But when the Jews saw the multitudes, they were filled with envy, and spake against those things which were spoken by Paul, contradicting and blaspheming. (Acts 13:45 KJV)
One of the most saddening aspect of ministry, a very dark reality amongst us children of God living in the flesh, is that one of the most ferocious attacks and oppositions against God’s moves often comes from God’s people. It might surprise you that some of the worst attacks on ministers of the Gospel who are doing what God wants them to do often comes from other believers or other ministers. Acts 13:45 above records one of many reasons of the contentions amongst God’s people.
Paul had preached in a city and the Word had so much impact that the entire city came out to hear it again the next Sabbath day. When the Jews who were leaders in the synagogue saw the multiples, they were filled with envy. They had probably never seen even a tenth of that population to their normal Jewish synagogues meetings. When they saw Paul’s great following, they began criticizing and attacking his teaching. Paul was persecuted not because he was doing something wrong but because the Jewish leaders felt threatened.
I did mention recently that as long as we continue to live in the flesh, every one of us will remain susceptible to such things. Do not think for a moment that these Jews were the worse sinners, because we are not any better off today for the most part. However, God commands us to walk by His Spirit and not allow fleshly impulses such as envy cause us to behave like mere humans (1 Cor. 3:3).
Would you have done different if you were in the place of those Jewish leaders of the synagogues? How would the Lord want us to react if we find ourselves in a similar position like theirs?
APPLY THE WORD
The Spirit of God in you will NEVER lead to you attack or criticize or try to bring down another believer or minister. Whenever we feel these impulses, remember that is the flesh asking you to follow it.
Ask the Spirit to help you modify the flesh at all times.