Jesus instructions for how we should minister. 9 Principles from Luke 10:1-16.
#1 - The Principle Of _______________ .
“After this the Lord appointed seventy-two others and sent them two by two ahead of him to every town and place where he was about to go.” v.1
Jesus never ever intended that we should attempt to work in His name for His church ALONE! We need each other. We are better together. This principle is stamped throughout Scripture.
From the very beginning, “It is not good for man to be alone.” (Gen 2:18).
“Two people are better than one, because they get more done by working together.” (Eccl. 4:9)
Community is God’s answer to loneliness and recklessness and weakness. When we work together, joy enters in the equation.
#2 - The Principle Of _______________ .
He told them, “The harvest is plentiful but the workers are few. Ask the Lord of the harvest, therefore, to send out workers into his harvest field.” v.2
Much of the work has already been done. We don’t start from scratch. We always carry forward what others have already done. It’s also the principle that the work to be done is almost overwhelming and requires all hands on deck. We don’t serve in a church where we hire a minister to do the work of ministry. We are all ministers here and we each have a responsibility to do the work of the ministry.
#3 - The Principle Of ________________ .
“Go! I am sending you out like lambs among wolves.” v.3
The principle of no excuses. None of us are strong enough. None are qualified. All of us need God’s strength and His partnership to be able to do what needs to be done. We have a huge advantage as a small church - we can’t pretend that we are strong in people, money, resources, ministry. We just do it in God’s strength with His help!
#4 - The Principle Of ___________ .
“Do not take a purse or bag or sandals; and do not greet anyone on the road.”v.4
This is the principle AGAINST DISTRACTION. We are distracted by our screens - what’s happening on FB, Twitter. If Jesus were being quoted today perhaps he would have said, “And don’t greet anyone on the Internet.” Clearly he’s not talking about not being friendly or sociable. He’s talking about focus. Keep our eyes on the ball. Be focused on our ministry.
#5 - The Principle Of ___________ .
“When you enter a house, first say, ‘Peace to this house.’ If someone who promotes peace is there, your peace will rest on them; if not, it will return to you. Stay there, eating and drinking whatever they give you, for the worker deserves his wages. Do not move around from house to house.”v.5-7
When we go out into the ministry, we don’t have everything all figured out. They didn’t even know where they were staying! How they were eating! So how do apply this to ourselves? Trust God for this step we are in right now. Don’t worry about the next step. It’s ok to use your brain to make a plan, but know that it’s God’s plan that matters. Whatever we work out could be dashed by circumstances. So we live in THIS moment trusting God to provide.
#6 - The Principle Of ____________ .
“When you enter a town and are welcomed, eat what is offered to you.”v.8
Are we diplomatic with other people? “Eat what is offered to you.” This is the idea that it’s not all about you and your preferences or even your convictions. Jesus' culture had hundreds of years of instruction about what you could eat and what you couldn’t eat. Many years later the Holy Spirit would give instructions to Peter to also eat what was placed before him - pork!
Let’s put this into our lingo. Dogs! Horses! Beetles!
Let’s not keep this narrowed to just food we eat. It’s about all our attitudes toward cleanliness and culture. You are not your own when you minister on behalf of Christ. We like to worship with people who are like us. We look for people who are like us. Our race. Our social groups. Our economic class. Our smell!
Diplomacy requires that we recognize that Christ’s church is never about our preferences, but always about HIS preferences! Consider what would have happened if Jesus only saved people that were just like him? YOU wouldn’t be here! We don’t look for people who are like us. We look for people who are LOVED BY JESUS.
#7 - The Principle Of ______________ .
“Heal the sick who are there and tell them, ‘The kingdom of God has come near to you.’”v.9
We need to break this down: A) - Pray for God to work. B) Pray in faith before others when they share their need. C) Believe that God will answer. D) Be sensitive to how God may answer. Sometimes we expect grand, unexplainable, supernatural miracles, when often God answers inside the ordinary & natural. We just have to pay attention.
Keep your eyes open to the little things! The “Show AND TELL” part would be for us to put words to God’s solutions as His working even in the little things of life. Not to chalk it up to just circumstances.
#8 - The Principle Of _______________ .
“… It will be more bearable for Tyre and Sidon at the judgment than for you. And you, Capernaum, will you be lifted to the heavens? No you will go down to Hades.” v.10-15
Be very careful in how you apply this principle to your ministry. This is NOT your permission to BE JUDGMENTAL on others. If anything, this should motivate you all the more to do all the other principles as best you can. We could have also named this the principle of REJECTION, because there will be many times in your ministry when you will be rejected. When you will be misunderstood. When you will even be hated for the work you do on Christ’s behalf.
When rejection happens (not if), remember that you don’t have to be judgmental. God’s judgment is fierce and sure. It should almost make you want to feel sorry for the person who does not welcome you. Jesus tells you that when that happens, JUST MOVE ON. “Even the dust of your town we wipe from our feet.” v. 11. Why? So nothing clings to you. You are completely separated from their coming judgment. Jesus says about rejection, remember it’s not about you. It’s about me…
#9 - The Principle Of _____________ .
“Whoever listens to you listens to me; whoever rejects you rejects me;
but whoever rejects me rejects him who sent me.”v.16
The reason this principle of agency is so important is that it frees us up to act on Jesus’ behalf and not our own. We are not PRINCIPALS in this ministry, we are AGENTS.
In the transaction of ministry, you are not the owner. You are not the principal. That would be God’s role. You are the agent, the one who represents Him. When people accept you they are accepting Him. When people reject you, they are rejecting Him.
We have the awesome and amazing task of representing Christ as His agents here on Earth. That’s why things like diplomacy, focus and trust are so important. How are you doing? Do you have a ministry? Are you in the game? Are you being used by God for His kingdom? Can you see how He is using you?