Stop and Think about the Bible

Torah ScrollIf I say, “I will not mention him, or speak any more in his name,” there is in my heart as it were a burning fire shut up in my bones, and I am weary with holding it in, and I cannot. Jeremiah 20:9

Woe to me if I do not preach the gospel! 1 Corinthians 9:16

  • The speaker in the first verse is the Old Testament prophet Jeremiah. The second verse comes from a letter written by the apostle Paul. Both of these men encountered aggressive, even violent opposition when they did what God wanted them to do. Why did they not shut up and go be safe?
  • Do you know anyone who makes you feel that it would be prudent not to mention your faith? What do you do when people actually suggest that you should avoid that subject?
  • Both Jeremiah and Paul had very vivid experiences when God called them to do his work. Not everyone gets that kind of a vivid call. Sometimes the call is simply the recognition that God has led you to a crossroads where you must choose whom you serve, Rahab, a prostitute in Jericho who is named in Christ’s ancestry in the gospel of Matthew simply did the right thing when God’s spies came to her for help. What is the moment, or the several moments, when you began to understand that God has something for you to say? To write? To do? Could you sum up your sense of God’s call on your life in a paragraph? A page? In a comment at the bottom of this post?
  • Many charities and charitable projects apply for grants from government at all levels. When this process first surfaced, the government was grateful for the value Christian charities brought to people in need. Now the government wants to restrict the charities from mentioning Christ, offering prayer or explaining who Christ is to clients when engaged in any activity funded by the grant. Since it is quite common for government rules to change midstream, is it feasible for any Christian charity to accept government money for any purpose? Do you believe God provides for all his purposes? Do you trust that God will not permit his own work to fail?
  • Secular thinkers believe that religion is an element of social life comparable to membership in a country club. They believe that nothing is lost if people restrict speech about faith to people who concur in the faith principles. Further, many secular thinkers consider that inviting a nonbeliever to church is tantamount to an attempt to force that person to believe. How would you explain yourself if someone challenged you for making an invitation to attend a service or a church activity?