Today’s word is copied from the EMW Daily Devotion for 23rd February. It was written by Dewi Tudor Pastor of (Eglwys Efengylaidd Ardudwy) whom I thank for encouraging me through it.
So shall my word be that goes out from my mouth; it shall not return to me empty, but it shall accomplish that which I purpose, and shall succeed in the thing for which I sent it.
The other day I was watching a film, and the hero had been sent on a dangerous secret mission to find out exactly what the evil terrorist’s plans to destroy the world were. After several battles (I won’t go into detail!) and having bravely faced many crises, the hero returns to his headquarters to give his report. Moments before he begins to speak, his supervisor warns him, ‘Remember, you can’t un-tell whatever you’re going to tell me, and I can’t un-hear whatever I am going to hear.’ That made me think about the gospel and sharing the gospel.
We cannot contradict, misrepresent or colour the gospel message to suit ourselves. The exact message contained in Scripture must be shared even though there are aspects of the message that are offensive to people (see 1 Cor. 2:14). The heart of the message, the cross of our Lord Jesus Christ, is going to be an offense (Galatians 5:11), but we cannot take it upon ourselves to contradict this message. This is the Word of God and this is the gospel message. That is why we need to pray for gospel ministers and preachers – nobody wants to offend people, but they must be faithful to the message of the Gospel. We pray for them, that they will receive special grace and strength to be able to do their work. No matter how much of a stumbling block the message is, people must be told the truth – the truth about their precarious condition and the truth of a just and merciful God.
Neither can anyone un-hear what they have heard. Once someone has heard the amazing message about God sending His only Son to do everything for us, to live and die for us, so that we can come into relationship with Him, they cannot un-hear it either! A lot of people try to do that, but they do not succeed because once a person hears, they have to respond. The invitation of the gospel must be accepted or rejected, and deferring is tantamount to rejection (Luke 14:15-24). This is another important thing to pray for today, that as people hear, they receive the message and receive the Lord Jesus Christ as their Lord and Saviour. The wonderous promise in our verse today tells us that God’s purpose is for His Word to succeed! After all, they are words of eternal life and the Word of God is a living Word.
We also pray for ourselves, to receive the Word joyfully, and for the opportunity to tell the good news to others. Family, friends, neighbours, colleagues – people need to hear the message, and since they can’t un-hear, who knows how God will succeed this great adventure of telling others about the Lord Jesus Christ.
Stay safe — in every sense.