I am very proud of our sporting teams in how they are seeking to show the light of Jesus through sport. This is an example in how we as a church can cross the cultural divide! How our teams play and how they care for one another is a great testimony to the unity we have in Christ. I know that in some games they get a rough deal from the officials and at times the opposition use less than godly tactics to upset our players. But it is how the team retains self-control and the smiles on their faces which testifies to who they have living in them. Yes, our sporting ministry is a wonderful way in which we can reach out to others across the nations and I thank those who are actively involved!
Today we welcome David Ryan from ChinaHeart International. David has been a pastor and has a heart for the gospel of our Lord Jesus Christ. He has come to share with us another way in which we can show the love of Jesus across the cultures. David’s heart is for the less fortunate children of China – children who have been abandoned; children in poverty and children who suffer serious medical and mental illnesses. I hope and pray that we will be challenged to see how we can make a difference to the lives of the needy through the ministry of ChinaHeart.
Last week we learned how the ‘light finally came on’ for Peter, the other apostles and the new Jewish Christian converts. It took God’s sovereign act through the Roman Centurion Cornelius’ conversation with Peter to bring about an understanding that the gospel is for all nations and not just the Jews. Today we come to a most remarkable passage of Scripture as we witness Saul’s preparation for a life-long ministry. Not only this, we witness his embarking on his first missionary journey. We observe how Saul becomes Paul and we are privileged to hear from his first sermon! Paul also faces great opposition following this sermon and it is testimony to the fact that when the gospel is proclaimed opposition quickly follows! There is always one of two reactions to the sharing of the gospel – acceptance with great gladness or rejection and with rejection comes opposition!