The choices under persecution are ‘turn, run or burn’.
The first is secular repentance, the second looks like cowardice, and the last is the wicked solution imposed by control freaks. In former times in the UK it was literal burning, but nowadays persecution burns a hole in your pocket or your wallet.
Christians will need to consider these options as aggressive secularism grows more vocal and domineering.
Thankfully, God in His benevolence does not give us a choice as He knows we will make the wrong choice – so He tells us: “Choose life!”
In this context, it means ‘run – for your life’. Christ tells us to run, to live to fight another day. It looks like cowardice, but rather ‘discretion is the better part of valour’ – and Jesus taught it to His disciples Mat 10:23.
There are many examples of aggressive secular persecution, and yesterday I drew attention to the ‘turn’ response to secular aggression. It looks as if Eugene Peterson had his head turned by homosexual Christians, then within 24 hours he ran from the evangelical backlash. It is now a question if his reputation will burn at the hands of the evangelicals or at the hands of the homosexuals.
He has put himself on the horns of a dilemma, like Peter denying his Master, and will he now weep, repent and bring every thought into captivity to the obedience of Christ?
Either way, he will burn at someone’s hands. It would have been better never to have turned – but that is what secular repentance and peer group pressure do to a person. Peterson is not the first, nor the last victim of ‘the sin that so easily besets us’. But he may be an example to the rest of us, just as David’s fall is, as Peter’s denial is, as Moses’ unadvised speech is, as Sodom and Gomorrah are, and as the global flood is 2Pe 2:5-6. The list is long, but is it heeded?
“He that has ears to hear let him hear what the Spirit says to the churches” Rev 2-3.