Then is Athanasius against the whole world!

From the book “God’s Pursiut of Man” by A. W. Tozer:

“The way it [the reversal of our nature] works in experience is something like this:  The believing man is overwhelmed suddenly by a powerful feeling that only God matters; soon this works itself out into his mental life and conditions all his judgements and all his values.  Now he finds himself free from slavery to man’s opinions.  Soon he learns to love above all else the assurance that he is well pleasing to the Father in heaven.

It is this complete switch in their pleasure source that has made believing men invincible.  So could saints and martyrs stand alone, deserted by every earthly friend, and die for Christ under the universal displeasure of mankind.  When, to intimidate him, Athanasius’ judges warned him that the whole world was against him, he dared to reply, ‘Then is Athanasius against the whole world!’  That cry has come down the years and today may remind us that the gospel has power to deliver men from the tyranny of social approval and make them free to do the will of God.”

“At my first defense, no one came to help me, but all left me. May it not be held against them. But the Lord stood by me, and strengthened me, that through me the message might be fully proclaimed, and that all the Gentiles might hear; and I was delivered out of the mouth of the lion. And the Lord will deliver me from every evil work, and will preserve me for his heavenly Kingdom; to whom be the glory forever and ever. Amen.”
— 2 Timothy 4:16-18

“Therefore, put on the whole armor of God, that you may be able to withstand in the evil day, and, having done all, to stand.”
–Ephesians 6:13

“let God be found true, but every man a liar. As it is written, ‘That you might be justified in your words, And might prevail when you come into judgment.'”
–Romans 3:4

“Yes, and all who desire to live godly in Christ Jesus will suffer persecution.  But evil men and impostors will grow worse and worse, deceiving and being deceived. But you remain in the things which you have learned and have been assured of, knowing from whom you have learned them.  From infancy, you have known the sacred writings which are able to make you wise for salvation through faith, which is in Christ Jesus. Every writing inspired by God{literally, God-breathed} is profitable for teaching, for reproof, for correction, and for instruction which is in righteousness, that the man of God may be complete, thoroughly equipped for every good work.”
— 2 Timothy 3:12-17

“But know this, that in the last days, grievous times will come. For men will be lovers of self, lovers of money, boastful, arrogant, blasphemers, disobedient to parents, unthankful, unholy, without natural affection, unforgiving, slanderers, without self-control, fierce, no lovers of good, traitors, headstrong, conceited, lovers of pleasure rather than lovers of God; holding a form of godliness, but having denied the power thereof. Turn away from these, also.”
–2 Timothy 3:1, 2-5

Lord of my death

Lord of my death
Lord of my weeping
Lord of my loss
Lord of my wounds
Lord of my illness
Lord of my unbearable pain
Lord of my heavy, light suffering
Lord of my unending, momentary affliction
Lord of my weakness
Lord of my fear
Lord of my despair
Lord of my uncertainty
Lord of all
Scoop me up into arms that hold to the ages
Out of time and out of dying life
Take me into wonder that I have slightly tasted
Into Your death and unending Life
Spread out Your Lordship over all of my being
Precious Lord Jesus
Lord first and last
God’s final Word forever
Have the last say!

“He has said to me, ‘My grace is sufficient for you, for my power is made perfect in weakness.’ Most gladly therefore I will rather glory in my weaknesses, that the power of Christ may rest on me. Therefore I take pleasure in weaknesses, in injuries, in necessities, in persecutions, in distresses, for Christ’s sake. For when I am weak, then am I strong.”
–2 Corinthians 12:9,10

“Therefore we don’t faint, but though our outward man is decaying, yet our inward man is renewed day by day. For our light affliction, which is for the moment, works for us more and more exceedingly an eternal weight of glory; while we don’t look at the things which are seen, but at the things which are not seen. For the things which are seen are temporal, but the things which are not seen are eternal.”
–2 Corinthians 4:16-18

Vindictive

This is about being “vindictive.” It may seem obvious to say it, but there are vindictive people. You have seen them, and perhaps have personally felt the heat of their wrath.

A vindictive spirit lashes out unreasonably, mauling and wounding those who are perceived to be a threat. A vindictive spirit is cold and calculating, lying in wait and planning for the destruction of their supposed enemy, delighting to do the same (or greater) hurtful thing to others that they do not want to have happen to them.

Vindictive people are not looking for vindication, or a clearing of their own name, but rather for the destruction of others who they perceive to have contradicted and wounded them. Either internally or externally, a vindictive spirit becomes an intimidator, pursuing and bullying, mean and hateful.

