BOOK OF GOD'S PROMISES
J. Steven Lang
-- Who would have thought, as this century drew to its close, how "evangelistic"
people would become? People are evangelists -- sometimes loud and violent ones
-- for animal rights, for abortion, against nuclear weapons, etc. Having a "cause"
has become trendy.
In the Bible, the only cause is the great Cause, God
himself. The Bible has much to say about being a witness for this God and his
goodness. Witnessing for God is sometimes confrontational, but never violent and
How beautiful on the mountains are the feet of those who bring
good news of peace and salvation, the news that the God of Israel reigns!
The Spirit of the Sovereign LORD is upon me, because the LORD has appointed
me to bring good news to the poor. He has sent me to comfort the brokenhearted
and to announce that captives will be released and prisoners will be freed. He
has sent me to tell those who mourn that the time of the LORD 's favor has come,
and with it, the day of God's anger against their enemies.
are the salt of the earth. But what good is salt if it has lost its flavor? Can
you make it useful again? It will be thrown out and trampled underfoot as worthless.
You are the light of the world -- like a city on a mountain, glowing in the night
for all to see. Don't hide your light under a basket! Instead, put it on a stand
and let it shine for all. In the same way, let your good deeds shine out for all
to see, so that everyone will praise your heavenly Father."
"The Good News about the Kingdom will be preached throughout the whole world,
so that all nations will hear it; and then, finally, the end will come."
"When the Holy Spirit has come upon you, you will receive power and will
tell people about me everywhere -- in Jerusalem, throughout Judea, in Samaria,
and to the ends of the earth."
After the Gospels, the New Testament
could be called the "Book of Witnesses," as the story unfolds of the apostles
and their witnessing for the Good News of Christ. Witnessing often brought persecution,
but Jesus' followers knew they could not keep the Good News to themselves, no
matter what the world might think or do.
"You are to take his message everywhere,
telling the whole world what you have seen and heard."
in Christ, reconciling the world to himself, no longer counting people's sins
against them. This is the wonderful message he has given us to tell others. We
are Christ's ambassadors, and God is using us to speak to you. We urge you, as
though Christ himself were here pleading with you, "Be reconciled to God!"
Whatever you do or say, let it be as a representative of the
Lord Jesus, all the while giving thanks through him to God the Father.
Live wisely among those who are not Christians, and make the most of every
opportunity. Let your conversation be gracious and effective so that you will
have the right answer for everyone.
God has not given us
a spirit of fear and timidity, but of power, love, and self-discipline. So you
must never be ashamed to tell others about our Lord. And don't be ashamed of me,
either, even though I'm in prison for Christ. With the strength God gives you,
be ready to suffer with me for the proclamation of the Good News.
The Book of God's Promises -- Copyright, 1999 by J.
Stephen Lang. All rights reserved, used with permission.