Today marks a most significant change in the direction of this study on the essentials of the Christian life. Up to this time, we’ve either been drilling below the surface into an unseen relationship with an ever-present yet invisible God, or we’ve been in relationship with “brothers and sisters” in the amazing gathering He’s called both “Bride” and “Church.” These have been relatively safe and totally within the bounds of the Family of God. However, on the subject of safety, I love the lines from C.S. Lewis’ classic The Lion, the Witch, and the Wardrobe, when Lucy and Susan are about to meet Aslan (the Lion who represents Christ in the allegory):
“But shall we see him?” asked Susan.
“Why, Daughter of Eve, that’s what I brought you here for. I’m to lead you where you shall meet him,” said Mr. Beaver.
“Is – is he a man?” asked Lucy.
“Aslan a man!” said Mr. Beaver sternly. “Certainly not. I tell you he is the King of the wood and the son of the great Emperor-beyond-the-Sea. Don’t you know who is the King of Beasts? Aslan is a lion – the Lion, the great Lion.”
“Ooh!” said Susan, “I’d thought he was a man. Is he – quite safe? I shall feel rather nervous about meeting a lion.”
“That you will, dearie, and no mistake,” said Mrs. Beaver; “if there’s anyone who can appear before Aslan without their knees knocking, they’re either braver than most or else just silly.”
“Then he isn’t safe?” said Lucy.
“Safe?” said Mr. Beaver; “don’t you hear what Mrs. Beaver tells you? Who said anything about safe? ‘Course he isn’t safe. But he’s good. He’s the King I tell you.”
Safe? Who said anything about safe? What a great line! And as we step deeper into our walk with Christ, we realize that having bound up the broken hearted, having strengthened the weak knees and feeble hearts, He’s exchanged in us a spirit of fear and replaced it with a power and boldness that is not of us. Is the life He’s called us to “safe”? (I feel like the Beaver giving you this news!) I can’t find “safe” as a promise in the Scriptures! But what I do find is GOOD! “Every good and perfect gift is from above, coming down from the Father of the heavenly lights, who does not change like shifting shadows” James 1:17 (cf. Romans 8:28-30).
As you re-examine the study outline, you find the other horizontal spoke had been named “Witness.” The Word & Prayer are all about our primary relationship with Christ. Fellowship is all about our relationship with the “supporting cast” around us. Yet there is another group of people, in fact a whole world of people, who have yet to be captured into the orbit of the King of Kings. They live either trying to make themselves the center of everything OR they are in orbit around something totally unworthy of worship… having made gods out of career, money, possessions, etc. In the next few weeks, we’ll unfold what God reveals in His Word about the amazing calling He (the King of Kings) has on our lives as we shine into a dark world. We’ll also discover what we shouldn’t be – the jobs that we are to keep our hands OFF OF that relate to the expansion of the kingdom of God into the darkened hearts of men. This won’t be safe – but I promise will be SO good, rich, and meaningful.
1 Peter 1:23 says “For you have been born again, not of perishable seed, but of imperishable, through the living and enduring word of God.” What is the difference between perishable seed and imperishable seed?
Give an example of perishable seed:
What role does the Word of God play in creating a “new birth” in us?
For you have been born again, not of perishable seed, but of imperishable, through the living and enduring word of God.
For I am not ashamed of the gospel, because it is the power of God that brings salvation to everyone who believes: first to the Jew, then to the Gentile.