They did not love their lives so much as to shrink from death. (Rev. 12:11)
Here we are invited to reflect on the martyrs who laid down their lives for the sake of the gospel. When John wrote this passage, there were already many, and he foresaw that there would be many more as the kingdom of God came into conflict with the kingdoms of this world.
Yet God never wastes anything. The testimonies of these men and women who loved the gospel more than their very lives were the seeds that grew the early church. Within the first three hundred years, the church grew from seventy people in the upper room to become the religion of the entire Roman Empire. The gospel of Jesus Christ is an unstoppable force, and nothing feeds the spread of the gospel more than the testimonies of the faithful and the power of the Spirit.
Martin Luther encouraged us that “the God whom we worship is not weak and incompetent. He can beat back gigantic waves of opposition and bring low prodigious mountains of evil. The ringing testimony of the Christian faith is that God is able.”
How might the Spirit be encouraging you to share your testimony today, showing someone close to you that God is (still) able?
Live your life as a testimony to the One who is able!
Jeremy Summers is an ordained Wesleyan pastor with a doctorate in spiritual formation. He is passionate about discipleship and church multiplication, and probably drinks too much coffee.
© 2022 Wesleyan Publishing House. Reprinted from Light from the Word. Used by permission. Scriptures taken from the Holy Bible, New International Version®, NIV®.