Summary: Our love for Christ compels us to serve HIM and to reach out to others who need to hear the most powerful message that world will ever hear: John 3:16 NIV
Cornerstone Church March 6, 2005
SET APART FOR THE GOSPEL
This morning I stand to speak in the middle of two major portions of our service.
We have just completed Communion and soon the Elders, along with the Congregation, will be Commissioning Pastor Jim with a time of prayer and the laying on of hands as he prepares to minister in Bosnia – March 11 – 19, 2005.
The Bookends of our service are not distinct or separate pieces but are matching pieces of the same message.
Communion reminded each of us again of the immense love God the Father and the LORD Jesus Christ have for each one of us.
Their sacrificial love defiles all logic and reason, and yet is undeniable!
1 John 4:9-10 NIV This is how God showed his love among us: He sent his one and only Son into the world that we might live through him. This is love: not that we loved God, but that he loved us and sent his Son as an atoning sacrifice for our sins.
God the Father responded for our need of a Savior by sending His ONLY SON – Jesus God the Son to pay for our sins.
We were bankrupt individuals whose account is marked: “Paid in Full!”
Rom 8:1 NIV Therefore, there is now no condemnation for those who are in Christ Jesus,
How are we to respond to God?
Rom 12:1 NIV Therefore, I urge you, brothers, in view of God’s mercy, to offer your bodies as living sacrifices, holy and pleasing to God—this is your spiritual act of worship.
Our love for Christ compels us to serve HIM and to reach out to others who need to hear the most powerful message that world will ever hear:
John 3:16 NIV “For God so loved the world that he gave his one and only Son, that whoever believes in him shall not perish but have eternal life.
Communion and our Commissioning Pastor Jim this morning are inseparably linked to the God’s will and plan.
Cornerstone Church and each one of us are equally a part of God’s plan for the world.
This morning we are going to look at Acts 13:1-12. This portion or Scripture records the time when the Church at Antioch laid hands on Barnabas and Saul and sent them forth to proclaim the Gospel Message.
Message: “Set Apart for the Gospel”
wasn’t any help!
The message might have been called: “Tag, You’re it.”
Acts 13 marks the beginning of the Missionary Era. All who want to be missionaries as well as all missionary sending agencies would do well to study Paul’s three missionary journeys to develop a “Theology of Missions.”
Found throughout these passages is God’s way of reaching the world for Christ.
Acts 13 opens for us the third major section in Acts.
Acts 1:8 NIV But you will receive power when the Holy Spirit comes on you; and you will be my witnesses in Jerusalem, and in all Judea and Samaria, and to the ends of the earth.
My Witnesses in Jerusalem - Acts 1-7
My Witnesses in all Judea and Samaria - Acts 8-12
My Witnesses to the remotest part of the earth - Acts 13-28
Starting from Jerusalem, Yuba City, California is part of the remotest part of the earth. It is at least for people in Ohio where I’m from!
THE KEY THOUGHTS THAT WE WILL SEE IN THIS SECTION ARE:
The Church – God’s Sending Unit (Acts 13:1-3)
The Work of the Holy Spirit – Calling, Equipping and Enabling (Acts 13:4)
The Work of Evangelism – It’s struggles and blessings (Acts 13:5-12)
THE CHURCH – GOD’S SENDING UNIT
Acts 13:1-2 NIV
In the church at Antioch there were prophets and teachers: Barnabas, Simeon called Niger, Lucius of Cyrene, Manaen (who had been brought up with Herod the tetrarch) and Saul. While they were worshiping the Lord and fasting, the Holy Spirit said, “Set apart for me Barnabas and Saul for the work to which I have called them.”
In the church at Antioch…
Imagine being part of this church! It had a plethora of active godly leaders.
How and When did this church began?
Acts 11:19-21 NIV Now those who had been scattered by the persecution in connection with Stephen traveled as far as Phoenicia, Cyprus and Antioch, telling the message only to Jews. Some of them, however, men from Cyprus and Cyrene, went to Antioch and began to speak to Greeks also, telling them the good news about the Lord Jesus. The Lord’s hand was with them, and a great number of people believed and turned to the Lord.
It only takes a spark to ignite outreach and the birth of something new for God.
God used persecution and the death of Stephen to disperse Christians from the safe confines of the Jerusalem Church and scatter them all over the area