregame commentary, I am on the council of the gossip coalition also served on the board which basically means it’s like a part time job. And in so, but it is it’s a privilege to to serve it though those brothers in the staff, the wonderful gospel centered on staff. And so it’s a real privilege to be to be a part of that. I’m also a part of a new ministry called the creek collective. That was started by my dear friend to BT and you bui Leigh, and John Owen, check WA. Louis loves your army, clean air and Ray as myself focused on on planting churches establishing churches in primarily black and brown communities that are neglected. And so we’re very excited about about that. And and so thrilled about our conversation today. So here’s our task. So there really, there are four things I want us to cover, I think the first thing that is essential, is let’s start with apart sorry about the text. And it all gets weird when you go to different, different monitor. But we need to establish theology first. And so we want to work toward kind of a theology of overcoming opposition, what is God showing about himself, and what is His purpose is in us, and how that relates to opposition. Opposition is not only not anticipated, in so many ways in God’s kind of economy, it is intended. So we want to appreciate the significance of that. And then we want to zone in on Hebrews 12. Three that is our text is that we want to kind of consider the context in it look squarely at the text and see what the Lord is saying to us about what is the impetus for our perseverance, what drives it? And then how do we fulfill it? That is the question, isn’t it? You know, we talk so much about principle there, all these audits? How do I have it? sorted the issue? And so we want to talk about that. And then we want to look at a what we’re calling a cloud of faithful witnesses, two persons want to focus on our dear brother Paul, in dear brother, Spurgeon, in look at their example. And then just kind of have a moment here of what is some of the significant reasons why it’s important for us. It’s true in every generation, that we finished strong. But there are some significant there’s a particular is at the particularities in our time, that I think can cause us to compromise that then if we have time. I’ve got some FAQ. Some questions for us to consider if we have time for that. Let me start my timer. I’m about five minutes in, give me a moment here.
If you recognize this, my thumb on let’s try that. Okay, so it’s sort of a theology of overcoming opposition. Here’s the question for us is why did God
create the church? A lot of ways that God could have, could have redeemed sinners. The church is this entity, this institution is Oregon that God has created. Why did God create the church in thinking It’s essential for us to realize that that spiritual conflict is really our defining reality. It’s what the world is. I think when when the Lord was talking about Adam and Eve and the fact that they had no knowledge of good and evil, there’s this sense in which they were unaware of the nature of the this reality that they were occupying. Conflict is the nature of the reality that we’re in. So we see this very clearly in Revelation 12, we won’t take time to go there. You know, the story, there is the struggle between the dragon and Michael and they’re, they’re wrestling, if you will, and then of course, the dragon is hurled to the earth. There are a lot of interpretations about that. When did that occur historically? What is that, but one thing it certainly speaks to is that this this this tension is conflict is not something that is bound to the garden. Serpent, before the garden, he arrived there. And so this is our situation. I think that that if I can click ahead, here, let’s try this like this. My tell you what, here. Doing this on my Sorry, guys. Jeez. Okay, hold on here. Stay with me. I’m trying to figure out the technology. I’ll just speak to it. So Daniel 10. This is when Daniel had been praying for two weeks. And there’s no answer from God. And then when the angel arrives, he’s like, Hey, listen, man, I was being held up. But Michael, one of the chief princes came, he came in freed me, the Prince of Persia was was I was wrestling with him. I heard your prayer. One of the things that strikes me about that passage is that he says, after he gives Daniel, this encouraging word to respond in response to his prayers, like I’m going back to do battle. What is this conflict? But it’s there, my friends. It is there in the angelic realm, we see the war in the garden. Again, here comes the serpent, everything is fine. God’s creation is good. The serpent comes in and injects battle, or war or conflict. There is war in Israel. Here, here’s David, everything’s going well, it says that Satan incited him, Why are you messing with him? Satan? He’s not bothering you. But he brings the conflict into Israel. And so the thing that we should appreciate is that spiritual conflict and frustration is, it is our defining reality. It will always be that way when Satan himself will be hurled into the abyss. But until that day, this is a conflictual reality. Here’s what we see there was heavenly rebellion. There was angelic fall, there was earthly disobedience, there was a human fall. Israel’s unfaithfulness meant that God’s people
failed. This is our situation. It will like this. We’re like, what the heck do we do with this? How does God respond to this? What is God’s rejoinder? What is God’s were taught? What is his
