Matthew 13:20-21 But he that received the seed into stony places, the same is he that heareth the word, and anon with joy receiveth it; Yet hath he not root in himself, but dureth for a while: for when tribulation or persecution ariseth because of the word, by and by he is offended.

2 Timothy 3:12 Yea, and all that will live godly in Christ Jesus shall suffer persecution.

Matthew Henry:

Impressions that are not deep, will not be durable, but will wear off in suffering, trying times; like footsteps on the sand of the sea, which are gone the next high tide of persecution; when that iniquity doth abound, the love of many to the ways of God waxeth cold; many that keep their profession in fair days, lose it in a storm; and do as those that go to sea only for pleasure, come back again when the wind arises.

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MICHAEL SATTLER – A Christian Martyr

The following quote is by Christian martyr Michael Sattler.  He proclaimed and defended the true Gospel of Jesus Christ.  He came against the false gospel of Roman Catholicism.  It cost him his life.

“… If the Turks should come, we ought not to resist them; for it is written: Thou shalt not kill. We must not defend ourselves against the Turks and others of our persecutors, but are to beseech God with earnest prayer to repel and resist them. But that I said, that if warring were right, I would rather take the field against the so-called Christians, who persecute, apprehend and kill pious Christians, than against the Turks, was for this reason: The Turk is a true Turk, knows nothing of the Christian faith; and is a Turk after the flesh; but you, who would be Christians, and who make your boast of Christ, persecute the pious witnesses of Christ, and are Turks after the spirit.”

Read about martyrs Michael Sattler and his wife Margaretha here.

Video:  The Radicals

Note that persecution came from both the Roman Catholics and the Protestants.

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My Dad was born 100 years ago today, on September 23, 1916.

He was born in Italy, Castellonorato di Formia, Latina Province.

Remembering My Dad, Giuseppe Lino DeMarco …


A man who didn’t know my Father spoke at his funeral service. This was not my choice but that’s the way it happened. (Jesus said “my kingdom is not of this world” and therefore we pilgrims suffer.) The words spoken by this stranger were typical funeral formalities with bits of information given to him about my Dad thrown in. The words spoken that day in no way revealed to anyone who my father was or the reality of his life. To the undiscerning my father was just an old man that died. But there was so much more to his life and death. I want to tell some of that story here.

My father first heard the Gospel when he was in his 70’s. He did not respond favorably. He did not like the conflict and division caused by God’s Word within the family. He was born in Italy (Castellonorato di Formia, Latina Province) where the Roman Catholic Church “rules” and he told me he had never before heard the things that I was sharing with him from the Bible!  (That’s something to think about in the very ecumenical climate of our day that tells us that Rome preaches the true Gospel.)  As a result of the Gospel witness he received, my Dad began to read the the Scriptures for the first time in his life, and that’s a good thing. After reading 1st and 2nd Timothy he told me in his thick Italian accent that they were “perfect”.

My dad was a good father, the best he knew how to be. I’ll tell you a little about his life.

He suffered.

Growing up …

His family was poor and often food was scarce. It was a long time before he had a proper pair of shoes. His mother died when he was only ten years old.  Certainly not an easy or pleasant childhood.

Years later, as an adult, he had to bury (literally) his only sister. It was said that she died of a “broken heart” thinking her fiance had died in the war.  Can you imagine her fiance’s heartbreak when he returned home from the war only to find his beloved bride to be had been buried … buried in her wedding dress.

Sad, sad, sad.

Jesus came to heal the brokenhearted but sorrow and suffering does not absolve anyone from their sins, only the blood of Jesus can do that, and Jesus offers that salvation freely to all who repent and believe. He sends the Comforter, the Holy Spirit, to all repentant believers.

My father never said the words I wanted so badly to hear … “Don’t worry about me daughter, I am saved, and I will go and be with the Lord when I die. I’ll see you again on the other side.” He didn’t say that. He didn’t say that. Oh how I wanted him to say that, but he didn’t. I was disappointed, and the Lord knows that. A Scripture came to mind one day as my father’s life was quickly coming to an end. That Scripture was … Psalm 89:1 – I will sing of the mercies of the LORD for ever: with my mouth will I make known thy faithfulness to all generations .

I believe the Lord was saying … “Trust Me”.  Surely I do trust Him.

The Lord gave me such an intense love for my dad in his latter days. I believe it was truly a work of the Holy Spirit in my heart. My father heard God’s Word until his last dying hours. On a Sunday night in March, in the year 2010, on his death bed, a few short hours before my father entered eternity, my husband was whispering the Scriptures into his ear.  And that is how it ended.  God is good … all of the time.

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My sister-in-law Tracey had cancer. She was diagnosed five years ago. During the five years of her illness, though she endured much suffering, I can say that she was a picture of calmness and grace. On those rare occasions when she would begin to despair, or in her words begin to have a pity party, she would often say “ONLY JESUS” with intense exclamation and quickly bounce back to serenity. It amazed me. It really did amaze me how level she was. The Lord’s amazing grace. I was inspired to write the poem ONLY JESUS because of Tracey.  The Lord gave me the opportunity to share it at her funeral.
Many years ago Tracey told her brother, my husband, that if she died before him she wanted him to preach at her funeral. The Lord opened the door for that to happen. We saw family that we hadn’t seen for many years. Such an emotion filled day. Our large family heard the gospel again. I wanted to scoop every one of them up and just love them and hug them forever.  If they only knew… For the love of Christ constraineth us; 2 Cor 5:14 *
Tracey left this world April 19, 2016.  Tracey was only 48 years old.
Who can uplift our spirits,
In the darkness of the night,
When everything is dreary,
And dawn’s light nowhere in sight.
Who can give us happiness,
Comfort, Joy, and peace, and light,
When everything around us,
Is so dark and full of fright.
Only Jesus,
Nobody but Jesus,
Only Jesus,
Nobody but Jesus.
Who can calm our many fears,
From the terrors of the hour,
When life is full of suffering,
And our circumstances dour.
Who can make a difference,
With His Almighty power,
When our hope is almost gone,
And we begin to cower.
Only Jesus,
Nobody but Jesus,
Only Jesus,
Nobody but Jesus.
The world, they keep on searching,
But they cannot seem to find,
The thought of seeking Jesus,
Ne’er enters into their mind.
The Bible has the answer,
Oh If only they could see,
The beauty of a Saviour,
Who was sent for you and me.
Cathy White 2016
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Hebrews 13:13-14  Let us go forth therefore unto him without the camp, bearing his reproach. For here have we no continuing city, but we seek one to come. 

Charles Spurgeon:

Christ was not of the world: 

His life and his testimony were a constant protest against conformity with the world. 

Never was such overflowing affection for men as you find in him; 

But still he was separate from sinners. 

In like manner Christ’s people must go forth unto him. 

They must take their position without the camp, as witness-bearers for the truth.”

Andrew Murray:

“There is perhaps no greater need in our day …

than that God should open the eyes of His people …

to the solemn truth that the so-called Christian world …

is the very same world that rejected Christ.

We are to bear to it the same relation He did.”

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