From This Verse

I once heard Warren Wiersbe say he loved reading because of the joy of meeting people he has always wanted to know. “If it were announced that Hudson Taylor or Charles Spurgeon was speaking at a particular church,” he quipped, “Christians from all over the world would show up. But when I open my book, Hudson Taylor opens his mouth. We have a great time together, and these people are my friends.”
“Through a book,” added Haddon Robinson, “we can wrestle with the thoughts of Augustine, rub shoulders with Calvin, make progress with Bunyan’s pilgrim, enjoy the wit of C. S. Lewis, and hear the sermons of John Chrysostom.”

Christian biographies have often proved hand-held time bombs which, when detonated through reading, can divert the course of a person’s life. For example, God has used Elizabeth Elliot’s biography of her husband Jim, martyr of the Ecuadorian Aucas, to direct many young people into missionary service.

Interestingly, Jim’s own interest in missions was whetted while reading a biography. In Shadow of the Almighty, Elizabeth quotes from his journal, dated October 24, 1949: I see the value of Christian biography tonight, as I have been reading Brainerd’s Diary much today. It stirs me up much to pray and wonder at my nonchalance while I have not power from God. I have considered Hebrews 13:7 just now, regarding the remembrance of certain ones who spake the word of God, “consider the outcome of their life, and imitate their faith.” I recall now the challenge of Goforth’s Life, read in the summer of 1947, the encouragement of Hudson Taylor’s Spiritual Secret. There are incidents which instruct me from the reading of J. G. Paton’s biography last winter. And now this fresh Spirit-quickened history of Brainerd. O Lord, let me be granted grace to “imitate their faith.”

I wonder if Jim Elliot ever dreamed that his own biography would one day inspire multitudes.

Today’s Suggested Reading
Hebrews 13:1–9

Remember those who rule over you, who have spoken the word of God to you, whose faith follow, considering the outcome of their conduct. Hebrews 13:7

Robert J. Morgan

Published by Intentional Faith

Devoted to a Faith that Thinks

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