Friday, July 7, 2017

they're dead. God protected them?

was listening to a john piper sermon from 1985 this morning... titled "ambushing satan with song."  wow.  what an inspiring reminder of the power of worship through music.

jehoshaphat.  david.  paul and silas.  martin luther.  jim elliot.

these aren't stories of people merely singing along with the worship team on sunday mornings.  this is real, true, prayerful, confident, miraculous, proud, unashamed, crying out to our creator God in song.

elizabeth elliot and her daughter valerie living with the Aucas
the 39 year old piper (now 71) ended his message with a beautiful perspective on an event that could easily be considered a "tragedy" if looked at from a worldly standpoint.  its the story of jim elliot and his four buddies who were brutally killed while attempting to take the message of Jesus to the Auca indians of ecuador.

jim and his friends had heard that the Aucas were a violent unreached tribe who had never had contact from the world outside the amazon.  while jim never had the chance to personally share the gospel with the Aucas, his widowed wife and young daughter soon returned to the tribe who killed their husband and dad.  there, along with another one of the widowed wives, they led many in the tribe to a relationship with Jesus, including some of the very men who carried out the violent killings.

here's the end of piper's message on the power of song:

"January 8, 1956, Jim Elliot and four other young missionaries approached the jungle edge where the Auca Indians lived. Their last recorded act according to Jim's wife, Elizabeth Elliot, was to sing a hymn together:
We go in faith, our own great weakness feeling,
And needing more each day thy grace to know,
Yet from our hearts a song of triumph pealing,
We rest on thee, and in thy name we go!
All five of them were killed that day, before 4:30 in the afternoon. 
And God... protected them.  (5 long seconds of silence)
He protected them from unbelief. 
And cowardice.  And from fear.
And from going home and buying a house in the suburbs...  and from saying 'somebody else can reach the Aucas.'
There was victory on that afternoon, and it has reverberated for 30 years and it will continue right on into eternity.
We have two great weapons in worship: the Word of God and song. So let us give heed to the Word of God and let us sing with all our heart."

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