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4. It's Not My Gift

Mark Howard


Mark Howard

Director, Emmanuel Institute of Evangelism




  • June 15, 2018
    6:00 PM
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Father heaven as we are now focusing on this lesson that we've been going through again I pray for the guidance of your Holy Spirit or not just to give us an intellectual understanding to stir our hearts with with the spirit of mission the spirit that motivated our master we ask him pretty things in Jesus name him OK now we were in the handout that you have on page it's cut it's Page 13 in and out which is I don't know what page it is in your hands it's the 2nd page back but it's the top of the page number 3 says it's not my gift OK Now before I get into that and just want to tell you where we're going to pick up but I want to I want to show you something in Scripture that I meant to look at this morning I want to go to Acts chapter one this is really fascinating to me add notices until sometime recently and I just I probably should preface what I'm about to say by saying because I mentioned it this morning that our message is a prophetic message and there's a reason for that you know how Peter when he was on the boat we talked about this morning and Jesus performed that miracle of the fish and how in that moment Peter realized he was in the presence of the divine Son of God No more was it the carpenter from Nazareth but he realized that he was in the presence of one who controlled all the forces in nature and what you know understand something that when we get into prophecy and we're preaching prophecy and we hear it sometimes criticism people say well we need to tell people about Christ and all we're telling you about is the mental image in the beast and what have you I want you to understand something when you're sharing the vision of Daniel 2 and somebody spiraling along at some point in that study it clicks for them that this dusty old book in something written 600 years before Christ has just outlined the history of the world all the way down to the present day and it's happened just like it was written. In that moment I'm going to tell you what they're not thinking about in that moment they are not thinking about Metal Men in that moment they are now thinking that there is a divine hand behind this book and the Spirit of God in the light is their mind in their gripped as they come face to face with the divinity of Christ just as Peter did in that boat that's what happened in an evangelistic meetings up enough to be interesting because they're not just like all Metal Men cool that the Spirit of God comes upon them and they're convicted that the Bible is true there's something to it besides just a a human book and there's a God behind it who knows the future and knows their future and there's power in in them now I'm saying all that to say I am very supportive and strongly affirming of our prophetic message having said all that sometimes a 7th Day Adventists we can get more caught up in trying to determine where we are by what's happening in the world with the signs of the times then we are with the mission that Christ gave us us you'll see what I mean in just a minute we're acceptor one and if you look at. Verse 6 will pick up in verse 6 the Bible says Therefore when they had come together they asked him saying Lord will you at this time restore the kingdom to Israel now you understand that the Jews thought that the Messiah was going to come and conquer the Romans and set them up as an earthly kingdom set up his earthly kingdom. And so the Disciples of Christ had that false understanding that was somewhat addressed Jesus had addressed it with them but they still didn't fully get it right the crucifixion wasn't supposed to happen he was supposed to set up as earthly throne while he didn't and they're all confused about that but Jesus explained his himself he went on the road to and made us with 2 of his disciples and try to reveal to them Look this is what Scripture said would happen that the price would suffer and die oh yeah that is what the Bible said would happen and so they kind of got it but now here they are again OK Lord we got it now you died you risen wrecked it and now is it time that you're going to set up the kingdom the earthly kingdom now notice the answer of Jesus this is very interesting verse 7 and he said to them it is not for you to know the times or seasons which the father has put in his own authority but you shall receive power when the Holy Spirit has come upon you and you shall be witnesses to me in Jerusalem and in all Judea and some area and to the end of the earth now I want you to think about that for a minute did Jesus believe in prophecy and the importance of prophecy I mean he is the one that gave them a discourse in Matthew 24 He is the one that gave the Revelation of John so what is he telling them here look is not for you to know times and seasons not be to worry about all this the father knows it but you shall receive power in the spirit has come upon you what's he saying think about that for a minute what does he really trying to get across is telling him not to worry about the signs of the time he could be saying that because he said elsewhere to worry about the signs of the time so what's he saying it's not for you to know the times of seasons but here's here's the point the disciples had a tendency