For my Leaving Sermon at the end of my time studying at The Birmingham Bible Institute, the Holy Spirit gave me this verse as the subject.
The Lord Jesus said in Matthew 10:28 “Do not be afraid of those who kill the body but cannot kill the soul. Rather, be afraid of the One who can destroy both soul and body in hell.”
I could have shared about my ministry and all the signs and wonders. I could have shared how God used us, a very troubled family, to witness for the Lord Jesus.
But instead I was to warn those who would follow the Lord that they would face terrible dangers from the followers of Satan, the Devil – enemies of Jesus. Those who are not on the Lord’s side.
That was 27 years ago!
If you read my Testimony, you will see what has happened to me as I witnessed, if imperfectly at times, for my Lord Jesus. Yet I am still witnessing for him that others may hear and know how powerful and loving he is. His mercy towards me is probably more than I can say to you.
There have been other witnesses for the Lord Jesus and the following verses talk about the Apostles Peter and John.
After he came back from the dead, Jesus reinstates Peter, who had denied knowing him during his crucifixion, his death on the cross. Fear can make the best of us runaway from the truth!
John 21:15 When they had finished eating, Jesus said to Simon Peter, ‘Simon son of John, do you love me more than these?’
‘Yes, Lord,’ he said, ‘you know that I love you.’
Jesus said, ‘Feed my lambs.’
16 Again Jesus said, ‘Simon son of John, do you love me?’
He answered, ‘Yes, Lord, you know that I love you.’
Jesus said, ‘Take care of my sheep.’
17 The third time he said to him, ‘Simon son of John, do you love me?’
Peter was hurt because Jesus asked him the third time, ‘Do you love me?’ He said, ‘Lord, you know all things; you know that I love you.’
Jesus said, ‘Feed my sheep. 18 Very truly I tell you, when you were younger you dressed yourself and went where you wanted; but when you are old you will stretch out your hands, and someone else will dress you and lead you where you do not want to go.’ 19 Jesus said this to indicate the kind of death by which Peter would glorify God. Then he said to him, ‘Follow me!’
20 Peter turned and saw that the disciple whom Jesus loved was following them. (This was the one who had leaned back against Jesus at the supper and had said, ‘Lord, who is going to betray you?’) 21 When Peter saw him, he asked, ‘Lord, what about him?’ (The Apostle John)
22 Jesus answered, ‘If I want him to remain alive until I return, what is that to you? You must follow me.’ 23 Because of this, the rumour spread among the believers that this disciple would not die. But Jesus did not say that he would not die; he only said, ‘If I want him to remain alive until I return, what is that to you?’
24 This is the disciple who testifies to these things and who wrote them down. We know that his testimony is true.
25 Jesus did many other things as well. If every one of them were written down, I suppose that even the whole world would not have room for the books that would be written.
The above teaches us several interesting lessons:
1. These weak and fearful people knew that Jesus was their Lord and Saviour. They also knew that they had failed him and they bitterly regretted it.
2. The Lord Jesus was very clear and to the point when it came to communicating with them. He did not waffle or go into religious speak.
3. The Lord spoke as a Shepherd and described his true followers as his sheep. He also made it clear that Peter was to be a helper in this shepherding.
4. The Lord made it very clear to all who were present that he expected their love to result in their obedience to him.
5. The Lord could see into the future and in this case was prepared to let those concerned, mainly Peter, know what would be his fate.
6. The Lord clearly states that his decisions on the fate of his followers were his business, not anyone else’s. All that he, Jesus, expected of Peter was that he would follow his Lord.
7. The above verses were written down by the Apostle John. He who Peter was asking Jesus about. And John states that his testimony was true.
8. Finally John added that the Lord Jesus did many other things that could not be recorded in writing as there were far too many.
Please Note! This same Lord Jesus is the same Lord Jesus that I have known since the age of 4. During these many years, I have heard, seen and experienced many things involving the Lord Jesus. That is why I published my own testimony, that others may come to know the truth about him and what he does in our present time.
His wonders are not confined to the ones we read in the Holy Bible.
9. Last but not least. Do not expect Christians who are unsaved to share Christ’s wonderful works with you, for they do not know of them in their own lives. That’s why they lack personal testimony that witnesses for the Lord Jesus must have – all they can do is quote the Holy Bible.
Does this sound familiar?
If you were on the Lord’s side, you would be as I am, true witnesses for Jesus with a true testimony to share.