My Expended ‘Edition’ from FES Praise & Prayer letter (March-April 2015)
I had a student-friend in college who allowed himself to get side-tracked spiritually by a dangerous line of thinking. He told me and some other friends that he was having a hard time believing that Christianity was true. He thought, why Jesus doesn’t appear to him physically personally, why God doesn’t send an angel to prove that the Bible is true, why he don’t feel the presence of the Holy Spirit when he prayed, why, why, etc. He was serious. So we talked for over an hour and I tried to assure him that the Christian life is a walk based on faith, not on superficial physical manifestations or a visit to heaven. We opened the Scripture and also point to him historical facts. Pray. But our conversation ended eventually and he walked away disillusioned.
Later I discovered that three other student-friends had each talked with him on the same subject. When I asked them, I learned that each of us had counselled him in the same way: cling fast to Jesus Christ as the Bible revealed Him. But our friend didn’t listen to us. This story says so much about our generation today and the people who actually had experienced Jesus the Son of God first-hand. People of Jesus’ day “asked him to show them a sign from heaven.” But Jesus answered, “No sign… except the sign of Jonah” (Matthew 16:1-4). Then Jesus went away.
This is important realization for me that today many people are seeking for and false teachers will appear, especially among our students, to perform miracles, signs and wonders to ‘prove’ the validity of Christian faith but they lack of “the sign of Jonah,” that is the fact truth and the accomplished work of Jesus in his death and resurrection. Oh pray that we will be faithful and “resolved to know nothing… except Jesus Christ and him crucified” (1 Corinthians 2:2). Yes, I do believe in miracles but the miracle that I want most in students is the miracle of life-transformed and the difference the living Christ makes in their lives. In Bible Study, Christ. In our call for Jambatan Anak Malaysia (JAM), to be agent of transformation and reconciliation, Christ. In friendship evangelism, Christ. Even in our failures, pray that we will refocus on Christ. Amen.
THINK BIG. START SMALL. GO DEEP.