countermove? I think saints that the answer is very profoundly seen in Ephesians. Three, I love this passage. He is his intent, God’s intent. What is God aiming for? It says through the church, that the church then would the God create the church for what is God’s divine instrumentality for the church? What is his objective is that through the church, the manifold wisdom of God should be made known to the rulers and authorities in the heavenly realms. There are two key two key things here. One is that the church becomes an instrument of theological expression. It is a way for God to flex that the church is a way for God to show himself his manifold wisdom is shown his wisdom, which is to say in the context of those things that have gone wrong, we need an answer. God’s answer is the church. But the answer to whom who is it’s for? Was says right here in the text that that it should be made known to the rulers and authorities in the heavenly realms. And most of the time when we see that in Scripture, it is speaking not just of all the angelic hosts, it is speaking specifically at against the rebellious that 1/3. Those that rose up against God, we see this in Ephesians chapter six. And so what what Paul is saying to us is God’s retort God’s battle rap, if you will, to what Satan was trying to say, against what God has done is the church. He here’s my answer. Sort of church is God’s spiritual in theological countermove. It is a statement about the wonder of God’s wisdom. How did you come up with this? angels long to look into this. In his speaks something compelling about the power of the gospel, think about those three falling arrows that we saw earlier. Heaven, heavenly failure, garden failure, law, failure, the church success. And so for us, then the stakes for persevering in faith in ministry, are immense. are eternal in their Gravatt toss. It’s not just an interesting discussion, topic. Everything. So David understood the stakes, says David, when he they encounter Goliath, he doesn’t just say, Oh, is he threatening us? Or we blocked? He says, Who is this uncircumcised Philistine? That he should defy the armies of the living God? This doesn’t make sense. Who is he to stand up to God’s very own people? These questions are, is God in Israel or not? And I think this extends to us. Is the Holy Spirit in the church or not? Are we the be the residence of the Spirit of God or not? Or are we just those who who claim some kind of principle or we are primarily, in our essence, a confessional intimacy? Or are we a positional intimacy? That is the question, isn’t it? What are we? In as ministers are Christ’s ministers, called which is to say, has got spoken and brought them into ministry? And are they filled with His Spirit or not? I want to be very clear, that these are not propositional truths. These are not truths to be taught. These are truths to be live. The Faith is not something you define on a slide. The faith is a reality it is an ontology. It is something that is not something that you declare it is something that you step into. This is how God does. God does not write what he’s trying to say simply on the wall. He writes it in lives, he uses nations.
He uses you. But friends, that’s what that’s That’s what’s at stake here. At the end of the day, who is God? Jesus understood the stakes. said to Peter, Peter, you’re in a battle. You don’t realize it. I noticed Satan got a hold he wants before. Let me tell you, he wants to get a hold of you again. But he doesn’t just want to wrestle you to the ground. He’s not trying to block us not trying to frustrate you. He’s not trying to fly things around the room. He wants to wreck your faith. But I prayed for you. Pray for you. What did you pray Jesus, that your faith may not fail. So my friends, failure is not an option. It is not something that we can if we really want to be compelling Christians, then we can choose not to feel quitting in the face of opposition or hostility is not spiritually or theologically benign. And what I’m saying by that is not something that you can you can make it if you want to if you don’t make it too bad when you’re still going to get a participation trophy. No, you It is urgent persevering until the end, overcoming resistance in temptation is the very definition of faith, and is exactly why the faithful will be commended. And so if we are to endure and overcome resistance to finish well, saints, we need to see and connect with something that is bigger than ourselves. And so in this sense, is that our faithful persistence is not just about our own grittiness. We’re dealing with the circumstances in our lives, it is about how do we plug into this great move of God that is encountering cosmological resistance. And if God is moving, if the great river of grace is moving, and it is moving to the finish line, if I am in the current I finish, that is grace. So we’re not talking about trying to become the Marines of faith or the special forces. This is about what it means to be in Christ. Now, let’s take a look at our text, the minds focus on finishing. So here’s our text Hebrews 12. Three, and we’re gonna go through this. But first, I think there’s some assumptions that we have, the very existence of this text helps us to know that not finishing well is a distinct possibility, which is to say there are those who do not. This is not hypothetical. There’s all kinds of conversations and questions about what are the warning passages? What are they? Are they hype? Or are they merely illustrations? Or is there a real risk message suggest to you that the Holy Spirit, His Word is very intentional. And if that threat was not there, then the warning would not be there. So we want to understand that resistance can derail us. Here’s our second assumption. There are those who have finished well before. verse one of chapter three of chapter 12 of Hebrews, my love this letter, or as Julia said, last night, this sermon. Therefore, since we are here it is surrounded by such a great cloud of witnesses. What the writer is saying what their preacher is saying here is that there is a a full record of those who have actually overcome resistance, and they have crossed the finish line of faith, you are not doing something novel, God is not asking you to do something that he’s not doing.
