Tuesday, November 11, 2014
“Am I a Gospel Sharer?”
You’re listening to The New You, the daily broadcast for people who have been made new by the blood of Christ. I’m Robert Hatfield, and here is today’s Scripture:
… At that time a great persecution arose against the church which was at Jerusalem; and they were all scattered throughout the regions of Judea and Samaria, except the apostles. … Therefore those who were scattered went everywhere preaching the word (Acts 8:1, 4).
Do you remember the YouTube video What Does the Fox Say? You’re probably thinking to yourself, “I had finally forgotten it! Thanks for bringing that back up.” Sorry about that, but it illustrates an important point. As of yesterday when I checked these stats, the What Does the Fox Say? video had been played 464,624,531 times. Collectively, we have spent 2,683 years watching the fox video. Wow.
What’s interesting is that, according to YouTube’s statistics, the fox video was extremely popular around October to November 2013 (it was first released in September of 2013), but has had trailing popularity since then. That’s how things work, isn’t it? We get hooked on something for a while until the fad fades away, and we’re over it.
I wonder whether we do that with the gospel. Do you remember the day you were baptized? Do you remember the zeal that you had, the fire that was lit within your heart? What about now? Does that same spiritual enthusiasm exist within your heart? Are you still as willing – yea, eager – to get out and spread the gospel message today?
Today, let’s briefly look at a pattern of passion from the first century and a reason to rejoice that extends all the way to our present time.
A Pattern of Passion
The New Oxford American Dictionary defines passion as a strong and barely controllable emotion; an intense desire or enthusiasm for something. Does that describe your attitude toward spreading the gospel message?
An examination of the first century church reveals that our brethren were on fire for evangelism! The converts on the day of Pentecost immediately began to spread the word, and the Lord was adding to the church daily (Acts 2:46-47). Even among persecution, they preached (Acts 4:4; 5:14; 8:1, 4). After all, “We cannot but speak the things which we have seen and heard” (Acts 4:20), and “we ought to obey God rather than men” (Acts 5:29). The number of disciples was multiplying as the word of God continued to spread (Acts 9:31; 16:5).
Are we like this today? Do we have that kind of passion for the lost and for the soul-saving message of the gospel? If not, why not?
A Reason to Rejoice
It seems that one of the keys to their passion for the gospel was the constant realization of where they had been and, by contrast, where they were in the present. The Ethiopian eunuch went on his way rejoicing (Acts 8:39) because of his appreciation for what Jesus had done for him. The Philippian Jailor did the same thing (Acts 16:34). Paul was thankful to Jesus for putting him into the ministry even though he had a sin-stained past (1 Tim. 1:12-13). He said that the grace of the Lord was “exceedingly abundant, with faith and love which are in Christ Jesus” (1 Tim. 1:14).
Let’s wrap it up: Don’t we have the same reason to rejoice today? In conclusion today, I’d like to remind us of the theme verse for this show. This is the verse from which the show title, The New You, came: 2 Corinthians 5:17.
Therefore if anyone is in Christ, he is a new creation; old things have passed away; behold, all things have become new.
The whole point of this passage is to remind us of this fact: Christ created the new in you, and He intends for the new to come and to stay.
Peter reminds us that God’s promises are just as true today as they always have been (2 Pet. 3:9). Therefore, we have every reason to rejoice in our salvation. We have every reason to be as passionate about sharing the gospel as were our first century brethren! We have every reason to be as passionate about gospel sharing as we were when we had just come out of the waters of baptism!
May God bless us to be gospel sharers. Today, look for someone with whom you can share the gospel.
Memory Verse: This week’s verse depicts Ezra’s incredible example for you and me to follow. Here’s Ezra 7:10:
For Ezra had prepared his heart to seek the Law of the LORD, and to do it, and to teach statutes and ordinances in Israel (Ezra 7:10).
The New You 10 Week Challenge for a Better Internet! This week I want us to answer this question: For what spiritual blessing are you the most thankful? So head over to Facebook, Twitter, Instagram and the like and compose a post which says, “The spiritual blessing for which I am most thankful is _____. #NewYouChallenge” This is week 7 of the 10 week challenge for a better Internet!
Thanks for joining me today for The New You. You can find us each weekday at thelightnetwork.tv. You’ll also find episode archives, transcripts, and more Christian podcasts there. That’s thelightnetwork.tv
Contact me by email at firstname.lastname@example.org or by voicemail, by calling 903-26-LIGHT, that’s 903-265-4448. I’d love to hear from you!
I’m Robert Hatfield. You are the new you! Let’s go live like it!