Thinking Thursday: Stewardship of the Gospel

How faithful are you in explaining the gospel as it’s given in the Bible?

The Holy Spirit has inspired men through the ages to set down God’s words and the record of his dealings with the children of Israel. Jesus came to live on earth as a man, and during his ministry he explained many things and set us an example of how to live in obedience to God. After Jesus’ death, men like Matthew, Mark, Luke, John and Paul were inspired to record what happened and explain the implications of it to us. Now we have a stewardship over those teachings. They are not ours, but we do have a responsibility to pass them on.

When we attempt to share the gospel, or to teach new Christians, we will often be asked to explain scripture or points of doctrine. What do you do when you don’t know the answer or aren’t sure? We can be tempted to say what we think, if we don’t know for sure, and we may not give the correct explanation. It’s best either to admit we don’t know for sure, or to clearly state that this explanation is merely our own opinion and not necessarily correct. Some people never share their faith because they are afraid of questions they can’t answer, but it’s OK to say you don’t know, but will find out.

The gospel is perfect and simple but Christ is no longer here to make sure it’s not corrupted or misread. It’s up to us to make sure we always get it right. This poem by Rudyard Kipling expresses this exactly and very strongly. Let’s all be faithful stewards regarding the purity and perfection of the gospel.

The Disciple

He that hath a Gospel
To loose upon Mankind,
Though he serve it utterly –
Body, soul and mind –
Though he go to Calvary
Daily for its gain –
It is His Disciple
Shall make his labour vain.

He that hath a Gospel
For all earth to own –
Though he etch it on the steel,
Or carve it on the stone –
Not to be misdoubted
Through the after-days –
It is His Disciple
Shall read it many ways.

It is His Disciple
(Ere Those Bones are dust)
Who shall change the Charter,
Who shall split the Trust –
Amplify distinctions,
Rationalise the claim;
Preaching that the Master
Would have done the same.

It is His Disciple
Who shall tell us how
Much the Master would have scrapped
Had he lived till now –
What he would have modified
Of what he said before.
It is His Disciple
Shall do this and more…

He that hath a Gospel
Whereby Heaven is won
(Carpenter, or Cameleer,
Or Maya’s dreaming son),
Many swords shall pierce Him,
Mingling blood with gall;
But His Own Disciple
Shall wound Him worst of all!

Rudyard Kipling

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About Ann Marie Thomas

Married since 1974, Christian since 1986, 4 children, 4 grand children, disabled with fibromyalgia but was working almost full time until a stroke in May 2010 changed my life completely. Writing poetry and making up stories since I was a child, I only started to write seriously when my children were grown. My main ambition is to write science fiction, but along the way I got distracted by local history and poetry about my stroke. Taking early retirement gave me the chance to concentrate on my writing. My book, Alina, The White Lady of Oystermouth, was published in print and ebook at Easter 2012. The success of Alina led to the publication of Broken Reed: The Lords of Gower and King John in September 2013, and The Magna Carta Story at Easter 2015. I am still writing science fiction - a series of novels called Flight of the Kestrel. For all my author news, see me author blog at www.annmariethomas.me.uk
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