Sunday, July 29, 2012

Extreme Author

India: William Carey

“They just can’t do this,” exclaimed William. “Can’t you see how wrong it is?”

“Look, most of the people in this town think it’s the right thing to do,” replied the exasperated government official. “It’s part of their religion.”

William questioned, “How is tying a living woman to her dead husband and burning them together the right thing to do?”

With this, the official threw up his hands. “William,” he answered, “one man alone can’t change this. Just give it up and go back to tending your flock.”

When his denomination said that “God alone” would convert heathens in pagan countries, William ignored them and embarked on one of the most successful missionary journeys in church history. In addition, he taught himself several languages and published a book that became the source for the modern missionary movement. He also translated the New Testament into thirty-four languages and the Old Testament into eight.

William Carey fought for years against the practice in India of burning wives alive with their dead husbands. Eventually, despite government opposition, he succeeded in getting the burnings banned.

Carey spent his life as an innovator for Christ, facing hardships to make a difference. And he was known for encouraging others to “Expect great things from God; attempt great things for God” (based on Isaiah 54:2-3).

William Carey did just that.

Most people fall into the following categories when it comes to sharing their faith: go-go, slow-go, and no-go. When Jesus calls Christians to go into the world and make disciples, some respond with great fervor. Like William Carey, they go and go for the gospel. Still others respond, but only halfheartedly, slowing down with age or the busyness of their schedule. Sadly, many believers are no-go Christians. They hear the command, but they figure that someone else will do it. Which category best describes your response to Jesus’ call to evangelism? Ask God to renew a desire to share your faith with others. If you are expecting great things from his answer, then be prepared to attempt great things in his name.

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