Get Out of the Way in 2002
by Bill Martin
I was just reading a World Magazine editorial warning true Christians to be prepared for the tough road ahead.
The warning comes as the Agape International Spiritual Center in Los Angeles sees explosive growth. It now boasts some 7,000 members. The attraction is the intermingling of Christianity with eastern mysticism. You will see in the so-called church, you will see a bible along with books by gurus, or a self-proclaimed goddess. The belief is we are not born into sin. The belief is Christ is in the way.
The question you gave to ask yourself is Christ really in the way or are you.
The simple truth is, being with Christ is not about what's easy. It's about what's right.
The followers of Christ knew that, even to their death. Mathew was killed by the sword in Ethiopia. Mark was dragged to death in the streets of Alexandria, Egypt. Luke was hanged by idolatrous priests on an olive tree in Greece. James the GREATER was [Zebedee] beheaded at Jerusalem by Herod. James the LESS was thrown from the Temple pinnacle, then beaten to death in Egypt. Andrew was bound to a cross, but preached until he died. Thomas was run through with a lance in India. Judas was shot to death with arrows. Simon was crucified in Persia. Matthias was first stoned and then beheaded. Peter was crucified with his head downward in Rome. Paul was beheaded in Rome. 1 Peter 4:12-13
"Dear friends, do not be surprised at the painful trial you are suffering as though something strange were happening to you. But rejoice that you participate in the sufferings of Christ. So that you may be overjoyed when his glory is revealed."
Now, I'm not in hurry to have my head lopped off, or stoned, or hanged, but when I see true believers I stop and think about my own faith. Where do I really stand with Christ?
Which leads me to my New Years resolution. Yes, I'm trying to lose weight, not be so short tempered, be a better husband and father, but this year I want to go to a new level with my faith.
If we all want to make a New Year resolution that really matters, lets step up. It's time to learn the Bible. What the Bible says without the spin. I'm in television and I know spin.
Why does it matter? Because God says so. Paul said, 2 Timothy 3:16 "All scripture is God breathed"
John 3:16 "For God so loved the world, that he gave his only begotten Son, that whosoever believeth in him should not perish, but have everlasting life."
Learning the true Christian faith will give purpose to our lives. Once you are saved, you become God's child to serve God. I Corinthians 6:20 "you were bought at a price. Therefore honor God with your body"
The thought reminds me of when the news first broke about LTV closing up. There were so many panicked news reports. My grandfather worked for Republic Steel his entire life. He was a good union man but he made sure I knew hard work mattered more. He was a godly man who tried to get it right. He knew how difficult it was looking ahead. How hard it was to figure out. Looking back however, it all made sense. God has a plan and he was there to serve
2 Timothy 2:11-13 If we died with him, we will also live with him; If we endure, we will also reign with him,
If we disown him he will disown us; If we are faithless, he will remain faithful, For he cannot disown himself."
God has a plan for you and me. Let's learn it and get out of the way.
Bill Martin is a multiple winner of Emmy and Associated Press Awards for Excellence in Broadcast Journalism. He was also inducted into the Ohio Television/Radio Hall of Fame in 1999.