POINTS TO PONDER 16. Will YOU be a Martyr?
Are you an observer or a witness? There is a big difference. An observer sees, hears or through the other senses becomes aware of a thing or an event but doesn’t act on it. A witness is an observer who takes action and reports on or testifies of the thing or event.
All mankind are observers of the work and glory of God; “The heavens declare the glory of God; and the firmament sheweth his handywork.” (Psalm 19:1). "Because that which may be known of God is manifest in them; for God hath shewed it unto them. For the invisible things of him from the creation of the world are clearly seen, being understood by the things that are made, even his eternal power and Godhead; so that they are without excuse:" (Romans 1:19,20). Those among mankind who are justified by faith, who have been born again, see and recognize and testify of God's glory; "He (Abram) staggered not at the promise of God through unbelief; but was strong in faith, giving glory to God;" (Romans 4:20).
An observer sees evidence of a thing or event but does not participate by experience and therefore has nothing to say. A witness experiences and participates in the thing or event and is thereby compelled by the Holy Spirit to tell others.
Another name or word for observer is spectator. A spectator is someone who sits in the stands in order to be entertained.
The Greek word for witness in the New Testament is MARTYR. A martyr then is a witness; someone who has experienced the new birth and will die to self to witness to others. The meaning is clear. Are we willing to be martyrs? Perhaps even to join the ranks with Stephen? (Acts 7:54-60)
Jesus said "But ye shall receive power, after that the Holy Ghost is come upon you: and ye shall be witnesses unto me both in Jerusalem, and in all Judaea, and in Samaria, and unto the uttermost part of the earth." (Acts 1:8).
Are we here to be entertained or to be martyrs?