“Blessed are ye, when men shall hate you, and when they shall separate you from their company, and shall reproach you, and cast out your name as evil, for the Son of man’s sake.” (Luke 6:22)
There is a vast difference between merely using the name of Jesus, and truly acting, speaking, or praying in His Name. Those who do the latter are His true representatives. They are the light of the world that reproves darkness. And because they are light, those who don’t want conviction and exposure of their deeds, avoid them. “For every one that doeth evil hateth the light, neither cometh to the light, lest his deeds should be reproved.” (John 3:20)
Jesus knew why some were repelled and others attracted. “But he that doeth truth cometh to the light, that his deeds may be made manifest, that they are wrought in God.” (John 3:21) When He preached radical discipleship the crowd thinned out. (Lk. 14:25) He knew the road to life was narrow with only a few on it. He was content to lead a “little flock.”
When you rightly represent Christ, expect to be a lovely fragrance to those who want Him and a repellent stench to those who are resisting Him.
Popularity is not necessarily a good thing. “Woe unto you, when all men shall speak well of you! for so did their fathers to the false prophets.” (Lk. 6:26) When you rightly represent Christ, expect to be a lovely fragrance to those who want Him and a repellent stench to those who are resisting Him. “For we are unto God a sweet savour of Christ, in them that are saved, and in them that perish: To the one we are the savour of death unto death; and to the other the savour of life unto life.” (2 Cor. 2:15,16)
Don’t mourn the loss of any relationship which ends because of intolerance for your devotion to Christ. Better to be a part of a small company of Christ’s disciples than a multitude following evil. “Thou shalt not follow a multitude to do evil …” (Exodus 23:2) And don’t take the despising and rejection of men personally. If they hated Christ, they will hate those who are His. Like God used Him as a stone of stumbling and a rock of offense to separate the chaff from the wheat, He will use you to reveal who is serving Him and who is not.
Wear the despising and rejection of men as a badge of honor. If they value you, your company, and the words you speak, they honor the One you represent. If they want nothing to do with you, it is because they want none of Him.
“He that heareth you heareth me; and he that despiseth you despiseth me; and he that despiseth me despiseth him that sent me.” (Luke 10:16)