Ministry

2 Corinthians 5:10-19

10For we must all appear before the judgment seat of Christ, so that each one may receive what is due for what he has done in the body, whether good or evil.

The Ministry of Reconciliation

11Therefore, knowing the fear of the Lord, we persuade others. But what we are is known to God, and I hope it is known also to your conscience. 12 We are not commending ourselves to you again but giving you cause to boast about us, so that you may be able to answer those who boast about outward appearance and not about what is in the heart. 13For if we are beside ourselves, it is for God; if we are in our right mind, it is for you. 14For the love of Christ controls us, because we have concluded this: that one has died for all, therefore all have died; 15and he died for all, that those who live might no longer live for themselves but for him who for their sake died and was raised. 16From now on, therefore, we regard no one according to the flesh. Even though we once regarded Christ according to the flesh, we regard him thus no longer. 17Therefore, if anyone is in Christ, he is a new creation.[b] The old has passed away; behold, the new has come. 18All this is from God, who through Christ reconciled us to himself and gave us the ministry of reconciliation; 19that is, in Christ God was reconciling[c] the world to himself, not counting their trespasses against them, and entrusting to us the message of reconciliation.

For “everyone who calls on the name of the Lord will be saved.”
How then will they call on him in whom they have not believed? And how are they to believe in him of whom they have never heard? And how are they to hear without someone preaching? And how are they to preach unless they are sent? As it is written, “How beautiful are the feet of those who preach the good news!”

(Romans 10:13-15 ESV)

“So you, son of man, I have made a watchman for the house of Israel. Whenever you hear a word from my mouth, you shall give them warning from me. If I say to the wicked, O wicked one, you shall surely die, and you do not speak to warn the wicked to turn from his way, that wicked person shall die in his iniquity, but his blood I will require at your hand. But if you warn the wicked to turn from his way, and he does not turn from his way, that person shall die in his iniquity, but you will have delivered your soul.
(Ezekiel 33:7-9 ESV)

When people think of being a minister, I wonder what goes through their minds?  Do they see it as a position of power and control?  Do they think its a glamorous position within the church?  Do they see it as something to be desired?  Do they see the throne-like seat in the pulpit and wonder if its comfortable?

Do they know what it is like to speak and be ignored?  Do they know what it is like to tell someone you love a hurtful truth?  Do they know what it is like to have personal issues and others still think you’re perfect?  Do they know what it is like to have blood on you hands when you stay speechless?

There can be such a lonely feeling in ministry as God sets you apart.  This feeling should  not be foreign to “believers” as we are all a part of a royal priesthood.  We are all commanded to spread the gospel, so a minister is not alone in this calling.  But those called out of the fold to participate and charge to feed God’s people, carries a different burden.  Those that take this mission to heart can feel heaviness.  A heaviness of  battle that a minister fights day in and day out spreading the gospel.   To look out at the world and see those who seem to live clueless lives, hurts. Your heart feels deep compassion for people you have never met. Your eyes don’t see humans but eternal souls on a path. You hurt for those that live lives without truly living because they have limited themselves to how much God they want. And you hurt for those who say that they don’t need Christ. Plus, there are some who have never heard, yet they know that there must be a God somewhere. A true man of God sees the wolves  hunting.  At times you feel helpless because the sheeps keep walking into the traps with their eyes wide open. There is nothing humanly glamorous about preaching. I don’t like people running up to me giving me credit for the Holy Spirit‘s work in me.  It humbles me so much to know that God picked a forgetful, sinful, selfish, arrogant and quiet man to stand before his people.  Ministry is not about me and has nothing to do with my abilities . I’m not out to build an empire or a international presence masked behind the mission statement of spreading the Gospel.  If the Holy Spirit can just bless me to live out the Gospel with integrity until I die, I would have done at least my duty.  But I pray to God, that I’m blessed to do much more for his glory and his will.

Stop the flowery talk and fancy words to display our pedigree. Stop the showmanship in the pulpits and be real. Stop building human thrones in God’s house.  Kill the arrogance and break the knees of the boastful. Crash the altars of the new pharaohs and restore the gates of Zoin.  How long will Jeremiah have to weep?  Can we get back to worshiping God? Can we stop planting trees and handling out apples of empty promises? Can we stop taking the poor to top of the temple and showing them that they too can lust and idolize wealth?  Ministry is not about us at all.  Aaron and his sons were ordained for God’s services, not their own.

