Tuesday, October 23, 2007

Who are the Jehovah Witnesses?

You never know when you are going to have an opportunity to bear witness to the faith (1 Peter 3:15-16). Sometimes, it comes when you least expect it or when you least desire it. On Sunday afternoon, God provided an opportunity for me to confess the truth to two young Jehovah Witness ladies. Sunday afternoon, I am usually fairly tired from the Sunday activities; and this past Sunday, I also had a hymn fest that I was going to later in the day. Needless to say, I was not necessarily in the mood to debate theology at my front door. But, as these ladies came to the door, I knew that it was an opportunity that I could not pass up. As the conservation began, I asked them where they were from and what they were up to (I had previously told them that I was a Lutheran pastor). They continued with their presentation. I listened for awhile and then when the opportunity presented itself, I began to stir the conversation around who Jesus was. Predictably, they informed me that Jesus was a created being, not God. Jesus was a good man, but not our Savior. He was, "our king"- one who shows us how we should live our life. Also, I asked them if they believed they were going to heaven. Their response, "No, only 144,000 are going there. They were going to the new earth that Jesus was going to create." As the conversation continued, we discussed many other topics, but before they left, I presented to them the Gospel. "We are all sinful, truly and completely unable to save ourselves. So, therefore, God the Father, who is rich in mercy, sent His only Son into the world, Jesus Christ, who died and rose again for all people. Those who believe and are baptized into Jesus will be saved." I also warned them to make sure that their beliefs were really from the Word of God. I, then, invited them to St. John and we parted ways. I will probably never know the full effect of this conversation. I pray I may have an opportunity with them again someday. But, as a Christian, the opportunities are all around to bear witness to Christ in what we say and what we do. May the Holy Ghost inspire us to be bold and take advantage of the opportunities as they present themselves! God bless!

Keeping Things in Perspective

I'm upset. This wasn't supposed to happen. This was their year. I had nearly given up earlier in the year; but, as the season ended, I was a firm believer. Everything was lined up and as game 7 with the Red Sox ended, I was in shock. But, as a few days have passed, my attitude has changed. It was disappointing- no question about it. But, keeping things in perspective, it was a great year. We won the division. We beat the Yankees and we were one game away from going to the World Series. I am very proud of our team. It will take time to get over how this season ended; but next year will come. We will be ready to take it one step further. Go Tribe!