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Sunday, April 17, 2016

Why True Ministry is Talking about Jesus, Not Talking about Ministry

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A lot of church people take this for granted---that true ministry is really talking about Jesus Christ, from beginning to end, nothing more nothing less. How engrossed are you in Christ? Do you love him so much that you can spend hours just talking about Him?

It's like this---when talking of their ministries and ministry plans, most pastors can say a lot. But when talking of Jesus, most of them can't say much. Yes, they can preach about Jesus at length, but during private moments, they seem to know nothing else except how He died for us. Even pagans and idol worshipers and cults know about that. They can't say much.

Some of them even feel awkward talking of Jesus. Others feel they're wasting time if the conversation isn't about how to grow their ministries.

Worse, there are those who cannot share anything about Jesus but their denominational doctrines about Him.

Talking of Jesus Like a Real Jesus Lover

I often watch and observe what pastors or church people say when they talk to me. Sadly, almost all of them never talk about Jesus. They talk about what they do in church or what they should do to get more members. But they can't talk about Jesus the way a real lover does or the way a real expert does.

Have you ever seen how a businessman talks about his business passionately in private? Or how a man crazily in love with a woman talks about her? You'd always see the fiery emotion and the mastery about details. You'd see them always eager to talk about their favorite subject matter.

Honestly, I don't see a lot of church people doing that about their Master. All they talk about is church.

One day, Jesus and his disciples roamed around Caesarea. After that, he asked his disciples, "Who do people say that I am?" Notice how he didn't ask: "What do people say about our ministry?"

What's important to God is what people say about the I Am and what they think about Him, not what people do in church.

Where People Talk of Nothing But Jesus

Power comes not when you talk about church and ministry. It comes when two or three are gathered in HIS Name. When even just two individuals talk about Jesus, He promises to be there. Talking about church and ministry will never have the same effect. Jesus never promised anything in that regard.

Worse are people who talk about themselves in church and call that preaching or fellowship.

But some would ask---what would happen if all we do is talk about Jesus? How will the church grow in number? How will more people be reached?

It's not our problem if the church grows or not. The Father alone decides that. What we're called to do is share the Gospel---talk about Jesus. And the promise is that Jesus will be there. What could be more important?

Another thing is, if we prioritize Jesus, everything else will be added to us---including church growth. Seek first His Kingdom and His righteousness. And "His Kingdom" is not the denominational church ministries church people do (they're nothing but man's kingdoms). His Kingdom is any place where Jesus really is present---and that is where two or three gather in His Name.

Can you passionately talk about Jesus, His Kingdom and His righteousness, with people?

Inventing Talks about Jesus

There are folks who claim to love talking about Jesus, but what they really do is merely invent stories. They love talking about how they see Jesus in person and talk to him directly as a friend. That's all they talk about. But they know so little about the Jesus Christ in the bible.

There are people who really see God's visions and hear Him talk audibly, but these people also master the Word of God in the bible.

To the law and to the testimony: if they speak not according to this word, it is because there is no light in them. [Isaiah 8.20]
What I mean is authentically talking about Jesus in-depth using the spoken Word in the bible relating to Him.

Theologians

Neither am I talking about theologians who merely act as propagandists for their denominations. All they know about are what past theologians debated about. They are stuck there. They're confined to what mere humans understand. Even after 20 or 50 years, they're still talking about what past theologians argued about.

How saints and angels talk about Jesus in heaven is how we should talk about Him today---if we really know Him and His Word---"not in words taught us by human wisdom but in words taught by the Spirit, explaining spiritual realities with Spirit-taught words," [1 Corinthians 2.13]

A Jesus Specialist

Specialists are often so passionate about their field of expertise. No matter what you talk about, they manage turn the conversation around so you'd end up talking about his profession. Most insurance agents are like that.

Jesus specialists are like that.

Like this guy I know. We sit and enjoy a cool drink and talk about life in general for a while. Then he shifts gear and starts talking casually about Jesus. Something like this:

First, we talk about career. "So, you were connected to this company for 4 years?" he asks, always interested about you than talking about himself.

"Yup, I was training and marketing director there but I decided to work online at home," I said.

"Freelance work, huh? It's good to be able to work freely like that. Where the spirit of the Lord is there is freedom. Working online must then be God's will for you!" he started. "Whatever you do, if it frees you as an individual---frees your thoughts, spirit, soul, time, and finances---then it's God's will."

He continued: "Jesus' career didn't seem much when he started it. But he was a totally free individual doing it. It says, he did nothing in his 'chosen career' initially except grow up before the Father like a tender shoot (he was referring to Isaiah 53.2). It didn't seem much, but he loved doing it. He was a "freelancer" so to speak!"

We both laughed. 

"Can you imagine a life like that?" he went on. "Doing nothing but merely '(growing) up before him like a tender shoot.' " He took a careful sip at his drink and then looked intently at me, emphasizing: "He just grew up before the Father! It's all very simple and practical. He did nothing churchy or religious. A lot of folks do a lot of things in church today but they never grow up before Him!"

I looked afar and considered it a while. Indeed, Jesus was tasked with a very difficult job---save souls by dying for them---and yet his preparation and training was so simple. He just grew up before the Father.

"And what does 'like a tender shoot' mean? " I asked. 

Readily he replied (as if he knew I was going to ask it), "It means Jesus grew up before the Father obediently, his heart was tender and teachable to the Father, easily directed like a tender shoot. A lot of us have stubborn branches already. If God tries to redirect our ways even a bit, we'd snap and break easily."

It was fun and insightful talking of Jesus casually like that. We loved it so much we could have done it the whole day.

And after my skin has been destroyed, yet in my flesh I will see God; I myself will see him with my own eyes—I, and not another. How my heart yearns within me! [Job 19,26-17]

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