Gospel Gazette Online
Volume 20 Number 7 July 2018
Page 8

Kneeling

Raymond Elliott

Raymond ElliottThe physical act of kneeling is normally associated with an attitude of humility and a submissive will of the individual doing the kneeling. Normally, it is not done in protest. Often a person will kneel and pray, asking God to heal his loved one who is critically ill. We have seen a grieving widow kneeling beside the flag covered casket containing the body of her husband who was killed during combat.

Luke records in Acts 20:36 and in Acts 21:5 that the apostle Paul “knelt down and prayed” before he left his brothers and sisters in Christ and continued on his journey to Jerusalem. It must have been a very emotional scene as men, perhaps weeping, thought that they would not see the apostle again.

Bible students are acutely aware of Stephen, the first martyr for Christ (Acts 7). He was being stoned to death by those people who were opposed to the truth he was preaching. The last words recorded by Luke that Stephen uttered appears in Acts 7:60. It reads, “Then he knelt down and cried out with a loud voice, ‘Lord do not charge them with this sin,’ And when he had said this, he fell asleep.” How merciful and forgiving was this servant of God, while kneeling, knowing his death was imminent!

Jesus Christ, while in the Garden of Gethsemane, “knelt down and prayed.” Our Lord was a humble servant of His Father and He prayed, “Father, if it is Your will, take this cup away from Me; nevertheless not My will, but Yours, be done” (Luke 22:41-41). Jesus knew of the terrible suffering and death He was about to experience, but He was submissive to His Father’s will, knowing that His death on Calvary’s cross would grant salvation to all who would surrender their lives to Him. In Hebrews 5:8-9, we read, “Though He was a Son, yet He learned obedience by the things which He suffered, And having been perfected, He became the author of eternal salvation to all who obey Him.”

Our precious Savior suffered death that we might live—in Him. We all should kneel before the cross of Christ, being obedient to His will for us to do. In Romans 6:1-4, we learn that we should die to sin and be buried with Him in baptism so that we can be resurrected to walk in newness of life. It is when we obey that form of doctrine (death, burial and resurrection of Jesus) that we are freed from sin and become servants of righteousness (Romans 6:17-18).

In the hymn, “Kneel at the Cross,” we have these encouraging and comforting thoughts: “Kneel at the cross, Christ will meet you there, He intercedes for you; Lift up your voice, Leave with Him your care And begin life anew. Kneel at the cross, Leave every care. Kneel at the cross, Jesus will meet you there.”


Life Is a Marathon, Not a Sprint

Dean Kelly

Dean KellyThe baby is born. From the first cry, all the baby knows is, “I need this now!” There is no time beyond right now. “I need to eat, now. It’s 2:00 in the morning; what does that mean? All I know is I am hungry!”

As the child grows, hopefully there is greater and greater recognition that there is more than right now. Some grasp it at a younger age, some much later (maybe never). Maturity brings the recognition that life is not a sprint, but a marathon.

Spirituality We must not “flame up and flame out” spiritually. We have a “course to run.” As Paul faced death, he could confidently say, “I have finished my course” (2 Timothy 4:7). Jesus told the churches of Asia, “Be faithful unto death” (Revelation 2:10). Our spiritual life will have ups-and-downs, but we just have to keep going.

Marriage Too many couples today seem to view marriage as a sprint, so when things get hard, they are ready to give up and quit. Only when a couple enters marriage viewing it as a lifelong marathon will it be successful, knowing that it is worth the run!

Life If we are blessed with years, we realize life is a marathon. It has those wonderful parts that light our lives up and give lasting memories. It has the little things that bring a smile to our faces, those sweet, tiny things. For example, the phone rings, and a little 18-month-old voice says, “Hey Pawpaw.” What a precious memory! There will be pain, tears and loss. Yet, in the end, the race will finish, and all the effort, pain, joy and perseverance will be worth it. May you, at whatever part of your marathon in which you find yourself, “run with patience the race that is set before you.”


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