Summary: The purpose of this message is to help us understand that the church is to minister to all walks of life and all kinds of people as God gives us the opportunity and to encourage us to reach out to the needy in our communities.
THE MINISTRY OF A CHILD OF GOD
A. The summer Olympics ended this past week in Beijing, China.
1. And it is natural for the games to be nationalistic – we each root for those who are of our own nation taking pride in those who win
a. Who could not shout when Michael Phelps won his record 8th gold metal – he won every race he was in!
b. Or for Walsh/May-Treanor, Women’s beach volleyball – 107 consecutive victories as a team – wrapping it all up with a gold!
c. And then there was the US basketball, back on top with a gold winning over Spain
d. We won 36 gold medals, 38 silver medals, and 36 bronze
e. Notice how we say “we” – it can be intensely national
2. But the games are much bigger than that
a. They are not games consisting of one nation, one language, or even one tribe – they are international
b. They are games in which people of all colors, sizes, races, and nationalities come together in one place.
c. The athletes put aside many of their differences: finding and building friendships with those who might once have been viewed as adversaries or enemies.
3. What an opportunity!
B. And so it is with the church of God
1. We have been so engrossed in the life of Paul for the last couple of weeks that we might have forgotten that there were many others serving the Lord in new church.
a. We read in Acts 9:32, And it came to pass, as Peter passed throughout all quarters, he came down also to the saints which dwelt at Lydda.
b. Peter is going about doing the work of his Lord, as well
c. And there is great variety in that work – he will even have to put aside some of his nationalistic pride to minister.
2. As we will see today, the church is not to be nationalistic – it is much broader than any one of us and members of the church are to minister to those of all walks of life.
- We need to take the admonition of James found in James 2:1 seriously, My brethren, have not the faith of our Lord Jesus Christ, the Lord of glory, with respect of persons.
C. In our scripture passage today we find Peter ministering to those whom God places in his path.
1. Three names are mention, all of different back grounds and in need of different things
2. As we look at the Ministry of a Child of God we will find that Peter ministered to
a. A Sick Man Named Aeneas
b. A Saint Named Tabitha
c. A Tanner Named Simon
3. May God grant us the desire to minister to all people as He gives us opportunity.
Here we pick up the ministry of Peter once again and find that he is in Lydda where he finds himself ministering to
I. A SICK MAN NAMED AENEAS, Acts 9:33-35 And there he found a certain man named Aeneas, which had kept his bed eight years, and was sick of the palsy.  And Peter said unto him, Aeneas, Jesus Christ maketh thee whole: arise, and make thy bed. And he arose immediately.  And all that dwelt at Lydda and Saron saw him, and turned to the Lord.
A. We Begin With Peter’s Ministry to Aeneas
1. Very little is know about Aeneas who is mentioned no where else in the New Testament
a. From the text we know that he was sick with palsy
b. Palsy is a medical term derived from the word "paralysis" and is defined as paralysis of a body part often accompanied by loss of feeling and uncontrolled body movements such as shaking.
c. In the case of Aeneas, we do not know the cause of his paralysis, nor do we know the exact extent of it
d. We do know that it had made him bed ridden for eight years now and he faced that prospect for the rest of his life
e. In his day this would more than likely have made him a beggar and useless to society.
2. Peter, who had learned that great things were possible in the name of Jesus Christ reached out to him and commanded Aeneas, Jesus Christ maketh thee whole: arise, and make thy bed. (v. 34)
3. Immediately Aeneas stood up – healed, completely!
4. Aeneas then became a living walking testimony for we read, And all that dwelt at Lydda and Saron saw him, and turned to the Lord. (v. 35)
5. Praise God for his great work in the life of Aeneas, through his humble servant Peter!
B. So How Does This Speak To Our Ministry to Others? Well I see at least two, possibly three, ways that it speaks to our ministy opportunities: