Religion is a hot topic. People are generally passionate about what they believe. Their beliefs defend their behavior. And their beliefs are often considered personal.
The people of Thessalonica are some of many examples in the Bible of what happens when talk about religion steps on toes. They listened to Paul for several weeks, and some believed in Jesus as a result. But, as often happens, other Jews got mad. It was ok for Paul to talk about Jesus, as long as they didn’t have to admit what they had believed was not true.
So, the Thessalonians decided to form a mob, and attack Paul. When they couldn’t find Paul, they beat up Jason instead. That’s what mobs do. And this mob fueled by jealousy wanted to hurt someone.
Then, when the Thessalonian Jews heard Paul was preaching in Berea, they followed him there to cause trouble. This was not a mob easily distracted.
Do you ever feel like people are out to get you because of your faith in Jesus? Someone seems always belittling you, or talking against you behind your back, or making fun of you in front of your peers, because “you think you’re better than everyone else”? Take heart. You are not alone. It’s been that way for thousands of years.
We can learn from Paul who, although he left Thessalonica, he didn’t stop talking about Jesus. He went through some tough situations, but he kept sharing Christ.
Here is the thing. If you know Jesus, you know the Truth. And there is only one Truth. If you know what Jesus has said, you know all religions can’t be true. There is One way, truth, and life, and no one goes to the Father except through His Son Jesus.
If you are tempted to keep your mouth shut because of the backlash of sharing Christ, don’t do it. Keep talking. It’s eternally important that people accept Jesus. They may be passionate about their beliefs, but unless they believe that Jesus is the Messiah who died to pay for their sins, they are lost. That’s not an opinion. It’s the Truth.
Let’s not be bullied into silence. It’s not enough to know the Truth. We’ve got to be taking about it, sharing it, leading others to their Savior. When people tell us to tolerate other religions, to accept other beliefs, don’t do it. When we are told to stop saying Jesus is the only way, say it anyway.