Featured in the January, 2014 Issue of the Ashburn Baptist News

There are two kinds of troublemakers. There are bad troublemakers and there are good troublemakers.

A bad troublemaker is one who makes trouble for good people. A good troublemaker is one who makes trouble for bad people and the Devil.

Wicked Queen Jezebel was a bad troublemaker. She made trouble for the people of God as she struck out to destroy the Lord’s prophets (I Kings 18:13).

Herod Agrippa was a bad troublemaker who was giving difficulty to the early Church by killing and imprisoning leaders (Acts 12:1-5).

Demetrius (Acts 19:23-29) was a bad troublemaker in that he was a greedy person who opposed the Lord’s people because he felt financially threatened.

But then there are good troublemakers. The prophets of whom we read in the Bible were troublemakers who rebuked the sins of wicked people and pled with them to repent and receive forgiveness.

Elijah rebuked wicked King Ahab for his idolatry and turning away from the Lord (I Kings 18:17).

Jeremiah the prophet was a first-class troublemaker because he appeared to be unpatriotic as he warned that the Babylonians would be used by God to judge the Jews for their wickedness. He was thrown in prison and they had attempted to kill him.

John the Baptist was a real troublemaker because he dared to reprove King Herod for tearing up his brother’s marriage and stealing his brother’s wife, saying, “It is not lawful for you to have her” (Matthew 14:4).

In the New Testament, Paul is an example of a bad troublemaker who became a good troublemaker. He freely confesses, “I persecuted the Church of God”, (I Corinthians 15:9); and Acts 9 gives the record of his evil deeds. But upon becoming a Christian believer, he became a good troublemaker. Wherever he went in the Roman world, there were uproars, tumults and riots because he was preaching Christ as the only Savior and this was not appreciated by either Jews or Gentiles.

Today the world is filled with troublemakers. Uncounted numbers of people are making trouble for God’s people who are being mocked, scorned, derided, arrested, jailed and killed. Only one question remains: Are you a good troublemaker? Are you making trouble for those who are doing evil? Are you making trouble for the Devil and his crowd? If you are not a good troublemaker, why are you alive?