Date Posted: June 18th, 2012
“The harvest is plentiful, but the workers are few.” Luke 10:2
Ministry opportunities are vast, but it’s hard to find people who are willing to do the work. So here’s what Jesus says we’re to do: “Ask the Lord of the harvest… to send out workers into his harvest field” (10:2).
To “send out” means to thrust out or to drive out. This is what we need to pray for. We need to ask God to place an inner compulsion in many hearts. What will it take for those who are thrust out to fulfill the work that God gives to them? What is the profile of the person that God uses?
6. They Speak with Authority
“He who listens to you listens to me.” Luke 10:16
Jesus did not say this to the Twelve. He said this to the seventy two. If He had said it to the Twelve, we would say, “Yes, of course. We all know that Christ speaks through the Apostles.”
But Christ tells the seventy two lay people that when they put the good news of Jesus into words, those who hear them actually hear Jesus—when you speak about Jesus, Jesus speaks through you.
7. They Find Joy in their Relationship with Jesus
“The seventy two returned with joy and said ‘Lord, even the demons submit to us in your name.’” Luke 10:17
When the seventy two return from their mission, they’re filled with joy, but Jesus gives them a strange reply: “I saw Satan fall like lightning from heaven” (10:17). What did Jesus mean?
It could be that Jesus was saying, “As you were expelling the enemy’s servants (demons), I saw their master (Satan) also fall.” In other words, Jesus is sharing in the joy of their ministry triumph.
Or Jesus was saying, “I watched when Satan was cast out of heaven (back when he rebelled against God).” This would be a warning about the dangers of pride for those who experience God’s blessing in ministry.
Jesus goes on to confirm that He gives His people authority over the power of the enemy: “Do not rejoice that the spirits submit to you, but rejoice that your names are written in heaven” (Luke 10:20).
If you place your joy in anything God gives you in this life, even your ministry, God will eventually take it away. Find your joy in what can never be taken from you: You belong to Christ. Your name is written in His book of life. He knows you and you know Him—that’s eternal life!
Are these things true of you?
I have found this very searching as I’ve tried to examine myself in the light of this profile. Are these things true of you? If you are to fulfill your calling, harvesting the opportunities that God has placed all around you, then you need these things to be true of you too…
6. Will you speak the Word of God with clarity? Or will you shape your message to what people want to hear?
7. Will you become proud in the achievements of your own ministry? Or will you humble yourself, knowing that it is only by grace that our names are written in heaven, and that all that we have and all that we are, we owe to Jesus Christ.
This LifeKey is based on the message “Ministry,” by Pastor Colin S. Smith, from the series, “The Conveniently Neglected Teachings of Jesus” preached on May 16, 2004.