How fast can you run? The world record in the 100-meter dash is 9.58 seconds. It was set by Usain Bolt in the 2009 World Athletics Championships final in Berlin, Germany. That time has stood for many years so far. You could say that Usain Bolt could run swiftly. For many of us our running days are long gone. Our legs, lungs and our whole body don’t do “swiftly” anymore.
However, we can be involved in partnership with something that can run swiftly. The psalmist said: “He sends out His command to the earth; His word runs very swiftly” (Psalm 147:15). Paul was requesting prayer from the Thessalonian believers. In 2 Thess. 3:1 he says: “Finally, brethren, pray for us, that the word of the Lord may run swiftly and be glorified, just as it is with you”. Paul wanted them to pray that the gospel message would continue to spread rapidly and be honored just as it spread in their own community. What do you suppose Paul meant when he desired that the Word of the Lord would run swiftly?
The gospel should run swiftly in its proclamation. More people need to hear that Jesus went to the cross to pay for their sins. More nations, more communities, and more people groups need to hear the good news. What part are we doing to speed the Word of the Lord to those who have never heard? The gospel should also run swiftly in its effectiveness. Hearing is not enough. Before the good news can change a life, it must be believed. Our duty is to do what Paul instructed in 2 Thessalonians; we should pray. Pray that hearts will be open. Pray that the lost would be convicted and converted. Finally, the Word of the Lord should run swiftly in its glorification. We can only become fully mature believers in Christ by honoring, teaching, and obeying the Word of the Lord.
You and I may be no Usain Bolt. The days of running swiftly may have passed us by. But we can be a part of ensuring that God’s Word is spread rapidly to those who never heard.