Boldness

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The next time a situation arises and the Holy Spirit rises within you, compelling you to speak or to act on behalf of your Lord, be bold! Be a Christian.

Ephesians 6:19-20 (NLT)

And pray for me, too. Ask God to give me the right words so I can boldly explain God’s mysterious plan that the Good News is for Jews and Gentiles alike. I am in chains now, still preaching this message as God’s ambassador. So pray that I will keep on speaking boldly for him, as I should.

It’s something we don’t see much of these days: Bold Christianity. I’m not talking about a loud, obnoxious, in-your-face kind of Christianity…just the kind that speaks when it should, engages when it should, goes when it should, and cares enough to act when it should. The kind of Christianity that doesn’t hide in a corner for fear of retribution or keep it’s mouth shut for fear of embarrassment.

In the Book of Acts the characteristic of boldness is on display over and over again. The Greek word is “parhessia” and there are more than a dozen English words used to translate this idea throughout Scripture: boldness, forthrightness, frankness, confidence, plainness and outspokenness are just a few. Peter boldly proclaims the Gospel message to a large crowd and thousands get saved. Stephen boldly rebukes the religious leaders and it gets him stoned to death. Peter and John boldly defy the orders of the Pharisees and it amazes their accusers. Boldness, it seems, was the mark of the early church.

Fast forward to today. Boldness in America won’t get you stoned or imprisoned or exiled. It might cause some situational discomfort or some public resentment or even some private rebuke, but that’s a pretty small price to pay for standing up for your faith, don’t you think? So, the next time a situation arises and the Holy Spirit rises within you, compelling you to speak or to act on behalf of your Lord, be bold! Be a Christian.

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