Me------A Missionary

Me------A Missionary?

Date:              July 5, 1998

Bible Verses: Acts 1:8; 10:39-41

Key Verse:     John 15:16

Session Focus: Every Christian is called to be a missionary

Acts 1:8 "8But you will receive power when the Holy Spirit comes on you; and you will be my witnesses in Jerusalem, and in all Judea and Samaria, and to the ends of the earth."

Acts 10:39-41 "39"We are witnesses of everything he did in the country of the Jews and in Jerusalem. They killed him by hanging him on a tree, 40but God raised him from the dead on the third day and caused him to be seen. 41He was not seen by all the people, but by witnesses whom God had already chosen--by us who ate and drank with him after he rose from the dead.

Acts 1:8 Comments -- Power with God to be His effective witnesses comes from the heart and not the mind. That is not to say that the mind is not important. The mind is as important to our walk with Christ as a pool of water is to the roots of plants. Now if the water were to stay only within the pool without soaking down into the ground to where the roots of the plants were, the water in the pool still would be of no use. So it is with our walk with Christ. If it merely exists in the realms of our minds, then we are like spiritual pools of water having a form of godliness but denying the power thereof. 2 Timothy 3:5 having a form of godliness but denying its power. Have nothing to do with them. Notice what our Lord has to say about our relationship with those who have allowed themselves to slide into a state of complacency with their relationship with Him -- STAY AWAY FROM THEM! What a sad existence to claim you know the King of Life and yet your life reflects a stagnant pool of water that is lifeless due to not taking it down within your own life---TERRIBLE! To allow stagnant water into our own life would do what? It would merely begin the stagnation process within ourselves.

Why is it/ How is it that we allow ourselves to slide into a lethargic relationship with not only Christ but with our loved ones as well? A good marriage takes W O R K!

And yet we tend to allow complacency to rule our hearts due to the effort that's involved to developing a vital, growing relationship or due to the fact that we have had our hearts spurned after having given so much of ourselves. And yet working diligently is a valuable necessity to our own life as well as our relationships. This diligent attitude of work is also seen within the fruits of the Holy Spirit "Self Control" for if self had it's way, we would become so "me" orientated that we would be unpleasant to be with. As terrible as it is to have your heart spurned, the joys of giving far outweigh the sorrow of having your heart spurned. This is more than likely due to God's Word that says in Acts 20:35 In everything I did, I showed you that by this kind of hard work we must help the weak, remembering the words the Lord Jesus himself said: `It is more blessed to give than to receive.'"

Those who would disagree with this statement that the joy of giving far outweigh the joys of receiving have yet to experience the death of self will that only Christ can perform in our hearts. For until that happens, self would much rather receive than to give. For those who have been spurned who know Christ, let us remember our Lord who knew He'd be spurned and yet gave Himself totally and completely knowing that though the world may spurn Him, the Father would never leave Him.

Moving on-- Acts 10:39-41 How can we be His witnesses today? The disciples could say they were witnesses because of why? Because they walked, talked and listened to what Jesus had to say with His Words and His Life. Because of their desire to know the Truth, it was revealed to them. In the same way, He makes Himself clear to us today. Matthew 5:6 Blessed are those who hunger and thirst for righteousness, for they will be filled. But even the way we hunger and thirst for Truth and Righteousness will determine whether we will come to the knowledge of Christ. James 4:1-3 "1What causes fights and quarrels among you? Don't they come from your desires that battle within you? 2You want something but don't get it. You kill and covet, but you cannot have what you want. You quarrel and fight. You do not have, because you do not ask God. 3When you ask, you do not receive, because you ask with wrong motives, that you may spend what you get on your pleasures." If our desires to know Christ are not from the heart, a heart of hungering and thirsting, instead of a mind which desires to grow in knowledge for the sake of obtaining an intellectual state of pride in one's own self, than we might as well be seeking Him first for a heart that knows how to hunger and thirst. We do not choose Him, but He chooses us Ephesians 1:11 In him we were also chosen, [1] having been predestined according to the plan of him who works out everything in conformity with the purpose of his will, and until we can come to a place in our lives where we realize we are not the center of the universe and are willing to listen to God's Word concerning who we are, where we've come from, and where we're going, we are never going to come to the true knowledge of the truth which is from the heart. Also Acts 10:41 41He was not seen by all the people, but by witnesses whom God had already chosen--by us who ate and drank with him after he rose from the dead. God is the one who saves us and not we ourselves. If we see, it's because of His mercy to show us our sin. How do we get to place where we can see? By listening to His Word John 8:32 Then you will know the truth, and the truth will set you free."

If we're not growing, we're dying. We're either missionaries for Christ, or mission fields for satan. May we ever learn how to listen, how to hunger for His righteousness on a daily basis that the water of our faith will never stagnate but always flourish and conform our hearts unto His Glory, Honor, and Praise.

Missionary: a person undertaking a mission and especially a religious mission

1.)        What is our mission? Our mission is first and foremost to do what our Lord has commanded us to do in the order of importance that He has requested which is what?

a.) To love Him with all of our heart, soul, mind and strength and our neighbors as ourselves. Scripture reference Matt 22:36-40 36"Teacher, which is the greatest commandment in the Law?" 37Jesus replied: "`Love the Lord your God with all your heart and with all your soul and with all your mind.' [2] 38This is the first and greatest commandment. 39And the second is like it: `Love your neighbor as yourself.' [3] 40All the Law and the Prophets hang on these two commandments."

2.         37 Deut. 6:5

3.         39 Lev. 19:18

Matthew 10:8 Heal the sick, raise the dead, cleanse those who have leprosy, [1] drive out demons.

Freely you have received, freely give.

1. 8 The Greek word was used for various diseases affecting the skin—not necessarily leprosy.

So a missionary for Christ is to be a vessel by which we allow the Love of God to flow through us first to Him and then to others. 8

2.) What makes one an effective missionary?

2 Timothy 2:15 Do your best to present yourself to God as one approved, a workman who does not

need to be ashamed and who correctly handles the word of truth.

Mark 9:28-29 28After Jesus had gone indoors, his disciples asked him privately, "Why couldn't

we drive it out?" 29He replied, "This kind can come out only by prayer. [2]"

2. 29 Some manuscripts prayer and fasting

So in conclusion, All who have freely received His Grace, are to freely give. All those who have experienced salvation are the ones who have to give and yet, salvation is like a birth -- it happens once. If we're not spending our time with the Lord both in the listening to His Word and communicating back to Him in prayer we will cease to have an effective story of Life to share for Life is like a flowing river and not a stagnant pond. It's not just a one time experience, it's a beginning like an artesian well of water that has burst through the ground to find its way to a main tributary (a fellowship - church) whose soul purpose is to make it back to the ocean from which it came - Christ our solid Rock. We are also to give as wisely as a gardener who plants a garden. If we haphazardly cast our seed without the concern of ensuring that it has been planted within good soil, it would more than likely perish where it landed. Matthew 7:6 "Do not give dogs what is sacred; do not throw your pearls to pigs. If you do, they may trample them under their feet, and then turn and tear you to pieces."

May we ever learn how to become ever increasingly more effective missionaries of His Love and Grace to this lost and dying world.

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