Spiritual Musings from an Educated Redneck

An inside look of the mind of Pirate Pops

Archive for the month “April, 2013”

REAL HEROES

What is a hero?  Is it a professional athlete that performs well on the field of play?  Many seem to think so.  We can certainly appreciate the ability but I don’t think that’s a hero. Is it someone who makes millions of dollars in business or the stock market and so others look up to him or her?  Many seem to think so.  We can appreciate their shrewd and strategic thinking, but I don’t think so.  That’s not a hero.

A hero is someone who does something heroic for someone else, at his or her own peril.  Being a hero is about personal sacrifice. 

Just this week we have seen it happen in two places in America.  Some coward planted two bombs near the finish of the Boston Marathon, killing three and wounding hundreds more.  Heroes?  Those runners who immediately stopped and helped others.  Those onlookers who stayed to help others.  Those officials, who, rather than running from the blast, ran toward it to help the hurting.  Those are our heroes.

Then just the next day a fertilizer plant caught fire and then exploded in the small community of West, Texas, just north of Waco.  When the fire began those first responders, volunteer firemen and officers, began moving toward the fire, knowing this was a fertilizer plant and what the potential was for an explosion.  Sure enough, before the fire could be extinguished, a massive explosion went off, immediately killing at least five of the first responders.  Heroes?  Without a doubt.  They went toward the danger for the sake of others and in this case gave their lives in the effort.

So often the true heroes aren’t the ones who are widely known or recognized.  That’s true in the Bible as well.  The Bible has many heroes who one could immediately identify as such.  It has a few that you wouldn’t immediately think of in terms of a hero.  Nevertheless they are, because of what they did for the sake of others and the Gospel.

This week I heard a speaker at a banquet speak about one of those unusual heroes.  He did so in a humorous way, and it is in some ways humorous, but it is also incredibly indicative of the heart of a hero.  His name was Timothy. 

You see Paul was getting ready to go on a missionary journey and the discussion was being held about who would accompany him.  Someone mentioned Timothy.  A young man, perhaps at the most, thirty years of age.  A Godly and committed Christ follower.  Paul agreed that would be a great choice.  There was only one problem.  Timothy was the son of a Jewish mother and a gentile father.  Because of that, he had never been circumcised.

Now Paul had already dealt with this issue, that it wasn’t necessary to be circumcised (to first become a Jew), in order to become a Christian.  But he also knew that as a practical matter, he would be going into the synagogues of the Jews to preach Jesus and having an uncircumcised person with him would be a stumbling block to the Jews.

So he asked Timothy to be circumcised.  Timothy, a grown man, understanding that it had nothing to do with his spiritual standing in Christ, agreed to be circumcised in order to promote the Gospel among the Jews. 

The banquet speaker said it this way.  So here is Timothy, being held down by four big men, and up steps the one who is going to do the procedure.  He has a sharp piece of flint in one hand, and no anesthetic in the other!!!  Now, I’ve got to tell you, that’s a real man!  That’s a real hero!  Timothy took one for the team!  Layed it all out on the line (or table), for the Gospel!! 

Why?  For the sake of others.  He did what he didn’t have to do, wasn’t required to do, in order to promote the Gospel among the Jews, who were the only ones who would have cared whether he was circumcised or not.

Side note here.  How would they have known whether he was circumcised or not?  Wouldn’t it have been on the honor system?  Just a thought.  Not really germane to the discussion.

In terms of our discussion of the heroes of Boston and West, Texas, Timothy ran to the blast rather than away from it.  He ran to the fire rather than away from it.  Why?  For the sake of others. 

How about it?  Are you a hero for the Gospel?  The question isn’t answered by how many people know your name.  It isn’t answered by how prominent you are.  It is answered by what you are willing to do for the sake others who need Christ.

That’s a real Hero!  Real heroes run to the fire not away from it. 

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