He is doing this. But it’s not magical. Here’s the thing, saints of God, our growth, our resistance, our sanctification, none of those none of those things happened by default. When we say this is just an aside, I don’t have any notes. So I can’t say it’s not in my notes. But suffice it to say, I wasn’t intending to say this. But but but the gospel does not do things magically. When we say the gospel is the answer. We’re saying the gospel provides the means by which Grace engages us. So we can walk in some new promise of God, not that the gospel doesn’t. And we get kind of surprised and carried along. It energizes us. The Spirit of God awakens our wheels. He connects with our motives, He changes us. So there are those who have been affected, whose faith is genuine, is what the writer is saying here in this passage. Again, our third assumption is that the principle of endurance comes with a practice that apprehends it says grace, here it is, always supplies you can’t see it here, always supplies right behind here, what it requires. Grace requires faith. In regeneration, Grace supplies, faith. So grace works. And so grace is calling us to this. Let us throw off everything that hinders in the Senate so easily entangles. And so the writer here is saying to us, is that we if we want to be like those who have finished well, we’re going to have to kind of leave if you will, gird up the Lord. If our mind will have you want to say it, I’ve got to energize my will with intent and throw these things off in so many ways, as promised us. So let’s do it. So let’s look at the text. Consider him. Consider him. And again, Julius really spoke to this last night, but I want to kind of look at it here closely today.
Consider who consider Christ. Now, there are a lot of ways that we could consider Christ. We could consider kind of Christ’s work. If you think about Jesus, the Lamb of God, standing in the center of the throne, and Revelation four, I can contemplate that reality and see him there, I can think about what we see in Colossians three, one and two, the exalted Christ, Christ being there, I’m there with him as he rules and reigns over the church. And so much of what we think about who Jesus is today, we want to think about that this is, this is our Lord, who is engaged with us, who has we see in Acts Chapter through that he poured out the spirit onto his people on the Pentecost, this is the risen Christ. I don’t think that’s who the writer is speaking of here. Not the exalted Christ. But the faithful Christ, consider him who endured such opposition from sinners. The focus here is not the effect of what Jesus did but the instrument the means. How did he walk? In faithfulness, saints, let’s just be very honest about something here. We are not a confession, are always focused on and zoned in on in pursuit of the example of Christ. His walking way, is not typically our walking way. Here’s one of the ways that we can see this, this is just as an aside, Jesus, it was accused of him, this was an accusation against him, spent a lot of time with sinners. There is a missionary direction to his life. The cross is a missionary instrument, and I’m a five point Calvinist like anybody else. And I believe in particular, at least all of us, many of us in this room, not like anybody else. But I’m all down for particular redemption. But I need to understand that the grace of Jesus Christ is a missionary instrument, it is the instrument for the loss. So there was a heart for there was an affection for sinners in the broken that Jesus had. Here’s the question for us, is that our focus? When we think about the fact that we’ve been placed in a broken world, to be on mission for God’s redemptive agenda, the fact that we are going to be assaulted within, and we’re going to be come the objects of scoring in that world is not surprising to us, indeed, is something that we should expect, and something that we will gladly step in. Knowing where God is taking this, and we see in verse two, that Jesus did this, what it says here, as the pioneer and perfecter of our faith, he’s the one that defines it. He’s the one that completes it. For the joy set before Him, He endured the cross. He didn’t just kind of go through these difficulties, he went through these difficulties. Purposefully, there was an objective in that joy, was both the commendation of the Father in your rescue.
