The Delight and Danger and Demands of the Church
On January 9, 1985, Pastor Hristo Kulichev, a Congregational pastor in Bulgaria, was arrested and put in prison. His crime was that he preached in his church even though the state had appointed another man the pastor whom the congregation did not elect. His trial was a mockery of justice. And he was sentenced to eight months imprisonment. During his time in prison he made Christ known every way he could.
When he got out he wrote, "Both prisoners and jailers asked many questions, and it turned out that we had a more fruitful ministry there than we could have expected in church. God was better served by our presence in prison than if we had been free."
It has well been said that persecution instead of extinguishing the flame it scattered the fire. We find in the eighth chapter the first preaching outside Judaism.
Samaria is the most unlikely soil but proves the most fruitful. We see Philip preaching the gospel in a community that formerly he would despise.
Therefore they that were scattered abroad went every where preaching the word. Then Philip went down to the city of Samaria, and preached Christ unto them. And the people with one accord gave heed unto those things which Philip spake, hearing and seeing the miracles which he did. For unclean spirits, crying with loud voice came out of many that were possessed with them: and many taken with palsies, and that were lame, were healed. And there was great joy in that city.
I. THE DELIGHT OF THE WORK
And there was great joy in that city. There was great joy in that city. Why was there such joy exploding in the city? First of all they had seen the hand of God at work. Philip proclaimed Christ and God did mighty works through him.
Where is our joy in this world? I'll tell you where it should be. It should be whenever we hear Christ preached and we see people coming forward giving their he ...
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