Word for the day by Christian Education Forum


Witnessing Life of the Laity
1 Thessalonians 4:1-8

V 1 "Finally, brothers and sisters, we ask and urge you in the Lord Jesus that, as you learned from us how you ought to live and to please God (as, in fact, you are doing), you should do so more and more”.

This portion of scripture urges us to 'live for Jesus in a sensual world.' (ESV and some other versions use 'walk' instead of 'live'. In Malayalam also, 'walk' is used instead of 'live'). We are exhorted to walk in response to God's calling. This way of life is governed by God and not by our plans or desires. Walk in order to please God.

We are familiar with the term, 'Walk the Talk'. In the present day Christian society there is no dearth for teachers and preachers. But the question to be asked is, 'Are they putting into practice what they preach?' Jesus commissioned his apostles to go and make disciples of all nations teaching them to obey everything that he had commanded. Moreover, he gives them the assurance that the Holy Spirit will empower them to be his witnesses (Acts 1:8)
The account of Paul's ministry in Thessalonica is given in Acts 17:1-9.

At the time of Paul's ministry, Thessalonica was part of the great Roman Empire. It was a thriving trading center because it was on the route of Rome's gateway to its eastern colonies. The Thessalonians followed different cults. Imperial cult and fertility cult were prominent in the city. Promiscuity was prevalent. It was not an easy task to preach about sanctification or holiness in such a city. The followers of Christ are asked to refrain from fornication and immorality. The church cannot operate in impurity. This is true in our case also. We live in an era in which people believe that financial support, rituals and worship will suffice for an authentic Christian life. We have commercialized Christianity. Luxury, immorality, power, position, arrogance, etc prevail instead of simplicity, purity, humility, service, kindness, etc. Even though we speak a lot about ecumenism, the conflict and division among denominations is on the rise. Even in this time of pandemic like Covid-19 and other threats challenging the very existence of human life, the so called 'Christians' fight with each other in streets and in sanctuaries for power and possessions. We are least concerned about pathetic condition of our fellow human beings. We have closed our eyes and turned deaf ears toward the plight of millions of our brothers and sisters in our own neighborhood and all around the world. We have lost our witness and have become laughing stock for people of other faiths, atheists and irreligious groups. Instead of welcoming others, we have become stumbling blocks deterring them from coming to Christ.

It is high time that we repent, amend our ways, and humble ourselves before God. Life of holiness means to live each moment trying to please the God who has called us for his service. The Holy Spirit will equip us with what we need for growth and maturity. We are chosen by God to be the light of the world. We have to ask ourselves whether we are helping others, who are weary and burdened, to come to Christ to enjoy peace, contentment and happiness in life. Voluntary Evangelists Association reminds us that every Marthomite ought to be a living witness to the Gospel of Christ.

Lord, search my heart and help me to acknowledge and confess my sins and to move forward as a living witness to your gospel through my life.

If you are arrested as a Christian today, is there enough evidence to convict you?

Ann Elizabeth Oommen
Trinity MTC, Houston

Christian Education Forum, Diocese of NAE of the Mar Thoma Church

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