Tuesday, December 29, 2009

A Barren Woman

He maketh the barren woman to keep house, and to be a joyful mother of children. Praise ye the LORD. (Psalms 113:9 KJV)

Mrs. Patty played the piano in our church for many years, before we were members and not nearly long enough. Shortly after our arrival she was diagnosed with cancer. She fought long. In spite of prayers and fasting that she might be healed and continue being an inspiration to us, the Lord took her home.

Having given birth to no child, nor adopting any, Mrs. Patty could be considered a barren woman.

How wrong that would be!!

She taught a children’s Sunday School class and was able to bring many of her students to the understanding that they needed God in their lives. She was an element of the being born again part of the gospel.

Jesus shocked Nicodemus with this information.

Jesus answered and said unto him, Verily, verily, I say unto thee, Except a man be born again, he cannot see the kingdom of God. (John 3:3 KJV)

An outright statement that on the surface just doesn’t make sense. Nicodemus called Jesus on this impossibility.

Nicodemus saith unto him, How can a man be born when he is old? can he enter the second time into his mother's womb, and be born? (John 3:4 KJV)

Evangelicals use the phrase more than other denominations, yet to ignore it also ignores the very center of the gospel. Christ’s discourse with Nicodemus explains the center of our faith. The first verse taught to most children by their faithful Sunday School teachers is:

For God so loved the world, that he gave his only begotten Son, that whosoever believeth in him should not perish, but have everlasting life. (John 3:16 KJV)

A century after Islam was formed, a caliphate minted the silver dirham, with a complete rejection of this verse on one side of these coins: "Allah is One, Allah is the Eternal. He begets not neither is He begotten." Which tells me how important this verse is in conveying God’s love and Christ’s divinity.

Accepting this verse, believing its truth, means a person acknowledges God as the creator, accepts that He loves enough to give of Himself and understands everlasting life is theirs. That’s the first part of His commandment.

Jesus said unto him, Thou shalt love the Lord thy God with all thy heart, and with all thy soul, and with all thy mind. This is the first and great commandment. (Matthew 22:37-38 KJV)

How could any woman who taught this and participated in the eternal birth of children ever be considered barren?

Why, then, do many churches experience difficulties in filling their classrooms with loving teachers? Have you discovered your ministry yet? Might it be showing God’s only begotten Son to those who need Him?

(drawing by unknown artist- arrived anonymously in an e-mail)

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