Glimpses of grace seen in the everyday

Posts tagged ‘evangelism’

10 Commandments for Christ’s Ambassadors

As Jesus sent out his disciples on their first mission trip—to preach, heal, and cast out demons—He gave them these instructions.  But they are also for us today who represent Him to the world.  (See Matthew 10)

1.  Give and serve freely. (v. 8)

2.  Trust God for your needs. (v. 9-10)

3.  Focus on those who will listen. (v. 11-14)

4.  Be prepared to suffer. (v. 16-28)

5.  Trust the Holy Spirit for what to say when put on the spot. (v. 19)

6.  Don’t give up!  Endure to the end! (v. 22)

7.  Don’t be afraid. (v. 26-31)

8.  Never deny the Lord.  (v. 32-33)

9.  Prioritize God over your own family and even your own life. (v. 34-39)

10. Humbly accept what people give you as a gift to God. (v. 40-42)

The Word Spreads

Step by step, the beautiful plan of Acts 1:8 unfolds in sequence:  And you will be my witnesses, telling people about me everywhere—in Jerusalem, throughout Judea, in Samaria, and to the ends of the earth.

Some of the key players in the stages of this plan are featured in Acts 6-10.

Stephen (chapters 6-7) was originally selected for a food distribution program in Jerusalem.  But along with that, he made good use of his God-given wisdom and power for preaching and doing miracles.  As we know, he was falsely accused and killed by jealous religious leaders. 

Philip (chapter 8) was also chosen for that feeding program, but like Stephen, he couldn’t help but preach and do miracles to spread the Good News about Jesus, especially when persecution drove him out of Jerusalem.  God used him in the neighboring province of Samaria to bring crowds of people to faith in Christ and also to an Ethiopian convert to Judaism.

Saul (chapter 9), more commonly known by his Greek name Paul, was a sworn enemy of Christ and His followers.  But he was arrested by Jesus, was turned around 180 degrees, and called to service among Gentiles in “the ends of the earth.” 

Peter (chapter 10), though his primary ministry was to the Jews, was chosen to “midwife” the first real Gentile conversions—Cornelius and his household. 

And on went the Good News from there, reaching around the world, and still spreading. 

Aren’t God’s ways and Word amazing?  I’m so glad His plan includes me!

Maranatha!  Come, Lord Jesus!

Time for Harvest

When Jesus saw crowds of needy people, he mixed a couple of metaphors to describe them:  sheep without a shepherd, and crops ready to be harvested.  In either case, decisive measures were required:  First he told his disciples to pray that someone would go (Matthew 9:38), but in the next verse (Mt 10:1 and on) he tells them that they will be the ones!

As I read chapter 10 this morning, I jotted down the main principles Jesus gave as he commissioned them:

–Go!  Proclaim the Kingdom of God!  Give freely!

–Don’t worry about your needs.  God will provide.

–Expect suffering, but don’t fear or worry.  God will be responsible for you and the outcome of your work.

–Stay faithful and focused, not distracted by family ties, personal ambition or the desire for comfort. 

–You will be rewarded!

At that point, a great song came to mind:

“Come and join the reapers, all the Kingdom seekers,
Laying down their lives to find them in the end.
Come and share the harvest; help to light the darkness;
For the Lord is calling faithful men.”  (by Twila Paris)

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