“Tragically, many sectors of the church have become so worldly that they too are hostile to the demands of Jesus. If you call the church to repentance, be prepared for the assaults. Don’t take up the task unless you’re prepared to die.”
That has been my experience as well. You know how often an angry unbeliever has ruined my life?
Not that it couldn’t or doesn’t happen. I’m aware of plenty of people it’s happened to. I’ve certainly had unbelievers angry at me. But in my life thus far, every time someone has betrayed me and tried to ruin my life and reputation, every single time, it has been a fellow Christian.
One time it was disagreement, personal offense, and wanting me out of the way. Another it was vendetta for wrongs partly real and partly imagined. Twice it was protecting my assailant’s hegemony over his petty fiefdom, which he felt I threatened. Once it was totally ordinary sin and lack of character, and as far as I can tell, I wasn’t even particularly a target; I just happened to be in the way.
As I say, it’s not that unbelievers can’t or won’t do this, and I’m only middle-aged. If the actuarial tables are to be believed, I have a long way to go yet, and there’s plenty of time for the pagans to get around to savaging me. But it’s worth noting how much danger comes from inside the family.