Summary: We have been called by Christ to serve His Kingdom
Called to Serve
November 2, 2014
What is an essential quality for ministry?
What do we have to do to be effective in ministry?
People have to be the primary focus in making ministry effective. There is no ministry if there are no people. The whole purpose behind everything that Jesus did was people and His strongest disagreements surrounded people.
1 Now after this the Lord appointed seventy others, and sent them in pairs ahead of Him to every city and place where He Himself was going to come. 2 And He was saying to them, "The harvest is plentiful, but the laborers are few; therefore beseech the Lord of the harvest to send out laborers into His harvest. 3 "Go; behold, I send you out as lambs in the midst of wolves. 4 "Carry no money belt, no bag, no shoes; and greet no one on the way. 5 "Whatever house you enter, first say, 'Peace be to this house.' 6 "If a man of peace is there, your peace will rest on him; but if not, it will return to you. 7 "Stay in that house, eating and drinking what they give you; for the laborer is worthy of his wages. Do not keep moving from house to house. 8 "Whatever city you enter and they receive you, eat what is set before you; 9 and heal those in it who are sick, and say to them, 'The kingdom of God has come near to you.' 10 "But whatever city you enter and they do not receive you, go out into its streets and say, 11 'Even the dust of your city which clings to our feet we wipe off in protest against you; yet be sure of this, that the kingdom of God has come near.'
17 The seventy-two returned with joy and said, "Lord, even the demons submit to us in your name." 18 He replied, "I saw Satan fall like lightning from heaven. 19 I have given you authority to trample on snakes and scorpions and to overcome all the power of the enemy; nothing will harm you. 20 However, do not rejoice that the spirits submit to you, but rejoice that your names are written in heaven." Luke 10:17-24
Jesus expanded the team – Moved from 12 to 72
Jesus had a large number of disciples and from that group He selected 12 to be leaders or apostles. Those who were followers were not necessarily part of the inner core of leaders. These people still followed Jesus but did not take on a larger leadership role in the ministry. Jesus announces that He is going to do another ministry journey and that He is going to send out not 12 but 72 to prepare the way for Him.
People were excited because there was going to be another opportunity to serve Jesus. There was another opportunity to be part of the team. There was another opportunity to be part of something greater. Assuming that Jesus is still sending out the 12 as part of this new group, it means He needs five times as many people to do ministry. Jesus is multiplying ministry and sending out more people than He ever has before.
Jesus is extending His ministry by using more people. He sends the 72 out and they do a great deal of work and serve Jesus with distinction. When they return they expect to get the accolades of Jesus because of what they were able to accomplish.
"Lord, even the demons submit to us in your name."
The 72 came back and were excited because they were able to have power over demons. They had become enthralled with the authority that they now had. They were focused on the ability and not what was done with the ability. They were ecstatic that the demons had to obey them.
This is where Jesus drops the bomb on them – I saw Satan fall like lightning from heaven
Jesus is telling them that they are focused on the wrong thing. Jesus is telling them that true power is His and His alone. The authority that they had was nothing more than a extension of His own. The truth is that they should have been excited about the fact that they set people free from demons.
* Healed the sick
* Caused the lame to walk
* Made the blind to see
Recorded in Heaven
* Book of Life – Community Journal
End of Conflicts
Weddings – including births – expansion of families
Jesus is not going to be asking what did you do for me? Jesus is going to be asking a much more powerful question – who did you help in my name? There is a stark contrast because ministry is not about doing lots of different things for Jesus. We have confused the reality because ministry is about people. Ministry is about helping those who cannot help themselves. Ministry is about reaching people who are lost. Ministry is about being Jesus to people who do not know Him.