Doing the right thing can be terribly inconvenient. It takes stamina and a life so dedicated to serve Jesus that pressure won’t take you down a path of immorality. Peer pressure pushes at each of us.

A man once sat in my livingroom to say that what his committee was doing to me was evil, but he wouldn’t do anything about it because they would pick on him if he did. So he went with the crowd and watched my vocation ripped away.

After being ordered to stop telling others about Jesus, at risk of dying, “Peter and the other apostles answered, ‘We must obey God rather than people’ ” (Acts 5:29 God’s Word).

Yet this same Peter bent under pressure and disobeyed his own inspired teaching. Paul writes, “When Cephas came to Antioch, I had to openly oppose him because he was completely wrong. He ate with people who were not Jewish until some men James had sent {from Jerusalem} arrived. Then Cephas drew back and would not associate with people who were not Jewish. He was afraid of those who insisted that circumcision was necessary. The other Jewish Christians also joined him in this hypocrisy. Even Barnabas was swept along with them. But I saw that they were not properly following the truth of the Good News. So I told Cephas in front of everyone, ‘You’re Jewish, but you live like a person who is not Jewish. So how can you insist that people who are not Jewish must live like Jews?’ ” (Galatians 2:11-14 God’s Word).


Moses and the Golden Calf

Moses and the Golden Calf (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

Another famous story of giving into the crowd instead of serving Creator comes from The Old Testament when Aaron, the priest of God(!) gave in to the crowd and taught them to worship a false god. “Moses asked Aaron, ‘What did these people do to you that you encouraged them to commit such a serious sin?’
‘Don’t be angry, sir,’ Aaron answered. ‘You know that these people are evil. They said to me, “We don’t know what’s happened to this Moses who brought us out of Egypt. Make gods for us. They will lead us.” So I told them to take off any gold they were wearing. They gave it to me. I threw it into the fire, and out came this calf!’ Aaron had let the people get out of control, and they became an object of ridicule to their enemies” (Exodus 32:21-25 God’s Word)

What’s your story? How many times have you saved your own butt and left someone else to get kicked in the head or left in the gutter?

Or what lifestyle choices have you made because of teasing, pressure or expectations from others which went against your own good sense? You know, had children because your parents wanted grandchildren, not because you are called to be a parent. Took a job because it paid good, but you hate it. Or kept, or abandoned, friends because of what other “friends” expected from you.

So will you be like Peter who wouldn’t eat with Gentiles for the sake of appearance, or Paul who stood up for the right thing?

God created you with a spine. If you play a jellyfish there’s something fishy, you’re all wet and…