When to Stand

I have been asked – on more than a few occasions “where do we stand up?”, “when should we stand up?” and “what should we stand up for?”….


Now, Before I give any thoughts or Biblical insights on this broad and heavy question, let me first ask my own questions in return: “what lines did the Lord draw for us?”, “when does the Lord say we shouldn’t we stand up?” and “what does the Lord say we should stand up for?”


I am convinced that if a believer is in their Bible on the regular – these questions are ten times easier to respond to – with confidence and conviction… but, if a Christian is only reading little morsels of daily bread, the milk and not the meat of the Word of God; it is harder to discern the things in which the Lord stood up for, the things in which Jesus drew the line, and when things should be stood up for.


First – a lack of knowledge is at the core of the issue of where, when and what to stand up for…. this insight comes from the following two passages of Scripture:


Hosea 4:6 “My people are destroyed for lack of knowledge; because you have rejected knowledge, I reject you from being a priest to me. And since you have forgotten the law of your God, I also will forget your children.” and


Isaiah 5:13 “Therefore my people go into exile for lack of knowledge; their honored men go hungry, and their multitude is parched with thirst.”


Second – where did Jesus stand up? He stood up in religious settings, civic settings and personal settings. There are so many passages I have limited it to three, with one passage for each – religious, civic and personal:


Luke 6:6-11  On another Sabbath, he entered the synagogue and was teaching, and a man was there whose right hand was withered. And the scribes and the Pharisees watched him, to see whether he would heal on the Sabbath, so that they might find a reason to accuse him. But he knew their thoughts, and he said to the man with the withered hand, “Come and stand here.” And he rose and stood there. And Jesus said to them, “I ask you, is it lawful on the Sabbath to do good or to do harm, to save life or to destroy it?” And after looking around at them all he said to him, “Stretch out your hand.” And he did so, and his hand was restored. But they were filled with fury and discussed with one another what they might do to Jesus.


Here Jesus confronted religious folks about their persnickety interpretation of honoring the Sabbath that prevented the good that God intends to happen through its observation… they cared more for their rules than the people. Jesus stood up for proper understanding and application of the Word to the situation and in favor of the Spirit of the Law… bringing healing and life – “the letter of the law kills, but the Spirit brings life ” 2 Corinthians 3:6

John 18:33-37  So Pilate entered his headquarters again and called Jesus and said to him, “Are you the King of the Jews?” Jesus answered, “Do you say this of your own accord, or did others say it to you about me?” Pilate answered, “Am I a Jew? Your own nation and the chief priests have delivered you over to me. What have you done?” Jesus answered, “My kingdom is not of this world. If my kingdom were of this world, my servants would have been fighting, that I might not be delivered over to the Jews. But my kingdom is not from the world.” Then Pilate said to him, “So you are a king?” Jesus answered, “You say that I am a king. For this purpose I was born and for this purpose I have come into the world–to bear witness to the truth. Everyone who is of the truth listens to my voice.”


Here Jesus, when questioned in the civic arena by Pilate, He called out Pilate and the people in their accusations without returning guile, but expressing truth. Jesus said His purpose was to bear witness – stand up to and for truth. Pilate simply followed the false narrative of the people in his line of questioning, and eventually acquiesced to the mob and ruled for Jesus’ flogging and death.


Matthew 8:23-27  And when he got into the boat, his disciples followed him. And behold, there arose a great storm on the sea, so that the boat was being swamped by the waves; but he was asleep. And they went and woke him, saying, “Save us, Lord; we are perishing.” And he said to them, “Why are you afraid, O you of little faith?” Then he rose and rebuked the winds and the sea, and there was a great calm. And the men marveled, saying, “What sort of man is this, that even winds and sea obey him?”


Here Jesus, even in the middle of a n Northeaster gale while all of them are on a boat, personally calls out His disciples lack of conviction, faith and trust… Jesus was standing up when they wouldn’t and He stood up calling out their unfaithfulness; while standing up for faith and conviction.

So – where, what and when do we stand up? This is where – in religious circles, in civics and in our relationships – public and private… This is what –  for Biblical truth and application in conviction and action… This is when – whenever truth is prevented to prevail, whenever people show a lack of conviction in truth in action and whenever others are not standing up for truth applied in these three.

Standing up For and With You, In Truth and Conviction –

Pastor D.L. Barnett

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