Projection With Deflection and Deception Has Always Been the World’s M.O.

Live out your Christian life openly and honestly and you will discover soon enough that someone isn’t going to like you because of it. It goes with the territory. The Lord Jesus, wanting his disciples to live with the awareness of the cost of following him, warned them (and us) several times about the behavior many in the world would display toward his people. John 15:18-19 was one of his more frank explanations about this:

If the world hate you, ye know that it hated me before it hated you.

If ye were of the world, the world would love his own: but because ye are not of the world, but I have chosen you out of the world, therefore the world hateth you.

Among the more radical displays of this hate is when Paul and his companions shared the gospel in Thessalonica in Acts 17. Things worked out really well at the outset. Then came the delayed reaction of hate towards them as the unbelieving Jews stirred up the unbelieving Gentiles to a riot as they used projection, deflection, and deception to foment violence. They falsely accused Paul and his friends of being “[t]hese that have turned the world upside down,” (Acts 17:6).

The reality is that the gospel is what turns the world right side up when people accept it and live by it. The sins of mankind are what have turned the world upside down, even during Paul’s day. Yet, even in our day, men who are much like the unbelieving rioters in Acts 17 wish to falsely accuse us believers as troublemakers and villains because their ways in relation to God’s ways are backwards. Therefore, in their backwards thinking they lash out against us using the same type of projection, deflection, and deception used against Paul. But just as Paul and his friends didn’t let rioters cancel their ministry, we shouldn’t get discouraged to the point of letting haters cancel our ministry either. Too many lost lives are at stake for us to give up on God’s plans, even if billionaires bash us.

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