Get The Rhyme and Reason Podcast Delivered, Free Apple Podcasts | Google Podcasts | Spotify | Amazon Music | Android | Pandora | iHeartRadio | Stitcher | Podchaser | Podcast Index | Email | TuneIn | Deezer | RSS | MoreYou’ve probably seen one of those movies or TV shows where tough guys (and these days “tough girls”) compare their war wounds. I just saw another one of those comparisons on a rerun of a show I really liked back in the twenty-teens. The first guy said something about a knife slice across his arm. And the second guy one-ups him with a gunshot scar on his shoulder. And so on and so on.
Life can be like that. Wonderful one day. War wounds the next.
One day you’re on your game. And you’re tempted to think you’ve got it goin’ on. But then the next day the hammer drops. And your metaphorical thumb (or even your real one) gets in the way. Bam! War wounds. But you ain’t seen nothin’.
You wanna see real deep and abiding marks? Not just scars in the skin. But also marks across the heart. Well, I can tell you who could tell you a thing or 28 about those kinds of marks. He’s a guy named Paul. And what did he do to attract so much contempt? Well, he dared to usher in a whole new message about God’s grace. How dare he?!
Wait. Play that back again. Paul ushered in a whole new message about God’s grace. Hang on. That actually doesn’t sound like a bad thing. I mean who couldn’t use at least a little extra grace these days? Am I right? < rhetorical question Well, I bet Paul would have wished it could be that simple. But he went through a LOT to share his gospel. In fact, there were 28 marks (indicators) of what it cost him.
1. in much patience
2. in tribulations
3. in needs
4. in distresses
5. in stripes
6. in imprisonments
7. in tumults
8. in labors
9. in sleeplessness
10. in fastings
11. by purity
12. by knowledge
13. by longsuffering
14. by kindness
15. by the Holy Spirit
16. by sincere love
17. by the word of truth
18. by the power of God
19. by the armor of righteousness on the right hand and on the left
20. by honor and dishonor
21. by evil report and good report
22. as deceivers, and yet true
23. as unknown, and yet well known
24. as dying, and behold we live
25. as chastened, and yet not killed
26. as sorrowful, yet always rejoicing
27. as poor, yet making many rich
28. as having nothing, and yet possessing all things.
And those marks are still available if you want some.
Because, these days, even in America, you’re gonna pay dearly, one way or another, if you take a stand for Jesus. So, why would anybody wanna talk about Him and suffer the physical, mental, and emotional war wounds?
Well, that’s because He suffered way more than anyone else will ever suffer. And He did it to make sure I don’t have to suffer forever. Oh yeah, so you don’t have to suffer forever either. Sadly, most people would rather suffer.
I guess they think one day they’ll all compare their war wounds at a crazy cool party in hell. I disagree. But who am I to judge?
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