TUESDAY March 17, 2020
St. Patrick’s Day
“Go therefore and make disciples of all the nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father and of the Son and of the Holy Spirit….”
Patrick was born into a Christian, Roman family in Britain, but he had no interest in the church. As a youth, Patrick was captured by slave traders and taken to Ireland. It was a place filled with Celtic, pagan practices, where people lived in a deep spiritual darkness. At the time, Patrick believed God was chastening him because he never followed the Lord. He suffered six years of slavery, herding sheep and pigs. In Ireland, as Patrick prayed night and day to the Lord, he came to know Christ personally.
Finally, Patrick escaped and found a ship that carried him back home. He began to study for ministry when, in a vision, God called him to return to Ireland to preach to the people who had enslaved him. He traveled across the Irish countryside, bringing the Gospel to the hostile, pagan Celts. His motivation for his mission is summed up in his confession:
According to the measure of one’s faith in the Trinity that one should spread God’s name everywhere and offer his gift of salvation to all people with confidence and without fear, even in the face of danger. If we really know the triune God we claim to worship, if we really believe that God is awesome, majestic, wonderful, and worthy of all praise, then we will be about the spread of God’s name, regardless of the consequences.
Patrick brought the light of Christ into a land of spiritual darkness.
In obedience to God’s call to go to Ireland, he was able to plant 300 churches, and 120,000 Irishmen were saved and baptized into the Christian faith. By faithfully preaching the Gospel, he laid a good foundation of Christianity in Ireland. His ministry lasted 29 years, and as the “Apostle of Ireland,” he lit such a spiritual fire in the land.
It behooved us to spread our nets, that a vast multitude and throng
might be caught for God.