I love the story about the little girl who told her mother after Bible class, “My teacher is Jesus’ grandmother.” When the mother asked the little girl how she knew that she replied with all seriousness, “Because she talks about him all the time.” Grandparents are the most shameless people on earth! They stand ready to tell anybody about their grandchild / grandchildren any time, any place! Got a couple of hours? Just sit down and listen up!
“Shameless” is defined by collinsdictionary.com as “lacking any sense of shame; audacious; insensitive to disgrace; without decency or modesty.” As commonly used, “shameless” is a negative description. It applies to people whose behavior is largely ungoverned and unguided by Biblical moral and ethical standards. Many beliefs and behaviors once considered by culture at large as immoral and sinful have been sanitized by popular opinion and baptized in legal and politically correct jargon. Sin and shame have almost disappeared. Sin is out, loud, proud, entrenched, and has lots of popular and powerful people who promote and propagate it shamelessly. Regarding this, we should work hard and pray fervently for a return of a sense of shame.
Now let’s make a dramatic shift in thinking about being “shameless.” The apostle Paul was a shameless Christian! Shameless like a grandmother! He wouldn’t stop talking about Jesus and His gospel. As he penned 2 Timothy he is in chains in a Roman prison, awaiting death by execution (1:8; 2:9; 4:6-8). But even in that place of shame and humiliation he is unashamed of Christ. Like a proud grandparent, for decades he proudly proclaimed Christ to as many people as possible. He was totally unashamed of Christ and the gospel. In 2 Timothy 1:8 Paul challenges Timothy to not be ashamed: “Therefore do not be ashamed of the testimony of our Lord, nor of me His prisoner, but share with me in the sufferings for the gospel according to the power of God.” Paul was out and loud
for Christ. He was a shameless Christian.
Someone observed, “The church today is often paralyzed with timidity and slowly dying of dignity.” The church of Jesus Christ must not be ashamed of the gospel. First, because of a sobering warning from Jesus in Mark 8:38 – “For whoever is ashamed of Me and My words in this adulterous and sinful generation, of Him the Son of Man also will be ashamed when He comes in the glory of the Father with His holy angels.” The Hebrews writer promises in Hebrews 2:11 that Christ “is not ashamed to call them brethren” – the “them” being those who have looked to and obeyed Him as the Captain of our salvation (Hebrews 2:10; 5:8-9). But that promise is to those who are not ashamed of Christ and what Paul calls “the testimony of our Lord” – that is, the gospel (2 Timothy 1:8; see Romans 1:16). Second, because sin and falsehood have so many proponents who are passionate, vocal, unintimidated, and unashamed in promoting and proclaiming perverted thinking, erroneous, beliefs, and sinful behavior. Third, because so much is at stake – our own souls and the souls of other people all around us. Richard Baxter, a 17th century preacher, once said, “O’ sirs, how plainly, how closely, how earnestly should we deliver a message of such [importance] as ours, when everlasting life or everlasting death of our fellowmen is involved in it! . . . Oh, speak not one cold or careless word about so great a business as heaven or hell.” When it comes to the gospel of Christ, it’s always a shame to be ashamed. God give us more shameless Christians!