Troublesome Topic: How Can We Prepare for Persecution?

1.  We need to be willing to give money in ways that cannot be taken off our taxes. I fear that we don’t give to needy individuals around us as much as our ancestors did because those individuals can’t give us a receipt that counts as tax-exempt giving. We need to do the right thing because it is the right thing to do, whether the government “rewards” us for it or not. Sometimes there are ministries or needs that should be given careful consideration, but they are not considered because they do not have the tax-exempt status. Breaking out of that mentality will be important for us when oppression turns into persecution.

As of this writing, the standard deduction has doubled In America; that means that fewer Americans are itemizing deductions. If you are one who does not itemize deductions, you are more free to give however you want without concern for the tax-exempt status of your recipients. Time will tell how long the deductions will remain as high as they currently are.

2.  We need to focus on internal purity rather than external expressions of our faith. We need to fight harder for personal holiness than we do for the right to display a cross, a nativity scene or the Ten commandments in public. They may succeed in taking away all man-made expressions of Christianity, starting with those on public lands, but they will never be able to eliminate the public witness of a God-centered life.

Don’t get me wrong; fighting for those public displays of our Christian heritage has its place, and the elimination of them will only bring on true persecution more quickly. What I am saying is that we should not place the importance of public expressions above that of personal testimony based on a pure life.

3.  We also need to be willing to shift into the “underground church” mode, characterized by house-churches. The earlier we start thinking about such matters the more likely it will be that we can make a relatively smooth transition into it. I say this because the pressure being exerted against Christians in America is, at this point, primarily against the institutionalized “churches.” That is where it starts because it is easy to target. We need to ask the question: “Is this institution the same as the kingdom of God?”

As part of this change, we need to seek ways to work together with people from other denominations (gasp). We need to stop focusing on the ways we disagree and start focusing on how we do agree. Do you think God cares about our theological distinctives? I doubt it. We are all partially right and partially wrong. So get over yourself and start reaching out to others whom you admit are on your team.

4. Spit yourself out of the system whenever possible. Here are a few examples without going into detailed description of each: homeschool your children, seek practical training rather than college, stay out of debt and don’t try to keep a good credit score, for health care look for alternatives to the “Modern Medical Machine” with its insurance companies and government regulations.

5. Seek a life of simplicity. This will mean different things to different people. The point is that if we have fewer toys and less stuff it will be easier to let go of material things when the time comes to make that choice. God gives us material things so we can bless others, not so we can get attached to them ourselves.

6.  Focus on the family. I don’t mean that as a cheeky reference to the well-known Christian organization by that name, but as a concise statement of truth. Where Satan has worked hard to cause many families to be characterized by self-centeredness, disrespect, arguing, fighting and abuse, we need to work at building a new generation of stable, healthy, God-fearing families. This is important for many reasons, one being that the family should be the central structure of the house-church movement. 

7.  Make it a priority to become as strong as you can in your faith and in your commitment to Jesus. Those who are “bare-minimum believers” will most likely crumble when weak opposition turns into strong opposition, or outright persecution. I assure you that the timid faith and the quasi-commitments of the “bare-minimum believer” cannot possibly prepare him for what is most likely coming. He will quickly compromise everything he says he believes in to maintain the lifestyle to which he has become enslaved.

You absolutely must seek God with all your heart; there is no room for a mediocre effort in God’s spiritual training-camp. The tough times that are coming will separate the faithful from those who only give lip-service to Christ. And you can’t spend time on the bench; there are no substitutes in this game; if you are alive, you are in the game. If this study of Revelation does nothing else for you, I pray it will convince you that the only smart option and the only wise choice is to be an on-fire, all-in, nothing-held-back Christ-follower. That is what He is looking for, those are the ones He will reward, and those are the only ones who will be ready for whatever is coming their way.

What are some other practical things I can do?

  • Turn off your 5G and use a lower level of cell phone service
  • Buy from locally owned businesses whenever possible
  • Seek a naturally strong immune system
  • Distrust anything that shouts “big money”, e.g. big government, big pharma, big banks, etc.

The next lesson is: Why Did Paul Say to Remain as You Are?