But let justice roll on like a river, righteousness like a never-failing stream! (Amos 5:24)
The year was 399 AD and Christianity was sweeping through the Roman Empire like wild fire. A young Jesus follower named Tetramachus finally became so disgusted by the blood cult of the gladiator games that after repeated attempts to stop the games, he finally stepped into the Colosseum arena and shouted at the top of his voice ‘Stop this madness! In the name of Jesus stop!’ The gladiators, seeing the crowds displeasure at Tetramachus’ actions, turned on him, running him through with their swords and spears. As his blood dripped down into the sand he cried out with his dying voice, ‘Stop this madness, In the name of Jesus stop!’ The crowd fell silent, then one by one began to vacate the arena. So moved by this action, The Emperor Honorius subsequently banned all future public gladiator games.
Christianity is a movement, a revolution of love and justice, a community of ordinary radicals like Tetramachus, like you and I. Radicals who refuse to settle for what is wrong with the world and who instead commit to laying down their lives to restore all that was lost at Eden.
Our challenge this week is to consider the causes that really get our blood boiling. What are we passionate about? Where do we see injustice around us, in our family, our community, nation and around the world? Could you use the internet to research the persecuted church (a good place to start would be www.opendoors.org). Maybe you are passionate about stopping people trafficking, medical research, sanitation or social welfare. Whatever touches your heart, there are ways that you can get involved to make things better, from support, giving, fundraising and lobbying. Why not organise an event, make some noise and, like Tetramachus, stop some madness in the name of Jesus!