Read thru the New Testament 2018
Thoughts about God for My Grandkids
Bible Reading: Matthew 10:1-23
Jesus has commanded us to share the Gospel with other people. However, we sometimes fail to do this because we think that other people may not respond in a positive manner. But their response should never be the determining factor. Instead, we should be faithful and obedient to tell others about Jesus…no matter what the consequences…simply because God has commanded us to do so.
Thoughts about God for My Grandkids:
A long time ago (August 22-23, AD 79), on the west coast of Italy, a huge volcano erupted. It was called Mt. Vesuvius and was located close to a city named Pompeii. When Mt. Vesuvius erupted it was so powerful that it shot clouds of poisonous gas 21 miles high into the air. Ash from the fires in the volcano blew out and formed dark, thick clouds that blocked out the light of the sun. It was so dark that it was like nighttime. Then, as the ash began to fall to the earth it was so thick that it looked like it was pouring down rain. The volcano threw huge boulders and rocks miles up into the air and then they crashed to the ground…sometimes landing on buildings, and animals, and people. Lava (which is made up of melted rocks) flowed down the sides of the volcano…catching everything that it touched on fire. The temperatures around the volcano were so hot that it felt like the air itself was on fire…reaching 360 degrees (remember that water boils at 100 degrees). Almost 20,000 people lived in the area around Mt. Vesuvius. On the first day of the eruption many of them didn’t panic. There had been many minor eruptions before and they thought this was just another one and that nothing more would happen. But then, on the second day, there was the most massive eruption they had ever seen. Some of the people began to run for their lives. Some tried to get into boats and escape. But many of them didn’t make it. Some died from the poisonous gases. Some died when there was a sudden surge of heat from the volcano that made the air so hot that it burned not just their skin, but their lungs. Some died when they were hit by flying rocks. Many, many people died.
An interesting thing happened to some of the people who died. The hot ash from the volcano was so thick and fell so fast that it covered up their bodies. Then, it cooled back down and became like rock. Inside the rock were the bodies of the people who had died. Many years later, when scientists found this rock, they discovered the skeletons of these people inside the rock in the exact position they had been in when they had been covered up. Some of these people were running away, trying to escape the volcano. Others were trying to hide inside the cellars of their homes. Two people were holding onto each other for protection. A father and mother and their 4-year-old little boy were found clinging to each other for safety. So far, they have found 1,044 of these casts made from impressions of bodies in the ash deposits. It must have been a terrible, horrible thing to go through.
But there is one man who did something extraordinary. He was a Roman sentinel, or guard. He had probably been placed next to the city gate the night before by his Captain. He was commanded to remain there until he received orders to leave. Then, the next day, the eruptions began to increase. The heat began to rise. The rocks began to fall and the lava flowed. The ash began to build up quickly…first to his ankles, then to his knees, then to his chest. But he never left his post. He never moved. In fact, when they found his body, he was still standing at attention with his hand firmly holding onto his weapon. He had remained there at his post just like his Captain had commanded him. Despite the fact that the ground was literally shaking under him, the air was burning up around him and in his lungs, and people were running in panic all around him…he continued to do his duty at the post where his Captain had put him. Faithful, dependable…no matter what happened…no matter what anyone else did.
Jesus tells us that many times people will be glad when we tell them about Him and about God’s love. But, there will be times when people will not be glad to hear about Him. In fact, when we tell them about Jesus, they will become angry and sometimes they may even try to harm us. But don’t let that stop you from telling people about Him. Just go on to the next person. Just like the Roman sentinel had been given a command by his Captain, you and I have been given a command by Jesus. He has commanded us to tell everyone about Him. People we know and people we meet. They all need to accept Him as their Savior. Some of them will be glad when they hear about Him…and others will not. But we don’t decide whether, or not, to tell them about Jesus based on their reactions. No. Instead, we make that decision based on the command that Jesus has given us. Just like the Roman sentinel we should be faithful and obedient to the command that we have been given…regardless of what is going on around us, or how people may respond.
Love you more than bunches and bunches,