Summary: Introduction 1.
1. A number of years ago, when Margaret and I answered God's call to go into ministry, one of the most important things we had to do was to sell our house. The equity in the house would help pay for all our living and schooling costs for three years. We decided to try and sell the house privately. That way we would not need to pay any real estate commission. We placed ads in the newspapers and had a for-sale sign made.
2. One thing we felt strongly about was that we were not going to be in the business of trying to sell our house on Sunday. We wondered if we should even leave the for-sale up on Sundays. Some of our friends said that we should. It was on Sunday that most buyers drove around looking for houses. To leave the sign out would not be doing any work. Maybe they were right and maybe they were not, but for us it was an important issue. As we prayed about it, I realized that some people would probably think that we were being fanatical. And yet we thought that the decision to take it down could also be a strong witness to our faith. A faith that tries to follow God’s word, not out of necessity, but out of a desire to serve Him. And if we believed He had called us into ministry, could He not also enable us to sell it, even by not advertising on Sundays. So we decided to take the sign down on Sundays.
3. On a Friday evening we put up our for sale sign. That attracted a lot of attention. Only a few neighbours knew of our plans. Late Saturday night, I took down the sign. That Sunday afternoon, many of my neighbours came over surprised we had sold the house so unbelievably fast. Many of them were not believers and we explained to them why we had taken it down.
4. I told them taking the taking the sign down was not that a hard and fast rule, but something we felt convicted of. That day and the next I had witnessed more to my faith then ever before.
5. We took, what for us at least, was a bold step in faith. We did something that let other people know that we were different. And because of it we had the opportunity to share about our love for Jesus and our trust in Him.
6. Being bold about our faith is not necessarily easy for most of us. As I look back over my life, there have been many opportunities for me to be bold in faith, and I have to confess that I often failed to take these opportunities.
7. I ask each of you this morning, "Are you bold for Jesus Christ? Do you stand before those who do not believe and tell them what Jesus Christ means to you?"
8. Many of us seem to face a major crisis each time we feel that we should take a stand or share our faith with others. Perhaps it means not going out with the boys after work. Perhaps it means telling your classmates why you go to church when it is time to deliver a speech. Perhaps it means sharing God’s love with the neighbour next door. Perhaps it means telling a saleslady that she has undercharged us and when she asks why we told her, letting her know it is because Jesus would want you to. I rememeber telling board member (NRYH) that it bothered me when he uses Jesus’ name in vain.
9. To be bold does not mean to be arrogant and to insensitively push our faith on people. It means taking a stand based on our relationship with Jesus and then letting people know why we took our stand. Letting people know that we are serious about our faith. That we have a deep desire to follow and obey Jesus. That Jesus is Lord of our lives.
10. Are you bold for your faith? Do those around you who are not believers know that you are different? As I said, this can be hard for many of us.
1. Today we look at how we can overcome this struggle and become more bold in our witness and walk. We take a look at the Peter and John. The day of Pentecost had just taken place. The believers were filled with the Holy Spirit. Peter had healed a blind beggar at the gate of the temple. Because of this many people came to see what happened. Peter pointed to Christ as the one who really performed the miracle and he proclaimed the good news.
2. As a result two things happened. The number of believers grew to 5,000 men. And Peter and John were arrested.