Something Old, Something New

Friday, January 22, 2016
Listen to this devotional:
Listen while you read: "The Wise May Bring Their Learning"1 (Lyrics)

Ecclesiastes 1:10 – Is there anything of which one can say, "Look! This is something new"? It was here already, long ago; it was here before our time. (NIV)

I am fascinated by the current cinematic trend of remaking or re-envisioning old movies. For the last couple of years, it's been difficult to find an original story or a completely new series of pictures. Hollywood seems pre-occupied with retelling old tales with new actors and brilliant special effects, yet, no matter how wonderful these remakes appear to be, they're just the same old stories presented in a different style or new medium.

As I watch crowds of people lining up at the movie theatres, it makes me wonder if the church could not learn something from this post-modern phenomenon. Are there new ways to retell God's stories? Should we seriously consider using innovative media techniques to present our worship, our Bible studies, our programs, and our missions in order to reach a wider community?

The answer is, of course, "Yes!" Christianity has always been good at adapting its faith to new innovative processes. The gospel writers used widely-spoken Greek instead of obscure Aramaic to spread Christ's message. The Reformers employed the printing press to produce Bibles in various European languages to expand Protestantism. Missionaries travelled the entire world using ships, trains, automobiles, and planes to take the gospel to other nations and indigenous peoples. And today, Christian pastors use the Internet by uploading sermons and devotionals, writing blogs, and posting pictures to reach people in their homes all over the world.

A long, long time ago, in Galilee far away, Jesus Christ lived, bringing a message of hope to His people and the rest of the world. His story is our history and we are the messengers of His words, works, and ways in our own homes, churches, and communities today. The gospel may be almost 2000 years old, but its teaching is still relevant for every human being on this planet. As Christians, it's up to us to present that old message in new forms, whether it be by texting Bible verses, sharing prayers on Facebook, or writing devotional blogs. The opportunities are both amazing and boundless; it's up to us to use them to glorify God and expand Christ's kingdom across the globe.

Questions for personal reflection: How has my faith been shaped by current technology? How am I using that technology to share my faith?

Prayer: Lord Jesus, we live in amazing times and have wonderful resources to share Your gospel message with our families and friends, neighbours and strangers. Grant us new opportunities to express our faith in positive ways using the technology at our disposal. In Your holy name, we share and pray. Amen.

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About the author:

John Stuart <>
Knoxville, Tennessee, USA

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1 Comment

  • PresbyCan Feedback says:

    A needed word John.

    Amen to being creative in our sharing of the Gospel.

    Amen to that.
    An interesting thought, and one I totally agree with.
    Thanks John.

    I am so blessed to receive these messages daily and I pass them on to others. It is a blessing especially for those who are unable to get out. It is a blessing to keep them updated and informed on current events so quickly. Thank you and God Bless.

    Dear Rev. Stuart,
    I always appreciate your devotionals and often copy and use them, giving you credit, of course.
    I just read the one you wrote on technology and totally agree with you.
    My biggest concern is that I’m seeing technology be the message more than just the medium. I wonder how we find the balance and where we look for guidelines to keep the message of the gospel from being compromised by the use of technology. Thanks for your input.

    John Stuart. Thank you for your devotional. It reflects the current position of our fellowship. We have a new pastor at our church and some members, of course, have to disagree with an updated version of church structure. We have new people with new ideas. I like it. I like getting out of a rut.
    I’ve read your Devotionals for many years.
    Thank you for your time.

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