Since all of the government shut downs and social distancing started, Here Am I Bible School has had to shut its doors until we are allowed to open up again. And because of that, there has been little to report concerning updates in the ministry. However, we felt led to start a weekly update from someone in leadership - whether news of the ministry or short study/devotion. This being our first week, we will be hearing from none other than the ministry's founder, David Spencer:
How often do you think , “ Wow, what a great ministry!"? Or maybe, “That's great man of God!”?
We think of Billy Graham, Franklin Graham, Moody, Spurgeon, Muller, or other pillars of the faith, and consider how great they were, or what mighty men of God they were.
Well, they were. God used them to accomplish what HE desired to do through them. They answered the call to be faithful in obedience to HIM. And, you and I can be also. All we need is obedience: that is, obedience to our calling, whatever and wherever that may be.
When we think, "Oh, how great of a ministry!", we are looking at the outward. We are comparing ministry to ministry. God warns against this through Paul in 2 Corinthians 10:12. Speaking of men trying to exalt themselves above Paul’s authority, he writes, “….they, measuring themselves by themselves and comparing themselves among themselves, are not wise.” But in verse 13 Paul says, “But we will not boast of things without [our] measure, but according to the measure of the rule which God hath distributed to us..." In other words, we should not be comparing ministry to ministry or measuring against accomplishments, but in doing what God has given for each of us to do.
In Ephesians 4 we see that Jesus gave gifts to the church: Apostles, prophets, evangelists, and pastors/teachers. Ephesians 4:12-16 tells us the purpose of those gifts in the church (verse 12), "the perfecting (or equipping) of the saints for the work of the ministry, for the edifying of the body of Christ. " The passage goes on through verse 16 describing the Church as a Body, and that every part of the Body is to be involved in ministry. In verse 16,”…. By which every part does it’s share, causes growth of the body for edification of itself in love."
In other words, we all have a ministry. We all need to be about “My Father’s business.”
Every part of a body serves the rest of the body. Not one part is designed to serve itself. When a part of the body becomes self-serving and feeding itself it becomes a cancer - a sickness that must be removed or put to death. Each part of a body is designed to serve the rest of the body for growth and edification of the WHOLE body. Galatians 5:13 says “…through love serve one another.”.
Ephesians goes on to share about ministry. First we give ourselves to Jesus, allowing the Holy Spirit to change us from within; our speech changes and we become givers instead of takers, no longer lying but speaking truth, and forgiving as God in Christ forgave you/me.
Ephesians goes on to describe ministry. As the Spirit works in us to change our hearts, that change works outward toward those around us. Ephesians 5:15-6:4 describes it. As Spirit filled Christians we start submitting to one another: wives honoring God through submission to husbands, husbands loving wives as Christ loved the Church (His bride), husbands washing their bride with the Word by edifying and building her up with it, children obeying their parents, and fathers bringing up their children in the training and admonition of the Lord.
The first ministry for each of us is at home. The highest calling is to fulfill the ministry in the home, whether one is a husband, wife, or child. It all starts at home. Our crowns (or, heavenly rewards) will not be based upon how mighty our ministry was in the sight of men, but rather upon our faithfulness and obedience to that ministry He has called us to, especially our roles in the home. 1 Samuel 15:22-23 says, “Has the LORD great delight in burnt offerings and sacrifices as in obeying the voice of the LORD? Behold, to obey is better than sacrifice, to heed than the fat of rams. For rebellion is as the sin of witchcraft, and stubbornness as iniquity and idolatry...? First Corinthians 4:2 says “Moreover it is required of stewards that one be found faithful.” Psalm 127 says, “Unless the LORD builds the house, they labor in vain who build it…….. Behold, children are a heritage of the LORD, and the fruit of the womb is His reward. As arrows in the hand of a mighty man, so are children of the youth. Happy (blessed) is the man that hath his quiver full of them: they shall not be ashamed, but they shall speak with the enemies in the gate.” And finally, Proverbs 22:6 says, “Train up a child in the way that he should go, and when he is old he shall not depart from it.”
Many verses in Deuteronomy speak of teaching your children the law of the LORD "when sit in your house; when you walk in the way". This causes me to think that God has an extremely high priority on a loving, God-fearing home that brings up children to walk with Him.
In John 21, Jesus told Peter that he would be “stretched “ out. Peter points to John and asks Jesus, “what about him?” Jesus answered Peter saying, “If he remains until I come again, what is that to you? You follow me.”
Want to hear “Well done Good and faithful servant” ? Want to have many crowns/rewards in Heaven? Then be faithful to your calling. Run the race to win. Train up a child in the way. Love your wife as Christ loved the church. Honor your husband. Obey your parents. And as Jesus said to Peter in the gospel of John , “Follow ME.”
You or I may not be a Billy Graham or Billy Sunday, but we do not have to be. Just be faithful to Jesus in all that you do.
Be a blessing and be blessed.