Sunday, August 17, 2014

Excitement in the boat, part 27: The assignment

But the man from whom the demons had gone out was begging Him that he might accompany Him; but He sent him away, saying, "Return to your house and describe what great things God has done for you." So he went away, proclaiming throughout the whole city what great things Jesus had done for him. (Luke 8:38-39 NASB)

We might well imagine that the newly freed man was eager to stay free. He had been in bondage long enough. His immediate response was to beg to stay with Jesus. He might have thought that Jesus could handle the demons again if they tried to come back, but certainly a part of his desire to stay with Jesus was pure gratitude. 

It may surprise us, but Jesus would not let the man accompany Him on the remainder of the journey. The problem this man had in the past was that, even if his demons were subdued, there was nothing to fill the void when they left. Now, he had Jesus, and Jesus was all he would need to stay free. 

It turned out Jesus had a plan for him that did not involve a boat ride. He was to go home and describe for his family the great things God had done for him. He was to share his testimony with anyone who would listen. In recounting his testimony for everyone at home, he would have repeated reminders of what God had done. 

So he went. Those three words indicate a lifetime of future faithfulness. Jesus said to go, and so he went. Oh that we would be as obedient! Oh that we would do that great work Christ has given us! His parting words were to go into all the world and make disciples, yet we are often hesitant to go to our neighbors and share the good news of Christ. It is sometimes more attractive to go around the world to serve God than to stay home and obey, isn't it?  

This redeemed man proclaimed his good news to everyone, throughout the city. He did not limit himself to the affluent sections of town, nor to the people with comfortable homes and nice children. He went everywhere. That "everywhere" included the nice parts of town as well as the "seamier side" of town. He went to the people who needed Christ the most, and to those who thought they needed Him the least, and so should we. 

How faithful are we in sharing what God has done for us? How quick are we to share His saving work with those we meet?

Pray today that we and our loved ones would be transparent and obedient in sharing Christ with all those He brings our way. 
Our terrorist/terror group of the week is the former ISIS, now the Islamic State. Their leader is Abu Bakr al-Baghdadi. To learn more about them and their goal of spreading radical jihad and sharia rule throughout the world, click here: