In 1917 (directed by Sam Mendes [Dreamworks Pictures, 2019]), two young soldiers are tasked by their commanding officer with delivering a message to another unit. The phone lines between the units have been cut, so this is the only way to communicate the important information. If the message is not delivered, the other unit will be walking directly into a trap. However, there is no guarantee that the message will be accepted or followed by the neighboring commanding officer. The soldiers are sent anyway. In the same way, we are charged with preaching the Gospel. Proclaiming the coming of the kingdom may get you plenty of funny looks. People will come up with all sorts of reasons for why they should reject your message: in the case of Jesus, because they think they know you too well; in the case of the disciples, because you don’t give them the words they want to hear. Rejection can even go one step further and become persecution. But our only resource, our only protection, is the gospel. And that is all we need to survive the scandal we cause by our message.
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