just like we have a tendency to get distracted from the mission that Christ gave. And the signs of the times and all that we can look at there the coming of Christ is not going to happen when we expect it to happen if we don't do the work Christ gave us to do are you aware of that go with me to the book of 1st Peter chapter 3 want you to see something here and I want a 2nd Peter chapter 3 pardon me and verse 9 2nd Peter Temple 3 in verse 9 you haven't notice what it says The Lord is not slack let's back up so that we know the context chapter 3 verse one says Beloved I now write to you this 2nd a pistol which just means letter in both of which I stir up your pure minds by way of reminder that you may be mindful of the words which were spoken before the holy by the holy prophets and of the commandment of us the Apostles of the Lord and Savior knowing this 1st that scoffers will come in the last days walking according to their own lusts and saying where is the what where is the promise of he is coming for since the fathers fell asleep all things continue as it were from the beginning creation so it's a context 2nd coming people going to say the 2nd coming of Jesus coming in other people going to say no no look we've heard this we've heard this before the fathers of all fell asleep saying the same thing now he says in that context verse 9 The Lord is not slack concerning his promise the promise of His coming right said Lord hasn't come yet did he forget that he just not as he is he is he slacking off on his promise no the Lord is not slack concerning his promise as some counts lacking is so he's giving us the reason why the Lord hasn't come yet but is long suffering to war does not willing that any should perish but that all should come to repentance. So what is the reason for delay that Peter gives right here if there is a an apparent delay of the Lord is he slacking on his promise of course not why is he not come yet because he is patient long suffering wanting everybody you have an opportunity come to repentance verse 10 but the day of the Lord will come it will come as a thief in the night in which the heavens will pass away with a great noise in the elements will melt with the fervent heat but the earth in the works that are in it will be burned up Therefore since all these things will be dissolved what manner of persons ought you to be unholy conduct and godliness looking for and hastening the coming of the day of God What does it mean to hasten something does the Bible to the no I don't want to don't get me a book from the A.B.C. or some pastor over years says does THE BIBLE say that we can't hurry up the coming of Christ it's plain as day year says looking for an hastening the coming of the day of God Now if you can speed something up by implication you can also do what you can slow it down now let's look at the context again why has God not come yet why has Christ not come yet what is the reasoning it gives because he's long suffering these patient not wanting any to perish to know if that's the contingent factor then what can we do to speed it up and what can we do to slow it down it has to do with whether or not people have an opportunity to hear and repent and come to salvation right so our commitment to the mission our activity in the commission of Christ has a direct impact on the timing of his coming now I don't believe that means that we're going to be here forever because the Bible says a lord can raise ups from the Stones children of. And Abraham right. He doesn't he know if we don't do it somebody is going to do it but the point I want you to get is that there is a an aspect in which the the mission and us carrying the mission has an impact on the timing of the coming of Christ and you maybe you're familiar with if I mention the food for worms vision does anybody have a clue what I'm talking about how many of you have a clue what I'm talking about a case of the rest of you are about to have a clue Ellen White had a vision I believe it was in the park real church but it could be wrong about that but she had a vision in which the angel the Lord showed her the congregation the church was preaching to and he said that all of that congregation some of those people were going to be food for worms interesting expression people going into the grave some of the people were going to be subjects of the 7 last plagues and some of those people are going to live until the 2nd coming of Christ now you know that you can have quite an impact on the you're here in the Prophet Lord said some of you are going to the 2nd coming of Christ that's really exciting and he's going to come in our lifetime for sure the problem God said it and because of that. It became a I don't want to say a custom a custom be the wrong word but there were many people who throughout the years after would undergo a study to find out who was present at that particular meeting and document them all so let's just say it happened right here and we said Ellen White was here and she said that Christ would come in somebody here is a lifetime Well I want to name of all the people and I get the name of all the people that way I know that at least while at least one of them lives I mean we're getting closer and closer and kind of count down the time. And people did that and in fact and I forget who it was I think it's Jan that shares a story but one of the ministers he was with one of the ministers and I may