“A Sign Of Deliverance” (Philippians 1: 29, HCSB) by Carley Evans

A gift of God Himself is our deliverance through belief in His Son, Jesus Christ. A portion of that gift is suffering for Him.

Reading of the lives of Christians recognized as “saints” either by the Roman Catholic Church or by the many Protestant Churches, we understand that some of us suffer more than others. Some only suffer the slight derision of family and friends. Others suffer torture and death.

One saint – recognized by the Roman Catholic Church – is placed in a cage with a wild boar three times, each time being wounded and near to death but not dying. After the third attempt to persuade the man to deny his faith in Jesus Christ, the tormentors tie a stone to his ankle and throw him into the sea where he drowns.

Hard to imagine that this man’s tormentors and murderers are not convicted as they watch him sink to his physical death.

Therefore, Paul tells us to “live [our] lives in a manner worthy of the gospel of Christ… not being frightened in any way by your opponents. This is a sign of destruction for them, but of your deliverance — and this is from God.” (Philippians 1: 27, 28)