Once you know that every time one of the Lord’s elect come to saving faith. It gives joy to Jesus. Every time one in Christ, passes into eternity, when death could destroy them, instead, they’re ushered into the presence of God big cause of the work of Jesus Christ on the cross. It gives joy to Jesus.
When those saints come into the presence of the Lord, and they join wasn’t that great heavenly society, and Jesus knows we’re not for what he did on the cross, they would not be there. It gives joy to Jesus. Seeing that attainment, stirred and move Jesus such that he could scorn, the shame of the cross is like, it don’t matter to me. ain’t worried about that. I don’t care what y’all think I don’t care. If you think that I’m some kind of criminal, it doesn’t matter to me, that doesn’t move me. What moves me is the joy that’s before me. And of course, again, the exaltation that will come to me, this is what move Jesus and the writer is saying, I want you to reflect on that. Meditate on Jesus’s way, my friends, I think is right for us. To assess the space between my way and his Jesus, Are we conjoined? Or am I doing something else? Something Christianly but not Christ. Sadly, these are the questions for us. With this mindset, we aren’t driven to accept things by how it feels to us to I feel affirmed. Stop my first question. Does it feel good? That is not my I have no piece of that those are not my first questions. My first question is, is this like Christ? We want to understand my friends that the cross defines the life of the disciple. What we’re saying here is that the cruciform life if you want to be like Jesus, if you want to be like him, it’s just Paul Philippians three, if you want to be like Jesus, if you want to be like Him, Jesus said this in Mark chapter eight, then there is a cross for you.
Have had conversations with pastors I’m a pastor will say this earlier, as we’ll say it later I’ll say it now whose first question when there’s trouble in their congregation, someone’s coming at them the emails are flying about something. You preach a sermon on election I recall when we were going through Romans years ago, had he gotten in Romans nine man, I was still in Romans eight. And emails were coming in. I was like, man, what’s gonna happen in three weeks? I was told you need to read the books. I’m like, I’m reading one book.
I want to confess something to you. I stumbled went through eight and went through nine. And as we were going into Romans 10, I’m confessing brother Please Please don’t Don’t judge me.
I said Lord I ain’t doing Romans 11 ain’t doing it. ain’t doing it. I’m not getting this hall, this conditionality. A whole different crew of folks are going to come out and start throwing Barb’s we got the pro Israel folks sitting back there in the back.
We went from Romans 10 to Romans 12. I kid you not you can go to our website, find the sir. And so it was years later. You’re talking to Kena. I was talking to Kenan Kevin, I have some he’s from Tampa, we have some, some common friends. And she was like Pastor D. What happened to Romans 11? John, like, is this like the Thomas Jefferson Bible or what? And so so I was like, Yes, Lord, will go back and get it and it was what an encouraging, encouraging time it was there. But it’s very tempting to withdraw. To find purpose and peace even if it comes to a compromise, to think somehow Christ is glorified because we defuse hostility, by skirting something.
That’s not wisdom. Because we live, we don’t go looking for fights. But we don’t run from them. If the Lord is being fought, we want to stand with him.
The cruciform life is always in necessarily the cruciform life I think that Smyrna is an interesting example for us. You notice letter very well, you were just talking Katie about about these letters to the churches in Revelation. Here’s a church that was under the gun. Jesus shows up, knocks on the door and says, Hey, listen, guys. I’m aware. I know what’s happening. Here’s the thing that Jesus says, You got to feel this. He says that know your afflictions, I understand the hard things that you’re going through, understand the difficulty. And it feels like so many folks will look at this and observe it and say, that’s the kind of poverty that’s a spiritual poverty, understand the difficulties that you have. And Jesus like, Hey, I have a different economy. You are rich. This is a situation. He says, I’m aware of what they are saying about you. I hear the words everywhere to say it. I know what they’re saying. And I know how it feels, I was slandered.
