by Barry Newton
Simply living for Christ is not enough. Even the apostle Paul and Barnabas experienced this firsthand. Upon entering Lystra, their actions had dramatically honored God. A local resident had been healed. Did the townsfolk understand? Had Paul’s and Barnabas’ Christian lives communicated God’s message? Absolutely not.
The people of Lystra apparently remembered an old myth about how their ancestors had dearly paid the price for failing to be hospitable to the gods Zeus and Hermes. This time they were determined not to mess things up.
Since people interpret the actions of others based upon their own frames of reference, those of Lystra misunderstood Paul’s actions. Even with Paul and Barnabas desperately proclaiming they were only men and trying to point the crowds to the true God, “they had difficulty keeping the crowd from sacrificing to them.” (Acts 14:18)
What do you suppose happens when we live for God, but never vocally explain to others why we live as we do for God? Do they automatically get it? No.
If God is going to use us for his purposes to spread the aroma of Christ, we must both live the Christian life and be verbal about our Lord. “Faith comes by hearing.” (Romans 10:17)

2 Replies to “Misunderstood”

  1. Barry is spot on with this message. Too many of us as Christians think our example is enough. Maybe we do this out of fear of confrontation. Somehow we convinced ourselves that if we live right in front of our neighbors they will ask about God/Christ. When this happens, such is the exception not the rule. Let;s determine to speak aloud the message of GREAT NEWS!

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