This was a story told by Michael Card about Joseph, who is a Masai Warrior, who came to a Billy Graham convention where people heard of his story. This is a sermon excerpt of John Piper reading the story.
One day, Joseph, the Masai Warrior who showed up at Amsterdam, from his tribe. One day Joseph, who was walking along one of these hot, dirty, African roads, met someone who shared the gospel of Jesus Christ with him. And then and there he accepted Jesus as Lord and Saviour. The power of the Spirit began transforming his life and he was filled with such excitement and joy that the first thing he wanted to do was return to his own village and there share the good news to the members of his own local tribe.
Joseph began going from door to door telling everyone he met about the Cross. Suffering. And the salvation that it offered, expecting to see their faces light up the way his had. And to his amazement the villagers not only didn’t care, they became violent. The men of the village seized him, held him to the ground, while the women beat him with strands of barbed wire. He was dragged from the village and left to die alone in the bush. Joseph somehow managed to crawl to a water hole, and there after days of passing in and out of consciousness, found the strength to get up. He wondered about the hostile reception that he had recieved from people he had know all his life. He decided he must have said something wrong, or left something out from the story of Jesus. After rehearsing the message that he gave at first, he decided to go back and share this message again.
Joseph limped into the circle of huts and began to proclaim Jesus. “He died for you so that you might find forgiveness and come to know the living God,” he pleaded. Again he was grabbed by the men of the village and held while the women beat him, reopening wounds that had just begun to heal. Once more they dragged him unconscious from the village and left him to die. To have survived the first beating was truly remarkable. To live through the second was a miracle.
Again days later Joseph awoke in the wilderness. Bruised. Scarred. Determined to go back. He returned to the small village and this time they attacked him before he had the chance to open his mouth. As they flogged him for the third and possibly the last time, he again spoke to them, “Jesus Christ the Lord.”
Before he passed out the last thing he saw was the women who were beating him began to weep. This time he awoke in his own bed. The ones who had so severely beaten him, were now trying to save his life. And nurse him back to health. And the entire village came to Christ.
Colossians 1:24 – Now I rejoice in my sufferings for your sake, and in my flesh I am filling up what is lacking in Christ’s afflictions for the sake of his body, that is, the church,…