Ready Obedience

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Daily Reformation, 1 John 5:9-13

About the Reformer

One day, as a preacher was inviting people to buy his indulgences (as they were called) for the forgiveness of sins, he was interrupted by three young men, who told him that what he said was untrue, and that Master Huss had taught them better. The three were seized, and were condemned to die; and, although it would seem that a promise was afterwards given that their lives should be spared, the sentence of death was carried into effect. The people were greatly provoked by this, and when the executioner, after having cut off the heads of the three, proclaimed (as was usual), “Whosoever shall do the like, let him look for the like!” a cry burst forth from the multitude around, “We are ready to do and to suffer the like.”

—Philip Schaff, History of the Christian Church

Pulling It Together

The crusade preacher stopped mid-sentence for effect, turned and pointed to the young man sitting in the front row of the balcony and waited for all eyes to turn to him. When he had gathered sufficient attention he declared that God had told him the brother was to write a check for $500 and give it to the ministry. The young brother stood and loudly proclaimed, “When God tells me to do so, it will be done.”

The crowd did not know what to think and he was labeled disobedient by the preacher but he had stood against the same charlatanism that afflicted the age of the Reform. But this young man’s greatest obedience was not in disbelieving a fraud, though it served him well that day. His one great obedience was believing in the Son of God. For that belief gave him life eternal.

© Mark E. Ryman, Daily Reformation: Devotions with the Reformers

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