Nevertheless even among the rulers many believed in Him, but because of the Pharisees they did not confess Him, lest they should be put out of the synagogue. John 12:42
Jesus’ lived in a religious society. Religion was not only accepted, it was expected. Those who were learned in religious things were held in high regard by all. However, when Jesus showed up on the scene, with His “new” teachings, upsetting everyone’s apple cart, He was not accepted by the religious authorities. But our verse tells us that there were some who believed in Him. We need to think on that for a minute. These people were experts in Scripture and they knew that Jesus made claims to diety. And they believed in Him. They believed that He was the Messiah, the Son of God. Let that sink in for a minute. But they were secret disciples, afraid to identify with Jesus openly because He was unaccepted by their peers. Afraid to be known as His disciples lest they should be put out of the synagogue and lose their place in the current religious system.
The world that we live in today is not unfriendly to the religious, but it is increasingly intolerant of Christ followers. When the name of Jesus Christ is introduced into conversations, many times you can see a physical reaction in people. They don’t mind our religion, but they cannot tolerate our Christ.
For each of us who follows Christ, there will come a day when you are presented with a “lest” moment, when it will cost you something to be counted among His followers. It could mean the loss of position, loss of esteem of those you care about, or even a loss of possessions. What is the thing you are most afraid to lose? And if the loss of that thing was threatened for the sake of Christ would it cause you to hide your faith in Him and become a secret disciple? What is your lest?