Have you ever been ashamed of the Gospel? It’s not something Christians like to admit, but we all have experienced this feeling at some point. Sometimes it’s easier to hide our faith than to stand up to the pressure around us.

We may keep quiet when non-believers criticize Christianity or the church. We may back down from our stand on sin when someone calls us narrow-minded or judgmental. We may feel embarrassed when our godly lifestyle sets us apart from our peers.

Even Jesus’ disciple Peter succumbed to the temptation to publicly hide his faith in the face of antagonism. After Jesus’ arrest, Peter denied even knowing Him: “I don’t know the man!” (see Matthew 26:69-75). But as we see in the book of Romans, once we fully understand the power of the Gospel, we will be less concerned about the approval of other people and more concerned with living for God. Because the apostle Paul’s identity was in Christ, he knew that being a “servant of Christ Jesus” was an honor—not a reason for shame (Romans 1:1).

Paul tells us about this transforming power: “For I am not ashamed of the gospel, because it is the power of God that brings salvation to everyone who believes: first to the Jew, then to the Gentile. For in the gospel the righteousness of God is revealed—a righteousness that is by faith from first to last, just as it is written: ‘The righteous will live by faith’” (Romans 1:16-17).

Because of the Gospel, Paul was confident in his mission here on earth, and he understood the importance of carrying out God’s purposes. He knew that faith is not a one-time act, but something that encompasses past, present, and future. Because of this sure foundation, Paul found strength instead of shame when he faced opposition and persecution.

Prayer: God, help me to be more concerned with Your approval than the approval of man. May I never be ashamed of the Gospel. I pray in the name of Jesus. Amen.

“And of this gospel I was appointed a herald and an apostle and a teacher. That is why I am suffering as I am. Yet this is no cause for shame, because I know whom I have believed, and am convinced that he is able to guard what I have entrusted to him until that day” (2 Timothy 1:11-12).

Learn more in Dr. Michael Youssef’s sermon series From Valley to Victory: LISTEN NOW | WATCH NOW

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About The Author

Dr. Michael Youssef, Ph.D.

Even before he was born, it is clear that God had a vision for Michael Youssef. His mother was in poor health when she became pregnant with Michael, and because his life was in danger at the time of birth, the doctor recommended terminating the pregnancy. An abortion was scheduled. But God intervened and sent the family pastor to reassure them that God was involved in this pregnancy. He told them not to be afraid and that the child would be "born to serve the Lord." Michael's parents accepted the pastor's message as a message from God and obeyed. His mother gave birth, and lived to see him give his life to the Lord at the age of sixteen.

Believing that God had called him out of Egypt, Michael sought an exit visa in a time in which no university student was allowed to have a passport or leave the country. God intervened again, and miraculously he managed to acquire a visa. He immigrated to Australia, where he studied at Moore Theological College in Sydney, was ordained as a pastor, and met Elizabeth who became his wife.

The Youssefs came to America in 1977, and in 1978 Michael received a master's degree in theology at Fuller Theological Seminary in California. Then he earned a doctorate in social anthropology at Emory University in Atlanta, Georgia. Michael served nearly ten years in the Haggai Institute, traveling around the world more than 32 times, teaching courses in evangelism and leadership. He rose to the position of Managing Director at the age of 31 years. The family settled in Atlanta, and in 1984, Michael became a citizen of the United States, making his dream of many years come true.

He founded The Church of The Apostles in 1987 with fewer than 40 adults with the mission of "Equipping the Saints and Searching for the Lost". The church has since grown to be a congregation of over 3,000 people today. This church has driven the international ministry of Leading the Way. While it is heard by millions at home and abroad, behind every message preached through radio waves, is the heart of a pastor, willing to nurture and care for these people. Clearly God has uniquely equipped Dr. Youssef to speak to a global audience. The path he has taken has given him an understanding and firm grasp of the Scriptures that transcend cultures. He preaches, teaches and calls with a sincere, based on the authority of the inerrant, inspired Word of God. With his personal knowledge of the Holy Land, its history and culture, Dr. Michael Youssef transmits life to listeners all over the world.

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