Insults have broken my heart. I’m sick about it. I hoped for sympathy, but there wasn’t any; I hoped for comforters, but couldn’t find any. Psalm 69:20 (CEB)

When people reject us for sharing the good news of the gospel of Jesus Christ, we must be cautious that we do not assign the wrong attitude or motivation to those who do not receive our message. Without complete understanding, which is very difficult when it comes to other people, we may perceive that rejection of the good news is because of stubbornness, rebellion, or hard-heartedness. In fact, it is because of the discouragement brought on by the difficulties of life.

Deliverance

So Moses told the people of Israel what the LORD had said, but they refused to listen anymore. They had become too discouraged by the brutality of their slavery. Exodus 6:9 (NLT)

God’s people, Israel, had been enslaved in Egypt for 400 years, and they had cried out to God for deliverance, but when God sent Moses to deliver them, they were not initially receptive to him. I wonder if Moses thought to himself, “These people are ungrateful. Don’t they realize what I have given up to come and rescue them?” It was not that they did not wish or desire to be released from captivity, but generations of bondage had caused them to lose hope. Moses did not let their initial reluctance derail his mission of bringing the nation of Israel out of slavery.

They Want to Believe

In the same way, we must take care to not to become discouraged when our message of hope and salvation is not received warmly or is rejected outright. We may not understand the hurt and the pain that someone has endured in their life. Many people want to believe, but life has beaten them down to the extent where they see any offer of deliverance as an illusion. If we misunderstand the situation, we may lose an opportunity to introduce someone who is desperate to the only one who can truly bring them freedom and life. We can deduce from Scripture that there is a special place in God’s heart for those who this life has beaten down. “The LORD is close to the brokenhearted; he rescues those whose spirits are crushed.” Psalm 34:18 (NLT)

At the beginning of Jesus’ ministry, he went into the synagogue and read the appointed text from Isaiah. “The Spirit of the LORD is upon me, for he has anointed me to bring Good News to the poor. He has sent me to proclaim that captives will be released, that the blind will see, that the oppressed will be set free, and that the time of the LORD’s favor has come.” Luke 4:18–19 (NLT)

Good News

Many people need to hear the good news of deliverance for the captives and freedom for the oppressed. They need to hear that the time of the Lord’s favor has come, but for them, it may seem too good to be believed. So we are called, not simply to get a decision from someone or lead them in the sinner’s prayer, but instead, we are called to a “ministry of reconciliation” that requires us to apply a healing balm to open wounds and eyes that cannot see. It requires a heart of compassion and patience because we know that we are called to be close to the brokenhearted. After all, they have a special place in God’s heart.

Stoop down and reach out to those who are oppressed. Share their burdens, and so complete Christ’s law. Galatians 6:2 (The Message)

Steve Ekeroth

1 Comment

  1. Dr Stan DeKoven on September 30, 2021 at 10:18 am

    Dear Steve;

    I loved the insight regarding Moses and the people…slavery did not make them lazy or stubborn, but discouraged, beaten down…Good word.

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