Do not be afraid saints we need to feel this. He does not say Do not be afraid. I will help you avoid the suffering. I got it when they come to, to punish to to persecute, I’m going to intercept that and take it away. He says do not be afraid of what you are about to suffer. It is going to happen. I tell you, the devil will put some of you in prison to test you. This is such a significant thing saying to God, because I am convinced that in Smyrna there were no demonic run prisons. There is this convergence between the acts of the demonic in what people do. It’s always that way. Don’t look for flying chairs. I don’t know how it works. But somehow Satan in his menus are able to engage with the thoughts he put the thoughts in David’s mind. He somehow convinced Peter to think carnally. But Jesus said, Get behind Me, Satan, there is this convergence. But here’s the thing, I want you to feel this, please. Here’s how here’s how things work in the Lord’s economy is that he grants his enemy, everything his enemy wants, the very victory, the very thing that they’re pursuing, if you want to put me on the cross, put me on the cross. But here’s the thing that the Lord does, he will defeat his enemy, by letting his enemy do exactly what his enemy is aiming for. You can’t be beaten, if your opposition achieves their area objective. And by those objectives, you win. So Jesus says, Don’t be afraid, they are going to put you in prison. It is going to happen to you. But here it is, Be faithful even to the point that everybody wants to avoid, and I will give you life as your victor’s crown. I think the NIV translation is really good here. Because I think when we think about crown of life, sometimes we think about something that is representative.
Life is the crown. Thank you, Thomas Schreiner. Life is the crown. And I will give that to you. If you’re faithful, the one who is victorious will not be hurt by the second death. In other words, everything’s at stake
in this it’s more than your witness. It is your life at times getting short. Let’s look at just a couple of examples. And your brother Paul, and your brother Spurgeon. There are so many that we can look at. I want to start with spurge, I want to expedite here, just for the sake of time. I think this problem probably not a pastor in this room. Who wouldn’t want a ministry likes virgins but it’s probably not a pastor in his room. That would want a life like spring chins because this brother had a very challenging time for 22 years old. When the new Park Street Church had at stampede, this man entered a new era that sustained for the rest of his life of sorrows where perhaps none was greater than what was called the downgrade controversy is a significant thing for us, because suppose you had to make the decision, am I going to stand on what God has said? Now, this is very important for saints, because there’s a difference between standing on your interpretation of what God has said right there, those there those I like John Wesley, I’m not a Wesleyan. But I respect John West. I like Wesley, but I’m not a Wesleyan, I disagreed with him, but he still preached the gospel. Spurgeon says, No, I cannot compromise on the authority inerrancy of Scripture. I can’t compromise on the fact that Christ alone is the means of salvation. I cannot compromise on what it means to die outside of Christ. We cannot compromise on these things. It’s Virginia tried wisely. To avoid the controversy. He did things. He wrote some articles in his journal, his his, his newsletter, trying to explain himself, he stepped outside of the Baptist union trying to diffuse the controversy, none of those things worked. His brother was charged with to go and try to negotiate some kind of agreement. And this is one of the reasons why saints before we can talk about closing ranks before we can define that what our unity needs to be what it needs to look like. We’ve got to ask ourselves, first of all, where is God? Because the only unity that matters is the unity that unifies around where he is. And once I find his location, if there are others who were standing elsewhere the Lord I entrust him to you and it cost him dearly and hurt him deeply to see the division within this Baptist association that name calling the folks who were accusing him of creating this unity in his wife was adamant that this accelerated his death
at 57 We’re gonna my brother here because we just talked about how both of us are in our 50s.