have the ministers wrong there but they actually went to Ellen White at one point and they said Sister why we need your help we're compiling a list of the people that were present at that time you had that vision and we want you to check it over and make sure we didn't miss anybody can understand what's happening because we you know we want to we want to make sure we can count down that way so somebody still alive is like OK there's 5 more or not all these people going to die before Christ comes that was what they were doing to determine the timing of the 2nd coming so she asked the question she said Why do you want to know when they explained well we want to get this and then she said this to them she said then you guys stop right where you are so I said if you do what you're talking about and you Pope and they want to publish a list in the review I've failed to mention that if you do what you're talking about a new publish that list in a review she said then our people instead of going out to push the work in new places are just going to sit around and look at the review and see who died understand I'm saying in other words they're going to start focusing on the signs as it were is that of doing what God told them to do and this is exactly the point Jesus is trying to get across to his disciples in Acts is not for you to know times of seasons the others times and seasons Yeah the signs of the times and things we should study and what have you but don't let that get you so focused on what the pope is doing and what's going on with the monetary system over here that you're too busy to do a crisis called you to do in preaching the message to those in your circle of influence. Don't get distracted and forget the mission the reason we're here and what's driving the coming of Christ and what's going to hasten it is on us carrying the Gospel forward so he says the Holy Spirit is going to come upon you and you shall be witnesses on to me in Jerusalem and Judea in some area in the uttermost parts of the earth the Lord has given us that mission and as we were talking about earlier for some of us that's a little bit discomforting because we say well you know I don't feel real I don't feel real at ease with that I sometimes I feel nervous and sometimes I feel scared and we look to be for lunch at the fact that the Disciples of Christ felt the same way Jesus had to tell them Don't be afraid and I remember the 1st time I learned that I was a little surprising to me because I was not the disciples were like a problem this is easy witnessing is easy for them and you may have felt that way before now witnessing is easy for everybody but mean sometimes you see people in fact I'll tell you something that you little know about mean you're about to know about me some of you do if you've heard me say this before but I'm very much interested as a person very much I don't like getting up in front of people you know and I extroverted people we get this idea that a person can get up front it's because they're extra extroverted wipe that out of your mind when I was in high school I actually was so scared to talk to people I forced myself to take a speech class that would force me to get up in front of people thinking that would fix the problem it only complicated it. The only thing that actually fixed it is when I accepted Christ and I was compelled to share the gospel and the Lord but I'll tell you that when e when and when an extroverted person gets up if you're very relaxed and in you know like introductory remarks are hard for me get up in the morning messages and unlike what I get to warm up a little bit and execute a person just gets up and they're just chatting and you don't see what goes on in the mind of the guy like me who gets up there. Right you know that's what you don't see but it's happening and how many of you have are the same way when you speak you've gotten up to speak in the 1st few minutes if you've ever gotten up to speak publicly and you're just like I'm just going to do this but I hate it and then after you get into it it's just like OK I'm here so I may as well finish it and it gets a little bit better but I'm saying you would be surprised I think all of us think of ourselves as the nervous one but I think we'd be surprised how many people get nervous when they go to share their fame and that's natural. In fact there's a little bit of healthiness in that fact there's a lot of it a healthy Mr that because the more nervous you are the more dependent you're going to be on Christ especially being as I just described if I feel at ease or real confident about something makes me nervous not confident confidence the wrong word but comfortable. I like to be a little uncomfortable because I'm more dependent on the Lord but don't think because something makes you a little nervous it's not something God is calling you to do we see that with the early church now I want to look at the top we talked about the spiritual gift tests and. As Pastor Marshall came to me during the break we talked about those those spiritual give test how the the problem with that is their subjective they're asking you what you like they're asking you what you're inclined to do in Pastor Marshall told me during the break he said I like that he said when did we ever accept the idea where we get the idea that a piece of paper is the Holy Spirit right I'm gonna fill out this thing and that's going to be no