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A Heart For God: The Perfect Testimony

Friday, July 10, 2009

The Perfect Testimony

Journey to the Celestial City #55. In our continuing look at John Bunyan's "Pilgrim's Progress," today we find the man, Christian, and his companion, Faithful, having endured physical affliction, their testimony has the following effect. The mistreaters are put at odds with partners among them. These note the pilgrims' patient response while abused and how there are in Vanity Fair men more worthy of such judgment than they. Blows are thrown. The melee only turns back towards Christian and Faithful where they are put upon again with much beating and mockery. Yet the two "[behave] themselves yet more wisely, and [receive] the ignominy and shame that [is] cast upon them, with so much meekness and patience, that it [wins] to their side (though but few in comparison to the rest) several of the men of the fair." And we're being watched. And at all times. We're being watched by the unchurched, unbelievers - the lost. And very closely. They've got their eyes trained on us and our response. Are they seeing the perfect testimony even when they mistreat us? "Now when they heard this, they were cut to the quick, and they began gnashing their teeth at [Stephen]. But being full of the Holy Spirit, he gazed intently into heaven and saw the glory of God, and Jesus standing at the right hand of God; and he said, 'Behold, I see the heavens opened up and the Son of Man standing at the right hand of God.' But they cried out with a loud voice and covered their ears, and they rushed upon him with one impulse. And when they had driven him out of the city, they began stoning him, and the witnesses laid aside their robes at the feet of a young man named Saul. And they went on stoning Stephen as he called upon the Lord and said, 'Lord Jesus, receive my spirit!' And falling on his knees, he cried out with a loud voice, 'Lord, do not hold this sin against them!' And having said this, he fell asleep." (Acts 7:54-60) More to come in the next blog post. Check back soon. (To read this entire blog post series, scroll down to "Pilgrim's Progress Series" in the left sidebar.) pp 84

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