Monday, November 30, 2015

Ephesians 4:7
But to each one of us grace has been given as Christ apportioned it.


Do we have anything to offer the church, other believers in Jesus, when it comes to the ministry of the body?  Yes, each of us has something to offer.  This verse tells us that Jesus has given each of us grace and that grace helps us live out ministry for one another in the life of the church.

So, instead of looking at what others can do for us we need to discover what grace Jesus has given to us so that we can be in ministry to others.

How do you give of yourself to be in ministry to others in the church?

November 29 - December 5

Apostolic Environment

Ephesians 4:7, 11-13
Acts 4:32-35
Unfortunately, the model for the church that all of us have lived with all of our lives is not a biblical model for living as the Body of Christ.  What most of us are used to is a form of church where clergy and staff members plan and perform ministry that people from the church can participate in.  Also, whenever someone from the church has a need it is also expected that the pastor or someone from the church staff will take care of that need.

This is not the model of church that we find in the book of the Acts of the Apostles.  This week we are going to explore how the church should function according to a biblical model.

Saturday, November 28

Luke 10:5
“When you enter a house, first say, ‘Peace to this house.’  If a man of peace is there, your peace will rest on him; if not, it will return to you.

In these words of Jesus he is affirming the belief that some people are more ready to hear the gospel than others.  Jesus instructs us to look for the person of peace.  Who is the person of peace?  It is that person who is ready and has his/her heart and mind prepared by the Holy Spirit to receive the good news of Jesus.

Jesus is saying that if the individual is a person of peace then we should share the good news with that person and it will be received.  If they are not a person of peace then they are not yet ready and we should continue looking for that person who will be receptive to the gospel.

Do you have a person of peace in your life?  How are you developing a relationship with that person so that you will have the opportunity to share the gospel of Jesus with them?

Friday, November 27

Isaiah 53:4-6
Surely he took up our infirmities and carried our sorrows, yet we considered him stricken by God, smitten by him, and afflicted.  But he was pierced for our transgressions, he was crushed for our iniquities; the punishment that brought us peace was upon him, and by his wounds we are healed.  We all, like sheep have gone astray, each of us has turned to his own way; and the Lord has laid on him the iniquity of us all.

In order to have the motivation to share the good news of Jesus we must be convinced that it is truly good news.  We need to be convinced that what Jesus did for us in his sacrificial and atoning death is the greatest thing that has ever happened in human history.

The witness of scripture can help us come to that realization.  Isaiah spoke prophetic words about the life of Jesus hundreds of years before Jesus came into this world.  The prophet tells us Jesus took upon himself all of our infirmities, sorrows, transgressions and iniquities. We learn in Isaiah that the sacrificial death of Jesus has brought each of us peace and through Jesus’ sacrifice we are healed.  Even though each of us has gone astray and sinned Jesus has paid the penalty for our sin and we are forgiven.

When we begin to understand the magnitude of what Jesus has done for us we will want others to know the peace and healing we have received.

Have you truly understood the price that Jesus has paid for us?  If so, how can we keep such great news to ourselves?

Thursday, November 26

Isaiah 52:7-8
How beautiful on the mountains are the feet of those who bring good news, who proclaim peace, who bring good tidings, who proclaim salvation, who say to Zion, “Your God reigns!”  Listen!  Your watchmen lift up their voices; together they shout for joy.  When the Lord returns to Zion, they will see it with their own eyes.

On this national day of Thanksgiving we should be particularly thankful for the fact that Jesus has come into our world and gave his life for our salvation.  Give thanks today that the good news of Jesus has come into our lives.

We should also give thanks that we have been called to be the ones who proclaim the good news.  Are we the watchmen who lift our voices and proclaim the coming of the Lord so that all people will rejoice?  When we have the missional mindset then we accept that we are called to be the ones who proclaim the good news.  Let’s be thankful that we have good news to share.

How has the good news of Jesus made you thankful?  Why should we be thankful that we are privileged to share the news of Jesus with others?

Saturday, December 5, 2015

1 Corinthians 12:27
Now you are the body of Christ, and each one of you is a part of it.

If we are believers in Jesus then we are a part of the church.  Often in the Bible the church is referred to as the body of Christ.  If we are a part of the church then it stands to reason that we have a role to play within the body.  As we join with all the other people in the church then the body becomes complete.  As we fulfill our role in the body then other’s needs and our needs will be fulfilled.  This is the way that God has planned it but it cannot function this way unless we all fulfill the role we have been given in the life of the church.

How are you living out being a part of the body of Christ?

Wednesday, November 25

Acts 16:9-10
During the night Paul had a vision of a man of Macedonia standing and begging him, “come over to Macedonia and help us.”  After Paul had seen the vision, we got ready at once to leave for Macedonia, concluding that God had called us to preach the gospel to them.

Just as there are people who have not opened their hearts to be ready to hear the gospel, there are people who have their hearts and minds prepared by the Holy Spirit and they are prime candidates to hear the good news of Jesus.  When we are living a missional mindset we will be looking for those people who are open to and receptive to hearing about Jesus.  How do we know when People have an open heart and mind regarding the good news of Jesus?  They will be curious about our faith.  They will display signs that they are searching for something in their lives.  Sometimes these people will display a brokenness in their lives and that they are searching for an answer to their problems and their lack of hope.  When we find those people in our lives we need to be ready to share the good news of Jesus with them.  That is what it means to be missional.

Do you know anyone in your life who is displaying the signs of openness toward hearing and considering the good news of Jesus?