Summary: 1- Don’t be ashamed - you’ve been saved and called 2- Don’t be ashamed - you’ve been given grace 3- Don’t be ashamed - you’ve been given a ministry
INTRO.- ILL.- The London Missionary Society almost lost the most prominent missionary of the nineteenth century when they were considering him because the candidate forgot his sermon. Had it not been for one member of the society’s board, they probably would have rejected the young man. The candidate was David Livingstone.
Livingstone (March 1813–1 May 1873) was the Scottish Congregationalist pioneer medical missionary with the London Missionary Society and explorer in Africa. His meeting with H. M. Stanley gave rise to the popular quotation, "Dr. Livingstone, I presume?"
James I. McNair, writing in Livingstone the Liberator, told about Livingstone’s embarrassing time: he took his text, read it very deliberately and then his sermon fled his mind.
“Friends,” said the flunking missionary, “I have forgotten all I have to say.” And hurrying out of the pulpit, he left the chapel.
David Livingstone, the missionary, had a complete lapse of memory. DID THAT EVER HAPPEN TO YOU? How embarrassing that would be or could be! But there are worse things to be embarrassed about or ashamed of.
ILL.- When Canada’s Justice Landreville of the Ontario Supreme Court admitted before a Senate-Commons investigating committee that “I often lie on minor matters,” many Canadians were shocked. A man who is vested with the responsibility for handing out justice, and who had often commanded those before the bar to “tell the truth, the whole truth, and nothing but the truth, so help me God,” had himself handled the truth loosely.
That judge should have been ashamed of himself! Have you ever been ashamed of anything you’ve done in life? WHO HASN’T?
ILL.- One day while passing a house of ill repute, Socrates, the famous Greek thinker, noticed one of his students inside. Stepping to the doorway, Socrates called out to his disciple. The latter hid himself, as Adam did when he committed the first sin. However, the youth finally had to show himself. His face was red with shame. He hung his head, expecting a stern rebuke from his teacher. But Socrates spoke in the tones of a true father:
“Come forth, my son, I pray you, come forth! To leave this house is not disgraceful; the only disgraceful thing was to have entered it.”
Chances are you’ve never been to a prostitute house, but the truth is we’ve all sinned and come short of the glory of God. And for those sins we all are ashamed and prefer not to think about them.
However, there is something for which we should never be ashamed and that is our faith in Jesus Christ!
PROP.- In our text, Paul clearly states: DON’T BE ASHAMED. And then he tells us why.
1- Don’t be ashamed - you’ve been saved and called
2- Don’t be ashamed - you’ve been given grace
3- Don’t be ashamed - you’ve been given a ministry
I. DON’T BE ASHAMED - YOU’VE BEEN SAVED AND CALLED
8 So do not be ashamed to testify about our Lord, or ashamed of me his prisoner. But join with me in suffering for the gospel, by the power of God, 9 who has saved us and called us to a holy life—not because of anything we have done but because of his own purpose and grace.
Saved and called to a holy life. Why then should we be ashamed in this life?
ILL..- When I was 18 or 19 years old I had my first major car wreck but thank God, no one else was involved and no other car was involved. I was going to work at Safeway near 10 p.m. and had a wreck on a back road, going to Joplin, MO. I was driving along about 50 mph on a back road that I was not familiar with and suddenly it made a sharp 90 degree turn to the left, which I never made. I saw that I was going to hit a telephone pole so I quickly laid down in the front seat. Somehow I missed the pole but still sideswiped it and the guy wire as I went between them and then took out a farmer’s wooden fence.
Thank God I was saved! Saved from what? I was saved from death and also any serious physical harm. God saved me so He could save me later on! He saved me physically so He could save me spiritually, because I wasn’t ready at that time.
Saved. When you say that you’re saved most people in the world will want to know what you’re saved from: car wrecks, bad accidents, financial ruin, etc. And we have been saved from something or several things.
Do you know what you’re saved from? Sin. The devil. Death. (in the sense that death is not the end if you’re in Christ). Hell.
Have you been saved from sin? Basically, yes, but I know that you still struggle with certain sins. How do I know? BECAUSE I DO TOO. The young man may be old but the old man is still alive and active. In other words, we think of sin as youthful thing but sin still haunts in various ways even when we age. AM I CORRECT? You may not have a lust problem but there may be other problems. And lust is still a problem for most of us even when we age, that is, lust for material things or comfort or even laziness. Yes, laziness is a sin.