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Archive for July 29th, 2018

Screen Shot 2018-07-28 at 9.38.04 PMI cannot remember when or where I heard it, but I doubt I will ever forget the acronym K.I.S.S. for Keep It Simple Stupid.

Life can get easier when we replace the confusing with the clear, the complicated with the simple.

When the Christian church first began, in a most unexpected way, there was a K.I.S.S principle that was loud and clear (though maybe a bit smokey).

It began at Pentecost, when all who were gathered in Jerusalem for the Feast of Weeks were (literally) lit by the Holy Spirit.

This is what Christian community was birthed from, and it wasn’t without it’s doubters, as some thought that those speaking in the tongues of other nations were simply a little too full of the liquid spirits.

There are always cynics, always doubters.

The apostle Peter addressed the crowd, explaining the legitimacy of what was happening in terms of the prophesies of Joel, and the prophecies of their very own David, who shared the bloodline of their very own Messiah and Savior.

When the people heard the reference to their David, “they were cut to the heart and said to Peter and the other apostles, “Brothers, what shall we do?” (Acts 2:37)

This is conviction, and …

 conviction of truth always makes us willing to do something.

Now, here’s a bit of bad news for those who teach and preach …

conviction does not come from the messenger,
but from the source of truth

Awhile back I watched an interview between Woody Allen and Billy Graham. As one might imagine it was a conversation of opposites in so many ways. It was also a conversation of light-hearted laughter … from both individuals. What I was reminded of was that Billy Graham understood and utilized the ultimate source of truth. When a question was asked of him, he did not respond with “I think …” but with “the Bible says …” He understood that it was not his words or thoughts that would convict, but the only source of truth we have at our disposal … the word of God.

And how did Peter respond to the conviction of the people gathered at Pentecost?

“Peter replied, “Repent and be baptized, every one of you, in the name of Jesus Christ for the forgiveness of your sins. And you will receive the gift of the Holy Spirit. The promise is for you and your children and for all who are far off—for all whom the Lord our God will call.” Acts 2:38-39)

Peter didn’t pull that message out of his … hat. This was not his instruction for the people gathered, who were to become the early Christian church. This was the message that he received at the feet of Jesus himself … Jesus who is the truth incarnate.

For it was when the raised-from-the-dead Jesus commissioned his disciples that the truth of the instruction for conviction was given:

“Therefore go and make disciples of all nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father and of the Son and of the Holy Spirit, and teaching them to obey everything I have commanded you. And surely I am with you always, to the very end of the age.” (Matthew 28:19-20)

There were no baptismal or membership classes to take, for this challenge was between truth that convicts, and the individual who is hearing the truth … with clarity that no other teacher or preacher can deliver.

Conviction is the igniting of the spark of the Holy Spirit

The passage, in Acts, ends with an alter call to be baptized, “and about three thousand were added to their number that day.” (Acts 2:41)

They believed, and were baptized

It was that simple … it is that simple.

If we are convicted by truth, our conviction must cause us to do something. The next step is not dependent on first getting the whole of our lives in order. It does not require us to first cleanse our lives of every sin, or attend a class.

The Bible tells us what that when we experience such a conviction we simply must repent, and be baptized. Easie peasie. No perfection required, just obedience.

This is keeping things simple … K.I.S.S. principle, simple.

 

 

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