A day is coming for believers when we will have to, for the last time, stand up for the name of Messiah - even if the price of loyalty is our own mortal lives.

In our minds' eyes perhaps we envision ourselves as valiant during the hour of temptation.. shining the way Stephen did at his trial.. stating firmly and unwaveringly whatever words are given us through the power of the Holy Spirit.

But before that day arrives, all we who claim the name of Messiah will increasingly have our respective metals tested against the ever-encroaching mandates of the Establishment.. and each choice made is cataloged and counted, either for us or against us.

It is perhaps easy to imagine an end-of-time grand finale of unyielding support for our Savior.. In the hour that our testimonies are given we will have one choice : obey Messiah or obey sin - a choice most believers would say is 'an easy one'.. but how do our choices measure up on a daily basis.. how 'easy' is it to say "No" to the System in our everyday lives?

At work.. at school.. at church.. in our circles of friends.. with strangers.. by ourselves.. when the choice is presented - is it found to be as easy as we'd like to believe it would be? Usually not, from what i've found.. but i've also found that choice gets easier to make the more it's made.

Recently the company where i work began a practice of saying the "Pledge of Allegiance" before the morning shift begins.. the first time it was announced, just before i was leaving for the day, i remember putting my hand over my heart, turning, along with everyone else in the room, and facing the flag. During the two seconds it took for me to do that i asked myself "What are you doing?"

I didn't want to pledge my allegiance to the flag.. any flag.. or anything or one other than Messiah.. i didn't say the words of the pledge.. and not wanting to make a scene, i stood still in my place.. while i remained there silent i wished that i had been walking out instead.. but i stayed.

Regret was instant, and i considered the choice i would make if that same opportunity was presented again.. and it was. This time as the room full of people, with hands over hearts, turned toward the flag of the government which hates them - i walked out in the opposite direction.

This time there was no regret.. no racing heart asking "what should i do?".. just a calm reassurance that the Almighty likes it when His children honor Him. Perhaps this seems a small choice to make against the Establishment of Evil, but we all have to start somewhere.

Believers have been, and will continue to be, implored to act in a manner unfit for His children.. and we all have to consciously decide whether we will stand up for what is right in the name of Messiah - or if we will sheepishly go with the flow of the System - and then we have to physically act on that decision.

Acting on the conviction that we will not yield to evil is something for which believers on Yahushua are known - and there is no better time than today to make that stand.. but how do we stand firm in our conviction without appearing to be a nut?

How? - by being meek.. by exhibiting strength under control.. by calmly exercising the rights given us by our Creator. If your job starts saying the Pledge.. refuse to participate.. if the cop asks for your SSN.. simply tell him 'no'.. if the government demands a head-count.. deny it that violation..

These days will draw closer to the end, riding the waves of injustice and mercilessness - but we, as believers, can reject the pressure to conform and instead rely and remain strong in our loyalty to Messiah. It is, after all, His authority which shall remain when the authorities of the world perish.. and it is to Him that we must answer when all is said and done.

"No"' doesn't go over very well when it comes from what seems to be a raving lunatic..

Instead, as believers, and as individuals who will be judged by the Almighty, let our every 'no to the Establishment' in these days be given in meekness.. with a calm knowledge that Messiah has purchased and owns us, and none can take us out of His hand.. so that in the hour of temptation we will not be doing a new thing, but will be accustomed to doing His will.

"Yet Miyka'el the high messenger, in contending with the devil when he disputed about the body of Mosheh, dared not bring against him a reviling accusation, but said, "Yahuwah rebuke you" (Jude 9)

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It's a very good point that i often think about...that believers who know and acknowledge that they must resist the Beast are finding it difficult presently to take small stands for the right things. It would make sense to me that if you have trouble saying no to a full body scanner at an airport..the future is only going to get harder for you. It might seem harsh to say "toughen up saints"...but if this is not a time for growing up and learning to trust Him, then when is?
I have been thinking that my life of the last 10 years have been preparation for just this... taking the stand later. I am a Jewish Christian and have asked for YHWH to give me truth above all else. That has meant giving up a lot of the traditions of both Judaism and Christianity. I wouldn't want to disappoint my Father in Heaven by making those around me comfortable. My family was the first, when I quit participating in the UNHOLY days they participated in, then my friends. But just today, I got an email from my brother in law telling me that a study he did on Psalms 119 has him all conflicted and under conviction, Praise Yahushua and Our Father. I know one thing that YHWH is a protective Father and if you use the Holy Spirit to do the right thing, then He will protect you and give you the strength to walk the walk. I also know that once you reject what you know is truth, then you won't get any more, until you go back, repent and walk in that truth.
hi Bets.. it can be awkward can't it.. once i was told "it's more important to go to the doctor than to be a good Christian".. wow.. i was like.. "that's insane.." lol.. so far i've found that when you stay sane and stick to your guns that most people might end up thinking you're "kinda kooky" but not 'crazy' lol.. however some i've found actually think it's awesome because they, even through their questioning, disdain hypocrisy.

saying the Pledge was not something i'd thought about much at all before that first day at work.. had to make that split decision.. at the time, asking myself what i was doing was the last question i'd had.. after the announcement i kind of hazed out and started looking around wondering "wait.. what's happening.. what? the Pledge of Allegiance.. oh.. no..nuh-uh.. i can't do this" .. but by that time the flesh 'me' had started with the "what are you going to do now.. walk out in front of everyone?" and so forth.. apparently my body sided with the flesh me, because i did put my hand over my heart and stand there like a fool =/

since then i've been around for a few handfuls of pledges.. people have asked why i wasn't saying it.. i've responded with "i think it's weird.. pledging your loyalty to an inanimate object.. i don't even like what our government is doing (anyone in the US will probably agree with that part) and i'd rather just pledge my allegiance to Jesus" and smile. i've seen one other person standing with hand over heart but not saying the pledge.. it looks pretty ridiculous. also i've also found out a couple don't participate at all and usually just talk to each other during it..they said they think it's 'weird' =)

what struck me that first day of standing and not pledging was the sensation that something bad was happening.. that sort of single-mindedness that starts demanding to know "what's going on here?" i'm a nerd so i'm going to say it's something like Spiderman's 'spider-sense' - like a Holy Spirit alarm when we are taken by surprise, as in the case of the unforeseen Pledge.

that's why i wrote this back then, because when we find ourselves in those specific unimagined circumstances, not only will we have to decide quick but we will have to discern quick.. and, as Cyprium pointed out, life will get harder if we can't even pre-justify saying 'no' to a naked body scanner. let alone saying 'no' in all those unexpected situations, great and small, where we have to discern decide and act all in a few seconds.

you had double the awkwardness, i imagine.. and i think it's really awesome that you 'stick to your guns' and are an overcomer in Yahushua.

interesting Psalm 119 came up.. 119:104 "Through Your precepts I get understanding, therefore I hate every false way." hopefully your brother-in-law will be moved to accept truth as well.

"..once you reject what you know is truth, then you won't get any more, until you go back, repent and walk in that truth." this has been true many times for me.. it's a good point, and all the more reason to take captive every thought and interrogate it for righteousness before it ever becomes a physical action.

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