Summary: What Can We Learn From the Priorities of the Savior’s Lifestyle?
Prayer and Ministry: Like A Horse and Carriage
All believers are to have a ministry. Matt. 5:16ff, "Let your light so shine…"
Question: What Can We Learn From the Priorities of the Savior’s Lifestyle?
I. Our Own Spiritual Health Is the Basis for Our Ministry (35)
1. At times, Jesus broke the routine to spend extra time in prayer….
2. He would have probably prayer 2 to 3 times a day (& before meals), but sometimes He needed to consult and receive strength from the Father….
3. The Kenosis passage….Phil. 2:5-9
4. Jesus had a routine and He had private retreats, He and the Father….
(1) once here, early in the morning
(2) once in late afternoon
(3) once He pulled an all nighter…
5. I have had many special times of prayer that have refueled my tank….guidance….peace
6. I do NOT think Jesus prayed through a list during this prayer time….informal conversation with the Father…talking things over; worship
7. The difference between ministering in the flesh (which can be effective in human eyes) and in the Spirit (which is what God values) is focusing the mind on the things of the Spirit…tuning into the Spirit (like a radio): Word and Prayer.
PRAYER is not the secret to effective ministry: it is the prerequisite. It is not enough, but without it, we are operating in the flesh….
II. Our Time With God Prepares Us For and Takes Precedence Over Our Time With People…. (36-37)
1. There are exceptions….mothers with young children, etc…
2. Prv. "The fear of man works a snare…"
3. Talmud: worse to break in and steal in a sneaky way than to grab a purse…
4. Jesus did not make it easy to be found…no notes, etc.; He needed to spend time in prayer
(1) I’ve got it good with a study, but sometimes busy…phone, visitors
(2) Reservoir Park, a waiting room at the hospital…
5. In Sr. Camp, the theme was "Take Two." The 1st Commandment must always take precedence over the 2nd. We begin by loving God, which means, in part obeying him. This may mean that sometimes we maynot please people because what people want and what God demands may be two different things. Like pills that must be taken separately and in order, loving God IS the first commandment, the first priority.
6. God wants us to love others out of our love for him: there is a difference between serving others for Christ and serving others because we are guilt driven co-dependents….
III. You Must Not Allow Our Focus to Become Too Narrow (38)
1. Was Jesus done in Capernaum? No. One is never done in ministry.
2. We Americans can get lost trying to right all wrongs here and forget we are part of a Kingdom that has responsibilities for the entire earth….
3. Some people get so excited about THEIR CHURCH and work so hard at living in an artificial Christian world that in their minds civilization ends at the other end of the Wabash….
IV. Ministry Involves Activity and Exertion (39)
1. If the purpose of your life is to get by with as little work as possible, you can never serve the Lord…
2. Although Jesus did not hesitate to take time away to pray or rest, and although at times He avoided people, most of His ministry was WITH people…