Summary: A church can only be what God has called them to be when everyone takes on their biblical role of, "minister." Based on a series of messages by John Maxwell, this message is about every lay person stepping up and doing ministry.
Make Your Move
Part 3: Let the Laity Move Up
Key Thought: Ministry is not a special office. Ministry is a special function. Ministry is any act of service given in Jesus’ name.
Intro: What do you think is the biggest sin in the Church, today? Because I guarantee you that whatever your answer is, it’s probably wrong. The biggest sin in the Church today is the lack of lay people leading and doing ministry.
-You see, we’ve got it all wrong when it comes to ministry. We think of ministry that something the pastor of a church does. But, as we talked about last week, that shouldn’t be the case and it’s definitely not biblical.
-Because ministry is not a special office. The word, “ministry” is never used in the Bible to mean a special office like an ordained pastor. It’s never used to mean that this person is a professional. At its heart, ministry is a special function. A special function. A function that everybody can practice and act upon according to the gifts that God has given us. Really, ministry is any act of service given in Jesus’ name.
-now, let me make sure we have understood this before I get into the heart of the message. Let me just give you al little quiz, all right? If you have the gift of hospitality, and you worked as a greeter this morning, welcoming people as they came into our building, today. Is that a ministry? Yes of no? Yes. You better believe it is. It’s a wonderful ministry. Okay, what if you’re helping in the nursery, rocking and taking care of babies and making sure they’re safe and secure and satisfied? If you’re changing diapers in the name of Jesus, is that a ministry? Sure it is.
-You see, we tend to make ministry something very high and mystical and unattainable. Something that most of us think we could never achieve. But that’s not what ministry is, at all. Ministry is just using your gifts for the glory of God in the name of Jesus. Every one of us has gifts, and everyone will be challenged this morning, as I take you now through this message. As you see why we should consecrate our gifts to Jesus and use them for ministry. That’s really what it boils down to. Consecration. That’s an old, churchy word that just means, “dedicated to service.”
-There’s actually a pretty well known hymn titled simply, “Consecration” that says this:
Since Jesus gave His life for me,
Should I not give Him mine?
I’m consecrated, Lord, to Thee,
I shall be wholly Thine.
My life, O Lord, I give to Thee,
My talents, time, and all;
I’ll serve Thee, Lord, Thine own to be,
I’ll hear Thy faintest call.
I care not where my Lord directs,
His purpose I’ll fulfill;
I know He everyone protects
Who does His holy will.
My home and friends are dear to me,
Yet He is dearer still;
In my affections first He’ll be,
And first His righteous will.
My all, O Lord, to Thee I’ll give,
Accept it as Thine own;
For Thee alone I’ll ever live,
My heart shall be Thy throne.
-That’s consecration. That’s being dedicated to service. Everyone of us who call ourselves Christians should be dedicated to using our gifts for ministry. There are 10 reasons why. Let’s get going.
Why Every Christian Should Use
Their Gifts for Ministry
1. God expects us to.
-First of all, every Christian should use their gifts for ministry because God expects us to. When we look in the pages of the New Testament, there is a lifting of expectations because of grace and the calling that God gives us. Look at 1 Peter 2:4-5 and 9-10:
Scripture: 1 Peter 2:4-5; 9-10
“As you come to him, the living Stone—rejected by men but chosen by God and precious to him— 5you also, like living stones, are being built into a spiritual house to be a holy priesthood, offering spiritual sacrifices acceptable to God through Jesus Christ. 9But you are a chosen people, a royal priesthood, a holy nation, a people belonging to God, that you may declare the praises of him who called you out of darkness into his wonderful light. 10Once you were not a people, but now you are the people of God; once you had not received mercy, but now you have received mercy.”
-Do you hear the titles Peter uses to describe you?
A. Living Stones
-We are part of God’s never-ending construction project. We help build up the body of Christ. We help build the Kingdom of God right here, right now. Jesus is described in the Bible as the chief cornerstone upon which the Kingdom of God is built, but we are living stones. We all have a part to play in building the Kingdom.