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IN TOUCH WITH GOD    by Edward Heppenstall

Faithful to Christ OCTOBER 17


Be not thou therefore ashamed of the testimony of our Lord . . . : but be thou partaker of the afflictions of the gospel according to the power of God. 2 Tim. 1:8.

In one of his sermons, Halford Luccock related the incident of a boy taken to church for the first time. The preacher entered the pulpit and made a terrible announcement. The boy felt it must have been important, because so many people had been called together to hear it. It was a rending tale of some brave and good man terribly hurt a long time ago. He suffered a dreadful pain because there was something that needed to be done for mankind that no one else could do. The boy wept beside his mother in the family pew, shrinking shamefacedly back into his corner. But the rest of the people seemed to be strangely tranquil. Later, when the boy questioned his mother, she only said that we must not take things too much to heart—people would think us odd and foolish if we did.

In all generations men have been both indifferent and ashamed of God's unspeakable gift of grace. This is man's folly: to turn to his land and to his estate, to his sports and his amusements, then count them as the principal things of which to be proud, the only things worthy of his time, energy, thought, and sacrifice.

We ought to listen to Jesus Christ with the utmost earnestness and seriousness. We ought to glory in Him who alone has the answers to all our questions. Let us take to heart God's supreme gift to us.

The peril of cowardice is best vanquished by an acknowledged appreciation of all that God is. The peril of being ashamed of Christ is most effectively overcome by one's response to the God-Man who gave His life for our redemption. The bane of religious boredom is banished as we contemplate the immortal love of God, who refused to surrender His children on earth to eternal loss. It is not enough to stand up within the walls of a church to sing praises to God. Before the callous indifference of an unbelieving world, we must witness courageously, unashamed of Christ, unashamed of His church, and of His last message to the world.

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