Holy Boasting

by Joseph Franks

In Galilee, Jesus Christ approached fishermen and turned them into fishers of men. In Samaria, the Savior met an evil woman and turned her into a city evangelist. Throughout his ministry, hedonists were turned into heralds, tax collectors were transformed into teachers, and Pharisees became preachers of the Gospel. He taught his disciples to pray for more laborers in the field, and his final words before exiting the planet were as follows:

… All authority in heaven and on earth has been given to me. Go therefore and make disciples of all nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father and of the Son and of the Holy Spirit, teaching them to observe all that I have commanded you. And behold, I am with you always, to the end of the age.    (Matthew 28:18-20)

Following his ascension, Jesus remained active in saving sinners and transforming them into missionaries. In the book of Acts, his Holy Spirit was responsible for growing his church and turning his people into a bold army of gracious Gospel proclaimers. And on one occasion, he personally appeared again in human form to transform the great antichrist – Saul of Tarsus – into one of his most faithful and fruitful apostles.

Yes, the Bible contains the story of the Relentless Evangelist turning his enemies into relentless evangelists, and his missional intent has not changed. Listen to the admonition of Saint Peter:

… in your hearts honor Christ the Lord as holy, always being prepared to make a defense to anyone who asks you for a reason for the hope that is in you; yet do it with gentleness and respect, having a good conscience, so that, when you are slandered, those who revile your good behavior in Christ may be put to shame.     (1 Peter 3:15-16)

The same truth was communicated by the inspired writer of Hebrews:

… Christ is faithful over God’s house as a son. And we are his house if indeed we hold fast our confidence and our boasting in our hope.     (Hebrews 3:6)

Christians are those who “hold fast in confidence.” In addition, members of God’s house are those who “boast in hope.” Hence the question of the moment, “How much boasting will we do today?”

Like fishermen of old, will we prepare our nets and cast them into the sea of humanity over and over again? As the Samaritan woman, will we be reminded of our sin, reminded of our family’s sin, reminded of our neighbors’ sins, forgiven by the Savior, and compassionate enough to run into the city and offer Living Water to our friends dying and in thirst? Like Matthew and Zacchaeus, will we preach the Gospel with both our words and our wallets? Will people see the way we handle business contracts and material wealth, and will they be drawn to the Father by our honesty and charity? As Christ teaches us, will we see the field is ripe for harvest, and will we pray and work while there is still time before the day of reaping comes to a close? Friends, can we commit ourselves afresh to have a great commitment to Christ’s Great Commission? Can we become bondservants of Jesus Christ ready to spend ourselves for him, his church, and our neighborhood? Will we prepare ourselves now to give a rational and biblical defense to anyone who asks us about our faith. Or in the words of the writer of Hebrews, will we boast of our hope?

Yes, let us be braggadocios believers. Let us not encourage people to honor and glorify us. Let us not speak arrogantly about our accomplishments or ourselves. Rather, let us look for opportunities to brag about Jesus Christ. From our Facebook posts to our face-to-face conversations, may the notoriety of Jesus increase while we decrease. Instead of encouraging others to worship us, may Jesus Christ be praised. So, let’s boast! Today, may we be relentless evangelists pleasing to the Relentless Evangelist.

Advertisements