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Summary: This study examines the call to be faithful in using our spiritual gifts.

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This month we have been involved in a focus on being faithful. The first Sunday we talked about being faithful to God. The next Sunday we talked about being faithful to church. Last Sunday we talked about being faithful to family. Today, I want to talk about being faithful to ministry. Sometimes we are not as faithful as we think. A bus driver and a minister were standing in line to get into heaven. The bus driver approached the gate and St. Peter said, "Welcome, I understand you were a bus driver. Since I’m in charge of housing, I believe I have found the perfect place for you. See that mansion over the hilltop? It’s yours. The minister heard all this and began to stand a little taller. He said to himself, "If a bus driver got a place like that, just think what I’ll get." The minister approached the gate and St. Peter said, "Welcome, I understand you were a minister. See that shack in the valley?" St. Peter had hardly gotten the words out of his mouth when the irate minister said, "I was a minister, I preached the gospel, I helped teach people about God. Why does that bus driver get a mansion, and I get a shack?" Sadly St. Peter responded, "Well, it seems when you preached, people slept. When the bus driver drove, people prayed." SOURCE: James S. Hewett, Illustrations Unlimited. (Wheaton: Tyndale House Publishers, Inc, 1988) p. 146.

(Contributed by SermonCentral)

For a text I want to examine I Peter 4:10."As each one has received a gift, minister it to one another, as good stewards of the manifold grace of God." From this text we will learn four important principles about being faithful.

1. Every Christian has a gift! In I Peter 4:10 we read “As each one has received a gift, minister it to one another.” Any time you discuss spiritual gifts there are certain questions that arise.

A. How do I discover my gift? Rick Warren gives the following suggestions.

S= Study (Take CLASS 301)

T= Trial & error (Nothing wrong with trial & error)

A= Analyze- take spiritual gifts tests

R= Request other’s opinions

T= take training

(Acrostic taken from Rick Warren’s CLASS 301 material)

B. What do I have to offer? Rick Warren gives the following suggestions in affirming your unique qualities.

S= What are my spiritual gifts?

H= What is my heart passion?

A= What are my abilities?

P= What is my personality?

E= What are my experiences?

(Acrostic taken from Rick Warren’s CLASS 301 material)

 No gift is small, in God’s eyes.

 No gift is insignificant.

2. Every Christian is a minister. In I Peter we read “as each one has received a gift, minister it to one another.” You may be like I was when the Lord called me to preach. I did not like the idea. However, ministry is supposed to be a rewarding experience. Ministry is supposed to be a fulfilling experience. This does not mean everyone is to be a professional clergy. It means everyone is to minister.

In our 301 material there are some principles about ministry that I wish to emphasize with you.

 I’ve been created for ministry. (Eph. 2:10)

 I’ve been saved for ministry. (II Tim. 1:9)

 I’ve been called into ministry. (Gal. 1:15)

 I’ve been gifted for ministry. (I Pet. 4:10)

 I’ve been authorized for ministry. (Mt. 28: 28)

 I’m commanded to ministry. (Mt. 20:28)

 I’m to be prepared for ministry. (Eph. 4:11-12)

 The body of Christ needs my ministry. (I Cor. 12:27)

 I’m accountable for my ministry. (Rom. 14:12)

(Principles taken from Rick Warren’s CLASS 301 material)

3. Every Christian has a responsibility! We have a “one another” ministry.

Brenda Goodine shares a story about her friend who decided to talk to her bright four-year-old son, Benji, about receiving Christ. “Benji,” she asked quietly, “would you like to have Jesus in your heart?” Benji thought for a few minutes and then rolling his blue eyes answered, “No. I don’t think I want the responsibility.” Benji realized what many Christians still have not figured out: salvation is a free gift but it comes with some strings attached. Service is not an option for a follower of Jesus – it is a natural outgrowth of our relationship with Christ. Are you serving the Lord?

(Contributed to Sermon Central by R. Darrel Davis)

The New Testament lists a number of ways we are responsible for “one another.”

We are “members of one another.” Rom. 12:5

We are to “Be kindly affectionate to one another.” Rom. 12:10

We are to“honor giving preference to one another.” Rom. 12:10

We are to “Be of the same mind toward one another.” Rom. 12:16

We are to “Love one another.” Rom. 13:8

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