the Spirit of God going to tell you says he calls us as he chooses us and gives his gift that he will now on the top of page 13 and of the section it's not my gift and I told you before the break before lunch that witnessing is not listed in any of the spiritual gifts lists it's what I call standard equipment and we look at that even in scripture that for everyone who's born into a king of God they become a witness for Christ now I want you to notice some of the some of the reasons people give here on the top of page 13 under letter B. for why they don't witnesses much for the told you only 2 percent in North America Christians not defend the evidence share their faith on a regular basis if not my gift is one of touched on that I don't know how to start a conversation OK that's semi legitimate I don't have contact with too many people or too many non abit of some money when somebody might say OK I can tell you how to fix that find some non avenues and contact them. Go up and down your street I guarantee not everybody lives on your street is a 7 day AVE Well I'm not sure how to start a conversation without sounding too pushing. The world's too tolerant employer a listing they wouldn't want truth if even if I told him is the mindset there I don't think anyone is interested I'm too busy with my family I don't feel I know enough to share that's one of my favorite ones I don't feel it how many of you I should be masquerading hands but. This is what a lot of people said I don't know I don't think I know and the and my response to that is what does enough mean how much is enough where is the golden tipping point where you're like OK now I've got it like what are we going to sit down and talk about is E.Q. on the wheel within a wheel I explain that you like being now I'm going to go witness like what is the magic piece of knowledge and you know I am saying that because there is no magic piece of knowledge because as soon as is the one thing you didn't understand and OK I understand oh wait a minute this is the other thing I don't know let me just tell you you will never be able to answer all the questions people ask you I can't answer all the questions people I mean I'm I make an attempt sometimes sometimes I just gotta say I don't know I have to look at that. A 5 year old can ask you questions you can answer so you know I get that get rid of them you know it's true that's the Holy Spirit's job I missed the one I'm not as qualified as others whatever that supposed to mean. And I think that's a misperception sometimes that we have as well let me ask you this well we're going to look at it in a minute so I'll get to a minute. That's the Holy Spirit's job here there's a lot right I don't you know look the Holy Spirit is here it is his job to convict and convert people and that's true now what do we just read in the scripture the Holy Spirit who's doing his job will come upon you and you shall be witnesses I mean so yes always Piers job and guess what always Spirit does with his job he uses you that's how he chooses to do it I'm not really sure how to do it OK there's some legitimacy to that as well I don't have enough time circumstances or but the bottom line with all these things that I'm reading off is what is the set what is the what is the common thread through all of these Where is the focus I mean. We don't witness I'm not in pastoral ministry because I'm good at it I'm not a pastoral ministry because I'm super talented I'm here because God told me and I'm going to use my talent whether it be the one talent or the 5 talents or the 2 talents I'm going to use what I have and trust he's going to do something with it the Lord will use what you have if you put it to use and so we get all of these excuses but we. Did that the problem is self focus we're not trusting you think I mentioned something like this earlier today but you know couldn't Jesus have just as easily commissioned the angels to do all the witnessing there was that needed to be done even as I mention it you're probably thinking yeah yeah it's a good idea why I didn't mean you hear it I'm saying I mean the angels would do so much better than us that would be my tendency but the Lord didn't choose evangelists to do a duty he chose us do you think Jesus is surprised you think there's something in your life that he didn't know about and he said hey I want you to witness for me and then he's like oh whoa wait a minute oh man I didn't even know that about you I wish I'd never asked you I mean is that. Listen he knows what he's getting he knows what's in May when he knows what's in you he knows what you struggle with and those vary how many were at that rebel to do it would be the devotional was it yesterday morning when I share the baseball card the Honus not Honus Wagner that was that was a slow Joe Doro right slow Jodo baseball card sold for $400.00 some $1000.00 at an auction really whois low Joe Doyle not a great player why does cards sell for $400.00 some $1000.00 because a misprint on the car. It's a rare card Well you know we all have misprints in our lives don't we were rare individuals we all have unique things and the Lord sees that uniqueness and says boy I can use that in a way I can't use it with anybody else right you've got talents and abilities and connections that somebody else doesn't have we focus we allow ourselves to focus too much on ourselves now that I'm not qualified part I'm getting into that in