Summary: If you believe that Jesus is the Son of God, then your life long mission is to share this message with others.
Purpose: Proclamation #2
Sharing Your Life Message
For some today’s message may be a contentious issue ... It is my belief that essentially we are called to “convert” or “proselytize” people.
Now you will hear people say ... “should we even tell other people what they should believe?” “Should we impose our beliefs on other people?”
The answer to that question depends on your answer to the question, “who is Jesus.”
If Jesus is a good teacher of moral law ... then your answer might be that no, it is not our place to convert people
If however you believe that Jesus is the Son of God, then your life long mission is to share this message with others.
In Luke’s gospel account:
First nine chps deal with the question, “who is Jesus?”
There is however a shift around chp. 9 which continues for the next few chps which says that, if Jesus is the Son of God, the divine Son from heaven, how should we live our life?
The general answer is that we should be disciples or radical Christian living
Starting in chap 10 of Luke, what this means is spelled out. How does a disciple live out their life in Christ Jesus?
As we discovered last time we talked on this that disciples have a mission
We are “Made for a Mission”
Mission = “to be sent”
We are sent to “proclaim”
Speak out, declare or make known
What do we proclaim? “Our belief in Jesus”
Tim Keller says “Disciples are messengers. Every disciple of Jesus is given a message to publicly communicate, urging everyone to believe it.”
So how should we do that? How do we do that? ...
READ: Luke 10:1
This is a similar story to the one I read last time in chapter 9. On that occasion Jesus only sent out his disciples (the future leaders of the church) to preach cast out demons and heal the sick. Those were things that Jesus did.
Preach = persuading of the truth
Cast out demons = liberate people’s souls from what is enslaving them
Heal the sick = mend bodies and community
Jesus gave the power and authority to these three things:
Permission and the Resources
If the story ended there one could be forgiven for believing that the responsibility for the doing those things falls on the clergy (those ordained/appointed for service in the Church).
But we have this account in Luke 10 where Jesus appointed seventy two others to do the same things ahead of Jesus
The number 72 is symbolic of something ... but what? Ancient readers and commentators know:
In the Gk translation of the Hebrew Bible the “Septuagint”
In Genesis 10 you have what is called the “The Table of Nations” – A list of all the nations on the face of the earth, there were 72.
This is Jesus’ way of saying, “it not just the 12 disciples ... it is not just the clergy that I send ... it is EVERYBODY ... everybody is sent with a message.”
Tim Keller “A disciple is someone who is called, ‘radically in.’ You don’t just know God from a far, you know him intimately ... to experience closeness to God through Christ – Intimacy to be healed to be blessed.”
At the same time Jesus says this he says, “I call you radically out – I send you out.” So what does that mean? What is Jesus implying?
Jesus only blesses you to be a blessing to others. Jesus brings you in – to send you back out into the world to be a blessing – no longer focusing on your needs but the needs of others.
1. to persuade people of the truth of the gospel
2. liberate people’s souls from what is enslaving them
3. to mend bodies and to bring communities back together
This is God’s message of peace, hope and liberty and you are the messengers. We are the messengers of this peace and hope and liberty.
So how do we do this – how do we go about sharing our faith – our life message?
D.L. Moody once spoke with a woman who didn’t like his method of evangelism. "I don’t really like mine all that much either. What’s yours?" She replied that she didn’t have one. Moody said, "Then I like mine better than yours."
There is no real right way – there are many right ways. The point is to find something that works for you. So here is a suggestion from Rick Warren’s “Purpose Driven Life.”
Sharing Your Life Message
1. Testimony: How you began a relationship with Jesus
Includes what life was like before your relationship with Jesus
How I realised I needed Jesus
How I committed my life to Jesus