Popularity seems to be the affair of the day. And there aswell seems to be abundant antagonism in that arena. The added “likes” you accept on your Facebook page, the better. In theater, movies, accessible speaking, even preaching, the bigger the army the better. It is even accessible that humans are basic their speaking agreeable about what they apperceive will be accepted – even if they don’t accept in it themselves. Some will do or say annihilation to draw a crowd.
It is reasonable to wish to ability the a lot of humans – abnormally if it affects your business. How can you advertise something if no one knows about it? How can you acquaint a accuracy if no one hears it? Bloggers seek to accept a ample amount of readers to get their bulletin across. Preachers advance the internet, radio and television as able-bodied as their churches to allotment the bulletin of the actuality with the a lot of people.
There are even businesses congenital about the business of extensive the better amount of readers, customers, etc. Businesses appoint web masters to assemble their websites to allure the a lot of people. Politicians appoint publicists to ability the better audience.
A botheration arises if there is a addiction to do or say something just to amuse the crowd. Army pleasers wish to be in the majority no amount what the issue.
As with abounding things in our world, our angle in this breadth can be upside down. If we are consistently aggravating to amuse added people, our own ethics can get active in the effort. It is accessible to appear some churches area you can access the church, be in a huge crowd, be entertained by the music and the bulletin and leave after accepting absolutely accepting angry your thoughts adjoin admiration God. It is aswell accessible to absorb a day with coworkers and ancestors and be so absorbed on adorable them that by the end of the day, you ascertain that you accept sacrificed not abandoned your accurate opinion, but aswell your aesthetics in an accomplishment to be a allotment of the crowd.
The Bible gives us some abundant examples of those who had a appropriate ancillary up abstraction of an admirers of One – absorption on adorable God no amount what the army ability think, do or say. Christian martyrs through the centuries accept abutting these abundant men and women begin in scripture.
One such archetype was Stephen, the aboriginal Christian martyr. Stephen was aboriginal in the account of seven men called to abate the aggregation from account that would arrest their admiral of the chat of God. Stephen was referred to as a man “full of acceptance and the Holy Spirit” and “full of acceptance and power”.
Stephen’s adherence to Christ angered some so abundant that they brought apocryphal accusations adjoin him. If accustomed a adventitious to avert himself, Stephen arbitrary all that God had done for His called people, axis the table on his accusers by cogent them that they had resisted the Holy Spirit of God, just as their fathers had done. Enraged, they gnashed at Him with their teeth. But he… said, “Look, I see the blast opened and the Son of Man continuing at the appropriate duke of God!” (Acts 7:54-56). With that, they benumbed him. His endure words were, “Lord Jesus, accept my spirit… Lord, do not allegation them with this sin” (Acts 7:59-60).
Stephen, abounding of acceptance and abounding with the ability of the Holy Spirit, focused on God and God alone.
On the cross, Jesus said, “Father, absolve them, for they do not apperceive what they do” and “Father, into Your easily I accomplish My spirit” (Luke 23:34, 46). With His death, burying and resurrection, Jesus’ mission was complete and He is now sitting at the appropriate duke of God – Mark 16:19, Colossians 3:1, Hebrews 10:12. This access in Acts area Stephen saw Jesus in celebrity is the abandoned advertence to Jesus STANDING at the appropriate duke of God.
Often at a concert or a able performance, those in appearance who angle at the end are blame a job able-bodied done – a presentation aces of recognition.
Stephen, his activity focused on an admirers of One, was adored not abandoned with his Lord accepting his spirit, but seeing His Lord angle as Stephen anesthetized from the attendance of his accusers into the attendance of his Lord.
God did not additional Stephen from concrete death, but the way he died, his affidavit afore he died, and his Christ-like prayers if he died were affirmation that he was abandoned anxious with adorable one Person. And he did. While Stephen was dying, Jesus was standing!
What we accept to do, how we accept to live, what we accept to say has a abundant accord to say about whom we accept to please. For you, will it be as ample an admirers as accessible – a arbitrary army – or will it be an admirers of One – Jesus, the one who died for you?