Wednesday, May 8, 2013

Considerations regarding God's call to the work of the ministry

I. God calls everyone to Salvation.

1 Peter 5:10 “But the God of all grace, who hath called us unto his eternal glory by Christ Jesus, after that ye have suffered a while, make you perfect, stablish, strengthen, settle you.”

II. God calls all of His children (the saved) unto holiness.

1 Thess. 4:7 "For God hath not called us unto uncleanness, but unto holiness."

2 Tim. 1:9 "Who hath saved us, and called us with an holy calling, not according to our works, but according to his own purpose and grace, which was given us in Christ Jesus before the world began,"

III. God leads his children in everything (John 16:13; Rom. 8:14; Gal. 5:18). Key phrase: “lead of the Spirit” (this leading never contradicts God's Word - the Holy Bible).

IV. God has a special calling for the work of the ministry given only to men.

1 Tim. 3:1 "This is a true saying, If a man desire the office of a bishop, he desireth a good work."

V. God calls men (to administrate) and leads women (to serve and follow) in ministry.

A. Always in accordance to His Word:

     1. Eph. 5:18 and Col. 3:16 are parallel passages.

     2. 2 Peter 1:19-21 – The word of God has one interpretation, with many applications.

B. Always in accordance with His church (Pastor and congregation):
     1. Acts 13:3 "And when they had fasted and prayed, and laid their hands on them, they sent them away."

     2. Acts 14:26 "And thence sailed to Antioch, from whence they had been recommended to the grace of God for the work which they fulfilled."

     3. Acts 15:40 "And Paul chose Silas, and departed, being recommended by the brethren unto the grace of God."

VI. God’s call is accompanied by objective signs.

A. He calls men who are already involved in the work of the ministry.
    1.  Acts 12:25 "And Barnabas and Saul returned from Jerusalem, when they had fulfilled their ministry, and took with them John, whose surname was Mark."

     2. Acts 13:1 "Now there were in the church that was at Antioch certain prophets and teachers; as Barnabas, and Simeon that was called Niger, and Lucius of Cyrene, and Manaen, which had been brought up with Herod the tetrarch, and Saul. (2) As they ministered to the Lord, and fasted, the Holy Ghost said, Separate me Barnabas and Saul for the work whereunto I have called them."

     3. 1 Tim. 1:12 "And I thank Christ Jesus our Lord, who hath enabled me, for that he counted me faithful, putting me into the ministry;"

If you are not faithful to God and His church why would you desire to do ministry work for God and His church? You preach a louder message by how you live versus what you say. Nothing is more damaging to cause of Christ than an insincere and hypocritical preacher.  This is why it is vital that the minister primarily takes heed unto himself (see Rom. 20:28; 1 Cor. 9:27).

B. He enables the men whom he calls into the ministry for ministry work.
     1. 1 Tim. 4:14 "Neglect not the gift that is in thee, which was given thee by prophecy, with the laying on of the hands of the presbytery."

     2. 1 Tim. 1:12 "And I thank Christ Jesus our Lord, who hath enabled me, for that he counted me faithful, putting me into the ministry;"

     3. 2 Tim. 1:6 "Wherefore I put thee in remembrance that thou stir up the gift of God, which is in thee by the putting on of my hands."

C. The call is personal but not exclusive.
     Acts 13:1-2 “Now there were in the church that was at Antioch certain prophets and teachers; as Barnabas, and Simeon that was called Niger, and Lucius of Cyrene, and Manaen, which had been brought up with Herod the tetrarch, and Saul. (2) As they ministered to the Lord, and fasted, the Holy Ghost said, Separate me Barnabas and Saul for the work whereunto I have called them.”

Here God had a personal call to Barnabas and Saul, but the leadership was also notified by God.
How do I know if God is calling me to the ministry? Or leading me to ministry work?

     1. John 7:17 “If any man will do his will, he shall know of the doctrine, whether it be of God, or whether I speak of myself.” – Are you doing what you know you are supposed to be doing? The Lord Jesus Christ always enables us to do what we should for Him.

     2. Do you meet the Scriptural qualifications and disqualifications for the church leadership?
1 Tim. 3; Titus 1:6-9; 1 Peter 5:1-3;

     3. Do you have the ability to communicate God’s truth?
1 Tim. 3:2 “A bishop then must be blameless, the husband of one wife, vigilant, sober, of good behaviour, given to hospitality, apt to teach;”

          A. Able to teach – (w/ a burden to see souls saved and lives changed).

          B. Qualified to teach – according to the Scriptures.

          C. Currently involved in teaching (esp. the lost, how they could get saved). Do you see souls saved under your own personal ministry?

August Newsletter