Dancing in the Light

I John 1:7 "If we walk in the light as He is in the light, we have fellowship one with another, and the blood of Jesus Christ, His Son, cleanses us from all sin."

Name:
Location: North Platte, Nebraska, United States

I am a christian wife, mother and grandmother. I am a licensed Social worker and a licensed Christian counselor. I am most proud of the relationships I have with God, my family and friends all over the world. I have been blessed beyond my dreams.

Wednesday, August 01, 2007

Guilty As Charged?

Ever so often, when doing my daily Bible reading, I find myself "stuck" on a particular passage. It isn't that I don't understand it but that it sticks in my mind and I can't seem to stop thinking about it. That happened a few years ago with a particular text in Acts 24. The Apostle Paul is imprisoned and brought before the governor, Felix. Felix listens as the Jews make their accusations. The apostle, then makes his defense. He tells the governor that while he is innocent of the charges brought against him, he is indeed a guilty man. What he is guilty of? Well, Paul informs the court that he worships the God and is a follower of the Way. He says he also believes everything that agrees with the Law and is written in the Prophets. Likewise he believes there will be a resurrection of both the righteous and the wicked . . . and he strives to always keep his conscience clear before God and man. Paul tells Felix that all of this guilt can be easily verified!
I am amazed at this passage. (First I think it is very cool that God "outlined" the sermon right there--should any preacher want to preach it. --wink, wink) But secondly, I am impressed that Paul is so confident in his behavior, in his faith and in his reputation that he will stand before a court of law and say courageously that he is guilty and he can prove it.
It is sad that we live in a world that is rife with rumors and gossip. Even in the church, we hear about so and so and what they have or have not done. We read about preachers who have strayed and elders who have abused their powers. The news tells of preacher's wives who take the law into their own hands. We hear of "big names" in the brotherhood being smeared by others. Unfortunately, not one of us who are working for the Lord, I mean truly working for Him, are exempt from the wagging tongues of those who are threatened by our ministry, who are uncomfortable with our mission and who are convicted by our message and choose to turn away. There will always be rumors, always be gossip, always be people anxious to cast dispersions on others.
I pray that we live lives that are exemplary, lives that are reflections of Christ and glorify the Father. I pray that we have reputations that make it difficult for anyone who knows us to believe the rumors. And I pray that we try to live "innocent" lives.
However, I also pray that like the Apostle, we are guilty. We are people who worship God and are followers of the Way. We are people who believe everything in the Law and written in the prophets. We are people who believe in the resurrection. And so, we live in a manner that provides for us a clear conscience before God and man. Of these things, we all should be guilty! And not only should we be guilty---but it should be easy to verify! So the question is "Are you guilty?" and "Can you prove it?"

Peace
Neva

21 Comments:

Anonymous Tim Archer said...

I've always loved the old line: "If you were accused of being a Christian, would there be enough evidence to convict you?"

Have a great day!

Grace and peace,
Tim

8:48 AM  
Blogger preacherman said...

Neva,
Excellent post sister!

8:55 AM  
Blogger Liz Moore said...

Great post! I pray will are all guilty! Blessings!

11:48 AM  
Blogger DJG said...

And ready to tell about....despite the consequences, just as Paul was...

2:00 PM  
Blogger The Preacher's Household: said...

I love that - I'm glad that you brought that to my mind today about him saying it. Yes, I am guilty and I can prove it! We need to make that I bumper sticker.

love ya,
and I really want to brag about coming to see you... nana nana boo boo..I get to see Neva and Mr. Neva!
Kathy

4:56 PM  
Blogger Godzheart said...

Oh yeah this is a wonderful post. Nothing can speak more powerfully than our lives demonstrating God's power and love. Thats where real people really meet the real christians. So lets shine.
God bless ya

5:55 PM  
Blogger K. Rex Butts said...

Very convicting passage in Acts... and a very convicting post. Thanks for sahring.

Grace and peace, Rex

8:22 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Very convicting post, Neva. I think it is really not up to US to prove it but to live like we believe so that others can "easily verify" it.

Shari

10:00 PM  
Blogger AncientWanderer said...

I have said for a while now that the Lord is looking for a few good men (and women).

I have always been amazed at the courage and strength of those who have gone on before us. I wish that we, as the church, would all live lives that inspire others to greatness. Just wanting to be that kind of Christian isn't enough... we're going to have to actually put our reputations and lives on the line.

12:00 AM  
Blogger Monalea said...

Neva, my dear praying sister,

Oh how I'm missed you! Thank you for the continued prayers that kept me up and going! Thank you for sharing your heart on your blog!

Love you 2-3-6

Monalea

2:44 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Neva,
I love this post---thank you for this.

Rachel

6:13 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Neva
this is a great post! We ought to live lives that are so easily distinguished as the Apostle Paul did. We all should be guilty!

Love
Pat

8:24 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

This would be a great sermon--like you said, God already outlined it.

Carlos

8:43 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Beautiful post Neva! You have such a way of bringing things out. I am as always amazed by your spirit and your insight.

Jean

10:18 PM  
Anonymous carol said...

It is my prayer that others can look at me and my life and know that I am truly guilty.
Great post, Neva

Carol

7:38 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Very well put, sister.


Dan

12:18 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

I pray that my guilt may always be evident. Thank you for these thoughts.
blessings,
Jeneane

5:08 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Beautiful!

Mary

6:19 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Wow! that one hit below the belt.
Thanks, I needed that!

Lyndsay

8:06 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

May each of us be "guilty as charged".


Corinne

6:25 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

I pray that all of us who claim to belong to Him can be proven guilty.
Great thougths.

Yvonne

12:50 PM  

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