Proclaiming the one true God to all

What is your role in the church today?

Romans 10:14-17 14 How then will they call on him in whom they have not believed? And how are they to believe in him of whom they have never heard? And how are they to hear without someone preaching? 15 And how are they to preach unless they are sent? As it is written, “How beautiful are the feet of those who preach the good news!” 16 But they have not all obeyed the gospel. For Isaiah says, “Lord, who has believed what he has heard from us?” 17 So faith comes from hearing, and hearing through the word of Christ.

As I considered many different passages for the second blog, I was led to what Paul had to say in his letter to the Christians in Rome. It begins with the question, how can one know the one true God and call upon him if they had never heard of him? This brings up a very important point! How do we let others know about the Triune God; Father, Son, and the Holy Spirit? We know in the first commandment that there is only one God, and this one God is of one substance but three persons. Sounds confusing right? It is not confusing for those who believe and know the one true God, but for those who don’t know him this doesn’t make sense.

How many out there are great preachers that sit in the pews? I would wager most of us think this is the job of the person who stands in the pulpit. But is that really true? How can the everyday Christian lead those who are not Christian to know nothing about the one true God, come to faith? The third question that Paul is asked in Romans 10:14 is simply addressing all Christians’ job. How do you feel about that? Do you feel equipped to go and preach to those people who don’t know about Jesus and his work on the cross that saved us from our sin?

So how are we equipped to tell others about the one true God? We hear Paul’s words from Ephesians 4 beginning at verse 11: 11 And he gave the apostles, the prophets, the evangelists, the shepherds and teachers, 12 to equip the saints for the work of ministry, for building up the body of Christ, 13 until we all attain to the unity of the faith and of the knowledge of the Son of God, to mature manhood, to the measure of the stature of the fullness of Christ. We are equipped as we hear the word of God and read the word of God in church or over the Internet or participate in Bible study which can occur in many different ways. This is why we have personal or family devotions that we may hear the word of God and be equipped.

Then we have a quote from Isaiah which is a warning for those who hear the word of God and turn away. We all know Jesus’ parable about sowing the seed. As we speak or show our faith in our actions and deeds, we communicate to those who have not heard God’s word. In the parable some of God’s word falls on good ground while in other cases God’s word falls on ground that does not nourish the seed of faith. Don’t get discouraged for God’s word goes out and it will accomplish his purpose.

In our final verse for this week, we look to faith. Faith comes from hearing the word of God as it nourishes us. This is the work of the Holy Spirit as he works through the word to bring faith in the hearts of those who do not believe. This is the faith that you communicate to those who have not heard. The Holy Spirit does the rest. We know that those who hear the word may reject it, but you are still doing what God has called you to do. We are all messengers of God’s word to those who have not heard is word! God uses you as his messenger in this time of Covid 19.

You might suggest to those who haven’t heard the word of God to tune in to your church service on Sunday on the Internet. If you have church, you may ask them to join you. Don’t worry about your words for God will give you what you need to say in all situations.

The peace of God be with each and every one of you as you continue to grow in God’s word as the Holy Spirit continues to strengthen your faith. Amen.

Proclaiming the one true God to all nations

Proclaiming the one true God to all

Children of the Lord

Mark 10:13-16: People were bringing little children to him in order that he might touch them; and the disciples spoke sternly to them. 14 But when Jesus saw this, he was indignant and said to them, “Let the little children come to me; do not stop them; for it is to such as these that the kingdom of God belongs. 15 Truly I tell you, whoever does not receive the kingdom of God as a little child will never enter it.” 16 And he took them up in his arms, laid his hands on them, and blessed them.

            Being retired, I wanted to continue to proclaim the good news of Jesus Christ death and resurrection to the world. After much prayer and talking with my children, blogging was where I was led. I am not sure of all the rules for blogging, so pardon me in advance if I make mistakes. These blogs will be based on the writings of both the Old and New Testament and are meant for; both Christians and non-Christians, young and old, men and women, rich and poor, etc. I will attempt to put one blog out per week, the Lord willing.

          What do you first think of when you hear the words child or children? Do you consider that to mean a young child; like an infant, or toddler, or preschooler? In our text from the book of St. Mark we hear Jesus talking to his disciples. They were preventing the parents from bringing their children to Jesus. Note the words sternly and indignant. We don’t think of these words as positive or complementary, do we? Jesus, in no uncertain terms, told his disciples that they were doing something definitely wrong. In their defense however, the disciples thought they were protecting Jesus. They did not understand at this point, that Jesus had come to save the lost children of Israel and the world.

          I want to go back to who you think children are. You hear throughout the Old Testament that Israel and all believers were called children. They were the children of Israel and had been called by him to bring this good news to the world. What was that good news? It goes all the way back to the book of Genesis when Adam and Eve sinned against God by eating the fruit of the tree of knowledge of good and evil. Man had fallen into sin. This means, in very simple terms, that they would suffer for all eternity, separated from God. God had mercy on the children of the world, and from the very beginning he had a plan to save them from their sin. We know and believe that all children born of Adam and Eve were born into sin.

          This is why God sent his only begotten son into the world. Jesus came into the world to do what we are incapable of doing. He came in order that he might atone for our sins, that is buying us back. The only way this can be done is for him to live a perfect life without sin, and that’s what he did. And then he went to the cross, that very ugly cross, where he took upon himself the sin of the entire world. He paid for it with his own death, that we might have life.

          This is where children are back in the picture. As children of God, it is our calling to tell the world what God has done for us. Children in this case, not only refers to infants, toddlers, or preschooler’s; but to all children who have been baptized and believe through the power of the Holy Spirit that God has forgiven us. We have received God’s righteousness as we have put on Christ. Our life is changed! From this point on we no longer serve the world, our own sinful nature, for Satan himself. Rather we serve God in all that we do, say, or think.

As you look over the text from Mark 10:13-16, consider it from your perspective as a child of God right now. Consider yourself if you have children, are they hearing the word about the only true God or not? Do you teach them in your own house about Jesus and why he came? Are you actively involved yourselves and set a good example for your children, no matter what their age?  To this day Jesus gets indignant and stern with those people who keep his children from coming to him. This means children of all ages, for we look at ourselves as the children of God. In verse 15 it says; Truly I tell you, whoever does not receive the kingdom of God as a little child will never enter it.” We enter the kingdom of God as his children at different ages in our lives. It makes no difference how old you are. We all know what it means when St. Mark said; And he took them up in his arms, laid his hands on them, and blessed them. We hear these words, or words similar to this, at the end of our worship services. The Lord bless you and keep you and may you always be children of the Lord.

Go in peace and serve the Lord.