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Listen while you read: "More Love To Thee"1 (Lyrics)
Acts 26:29 – Paul replied, "Short time or long — I pray God that not only you but all who are listening to me today may become what I am, except for these chains." (NIV)
I love the genial attitude of Paul when he is being interrogated by the local Roman rulers in today's passage. He knows that his life is on the line, but instead of remaining fearfully silent or pleading for forgiveness, he shares his faith in Christ and hopes that those who listen to him will come to know Jesus, too. It's not an act of staunch defiance; it's a simple profession of faith which he compassionately expresses.
I think that we can all learn a great deal from the apostle about how we can share our faith. On the one hand, he isn't ashamed of or silent about what he believes; on the other, he doesn't demand compliance with his beliefs. Instead, through his testimony, Paul simply invites the rulers and their courtiers who are listening to join Christ's kingdom. The apostle truly wants them to accept Christ as their Saviour, but respects their freedom to choose what they want for themselves. Paul is just being the gospel messenger that Jesus called him to be.
As Christians, we witness to Christ every day through our words and deeds. Sometimes, we say and do the right things which may complement our faith; on other occasions, our bad behaviour and ill-chosen words can repel those around us from wanting to know Christ, especially if we are too forceful in our witness. But for those who are afraid of being too aggressive, let's be willing to risk being rejected and not be intimidated into silence by those who think, live, and do things differently. Remember, Paul did not backpedal on what he believed; he issued a sincere invitation to his listeners to consider it.
Question: How do I project my faith to others? Am I pushy, silent, or invitational?
Prayer: Lord Jesus, we were invited to have faith in You through other people who followed Your way. We know that we are flawed and imperfect, so we ask for Your guidance to invite others to faith through compassion, grace, and, above all, love. In Your holy name, we humbly pray. Amen.
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Thank you, John. This is wise advice.
Thanks for sharing, John. Keep up the good work.
Amen, thank you for sharing this encouraging devotional with us. Blessings.
Amen Thank you so much for this good message!
(N S Canada)
John, thanks for the good question at the end of your writing today, and the reminder that there is an option to be invitational in my interactions with others. Blessings.
Thanks, John, for another of your special devotionals. It is important that we show the love of Jesus to others in the way we conduct our lives each day. Caring words can be a benefit to someone going through a rough time. Blessings for your thoughtful writings.
This was an excellent, thought-provoking devotional, John. Our words and behavior can make this vital message of salvation either attractive or repellant. We bear a great responsibility as well as privilege in sharing the Gospel. Thanks for making me think about this.
Thank you for writing/sharing/encouraging/praying.
I added to the prayer a request for forgiveness for any time in my life when I “tried” to witness the wrong way or a pushy way, I messed it up not being like Jesus.
From a sister believer.
How refreshing! “Each one reach one” These days of anxiety can be faced boldly. “If God be for us, who can be against us?”
Thank you for reminding us – our voice CAN make a difference!
Bless you and yours,
Good morning, John,
I think quite often we share our faith by our actions as well, people see us going to church, they can tell by the ways we talk. The people who worked for us on construction knew not to use foul language in my office trailer. I heard one fellow tell another about that.
Thank you for your good words this morning.
I like your title because that is what our sharing of the good news is – an invitation to join with others in worshiping Jesus as our Lord.
I always enjoy your insights and how you see the truth and understanding in the verse that you write about. We are the messenger, and it is God who does the rest. But if we are not the messenger, then God does not have the opportunity.
I like the use of a question to really make us think about how we approach other about our faith. It took me awhile to learn that I don’t have to convince anyone, that is not my part of the equation.
Thanks for always being willing to share your thoughts and wisdom. Blessings.