“I am sending you out like sheep surrounded by wolves, so be wise as serpents and innocent as doves.”
Jesus sent out the Twelve to preach to Israel. He warned them about opposition. He told them how they should deal with it.
Jesus’ words here applied to Matthew’s readers and to us today. Wisdom is need to meet resistance. We must never lower ourselves to the level of others. What “wolves” have you encountered?
#votd #Matthew #mission
“For they refreshed my spirit and yours. So then, recognize people like this.”
1 Corinthians 16.18
Paul refers to three brothers sent by the Corinthian church to help and encourage Paul. The Corinthians wanted to associate with whom they considered big names. Paul wanted them to see that those who were involved in God’s mission were worthy of recognition.
Who is doing God’s work that deserves recognition among us? What can I do to refresh the spirits of the saints who do God’s work?
#votd #1-Corinthians #mission
“But you will receive power when the Holy Spirit has come upon you, and you will be my witnesses in Jerusalem, and in all Judea and Samaria, and to the farthest parts of the earth.”
The book of Acts follows this program of witnessing to the world. The verse is key to the book. The Holy Spirit empowered the church to proclaim the gospel. They spoke about Jesus.
We continue the work of proclaiming Christ to the world. This is Jesus’ mission for the church in every age. It is an essential identifying mark of the church.
#votd #Acts #mission
Faith and footwork for the Lord,
Contented smiles to take the News,
Fervent prayers for family growth,
For added workers in the field.
A tropical sun to try the wavering,
Jeers and rocks from passersby,
A song of joy from Jesus’ sowers,
With seeds of hope for heaven’s folk.
Amazed disciples mind their brethren,
Fraternal love to teach and learn
The gifts of life, the gates of glory —
Here reigns our God, the rousing Father.
This commentator draws a lesson from Luke 13.1-9:
The passage is significant because Jesus constantly avoids letting the question get off-track; he keeps people considering their own sinful state. I am reminded of the standard question that comes up in evangelistic contexts, often to shift the subject: “What about the heathen in Africa [or some other remote area]?” This abstract question is often posed to deflect a personal confrontation with our sin and our need for God. In former days when confronted with such a question, I would wax eloquent on the evangelistic possibilities or lack of possibilities for those distant folk in need. Recently, thinking of this Lukan exchange, I have tended to quickly refocus the question by assuring the listener that God is perfectly capable of handling the needs of those distant folk, but the real question for us to discuss is what we will do with God and his call to turn to him.
via Luke 12 Commentary – Know the Time: Israel Turns Away but Blessing Still Comes – BibleGateway.com
There is an answer about the lostness of man and the condemnation that sin brings. Like the author above, however, I tend to emphasize the need of the questioner.
God has made the church responsible for telling everyone about Christ. If they’re lost without hearing the gospel, we bear responsibility for it. Let us therefore fulfill our mission with the news of salvation.
(Oh, in Brazil, the question often is asked about the natives in the depths of the Amazon jungle.)
#mission #evangelism #perdition
“For you yourselves know, brothers and sisters, about our coming to you—it has not proven to be purposeless.”
1 Thessalonians 2.1
When the gospel is preached, God brings forth fruit. The truth is not without effect. Paul recalled the conversion of the Thessalonians. His work among them was the best answer to critics who charged him with disinterest or hidden motives.
How does our work show our purpose and motives? How can you be sure that the gospel will bear fruit?
#gospel #mission #VOTD
“The one who believes and is baptized will be saved, but the one who does not believe will be condemned.”
Jesus gave this command and promise to be preached in all the world, v. 15. The response to the gospel is a part of the message.
This command requires double obedience: first, to believe and be baptized; then, to proclaim it to all. Have you done the first, and are you doing the latter?
#Great-Commission #mission #VOTD
“May God be merciful and bless us.
May his face smile with favor on us. Interlude
May your ways be known throughout the earth,
your saving power among people everywhere.”
Psalm 67.1-2 NLT
Israel received God’s blessing in order to make his ways known to “people all over the world” v. 7, so that they might fear him. The focus of the psalm is v. 4, the just government and guidance of God, which brings joy to the world.
As God’s people today, the church has been given the mission to make God’s salvation known to all. How should the church show that this mission has priority?
#mission #God #VOTD
“After this the Lord appointed seventy-two others and sent them on ahead of him two by two into every town and place where he himself was about to go.”
Jesus prepared his disciples for their future work of proclaiming the gospel and prepared the peoples who would soon be blessed with his presence as he proclaimed the kingdom of God in Israel.
How do Christians today prepare people ahead of time for Jesus’ appearing?
#mission #discipleship #VOTD
“But the Lord stood by me and strengthened me, so that through me the message would be fully proclaimed for all the Gentiles to hear. And so I was delivered from the lion’s mouth! The Lord will deliver me from every evil deed and will bring me safely into his heavenly kingdom. To him be glory for ever and ever! Amen.”
2 Timothy 4.17-18
The Lord saved Paul so that he might save others. In this life the Lord stood by him. For the next, the Lord delivers from evil and conducts him safely.
The Lord protects us so that we can do his will, that of teaching others the Good News. As we are engaged in this, God is guaranteeing our entry into the heavenly kingdom.
#salvation #mission #VOTD
“So Jesus replied, ‘My teaching is not from me, but from the one who sent me.'”
The Lord replied to a question of how he, untrained in a formal school of rabbinical theology, had acquired such learning. He exploded all human expectations and attributed all to the Father.
If Christ has sent us, as he was sent by the Father, Jn 20.21, what does this say about what we should teach?
#mission #teaching #VOTD
“Then the apostles gathered around Jesus and told him everything they had done and taught.”
Jesus had sent out the Twelve to preach only in Israel and to heal the sick, vv. 7-13. They reported in to him when they returned.
We learn from Jesus when we obey him. Our mission is unlimited, and he gives us on-the-job training. He shows us our mistakes and teaches us how to deal with our successes.
#mission #Twelve #VOTD
“Now those who had been forced to scatter went around proclaiming the good news of the word.”
All except the apostles were forced to leave Jerusalem because of the persecution launched after Stephen’s death.
The Good News is what got them persecuted, but because all the saints understood that they had been give a mission by the Lord, they continued to proclaim it.
#gospel #mission #VOTD
“The man from whom the demons had gone out begged to go with him, but Jesus sent him away, saying, ‘Return to your home, and declare what God has done for you.’ So he went away, proclaiming throughout the whole town what Jesus had done for him.”
Whatever Jesus’ reason for not permitting the man cured of demon possession to accompany him, he gave him a great mission, so that the next time the Lord entered the region, he was well received.
Today, we can do both: go with Jesus and go out declaring what God has done for us.
#VOTD #salvation #mission
The video of a doctor dragged bloodily from a United Airlines flight last Sunday by airport security personnel will long provoke anger, long after the episode is investigated and resolved. The video went viral, and United’s stock has taken a multi-million dollar drop in value.
One writer noted that it wasn’t United personnel responsible for the scene, but an airport security person. Regardless, it happened on a United flight and the company will bear the brunt of the criticism. Continue reading