2 Corinthians 4

English Standard Version (ESV)

The Light of the Gospel

4 Therefore, having (A)this ministry (B)by the mercy of God,[a] we do not lose heart. But we have renounced (C)disgraceful, underhanded ways. We refuse to practice[b] cunning or (D)to tamper with God’s word, but (E)by the open statement of the truth (F)we would commend ourselves to everyone’s conscience in the sight of God. And even (G)if our gospel is veiled, (H)it is veiled to (I)those who are perishing. In their case (J)the god of this world (K)has blinded the minds of the unbelievers, to keep them from seeing (L)the light of (M)the gospel of the glory of Christ, (N)who is the image of God. For what (O)we proclaim is not ourselves, but Jesus Christ as Lord, with (P)ourselves as your servants[c]for Jesus’ sake. For God, who said, (Q)“Let light shine out of darkness,” (R)has shone in our hearts to give (S)the light of the knowledge of the glory of God in the face of Jesus Christ.

Treasure in Jars of Clay

But we have this treasure in (T)jars of clay, (U)to show that the surpassing power belongs to God and not to us. We are (V)afflicted in every way, but not crushed; perplexed, but not driven to despair; persecuted, but (W)not forsaken; (X)struck down, but not destroyed; 10 (Y)always carrying in the body the death of Jesus, (Z)so that the life of Jesus may also be manifested in our bodies. 11 For we who live are always being given over to death for Jesus’ sake, so that the life of Jesus also may be manifested in our mortal flesh. 12 So (AA)death is at work in us, but life in you.

13 Since we have (AB)the same spirit of faith according to what has been written, (AC)“I believed, and so I spoke,” we also believe, and so we also speak, 14 knowing that (AD)he who raised the Lord Jesus(AE)will raise us also with Jesus and (AF)bring us with you into his presence. 15 For (AG)it is all for your sake, so that as (AH)grace extends to more and more people it may increase thanksgiving, (AI)to the glory of God.

16 So we do not lose heart. (AJ)Though our outer self[d] is wasting away, (AK)our inner self (AL)is being renewed day by day. 17 For (AM)this light momentary affliction is preparing for us an eternal weight of glory beyond all comparison, 18 (AN)as we look not to the things that are seen but to the things that are unseen. For the things that are seen are transient, but the things that are unseen are eternal.

Ministry is about displaying God’s grace and mercy by using the worthless to do the impossible which will last an eternity.   No, it is not always sunshine and that one person that you are disciplining doesn’t always get it.  But as ministers we set aside our comfort and bear all  for the sake of others.  We live or died for those we service in the name of Jesus and all for the glory of God.  Every time I open my eyes I’m reminded of his grace.  Everyday, I’m compelled to share because my heart will not let me keep the love, mercy,  grace, blessedness, salvation and loving-kindness of God to myself.  A God like this must be shared.  The mere thought of God brings me to tears… The weightiness of his grace is indescribably and there is nothing that can stop me from speaking of his goodness.  This ministry that God has given me is a blessing.  It is a treasure that can’t be bought and it is more valuable than gold.  My ministry is Jesus Christ and his message of the Gospel.  It is the ministry of salvation being given to those who hated God and now can’t live without him.  It is a ministry that seeks to make much of God and little of ourselves.  Ministry is not about convincing others that you are right.   Ministry has nothing to do with convincing period!  Its about lifting Christ up and watching the trinity do the rest.

John 7:16 So Jesus answered them, (U)“My teaching is not mine, but his (V)who sent me. 17 (W)If anyone’s will is to do God’s[e] will, (X)he will know whether the teaching is from God or whether I (Y)am speaking on my own authority. 18 The one who speaks on his own authority (Z)seeks his own glory; but the one who seeks the glory of him who sent him is true, and in him there is no falsehood.

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Comments
2 Responses to “Ministry”
  1. joseph says:

    praise God.. I’ve been behind on reading some devotions/blogs and had a spare 30min this evening to get caught up.. Perfect timing as always by the Lord..

    Recently, I realized that all has been lost, and I’ve gained Christ. Luke 14:26-27 If any man come to me, and hate not his father, and mother, and wife, and children, and brethren, and sisters, yea, and his own life also, he cannot be my disciple. And whosoever doth not bear his cross, and come after me, cannot be my disciple..

    All that I once was.. is dead. All that I had.. it’s gone. All that I have once thought was true is a lie.. I have no worldly home, I have a home in heaven. I have no earthly family that I can talk to.. I have the Body of Christ.. Debt? I just exited bankruptcy. Worldly belongings.. none, but I have plenty. He has met all of my needs. I have food in my stomach, clothes, shelter, a car.

    What else do I have? Christ. I have Peace.. I have Love.. I have His guidance. I’m protected. He’s all I need, all I want, and all I have.. there is only one thing to say… Hallelujah!!!!!! Where next Lord!? Here I am, send me!

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