Sermon Detail

Happiness Revealed …and With Persecutions (Mark 10:30)

June 04, 2023 | Buster Brown

“Peter began to say to him, 'See, we have left everything and followed you.' Jesus said, 'Truly, I say to you, there is no one who has left house or brothers or sisters or mother or father or children or lands, for my sake and for the gospel, who will not receive a hundredfold now in this time, houses and brothers and sisters and mothers and children and lands, with persecutions, and in the age to come eternal life. But many who are first will be last, and the last first.'”  Mark 10:28-31

In response to Peter's question, “what’s in it for me/us?” Jesus talks about the blessings of rich community, purposeful living, and eternal life; and also says there will be persecutions that believers face.

As we make application from this passage to our lives the question is: are Christians in America persecuted today? The answer is yes, but not at the same level or with intensity that other believers face in different parts of the world.

*The reality of Christ and his Word gives us a place to stand.

  • "But the path of the righteous is like the light of dawn, which shines brighter and brighter until full day. The way of the wicked is like deep darkness; they do not know over what they stumble."  Proverbs 4:18-19
  • “There is darkness without and when I die there will be darkness within. There is no splendor, nor vastness anywhere; only triviality for a moment and then nothing.”  Bertrand Russell (1872-1970)
  • “We must deprive ourselves of nothing, because we know that the guillotine awaits.”  Edda Mussolini (1910-1995)
  • "So we do not lose heart. Though our outer self is wasting away, our inner self is being renewed day by day. For this light momentary affliction is preparing for us an eternal weight of glory beyond all comparison, as we look not to the things that are seen but to the things that are unseen. For the things that are seen are transient, but the things that are unseen are eternal."  2 Corinthians 4:16-18

“Blessed are those who are persecuted for righteousness' sake, for theirs is the kingdom of heaven. 'Blessed are you when others revile you and persecute you and utter all kinds of evil against you falsely on my account. Rejoice and be glad, for your reward is great in heaven, for so they persecuted the prophets who were before you.'"  Matthew 5:10-12

"For the time that is past suffices for doing what the Gentiles want to do, living in sensuality, passions, drunkenness, orgies, drinking parties, and lawless idolatry. With respect to this they are surprised when you do not join them in the same flood of debauchery, and they malign you;" 1 Peter 4:3-4


1. Is to be __________________ (?) 

“Indeed, all who desire to live a godly life in Christ Jesus will be persecuted."  2 Timothy 3:12

2. Persecution is seen as a c___________ and p____________.

“A disciple is not above his teacher, nor a servant above his master. It is enough for the disciple to be like his teacher, and the servant like his master. If they have called the master of the house Beelzebul, how much more will they malign those of his household."  Matthew 10:24-25

"Then they left the presence of the council, rejoicing that they were counted worthy to suffer dishonor for the name."  Acts 5:41

3. If we overly limit the scope of persecution we will miss out on the privilege of understanding our calling in Christ and we will neglect the Christian ethic incumbent upon us to pray for those who persecute us. (Matthew 5:44) (see “Are Christians in America Persecuted” by Kevin DeYoung,

4. If 2 Timothy 3:12 is true then no amount of PR is going to rescue the church from being thought of as out of step and backwards. 

"But thanks be to God, who always leads us as captives in Christ’s triumphal procession and uses us to spread the aroma of the knowledge of him everywhere. For we are to God the pleasing aroma of Christ among those who are being saved and those who are perishing. To the one we are an aroma that brings death; to the other, an aroma that brings life. And who is equal to such a task?"  2 Corinthians 2:14-16 (NIV) 

5. As we represent Christ in our culture, let us labor to fulfill the dictates of Colossians 4:6 and 1 Peter 3:15 (Let us work hard not to be obnoxious and overly opinionated).

"Let your speech always be gracious, seasoned with salt, so that you may know how you ought to answer each person."  Colossians 4:6

"but in your hearts honor Christ the Lord as holy, always being prepared to make a defense to anyone who asks you for a reason for the hope that is in you; yet do it with gentleness and respect."  1 Peter 3:15

6. Christians are to live with p_____________c_____________ and s__________________ h___________ in the midst of the “already but not yet” of the Kingdom.

ANSWERS: expected, calling, privilege, profound certainty, sustaining hope