One of the best examples of putting the passage “But more than just getting us out of trouble, he got us into life!”(Romans 5:20 Message) is the person, for whom the holiday, St. Patrick’s Day is named.
For many it has become yet another excuse to drink. However, not all Irish drink alcohol, and for those that do, many drink only moderately. Within the culture of the Irish, in the pagan days before being evangelized it was the way they conserved their harvests, by making beer. By choice and by leadership of the Holy Spirit, I follow an abstention from alcohol, though I do like non-alcoholic beer and wine.
The story of St. Patrick is a compelling one. He was taken captive as a young boy, and taken to Ireland, by Celtic, Irish Raiders. He was a follower of Christ, and as a slave served humbly. By God’s intervention, he was able to escape from Ireland and return home. Later, the Holy Spirit began to deal with him, and quite possibly using this passage of scripture, though the message translation was not around then.
But more than just getting us out of trouble, he got us into life!
The Holy Spirit was compelling Patrick to return to Ireland, with a team of missionaries, and to use their visible witness of how to live, as the witness to the pagan Celts.
Their witness was to set up their camp, filled with families, who were Christ followers, and invited the Celts to witness how they lived, which include conflict resolution, all matters of family life, and how they governed themselves.
They came in the power of the Holy Spirit, trusting in the Word of God to empower them to live in community in sight of the Celts.
Let us open our lives to the pagan’s around us, so they can witness a life following Jesus.