In my wheeling to die sooner. I had one brother, a mentor of mine to say to me, he said like this, he said, pastoring I assure you you will not live as long as you would have if you were not pastoring so he said to me now I’m not sure if he did the analytics right? It was just his his intuition as a Pastor Paul but friends Second Timothy isn’t a remarkable letter. Right here chapter one, I’m gonna read this because it grabs me in the Spirit of God gave us how am I doing on time. For the, for the Spirit of God gave us does not make us timid, but gives us power, love and self discipline. So do not be ashamed of the testimony about our Lord or me his prisoner, rather, join with me in suffering for the gospel. Most folks who are in prison if this is your son, your son in the faith, you’re like, don’t end up where I am. Let me tell you what I how I did it wrong. So you can you can go talk to these folks and figure out this opposition before it can land you in prison. He says, No, Timothy, you get some of this to you come and get the joy in me. Look at me in this dungeon. In the memory team prison. You get some
I don’t want to arrive in the Lord’s presence, surrounded by his great cloud of witnesses with a legacy of compromise. I don’t want that. I don’t want to slide to the back. While others are talking and telling their stories, and I’m over here and just saying I’m thankful for grace. I’m just thank You Lord Jesus for your mercy. These small I hid I don’t want that. Paul says get some any demotion is letter. It’s astounding abandonment, a socket. Seeing some accelerating here both of these brothers should have been commended. Should have been celebration banquets for Paul.
Everybody should have been there here’s the thing saints want you to feel this, please. That’s not the way of the cross. Your Commendation is not meant for this world, my friends
that banquet, think of Jonathan Edwards out thinking that his last ministry, which really was his last ministry, out with Native Americans, no one’s watching. No one knows who you are his people don’t care. I was reading a Farewell Sermon of Lemuel. Haines a few months ago, as he’s being driven out of His ministry, I don’t want that. But our Commendation is not in this world. It is Christ’s commendation that we’re aiming for. Let me just say this as we close. There’s a Tennessee, Tennessee today to emphasize amount of time I’m gonna good, how much how much time? We have five minutes. Okay, thank
you. Sorry, live streamers. I mean, it seems a little weird for us to be having a little conversation like this.
There is a tendency today, if I had a whiteboard, I would put it up on I would write the word, Balance. Balance it brother. One of the first questions I get from folks, it’s a good question. It’s a helpful question. It’s a loving question. It’s a needed question. One of the first questions I get from folks, when I talk with them, they’ll say, Hey, man,
how’s your Sabbath? Talk to me about your rest. That’s good. There are good biblical reasons for that. People say Jesus, Jesus was a vacationing a lot, my friends.
Jesus wouldn’t see Jesus vacationing. We see Christ pulling off to be by himself to be with the Father. He would fast to get along with with with the Father. And we should vacation is a good thing. It’s a good general revelation principle. But the Lord is not going to take you to task. Because your testimony mirrored Paul’s who talked about his many afflictions, his being out under the elements, the times he went without food, the uncertainty. That’s good counsel. But it’s not the main counsel. Don’t think you’re being stretched is inconsistent with the gospel. That your limits is not the boundaries of what God is calling you to be in to do. That’s me, you should burn yourself out, or course you shouldn’t burn yourself out. But your first consideration can be is this is this okay? Is this sustainable? Your first consideration is where’s Christ? I can’t run from persecution. I can’t run from the cross. And if I had the mindset, that that not only there’s something about suffering and persecution and opposition, that’s right, that’s consistent with the nature of this world that’s consistent with God’s presence in this world that Jesus has modeled for us what it looks like what the redemptive movement of God is going to encounter. I have the mindset such that, like, I think Julian said it well, last night about that little, little mouse that nose is going to be saved. When I realize there is a day that I’m going to be commended for his difficulty. I have the perspective to endure When encouraged you don’t get don’t think it’s strange. When someone says something to you, it’s hurtful. When you receive opposition, but doing what the Lord’s calling you to, it really isn’t you. It is Christ. That they’re struggling within it. It’s Christ in you that’s causing you to share. It is afflictions, for the sake of His people. Let’s go before him now. Jesus, Father, we admit our weakness. We often run from this, we run from this. Father, pray for everyone in this room and those who are who who are here virtually God, I pray that you would move by your Spirit to give them stout heartedness that you would give them a rugged faith for a rugged call. Yes, give them pace. Help them to know that it’s not them. It’s you. It’s not their resources, it’s your spirits. We ask this Lord Jesus, for Your glory sake, and for the cause of your gospel. In Jesus name we pray. Amen. Amen. Saints God bless you saints.