“For the word of the Lord rang out from you, not only in Macedonia and Achaia, but in every place that your faith in God has gone out. Therefore, we don’t need to say anything, for they themselves report what kind of reception we had from you: how you turned to God from idols to serve the living and true God…”
1 Thessalonians 1:8-9
The Name of The Game
Do you remember playing a game by the name of telephone? The whole party would gather around in a circle, and the initiator would whisper a sentence into the ear of the person beside them. From there, the phrase—or some unfortunate variation of it—would be repeated via whisper all around the room until the last participant shares it aloud.
Usually, it’s so far off from the original statement that it’s comical. This is not an effective form of general communication. Or evangelism.
Ring Ring! Will You Answer?
The gospel wasn’t created to be whispered in isolation. God’s design for the gospel was always proclamation and declaration. In fact, the apostle Paul applauds the church of the Thessalonians for how far and wide and loudly the Word of the Lord rang out from them. And it wasn’t just in a couple of places; he proclaims that the gospel traveled “every place that [their] faith in God has gone out” (1 Thessalonians 1:8).
What a way for the Word to travel!
Forsaking All Else
And the best part of the church’s witness is that Paul and his team didn’t have to try to put in a good word for these brothers and sisters. He writes that the people they sought to reach were instead proclaiming what they already knew to be true. The church in Thessalonica had already forsaken the worship of false idols and turned to the true and living God instead.
The Word of the Lord rang out. The Thessalonians answered. And those around them got to see its power at work, enacting change and spreading this impactful truth. Ring ring! Will you answer? Will you heed the call of the gospel to believe and tell others, too? Or will you keep trying to live it out in whispers?
Think about what rings out from your witness as you go about your days at work, at home, and all throughout your community. Is it gospel truth you’re proclaiming? Is His Word what you’re abiding in, that others would be able to declare a gospel witness on your behalf? Spend some time with Jesus today reflecting on the power of the Word at work in your life.