Wednesday, October 10, 2012

Who are your heroes?

Heroes, that's what childhood is made of. We all had our heroes and most of us still do. Do you recall those supermen and women who could leap buildings in a single bound, or who had a pair of bracelets that were indestructible.

How about a superhero who could turn invisible or run faster than the speed of light? All of those childhood superheros stay in our psyches even as adults. We all need to be able to look to others who seem taller and bigger than life itself.

What about now as adults? who are your heroes now?

 Well, let me share just a few of my personal heroes that I've come to look up to and hope to emulate their faith in my life.

First:  It would have to be John Bunyan the simple, British, Baptist pastor who while in prison wrote the book that to this day remains the widest circulating single piece of literature in the history of the human race outside of the Bible, The Pilgrim's Progress. 

John Bunyan could have at any time walked out of his prison; he only needed to agree to stop preaching, but he remained in prison for 12 years. In Bunyan's writings we see his intense struggle and anguish-he tells us that when his oldest child Mary -born blind from birth-visited him in prison, it was like the "pulling of the Flesh from my bones." 

I could write for hours on the life of John Bunyan who stayed in that Bedford prison because of his love of the Gospel-This one phrase captures the heart and soul of my hero; Bunyan wrote, " To live upon God that is invisible." Yes, that is the life of this great hero-to live his life, trusting in the invisible God.

Second: Dietrich Bonhoeffer-Bonhoeffer gave his life under the brutal Nazi regime of Adolf Hitler. Bonhoeffer was a pastor, prophet, theologian, martyr and spy. He lived his live always looking for the will of God, and he had a constant longing to "hear God's voice." 

Bonhoeffer wrote, "To endure the cross is not tragedy; it is the suffering which is the fruit of an exclusive allegiance to Jesus Christ. As Bonhoeffer was being led to the gallows, "The doctor who witnessed Bonhoeffer's execution wrote, "I have hardly ever seen a man die so entirely submissive to the will of God." That's because Bonhoeffer knew what Christians know. Death is not the end, but a beginning. His hanging was not final; it was merely a transition. 

I've come to love this man, and can't wait to see him.

Third, Pastor, teacher John MacArthur. John is my hero not for his personal suffering like Bunyan and Bonhoeffer, but for his love of the truth of God's Word. 

In today's politically correct atmosphere, and yes it is in the church-MacArthur has stood tall and unashamedly proclaimed the truth of God's word. His attention to detail and his careful handling of God's word causes me to want to emulate and follow his stalwart example. 

This one statement by MacArthur sums his ministry up best, when he says, " If Jesus, the sinless and perfect Son of God, limited Himself to speaking nothing during His incarnation except the truth He received from His Father, how much more should those who have been called into ministry speak only on the authority of divine Scripture."

Christian, make your heroes those of the faith-put off this worlds models and superstars, God give us the wisdom to make our hero's those who have a kind of faith we can follow and emulate. 

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