Summary: The call of Christ is for the true believer to "Walk Tall" for the sake of the gospel.
It is located in Tennessee, on the Mississippi-Tennesee state line, and it is name "McNary County". Many, if not all, will recognize this county by reputation and story if not by name. In the early 1960’s the area around the state line had become an area of ill-repute. The story is told that either the sheriff was afraid of the organization or that he had been bribed to overlook the illegal activities. In 1964 – a new sheriff was elected. A former Marine, former wrestler, Buford Pusser was a force to be reckoned with. Over the next 6-8 years, he set out to clean up his home (county) which he dearly loved. Several movies were made of his actions and activities as he sought to clean up the illegal and immoral activities. Most of us remember the title, “WALKING TALL.” The mantra of Buford Pusser was “Walk Tall” and carry a big stick.
I submit that “walking tall” is a term used for anyone who goes against the grain, the tide of the society, and seeks to make a difference. We can find, read, and understand the many people in scripture who walked tall. Some of these would be; Elijah, Daniel, Post-Pentecost Peter, Paul, Stephen, and the list goes on.
Today, our culture begs for people to “Walk Tall”, to stand for “truth” and “right” and to stand against evil and wrong. Will you be one? It takes no effort to go with the “flow”.
This past week, God was in the house. Bro. Wayne, Bro. Todd and Alicia – invited us to be “renewed in our spirits, our hearts, and our lives.”
This is now the time for our testing. Will we walk tall? Can we walk tall? HOW? Let’s Read our Text today.
Question is: HOW do we walk tall? What do we do to walk tall? Submit the text gives some instructions. It we are to walk tall there are some things we need to KNOW. Be Reminded that, in 1 John, John uses the word “KNOW” over 30 times.
1) KNOW THE TIMES – We are not talking about your clocks, watches, cellphones, or computers. We are talking about the “times”, the ages, the culture in which we live.
a) Historically, we live in the age of “enlightenment”, the age of ”information”, the age of “communication.” Consider that in the 1990’s for the first time we watch a war on television “as it happened.” Who would have even considered this possibility in days past. Yet, with this increased connection and communication comes increased responsibility. Why is this? Because of the increase of temptation and sin which accompanies this.
b) Biblically -
i) "The last time" (or "the last hour") is a term that reminds us that a new age has dawned on the world. "The darkness is past, and the true light now shineth" (1 John 2:8). ii) Since the death and resurrection of Jesus, Christ, God is doing a "new thing" in this world. All of Old Testament history prepared the way for the work of Christ on the cross, All history since that time is merely preparation for the return of Jesus. There is nothing more that God must do for the salvation of sinners.
c) Personally – The Bibles says, “today is your day of decision, now is the time to be saved”. Maybe you have invited Christ into your life and know Him in a personal way. Could it be that the next step is beginning the trek of “walking tall” for Him. I am reminded of Joshua as he was passing off the scene. His famous challenge to the people of God still rings true today. “Choose you this day whom you will serve” needs to be the clarion cry for the believers today. In 2 Chronicles 16:9 we read, “the eyes of the Lord range through out the earth..” God is still looking for people to walk tall. He probably needs more “walkers” than “talkers”. Many will attend a service like this and give all the correct, pat, “Sunday School” answers to important questions, but never really give their lives to what their lips are saying.
i) Today it is Time for you to “surrender” to Christ. Yes, that sounds like a “giving up”, waving the white flag of surrender because most of us have the stubborn, prideful part of our lives which does not want to give up so easily.
ii) Today is also a Time for you to “sell out” to Christ. Remember the only man who can’t be bought is one who has already been sold. Most of us sell out to something. We sell out to our vocation, our family, our possession, our prestige, but Jesus calls us to sell out to Him. He teaches us that, “no one can serve two masters.”