The Lame Who Think They Can Run

posted by Jeffrey on Tuesday, June 21, 2005 at 3:55 PM


*I've moved, and my posts have come with me! Check out my new blog at www.jeffrey-davis.net/blog/*

Aren't we as the Church supposed to be living life to the full? If so, what does your imagination conjure up when you think on that? Mine paints a picture of someone laughing, running, playing, and radiating with a near physical glow of joy and happiness (yes, yes, even though those two things are quite different, I know). I would dare say that all of us imagine something along those lines when we think of someone who is living "life to the full." If this be the case, then do the proclaiming "Christians" that I know (including myself) fit into that picture?

In Acts 3, we seem to have a literal representation of how this might look. We came to this story last week as we continue our conversation about the book of Acts in our weekly gatherings. Here he sits, a man lame from birth, when the power of Jesus' name spoken by Peter and John heal him. What then does he do? Well he sits back down right where he had been for the many years past and goes back to begging. Wrong! He gets up (with the help of Peter) and begins to walk, jump, and praise God.

Now here's the 2nd major confusion of this past weekend: In verse 19, Peter encourages the witnesses of this miracle to "repent and turn to God, so that your sins may be wiped out." No big deal right? Well what he doesn't ask them to do is to say a prayer. Could we be totally off on how we measure whether we are "Christians" or not? Could it be that this commitment to follow Jesus actually takes action, to "repent and turn to God", or is it to merely say some words, go to church, and try to be good? John further addresses this in MANY of his writings, one being in 1 John 2:3-6. Maybe, like Peter does for this beggar (yeah, this is all in the text--read it), we should be about helping people up, letting them actually hold onto us for a while (gasp), and take them right into the community of God's people so they may learn more of this God who has made them whole, who has healed them, who has allowed them to finally walk and not beg. hmm..a random thought: Doesn't the ability to walk mean this fellow is now able to do something.

Now, before you get out your tar and feathers, I realize this line of thought could dangerously (and easily) lead to legalism--to rules of "do's/don'ts". It is important to remember that "it is by grace we've been saved through faith, this not from ourselves, but it is the free gift of God." But true faith in Jesus will produce a lifestyle change. True faith in Jesus will transform us by the renewing of our minds. True faith in Jesus will give us a heart for the poor and the widows. True faith will lead to a heart of flesh instead of a heart of stone.

Is everyone perfect, joyful, running, jumping, and praising God all the time--"by no means!" So I praise Yaweh that He has already taken care of that for us (See Hebrews 10:11-18). All I have meant to say is that I am confused--is it possible that we sit in our church buildings, homes, fields, cathedrals, or whatever, week after week and think that we are "running the race" when in fact, we are crippled beggars looking for handouts?

1 Comments:

Blogger Rick said...

Wanna see if your lame or not....

Most of us have had an intimate personal human relationship and could share about our many encounters with another. So...share the same about your times with Jesus.

Not what the bible, didache, the 'church', some book, pastor, etc says about Him but what you've personally experienced 'of' Him day to day.

June 22, 2005 5:07 AM

 

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