Summary: Jesus knew that God’s creation and purposes works best through a diversity of perspectives, cultures and approaches to ministry. One day the disciples came to Jesus complaining about men who were doing the ministry differently then they were accustomed
1. Jesus knew that God’s creation and purposes works best through a diversity of perspectives, cultures and approaches to ministry.
One day the disciples came to Jesus complaining about men who were doing the ministry differently then they were accustomed to. Jesus said, "Do not hinder them, for he who is not against us is for us."
Application: Ask the Lord to give you a greater appreciation for the way God can work through a diversity of people and ministry approaches.
2. Jesus knew that all people struggle to overcome ethnocentric tendencies. The Lord spoke to the woman at the well to teach everyone that the Lord has no bias, prejudice or partiality.
Application: Ask the Lord to help you confess any hidden assumptions of bias, prejudice or partiality.
3. Jesus knew that the disciples would need a wider appreciation of the diversity of God’s 18,800 people groups in order to fulfill His great commission. (Matt. 28:18-20)
Application: Ask the Lord to help you gain greater exposure, awareness and knowledge of the diversity in people groups and the ministries God is using to reach them with His kingdom, gospel and righteousness. Begin to read and pray through "Operation World", an excellent prayer source to help you pray for the needs of all 228 nations.
4. Jesus chose to work through disciples from a diversity of backgrounds and social-economic classes. The Lord’s body is made up of a wide and deep diversity of backgrounds, professions and experiences that enrich the church.
Application: Ask the Lord to help you learn how to cooperate with a wide diversity of perspectives, social-economic and backgrounds to increase the quality and quantity of ministry scope.
5. Jesus’ love is so broad, long, high, and deep that He encompasses everyone with a believing heart and mind.
Application: Resist the temptation to have a higher standard than the Lord when it comes to accepting people. (Rom. 15:7) Christ’s love is broader than the measure of any person’s mind or heart.
6. Jesus’ approach to ministry evidenced a great kindness, understanding and appreciation for a wide variety of methods in ministry. Our Lord gave every believer creative powers through the Holy Spirit to innovate a diversity of approaches in many different contexts.
Application;Ask the Lord to give you the wisdom to find just the right "key approach" to match the "lock" in every personal, emotional and cultural mindset.
7. Jesus kept an open mind to anyone from any background or profession as long as they would follow Him and believe. The Lord did not discriminate against prostitutes, tax collectors or thieves.
Application: Ask the Lord to help you to keep your mind open to how He can use you to reach and disciple people from any previous experience.
8. Jesus knew that Paul, the apostle, who previously demonstrated murderous narrow-mindedness and hatred, would prove to be a great example of God using the power of the Spirit to reach out across new cultural, ethnic and language barriers.
Application: Ask the Lord to give you the same burden, abilities and skills to reach across cultural boundaries to those of different backgrounds.