Total Commitment for Total Involvement
Editorial by Jerry Lutz
It is remarkable to see how God can use the least likely people to do amazing things. For example, take the apostles Peter and John. The New Testament reveals enough about their personal lives from before they knew Jesus to all but guarantee they’d be overlooked as candidates for discipleship, let alone commissioned for key leadership in His church. While these Galilean fishermen were indeed colorful individuals with as coarse and unrefined characters as they come, Jesus sdaw in them what others did not: Potential. And what potential there was!
After living in His presence for some 3 1/2 years and undergoing conversion and a slow but steady radical transformation, Acts 4 describes Peter and John under the influence of the Holy Spirit. They were boldly proclaiming the gospel, but the pious, hypocritical, short-sighted religious leaders were out to silence them permanently, just as they thought they had silenced Jesus. One of the most telling and instructive statements the apostles made during the dialogue with their accusers is in verse 20: “For we cannot but speak the things which we have seen and heard” (KJV). They were referring, of course, to the life, death and resurrection of Jesus, which had changed their lives forever. These men were totally committed to Jesus. He was their Lord, their Savior and their friend. And moreover, they would not be prevented from sharing the Good News.
Later in life, both apostles would give similar testimonies of their unrelenting devotion to Jesus. In 2 Peter 1:16, we read, “For we have not followed cunningly devised fables, when we made known unto you the power and coming of our Lord Jesus Christ, but were eyewitnesses of His majesty” (KJV). Similarly, John describes his personal experience with Jesus in 1 John 1: “That which was from the beginning, which we have heard, which we have seen with our eyes, which we have looked upon, and our hands have handled, of the Word of life; … And these things write we unto you, that your joy may be full” (verses 1, 4).
Total commitment. Total involvement in spreading the Good News. If He can use them, He can surely use any of us, if we are willing.
Jerry Lutz serves as president of the Chesapeake Conference.