And now, behold, I go bound in the spirit unto Jerusalem, not knowing the things that shall befall me there: Save that the Holy Ghost witnesseth in every city, saying that bonds and afflictions abide me.
(Acts 20:22-23 KJV)
One of the most significant features of Apostle Paul’s life was his readiness to take risks for God. From the beginning of his ministry to the end of his life, Paul was ready to take any risk for the advancement of the gospel. Even when his life was at stake, Paul was ever ready to go ahead and take any step that will make people to know Christ.
B. PEOPLE WHO TOOK RISKS FOR GOD.
A close look at the scriptures will reveal to us that making a mark for God often requires taking definite risks. Let us look at the following examples in the life of some notable Bible characters.
Study Gen.22:1-14. Will you be able to take the risk that Abraham took just because God asked him to do so? Why?
Study Ruth.1:1-17. Look again at verses 11-14, did it make any sense for the daughters in law of Naomi to follow her back to Israel? Comment on verses 16&17, would you have been able to take the risk which Ruth took?
Study 1Kings 19:19-21. Elisha was a very successful farmer. The suddenness of his call through Elijah and subsequent winding up up of his entire agricultural enterprise was a great risk. Why do you think he was able to take the risk?
Study Esther 4:10-16. Esther knew that anyone who goes in to see the king uninvited risks certain death, but she took the risk.
Nehemiah took the risk of asking for the permission of king Artaxerxes to go and rebuild walls of Jerusalem (Neh.1:1-5; 2:1-3). How dangerous do you think that request was, knowing that Persia was a foreign country which conquered Israel and took them as slaves?
C. SOME REASONS WHY APOSTLE PAUL TOOK RISKS FOR GOD.
Discuss the following scriptures as the reason why Apostle Paul took the risks which he took for the cause of the gospel. If you believe like Paul in those scriptures, what kind of risk will you be able to take for God?
i. 1Cor.1:26-29. If you really believe this scripture, you will be able to risk taking any assignment for God.
ii. 1Cor.4:7. What is the risk that this scripture make you to take?.
iii. Rom.1:14-17. If you believe this scripture, what is it that may prevent you from preaching anywhere?
iv. 1Cor.9:16-18. What will a belief in this scripture make you to risk.
v. Rom.3:23-24. You will be able to risk preaching to the high and mighty knowing that there is no exception to the human need for the saviour.
vi. Rom.5:6-8. Paul was propelled by something in this scripture. What was it?
vii.Rom.8:14-17. A belief that you possess the spirit of adoption may make you to risk even death for the cause of the gospel because you are confident of your inheritance among the saints along with Jesus Christ.
viii.2Cor.5:1-4. What may this scripture lead you into?
ix. 2Cor.9:6-7. Comments?
x. Eph.1:18-22 – The scripture will make you able to risk anything for God knowing that the power backing you up is supreme.
Paul even in the face of death was ready to move on propagating the gospel of Jesus Christ (Acts.21:11-14). How far can you even inconvenience yourself to do God’s will? The extent to which you can go depends so much on your foundation in the faith. How grounded are you in the gospel?