January 2, 2010

All Boldness

Philippians 1:19-20
For I know that this will turn out for my deliverance through your prayer and the supply of the Spirit of Jesus Christ, according to my earnest expectation and hope that in nothing I shall be ashamed, but with all boldness, as always, so now also Christ will be magnified in my body, whether by life or by death.
What is included in "all boldness"?

I find it most helpful to think of this as a spectrum. Anything above holding your peace qualifies as boldness to some degree. Perhaps in some mixed order of increasing boldness:
  1. Leaving a Gospel tract for someone to find.
  2. Handing someone a Gospel tract.
  3. Posting a Bible verse on Twitter.
  4. Using a Gospel tract to start a conversation.
  5. Using a Gospel tract to finish a conversation.
  6. Teaching a Sunday School class of children.
  7. Teaching a Sunday School class of high school students.
  8. Teaching a class of non-believers.
  9. Proclaim the Word to civic leaders.
  10. Street preaching.
  11. Going to a closed country.
  12. Street preaching in a closed country.
  13. Proclaiming the Word to hostile leaders.
  14. Proclaiming the Word when it could cost you your life.
  15. Proclaiming the Word when you know it will cost you your life.
You ready for this?

All boldness includes the whole spectrum.
  • All boldness means "whether by life or by death."
  • All boldness means in friendly and in hostile territory. (You never know where objections may arise--all too often it's friendly fire.)
  • All boldness could mean inadvertently "in pretense or in truth" (1:18). (Some may misinterpret a presentation as pretense.)
  • All boldness includes the simple, humble presentations as well.
Great is my boldness of speech toward you, great is my boasting on your behalf. I am filled with comfort.
I am exceedingly joyful in all our tribulation.

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