But What Can I Do?

Wesley N. Dawson
Hammond, Indiana

Occasionally we hear some brother or sister in Christ say, "I know that there are many practices in the church today for which there is no Bible authority. But what can I do?" The implication of this statement is that no one else cares and I do not have enough influence to do anything about it

There are two things wrong with such an attitude: (1) there are others who care about the kingdom of God and its purity. (2) It assumes that God's word has no power or influence to change others.

Elijah made the first of these errors and hid in the wilderness because he felt that no one else in all Israel was faithful to Jehovah, But the Lord spoke to him and asked "What doest thou here, Elijah?" The prophet then expressed his fears in these words, "I have been very jealous for the Lord God of hosts: for the children of Israel have forsaken thy covenant, thrown down thine altars, and slain thy prophets with the sword; and I, even I only, am left; and they seek my life to take it away" (I Kings 19:9-10). In effect Elijah was saying, "I'm the only one left who is interested in obeying God. What can one man do?"

The Lord then instructed Elijah to go anoint new kings over Syria and Israel. Then he was to anoint Elisha to be prophet in his stead. Finally, God assured him, "Yet I have left me seven thousand in Israel, all the knees which have not bowed unto Baal, and every mouth which hath not kissed him. (I Kings 9:18).

In spite Of all the modern day Baals that plague the church, there are undoubtedly many thousands of faithful Christians who have not bowed to the scriptural innovations of men. Some may even be waiting as did Elijah to hear that they are not alone in the fight for truth.

What can one Christian do? "Thus saith the Lord, Stand ye in the ways, and see, and ask for the old paths, where is the good way, and walk therein, and ye shall find rest for your souls" (Jeremiah 6:16). "Watch ye, stand fast in the faith, quit you like men, be strong." (2 Corinthians 16:13) "In meekness instructing those that oppose themselves; if God peradventure will give them repentance to the acknowledging of the truth" (2 Timothy 2:25). "Fear none of those things which thou shalt suffer . . . be thou faithful unto death, and I will give thee a crown of life." (Revelation 2: 10)

Christians will remain true to God only if they are truly full of faith. Such a faith comes only from an unfaltering trust in God's word. As a child of God you must 'mow the power that it holds to change the lives and thinking of men. Paul says, "For I am not ashamed of the gospel of Christ: for it is the power of God unto salvation to every one that believeth; to the Jew first, and also to the Greek." (Romans 1: 16). You must "study to show thyself approved unto God, a workman that needeth not to be ashamed, rightly dividing the word of truth," (2 Timothy 2:15). "... and be ready always to give an answer to every man that asketh you a reason of the hope that is in you with meekness and fear: Having a good conscience; that, whereas they speak evil of you, as of evildoers, they may be ashamed that falsely accuse your good conversation in Christ" (1 Peter 3: 15-16). Remember that the Lord has promised, "So shall my word be that goeth out of my mouth: it shall not return unto me void, but it shall accomplish that which I please, and it shall prosper in the thing whereto I sent it." (Isaiah 55:11).

June 17, 1971