Without question this text suggests the theme of Christian influence. We all have influence on other people regardless of age, position, or status.
- Romans 14:7
We all have influence, it might be good or it might be bad.
- Matthew 12:30
Jesus had influence, yet he states we are either with Him or against Him. We all have influence and we will never lose influence. But it can be transformed.
Sometimes we don’t realized the power of influence in the lives of others. We need to try to have an influence of good, rather than bad. Our influence continues to live even after our death. We can all think of people who have had influence in our lives whom we remember how they helped us, and set examples in our lives.
The first person on this earth, that died, was Abel. Yet his influence still lives on.
- Hebrews 11:4
We read of his influence, how his sacrifice, by faith, was offered. And his example of faith still live on today.
- Revelation 14:13
Their works do follow them, the responsibility of your influence continues on after you are gone from this world.
We want to establish a good legacy in life, but as Christians we want to have an influence of good that lives on after we die.
The Bridge Builder - By: Will Allen Dromgoole
An old man going a lone highway,
Came, at the evening cold and gray,
To a chasm vast and deep and wide.
Through which was flowing a sullen tide
The old man crossed in the twilight dim,
The sullen stream had no fear for him;
But he turned when safe on the other sideAnd built a bridge to span the tide.
“Old man,” said a fellow pilgrim near,“You are wasting your strength with building here;Your journey will end with the ending day,You never again will pass this way;You’ve crossed the chasm, deep and wide,Why build this bridge at evening tide?”The builder lifted his old gray head;“Good friend, in the path I have come,” he said,“There followed after me to-dayA youth whose feet must pass this way.This chasm that has been as naught to meTo that fair-haired youth may a pitfall be;He, too, must cross in the twilight dim;Good friend, I am building this bridge for him!”
When you think of the influence we have on others, we can consider it like building a bridge through time, that can lead others to know what is right, and good.
How do we Influence Others?
- 1 Timothy 4:12
Be an example to the believers. In ways of word, in conversation, in charity, in spirit, in faith, in purity.
Influence in Word
Our words becomes an index of our character.
- Matthew 12:34,35
- Ephesians 4:29
- Ephesians 5:3,4
- Colossians 4:6
- Psalms 19:14
Influence in Conversation, or Manner of Life
No part of our life yields greater influence, the manner o flife the way that you life your life shows how you life.
- Philippians 1:27
- 2 Corinthians 3:2
Influence in Charity
The way we love one another is a great influence.
- John 13:34,35
It made an impression in the first century on the Romans who were trying to stamp out Christianity. The love they had for one another even in the face of severe persecution made a great impression upon the Roman people and soldiers who were present.
When there is backbiting and fighting in the church it causes such a great bad influence in the community.
The Influence of Spirit
Our influence in spirit should be shown in the way we serve.
- Luke 10:27
- Deuteronomy 6:4-5
Our Influence of Faith
To be faithful is to be full of faith. It can be seen by others.
- James 2:18
Our Influence in Purity
If anyone is to be pure it ought to be Christians. Christians have been washed in the blood of the Lamb.
- Revelation 1:5
- 1 Peter 1:15
- 1 Peter 2:21-22, 23
Christians are to be holy, we are to reflect the Holiness of Christ. Christ was persecuted, he was reviled, but he did not return evil for evil. He is to be our model in purity of life. If we continue to follow Him we are sure to be pure.
- 1 John 1:7
The Influence of Salt and Light
We have great influence in every aspect of our life, whether we know it or not. It is likened to salt and light. Salt and light are silent influences, they simply work in the background to season and enlighten.
Salt provides flavor, but too much is overwhelming. It also is a preservative.
Light is also positive, it can be seen from great distances. It is conspicuous even though at times it might be unwelcome.
- Isaiah 2:2-3
The house of the Lord shall be established, this is the church. It is a city setting on a hill. It occupies a conspicuous place int he world.
Light dispels darkness.
- John 3:19-20
When someone is in sin, and you point out their actions as sin they get angry. Those in sin do not like having their error exposed. But, we are to expose sin. We are to reprove them.
- Ephesians 5:11
Even exposing the truth in a loving way can cause those who love darkness to be angry. Yet, we are to give a positive influence.
- Matthew 5:16
Our influence is to be done for the purpose of glorifying God in Heaven.
“You are writing a gospel,
A chapter each day,
By the deeds that you do,
And the words that you say.
Men read what you write,
Whether faulty or true;
Say, what is the gospel
According to you?”
- Melvin J. Wise
Do you show the gospel by the way you live your life? Are you glorifying God and the doctrine of Christ by the way you live your life?
If you haven’t set a good example for others, if you are a Christian who hasn’t set a good influence, you need to repent.
If you have not become a child of god through obedience to His word, you need to have your sins washed away and be added to the Lord’s church to set a good influence in life.
- Jack McNiel, Evangelist