How often do you think of cowardice as a sin?
I just preached a final message on the Return of Jesus. The text was Revelation 21:1-11 of which the 8th verse has always been a stand out for me:
8 But as for the cowardly, the faithless, the detestable, as for murderers, the sexually immoral, sorcerers, idolaters, and all liars, their portion will be in the lake that burns with fire and sulfur, which is the second death. ESV
This sermon was difficult for me because if left to my own devices I’d never mention the fire & brimstone type stuff. I’m really thankful God’s word doesn’t leave to my own devices! What has always jumped out at me is how cowardice leads this list of sins. How often do we consider cowardice a sin? Recently, I have felt the Lord leading to repent of cowardice.
It is often said that courage is not the absence of fear but responding well in the face of it. Courage is a virtue admired in many a culture. Courage has long been counted as a gift from the Holy Spirit. Perhaps courage is a much needed virtue and gift for us today. In the new mission field of the post-Christian West we may need it more than ever. It takes courage to stay with the same Gospel in a shifting culture. It takes courage to talk simply about Jesus to a friend or stranger. It takes courage to be both loving and truthful to those around, rejecting the temptation to see truth and love as opposing options.
This past Sunday I needed courage to read Revelation 21:8. How about you? Where do you need courage as a disciple?
Let us be bold to ask the Lord for boldness!