«Justice Is a joy to the godly, but it terrifies evildoers» (Proverbs 21:15, NLT).
John Calvin (1509-1564) was a very capable young student He would be moved when hearing new ideas coming from northern Europe and considered that the heretics deserved to be exterminated. Occasionally, he argued about religious issues with one of his cousins who had joined the reformers. His relative’s words made him think for a time and he began to question his spiritual experience. It seemed that nothing could alleviate his grief.
Coincidentally, one day he witnessed the brutal death at the stake of a faithful Christian accused of heresy. «He was filled with wonder at the expression of peace which rested upon the martyr’s countenance. Amid the tortures of that dreadful death, and under the more terrible condemnation of the church, he manifested a faith and courage which the young student painfully contrasted with his own despair and darkness, while living in strictest obedience to the church. Upon the Bible, he knew, the heretics rested their faith. He determined to study it, and discover, if he could, the secret of their joy’—The Great Controversy, ch. 12, p. 220.
That is how Calvin found Jesus in the Scriptures. » ‘O Father,’ he cried, ‘His sacrifice has appeased Thy wrath; His blood has washed away my impurities; His cross has borne my curse; His death has atoned for me. We had devised for ourselves many useless follies, but Thou hast placed Thy word before me like a torch, and Thou hast touched my heart, in order that I may hold in abomination all other merits save those of Jesus’ «—Ibid., p. 221.
We do not know who the martyr was whose testimony touched the heart of John Calvin, who would become a key player in the development of the Protestant Reformation. The truth is that his courage touched the young university student and led him to the Scriptures.
You do not need to have a degree to influence the lives of great personalities. A faithful witness shakes the consciences of the brightest minds. And although we will never know in this world the impact of our faithfulness in the midst of hard trials, it will be in the kingdom of heaven where we will contemplate the scope of our faithfulness to the God of the universe.
Do not forget that today there will be several eyes contemplating your actions. Don’t fail the Lord.
Your good testimony can transcend more than you can imagine.