When Jesus says, ‘Do it,’ do it.
AUGUST 19, 2021
When Jesus says, ‘Do it,’ do it. Let’s talk on Key Life.
That was Steve Brown. And this is Key Life. We’re dedicated to the teaching that the only people who get any better are those who know that if they don’t get any better, God will still love them, anyway. Steve is an author, seminary professor and our teacher on Key Life.
Thank you Matthew. If you have your Bible, open it to the fourth chapter, and we’re looking in this text at most of that, we’re going to save the last paragraph of the fourth chapter of Acts for maybe next week or the week after, maybe next week. But in this text, the cripple man has been healed as he was in the third chapter. And the disciples have been arrested, Peter and John, and they’ve been brought before the powers and the cripple man is there too, which presents somewhat of a problem to the powers. And Luke points it out, like, what are we going to say, man. Cripple guy is dancing and everybody knows the cripple guy is dancing. And everybody knows, these guys were the causative factor in that. And if we put them in jail or discipline them or fine them and give them a record, nobody is going to be favorable toward us. And so, the politicians that they were, they decided to admonish them, give them a slap on the hand, and let them go. They said, don’t do it again. And Peter said, you gotta be kidding, you know, this is what God has done. We are going to stand and they let them go anyway, because what were politicians to do? They were in a corner and they were forced to do the right thing. God sometimes does that. And then when Peter and John get back with the disciples, they had a prayer meeting. And it was a praise and worship meeting, man, probably one of the best that had taken place in the church up to that time. And then they got on their knees and they had a season of prayer. And Luke says that when they finished the season of prayer, the house in which they were praying was shaken. When was the last time that happened, but going back to the main thrust of what we’re talking about this week, it’s the importance of Christians standing up and letting the world know whose side we’re on. And by the way, I know, I know what you’re thinking. You’re thinking, you know, they’re going to think I’m one of those, the people that are always condemning, the ones that are hypocrites. And I don’t know if I want to speak up for Jesus, because I don’t want to be put in that box. Let me tell you what I used to tell students in preaching classes. I said, boys, look, I want you to get to the point when somebody asks you what you do to make your living. Don’t say I’m a clergyman or I’m an elder, a teaching elder in the church. I don’t want you to sing any of that, I want you to say, I am a preacher of the gospel of Jesus Christ. That’s what Billy Graham said. He was giving testimony for a former Texas governor, and the dumb prosecutor asked a question of Mr. Graham, after he had put his hand on the Bible and sworn to tell the truth. And the prosecutor said, Mr. Graham, what is it that you do? You know, some people and that guy votes, some people just are really dumb. And he said, Mr. Graham, what is it you do? And Mr. Graham smiled and said, I am a preacher of the gospel of Jesus Christ. I know, I know. There’s some Christians, and we got a weird bunch in our family, that I just wish would go away. There’s some Christians that give us all a bad rep. There’s some Christians that are so condemning and so angry and so political and so in your face. And they do it in the name of Jesus. And when we say we belong to Jesus, then we seem to affirm that sort of thing. I got some good advice for you. Do it anyway. Do it anyway. And let the devil take the hindmost. Do it anyway and see what God does with it. Actually, that has been used, and I’m not talking about you, I’m talking about me. You know, every time I witness for Christ, I want to say, yeah, but I’m not one of those. And Jesus said, stop it because you see, most people don’t even know about all that stuff. We think all they do is think about how horrible the church is and all the bad people in the hypocrites in the church, they don’t. They’re busy making a living, getting enough money to pay the mortgage and put food on the table and braces on their kids’ teeth. They’re doing what they gotta do to live, they don’t spend their lives thinking about how horrible the church is. And I’ll tell you something else. They also know who they are. Paul Stookey of Peter, Paul and Mary, after they broke up, they got together a couple of times before Mary died, and they gave concerts, but Paul created a studio in Maine and it was a recording studio and it was technologically wonderful and did a lot of work for PBS in Maine. He said, that they, how they got the studio is they took an old chicken coop on the back of his property. And they steam cleaned that sucker and they painted it and they made it look really sharp. And then he would smile and say, but when it rained, you could still tell. That ought to be Christians. You know, I know, I know sometimes I don’t want to be associated with some of our family members. You know, I want to say, look, I know, I have a brother whom I love, brother in Christ, and he’s done some pretty in your face things, that were angry and condemning and guilt producing, and he’d gone after a politician. And I found myself on an airplane sitting next to that politician and I thought, I’m keeping my mouth shut. And then I decided, I’m going to say something. So I said to this politician, and you would know his name, if I spoke it. But I said to this politician, I think we know somebody in common. And he said, oh really? And I said, yeah, and his name is, and I mentioned the name of the brother in Christ that I love who had gone after this politician. And as soon as I said it, the politician turned white. I mean, he really did. And I said, but before you go any further, that doesn’t mean that I agree with everything my brother has done, but he is my brother, and he loves Jesus. And even if sometimes it doesn’t show, and it doesn’t show in me sometimes either, he loves Christ and he knows that Christ loves him. Do you know, we became friends. How about that sports fans? We became friends. So, I know. I’m calling you and I’m calling myself as we study this fourth chapter of Acts. Don’t shilly shally, don’t back up. And we’re going to say more about it next week, because there are ways that you can do this, without being insufferable, but we’ve got to quit being silent. We’ve been intimidated and speaking truth about what’s right and what’s wrong about a God who calls us to account, about forgiveness and love and redemption. And I’ve said this before, and I’m going to say it again and probably a lot. We live in a country and you guys in Canada, exactly the same way, where the historic relationship with God has been severed. I mean, we took the prayer out of the schools. We don’t study the Scriptures anymore. God is never mentioned politically, because it’s dangerous. You’re sometimes, because you’re a Christian called a racist, what’s with that? And we’ve been intimidated and we haven’t said anything and we got to stop. We got to stand up. And Peter did that. He was in a position, where he had seen something, where he knew he had to save something and he decided, look, I know Peter, he’s a friend of mine, by the way. I know he was not altogether happy about standing before the political leaders who were going after his stand for Jesus. When Peter spoke, man, it was in your face. Peter said to himself, and it’s not in the text, but I know this is what he said. Peter said to himself, if I’m going to go out, I’m going to go out in a blaze of glory. So, he got out a howitzer and he fired it. And, I want to say, that’s so good. Jesus, could you do that for me too? You can think about that. Amen.
Thank you Steve. And that wraps up four days of exploring Acts chapter four, but there’s more to discover here, so we will resume our exploration on Monday. And be sure to join us again tomorrow for Friday Q&A, as you know, that’s when our friend Pete Alwinson swings by and together, Steve and Pete answered the challenging questions you’ve sent em. By the way, on this day, August 19th in 1960, the Russians launched two dogs into space, the first living beings ever to travel there. Speaking of Reds, have you read the 2021 edition of Key Life Magazine yet? I promise you won’t be rushing through it. Okay, I’m done, I’m done, I’m done. Apologies. This edition to the magazine features a great article from Steve called You Can’t Fix It. You’ll also discover pieces from Robin DeMurga, Chad West and a new Key Life voice, Chris Wachter. It’s all in the 2021 edition of Key Life Magazine. And we would love to send it to you for free. Just call 1-800-KEY-LIFE. That’s 1-800-539-5433. You can also e-mail [email protected] and ask for the magazine. If you’d like to mail your request, send it to
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