You may encounter this spirit in your travels through this dark and fallen world. If you do, pray for God to lead you not into temptation, but to deliver you from all evil, into all of His goodness. God has not called His sons and daughters to associate with or take upon themselves a vindictive spirit. So be sure that a vindictive spirit never takes up residence in you. Rather, leave vengeance to God, if there is any need for vengeance. Always stay with God. Always abide in Him and embrace His ways and His truth. As Jesus said, “sanctify them in Your truth, Your word is truth.” God will have the last say in all the world and all the powers and players of darkness combined cannot resist Him when He acts. As the Scripture says, when God acts, who can reverse it? All the frenzy and fury of evil is on an eventual collision course with Almighty God Himself. So wait for God, call out to Him, and He will save you. Never doubt it.

Below are some verses from the Scripture as food for thought…

Don’t seek revenge yourselves, beloved, but give place to God’s wrath. For it is written, “Vengeance belongs to me; I will repay, says the Lord.”
–Romans 12:19

Don’t say, “I will pay back evil.” Wait for Yahweh, and he will save you.
–Proverbs 20:22

But I tell you, don’t resist him who is evil; but whoever strikes you on your right cheek, turn to him the other also.
–Matthew 5:39

See that no one returns evil for evil to anyone, but always follow after that which is good, for one another, and for all.
–1 Thessalonians 5:15

not rendering evil for evil, or reviling for reviling; but instead blessing; knowing that to this were you called, that you may inherit a blessing.
–1 Peter 3:9

having good behavior among the nations, so in that which they speak against you as evil-doers, they may by your good works, which they see, glorify God in the day of visitation.
–1 Peter 2:12

having a good conscience; that, while you are spoken against as evildoers, they may be disappointed who curse your good manner of life in Christ.
–1 Peter 3:16

But these speak evil of whatever things they don’t know. What they understand naturally, like the creatures without reason, in these things are they destroyed.
–Jude 1:10

But you, beloved, remember the words which have been spoken before by the apostles of our Lord Jesus Christ. They said to you that “In the last time there will be mockers, walking after their own ungodly lusts.” These are they who cause divisions, and are sensual, not having the Spirit. But you, beloved, keep building up yourselves on your most holy faith, praying in the Holy Spirit. Keep yourselves in the love of God, looking for the mercy of our Lord Jesus Christ to eternal life. On some have compassion, making a distinction, and some save, snatching them out of the fire with fear, hating even the clothing stained by the flesh. Now to Him who is able to keep you from stumbling, and to present you faultless before the presence of His glory in great joy, to God our Savior, who alone is wise, be glory and majesty, dominion and power, both now and forever. Amen.
–Jude 1:17-25

For the whole law is fulfilled in one word, in this: “You shall love your neighbor as yourself.” But if you bite and devour one another, be careful that you don’t consume one another.
–Galatians 5:14-15

Humble yourselves therefore under the mighty hand of God, that he may exalt you in due time; casting all your worries on him, because he cares for you. Be sober and self-controlled. Be watchful. Your adversary the devil, walks around like a roaring lion, seeking whom he may devour. Withstand him steadfast in your faith, knowing that your brothers who are in the world are undergoing the same sufferings. But may the God of all grace, who called you to his eternal glory by Christ Jesus, after you have suffered a little while, perfect, establish, strengthen, and settle you. To him be the glory and the power forever and ever. Amen.
–1 Peter 5:6-11

But Peter and the apostles answered, “We must obey God rather than men.”
–Acts 5:29

the foolishness of God is wiser than men, and the weakness of God is stronger than men.
–1 Corinthians 1:25

Psalm 57

To the chief musician. Do not destroy. A secret treasure of David, when he fled from Saul in the cave.

1 Be merciful to me, O God, be merciful to me, for my soul trusts in You; yea, in the shadow of Your wings I will make my hiding place, until the great destruction passes by.
2 I will cry to God Most High, to God who works for me.
3 He shall send from Heaven and save me; He will shame the one who crushes me. Selah. God shall send His mercy and His truth.
4 My soul is among lions; I lie among those on fire, the sons of men, whose teeth are spears and arrows, and their tongue is a sharp sword.
5 Be praised above the heavens, O God; let Your glory be over the whole earth.
6 They have prepared a net for my steps; my soul is bowed down; they have dug a pit before me; they have fallen into it. Selah.
7 My heart is fixed, O God, my heart is fixed; I will sing and give praise.
8 Wake up my glory! Wake up, harp and lyre! I will stir the morning dawn with praise.
9 I will praise You among the peoples, O Lord, I will sing to You among the nations.
10 For Your mercy is great to the heavens, and Your truth to the clouds.
11 Be exalted above the heavens, O God; Your glory over the whole earth