“And whosoever shall not receive you, nor hear your words, when ye depart out of that house or city, shake off the dust of your feet. Verily I say unto you, It shall be more tolerable for the land of Sodom and Gomorrah in the day of judgment, than for that city. Behold, I send you forth as sheep in the midst of wolves: be ye therefore wise as serpents, and harmless as doves. (Matthew 10:14-16)
The Christ-ian, by divine nature, is full of hope. The Christ-ian is salt and light upon this world. We walk by faith; not by sight. We see the “God in the bad.” In fact, it is written, our peace passeth all understanding.
However, there is a darker side to our light. The night Christ was betrayed, Peter took a sword and fought to defend his Lord and his dearest friend. Peter cut the ear of Malchus, though, methinks, he was aiming for his neck. The Lord, with full composure, and control commanded His “man at arms ” to stand down. He said to Peter, “for all they that take the sword shall perish with the sword.”
The sword that Peter used cuts both ways. It cut off an ear of a soldier and amidst the arrest, The Lord cut Peter with a reproof.
In our text from Matthew 10, we learn that one who witnesses to Christ will be a blessing to those who are awaiting the coming Messiah. We also learn that the witness to the Christ will be a witness against those that reject the coming Messiah. The dust that is shaken from the feet of the witnesses shall testify against the Christ-rejector. Methinks this is akin to the stones praising Christ, if people do not.
Soul winning or witnessing or testifying is a double edged sword. One who hears the Gospel is responsible to respond in one way or the other. One will either repent and believe or one will cast the Gospel off as “not for me or not right now or no thank you.” In other words, No decision is the wrong decision.
Think about the men, who came to the Lord, of their own volition. One was told to sell all his luxuries and give the money to the poor. The other was told to let the dead bury the dead. Neither, were willing to submit to Christ as Lord, therefore He will not be their Saviour either. [side note: methinks the “rich young ruler” may have reconsidered and in my sanctified imagination, I like to think he was the naked one, who followed Christ afar off.] To think …Christ, Himself, spoke to these two (2) men and they walked away. Imagine being one of these two (2) at the Great White Throne Judgment. God, Himself “witnessed” to them and they received Him Not. [another side note: theologically, these men demonstrate that it is impossible for man to come to God on his own volition.]
Another doubled edged sword is, the Will of God. A brother of our’s posted this: Safest place in the world is in the will of God [Paraphrased]. We, then, thought, the most dangerous place in the world is also the center of God’s will. The safest place and the most dangerous place, at the same time, is the center of God’s will.
Allow us to draw your attention to the prophets, to the Apostles, and the Reformers. All these, we assume, were in the will of God. The prophets suffered great inhumanities. Tradition tells us, Isaiah was martyred inside a log and cut in half. The Apostles, all found their release in terrible deaths. St. John is the one (1) exception [Another side note; God has His favourites]. John Wycliffe, the precursor to the reformation, was burned at the stake. John Huss, also , burned at the stake.
The sinless, Son of God, The Lord Jesus, dying the sinner’s death, was at the center of God’s will.
Therefore, to be in God’s will… is a double edged sword. In His will, we remain………