Have you ever, like I have, felt you were born maybe a little too late…like you would have fit in better at a time when life was more simple and faith in God was more readily accepted? As I look back today, I realize I did live in such times. In the 70’s, when I was in my twenties, it was a good time to be alive. God was at work and people responding to His call to believe. The church pews were filled, but always room for more. Revivals lasted a whole week and every one was encouraged to visit and bring a friend. We need times like that again…and we could make it happen. With God, all things are possible.
What is it today that keeps the church from being heard and the people discouraged? Perhaps the devil and his followers have been working harder than we have. Satan seems to have gotten the upper hand and the church is not responding in the right way.
Before Jesus began His ministry, the people were aware that He was coming. They had heard about His birth for thirty years. At that time, the people were worshiping pagan gods and being led by the Pharisees and the Sadducees… Two groups who had very different ideas about religion and how one should believe and worship. They knew of a Messiah who was coming, but neither believed that this person called Jesus could possibly be Him.
The people though were in need of a Savior and much more ready to listen and believe. After hearing John the Baptist refer to Jesus as ‘the Lamb of God,’ two young men began to follow Him. When Jesus realized they were behind Him, He turned and asked, “What seek ye?”
They called Him Master and asked where he lived. “Come and see,” He told them.
One of these young men was Andrew, the brother of Simon Peter. After spending the day with Jesus, Andrew found his brother and told him, “We have found the Christ.” He brought Peter to Jesus.
Seeing Peter, Jesus said to him. “You are Simon, the son of Jona.”
The next day, Jesus went into Galilee and found Phillip and said to him, “Follow me.”
Phillip then found Nathanael and told him about finding Jesus of whom Moses had written: Jesus of Nazareth, the son of Joseph.
Nathanael’s response was, “Can there any good thing come out of Nazareth?”
Phillip told him. “Come and see.”
When Jesus saw Nathanael coming He said, “Behold, an Israelite indeed, in whom is no guile.”
Nathanael, realizing that Jesus knew who he was, but they had never met, decided, “Thou art the Son of God.”
This was only the beginning of the group of disciples that soon followed Jesus and the twelve he chose to work alongside Him. As He talked in the temples and synagogues, the number of people who followed Him daily grew larger and larger.
As the crowds of people grew, so did their excitement and enthusiasm…a fact that disturbed the Jewish leaders as well as the law enforcement. When Jesus made His final visit to Jerusalem, riding on a donkey, the people greeted Him with shouts and songs of praise. Luke 19
Some of the Pharisees called to Him, “Master, rebuke thy disciples.”
Jesus answered them, “I tell you that, if these should hold their peace, the stones would immediately cry out.”
Jesus’ was meant to be exalted and His name the only one people can call upon to be saved! He will not be silenced or ignored for long. Maybe people are not attending church and accepting Jesus as readily as they did when He first came, or even in the 70’s, but we, His people can change that…if only we commit to it. The world is a scary place right now and visiting strangers in their homes is not easy to do, but our commission, God’s command to us, is to go ye into all the world and tell the people about Jesus and His love…about His power to save our souls and give us eternal life. We should take advantage of every opportunity to share our testimony and tell others what Christ, and finding Him has done for us.
Just like the disciples, once they met Jesus, they introduced Him to someone else…and He amazed them by the fact that He already knew all about them and who they were. He does the same today! Weren’t you excited to know that Jesus already knew you once you decided to come to Him? No long explanations were needed. He knew us even before we were born! Isn’t that a fact worth sharing.
The waters are getting deeper and the waves are stronger every day, but God is not asleep. He hears the cries from our hearts and is there to calm the raging seas that life feels like at times. Today is the day the Lord hath made. Let us rejoice and be glad in it…so glad we want to share Jesus with others, so they can be glad too.
Years ago might have seemed a better time to live, but God chose when and where we are to live and serve Him. So let’s not disappoint Him. 2 Cor. 6:2 …behold, now is the accepted time; behold, now is the day of salvation. Perhaps He chose the time for us to be saved for this very time we live in now. Who else will tell our stories? Who else was given our commission? No one. It is time to put feet to our prayers and do as we were told. Today is the day of salvation! Let us serve. Amen.