Sunday, May 26, 2013

Run, Jump, Shout, Walk

 All scripture references are from the King James Version of the Holy Bible.                                                                                            

The Bible tells us in Matthew 28:8, after the angels informed Mary Magdalene and the other Mary that the Lord Jesus was resurrected that they “did run to bring his disciples word” of that wonderful event.  No one who has ever felt the wonderful presence of the risen Lord in a church service can sit quietly by and not be moved upon to react in worship in some way.  I have seen people run in churches over the years in exuberant joy.  I remember one time in a church camp meeting, I was on the platform with other ministers as the evangelist was beginning to speak.  Suddenly I felt that I had to move.  But being in the middle of the middle row of preachers, I did not know what to do.  Then, the ministers on the front row began to spontaneously run off the platform and before I knew it, I too had run off the platform.  We all ran the aisles around the congregation in that service.  I am not normally a demonstrative person and was totally surprised to find myself running the aisles.

Again, the Bible says in Acts 3:6-8 that as Peter and John were entering the Temple to pray, they were stopped by a man lame from his mother’s womb. He was a beggar and was laying there with the hope of receiving alms from whoever passed by.  When Peter looked on him he said, "Silver and gold have I none; but such as I have give I thee: In the name of Jesus Christ of Nazareth rise up and walk." Peter took him by the hand "and lifted him up: and immediately his feet and ankle bones received strength.
And he leaping up stood, and walked, and entered with them into the temple, walking, and leaping, and praising God.”  What a wonderful thing it was for the lame man.  He was “walking, and leaping, and praising God,” as he went into the Temple with Peter and John.  If this were to happen in some churches today they would be politely asked to leave. We, however,  often see exuberant jumping and praising God in our Pentecostal services. And no wonder, we have been set free from sin!

When Jesus made His triumphal entrance into Jerusalem, Luke tells us in Luke 19:37-40 that “the whole multitude of the disciples began to rejoice and praise God with a loud voice…” The Lord Jesus told those who were displeased at such a demonstration, that “if these should hold their peace, the stones would immediately cry out.”  There are times when the realization of what the Lord Jesus has done for us strikes us in such a way that we cannot refrain from praising God with a loud voice.  We just don’t care who hears us.  We want the world to know.

Then, in Romans 8:1 the Bible says that there is “no condemnation to them which are in Christ Jesus, who walk not after the flesh, but after the Spirit.”  We can and often do run in church because of the mighty move of God’s Spirit that touches us.  There can be jumping and leaping for the joy we feel in our hearts that we cannot contain.  And we often shout unto God with the voice of triumph (See Psalm 47-1) because He has given us the victory over sin in our lives.  But when the running, jumping and shouting is done it is then that we must walk.  We must learn to “walk in the Spirit,” if we would not “fulfill the lusts of the flesh.”  There is truly nothing wrong with running in church, or jumping, or shouting, as long as we walk in the Spirit when the service is over.  Someone has said many years ago, “I don’t care how high you jump, it’s how straight you walk when your feet hit the ground.”  May God help us in all of our exuberance and rejoicing, to walk with Him in the Spirit in that strait and narrow path.

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