“And not in any way terrified by your adversaries, which is to them a proof of perdition, but to you of salvation, and that from God.”
Many Christians panic under pressure. It does not take much for some people to cave in to adversity. This verse addresses how to orient when we are under duress.
Verse 27 exhibits the need to match our life with lip, our behavior with our testimony. But that is going to come with a price. When we share Christ, adversity will come.
“and not in any way terrified by your adversaries,”
The word “terrified” means to be frightened, startled like a surprised bird. Some Christians “flutter” at the first opposition to their testimony. They shy at every shadow. This is panic, and panic is a rout. This is the worst kind of defeat. Christian forces disperse at the first person who says, “Boo!” If a Christian can be intimidated, his testimony will be neutralized.
“Not in any way” means that there should be no circumstance that disorients the believer from his course. We should never hit the panic button. A believer should never become disoriented.
“which is to them a proof of perdition,”
“Proof” is a sign, a testimony, a declaration. Their courageousness is a double symbol:
to their adversaries a sign of destruction,
to their fellow believers a sign of salvation.
If non-believers cannot shake you from your testimony, it shows them that they are on the wrong road. They can take your house, bank account, or business, but you are unshakable. They can see that the “game is up.”
However, this proof does not come from you but “that from God” (last phrase). Those without Christ see their own doom in you. The world is not interested in an anemic, spineless Christianity but is impacted by courageous Christians.
“but to you of salvation,”
Sharing our testimony with courage is a “token, sign, proof” of our salvation. It symbolizes the reality of it. One reason some Christians do not experience the reality of their faith is that they never put their faith on the line. Our faith will prove itself to us when we use it with courage.
“and that from God.”
The proof to Christians of the reality of their faith also comes “from God.” It is God who gives that proof. It is by His order or plan. God is interested in His cause, so He actively gets involved in your testimony.
Our testimony is a much more powerful thing than most Christians realize because God works through it.
Because God works through our testimony, it is more powerful than most of us realize. When you share your faith, do you panic or trust God to use your testimony?