Hezekiah cared deeply for the spiritual welfare of not only the people of Judah, but also Israel. He sent runners throughout Israel, inviting these fellow Israelites to join them in repentance and celebration of the Passover. How did these invitees respond?
“The runners went from town to town throughout Ephraim and Manasseh and as far as the territory of Zebulun. But most of the people just laughed at the runners and made fun of them” (II Chronicles 30:10).
“Most of the people just laughed… and made fun of them.” Folks, being laughed at is a small price to pay for reaching out to others with the love of Jesus. Only in heaven will we learn the final outcome of the countless seeds we’ll plant throughout our lifetimes. While countless Christians in other nations die daily for their faith, surely we can be courageous enough to risk a bit of embarrassment.
Sharing the Good News is so important that Jesus told a number of parables (teaching stories) relating to just that. In Matthew 25:14-30 we read the “Parable of the Three Servants.” In it, Jesus says a man preparing to leave on a long journey gives money to three of his servants and instructs them to use it wisely until he returns.
Two of the servants invest their master’s money so that they’ve doubled it by the time he returns. But one servant buries the money he’s been entrusted with and has not one bit extra to show for all the time he’s been given to invest it. Jesus concludes the parable with the master saying, “Throw this useless servant into outer darkness” (Matthew 25:30a).
Folks, every person who’s been redeemed by the blood of the Lamb has been entrusted with the precious Good News of Jesus and we’re to invest it by sharing it with others.
How many people have you shared the Good News with today? Yesterday? This week? This month? This year? We’re saved to share, not to shun the spreading of the Gospel. The servant who hid it away wasn’t even a believer; otherwise he wouldn’t have been cast “into outer darkness.”
Jesus didn’t beat around the bush when He said, “Everyone who denies Me here on earth, I will also deny before My Father in heaven” (Matthew 10:33). Nor did the apostle Paul who told us: “I am not ashamed of this Good News about Christ. It is the power of God at work, saving everyone who believes” (Romans 1:16a).
If you aren’t “ashamed of this Good News,” then you should be telling it. If you aren’t “ashamed of the Good News,” nobody should have to ask you whether or not you’re a Christian. They should know it by your walk, your talk, and your Christ-like love for others.
“Your love for one another will prove to the world that you are My disciples” (Jesus speaking, John 13:35).
Copyright © 2013
Judy Woodward Bates