Sunday, January 5th, 2014
Acting School (Part 5)
A Mystery Story
In Him we have redemption through His Blood, the forgiveness of sins, according to the riches of His grace which He made to abound toward us in all wisdom and prudence, having made known to us the mystery of His will, according to His good pleasure which He purposed in Himself, that in the dispensation of the fullness of the times He might gather together in one all things in Christ, both which are in Heaven and which are on earth--in Him.
Ephesians 1:7-10 (NKJV)
The mystery which has been hidden from ages and from generations, but now has been revealed to His saints.
Colossians 1:26 (NKJV)
Consider the Gospel a mystery story. Or more specifically, a mystery revealed. The purpose of every saint of the Most High God is to 'Make known the mystery of the Gospel' (Ephesians 6:19): 'To speak the mystery of Christ' (Colossians 4:3).
Because 'Great is the mystery of godliness: God was manifested in the flesh, Justified in the Spirit, Seen by angels, Preached among the Gentiles, Believed on in the world, Received up in glory' (1 Timothy 3:16).
Actors, models and talent for Christ: you are story tellers. But in this drama, the Greatest Story Ever Told, you can't just talk about It. You must act It out. Because if you don't, two things can happen:
1) You get labeled as hypocrites. Even worse, condemnatory 'Christians' and billboards of hate give Jesus a bad rap. They stand in opposition to the Gospel and deepen Its mystery--rather than reveal It. They toughen the hearts of non-believers, rather than tenderize them.
2) You get misunderstood. Because 'The natural man does not receive the things of the Spirit of God, for they are foolishness to him; nor can he know them, because they are spiritually discerned' (1 Corinthians 2:14).
Consider the apostle, Thomas: a brave and honest man who needed to see the End of the Story before He could believe It. Millions of Thomas's live today: brave and honest people of varying religions, or no religion at all, like C.S. Lewis, atheist turned apologist. Or Adam She, now president of AMTC.
Both of these future stars for God were influenced by people who acted like Christ. They were tenderized and made ready for God to call them directly. 'No one can come to Me unless the Father Who sent Me draws him' (John 6:44). John the Baptist had the same mission that you have: to prepare the way of the Lord.
Undoubtedly, our world is a mixed-up mess. Nevertheless, countless non-Christians are sincere and helpful people. But to them, God's plan remains a mystery. They need to see Christ up close and personal. But how is that possible, except by a vision or a dream?
It's possible by you--and specifically, by your behavior: 'Love, joy, peace, longsuffering, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, gentleness, self-control. Against such there is no law' (Galatians 5:22-23).
Against such there is no doubt. Walls of skepticism crumble when you act like a Christian.
To Be Continued...
P.S. To read the other devotions in this series, please see the Acting School series.