Summary: Partnering in Ministry
"Discipleship Boot Camp: Partnering in Ministry
August 3, 1997
Intro: Each of our four gospels has a different emphasis. We’ve been looking in Matthew at the presentation of the King. In chapters 1-4 we saw the Person of the King. In 5-7 the Principles of the King. In 8-10 the Power of the King. Today in chapter 10 we see that Christ extends his power by multiplying his ministry.
Think for a moment how important it is to develop leadership to partner together in ministry. Take a moment and try to shake hands without someone else. It’s very empty without someone else. Try to clap with only one hand. Try doing "the Wave" - you’ll look pretty foolish. We need each other in ministry. "As iron sharpens iron, so a man sharpens his friend."
Think about multiplication and how powerful it is. Take one penny today. If every day for a month you get one penny, you’ll have less than a dollar. If the second day you double that penny, and keep on doubling, in a month you’ll be a multi-millionaire. Many of the largest, fastest growing companies are those with pyramid structures: Amway, Avon, etc.
Christ called his early disciples to go into all the world. That was not just wishful thinking, but was a goal they could have accomplished in the first century if they would have multiplied and reproduced as Christ taught them to do. The Great Commission called for the disciples to teach others who would learn, who would in turn train others: a ministry of multiplication.
Christ’s Model: Christ invests in developing leaders. In the various lists of the 12, they are listed in different orders, but with certain ones being listed at key intervals. Peter, Philip, and James are always listed at the same place. Maybe they were the leaders of smaller groups of four.
Many disciples followed Christ. Matthaias was chosen from the larger group of followers after Judas hanged himself. But out of the large group, Christ chooses 12 to invest himself in. Later he also chooses out 70 more leaders. Christ invested greatly in developing leadership. If we really want to see God expand the ministry of Union Chapel, it will happen as we develop leadership and multiply our ministries.
Steps to Developing into a Leader:
I. Be Prepared to Make a Commitment - 1-4
In verses 1-4 we see Christ taking followers and making them leaders. We see he calls twelve "disciples" - those who are learners, those who imitate a teacher. He sends them out as "Apostles" - those who are sent on a mission, those commissioned to go and serve.
There’s always a big step in going from being a watcher and becoming a doer. Many times we want to sit back and watch someone else do the work.
II. Be Prepared to Get Experience 5-15
The disciples are sent out to learn by doing. Christ often calls us to do things we don’t really feel capable of doing. If we were capable, though, we wouldn’t need to turn to him for his help. Christ has prepared his disciples by teaching them and by modeling for them. Now he gives them safe experience.
A. Start with a Safe Environment - The apostles are told not to go down the road to the gentiles. They are to start their ministry by going only to the Jews. They are to start with a "safe" audience.
When we start out witnessing, normally we don’t go out street preaching or knocking on doors or witnessing in the shopping malls. Normally we start by talking to our family and friends. We start by talking to those we feel comfortable around
B. Focus on the message - We need to emphasize our message, our ministry, the reason we are serving. When we first step out into ministry, we don’t need to try to do everything perfectly. We need to make sure that God is exalted: that is the important thing.
C. Be empowered by Faith - The apostles are told not to procure for themselves lots of extra supplies. Rather they are to trust God to provide for their needs. They are to be equipped, but they do not to trust in themselves to meet all of their needs; rather they need to trust in God.
D. Don’t focus on personal comfort - They are told not to try to find the most comfortable place to stay. Rather, they are to look for a worthy person. Find someone who will provide for your needs. Many times God meets our needs by using unlikely people.
E. Don’t push yourself where you’re not wanted - Many face personal frustration and fruitless ministry because they seek to minister outside of the power of God. We can not bring about results. It must come by the power of God. If someone does not want to listen to you, don’t try to force them to respond to the gospel.