this next section when I look at a passage here in the Book of Exodus You may remember this I'm going to warn you ahead of time that this passage I'm about to show you will basically destroy every excuse you have so. You know you've been forewarned Exodus Chapter 4 now this is when God calls Moses. To lead his people out of Israel you know the story of Moses right Moses was taken as a baby and raised in the House of Pharaoh and trained in all the military might in genius of the then most powerful nation in the world and there came a time incidentally Moses knew from an early age that God intended to use him to deliver the Israelites he knew that the day came when he saw all and Egyptian taskmaster being some Hebrew servants and he thought Now is the time any killed that taskmaster and buried his body in the sand remember the story in scripture using that military genius he had and he was ready as a military leader to lead God's people out of Egypt so he thought and the Hebrews were not as on his side as he thought they would be and when he saw some of the Hebrews arguing the next day and tried to break it up to say what are you going to do kill us like he did that taskmaster and he realized that the word was out and if the word was out of his back to Pharaoh and he fled. How long 40 years did he go and be a commander in some army somewhere What did he do. Well you're the commander of an army or sheep I guess for 40 years right and after 40 years he was out of practice he's not a military genius anymore I mean he's been heard in sheep for 40 years in the Lord came to Moses This is where a picking up and he just told us you kind of put yourself in Moses shoes you're just not feeling all that empowered anymore in the Lord comes to Moses now pick up in verse 10 the Lord has asked him he's given him some signs and then it says in verse 10 then Moses said to the Lord Oh my lord I am not what what does eloquent mean I'm not a good talker I'm not good up front I don't preach well I get all flustered and I get my tongue gets tied and I don't know what to say right I'm not oh. I'm saying that because I know there are those of you here felt the same way because of the same way it's pure It's a common thing. I guess I like to share this because not everybody realizes most felt the same way I'm not eloquent neither before nor since you have spoken to your servant but I'm slow of speech and slow tongue now honestly how many of you have felt something like that before some inadequacy maybe it was a speech or maybe it's just some level of I just I'm not good at that now what look at the LORD sister damn verse 11 so the Lord said to him who has made man's mouth or who makes the mute the deaf the seeing or the blind have not I the LORD NOW THEREFORE go and I will be with your mouth and teach you what you shall say now I'm going to tell you that when I read this you know we get a lot of ideas sometimes we read these examples in the Bible and think If only only God would talk to me that way I would be so different. It's not true but we tell ourselves out of only God show me a blinding light like you did Paul on the road to Damascus if only If only filming but then about it God spoke to Moses in an automobile voice and said Moses Don't be worried about it on the creator I made you I made your mouth don't worry about it I'm going to be with you and teach you what you shall say now you would think after an encounter like that you know he asked OK Lord I'm going to go you be inspired you would think right I mean I can tell you here things that are going to inspire you but I'm not the Lord telling you all by the way I'm going to be with your mouth and teach you what you say but watch what happens after he tells Moses this verse 13 but he said Oh my Lord please send by the hand of whomever else you may send Let's paraphrase that nonsense somebody else. Send anybody but me and a body brought me right is nobody saying I mean so after that assurance from the Lord still Moses is like lords then anybody but me and so the Lord says the anger of the Lord was verse 14 Kindle against Moses and he said is not here in the Levite your brother I know that he can speak well look he is also coming out to meet you when he sees you who began his heart now you shall speak to him and put the words in his mouth and I will be with your mouth and with his mouth and I will teach you what you shall do and so they go on to Egypt now the reason I'm sharing that with you is just to say you're in good company if you're nervous but it's not a good excuse not to work out cold you to go want you to see what it says at the bottom of page 13 and it's a statement against the bottom of the page as Moses speaking of the Lord after his 1st hey Moses I'll be with your mouth I'll teach you what you should say Moses still intreated that a more competent person be selected right send anybody else. These excuses at 1st proceeded from humility in diffidence That's why I say it is natural to be a little nervous but when the Lord comes up behind that and gives you courage when it says look low I am with you always even to the end of the Age It says these excuses 1st proceeded from humility and diffidence but after the Lord had promised to remove all difficulties and to give him final success then any further shrinking back and complaining of his unfitness showed what what he did show distrust of God It's a false humility It starts out as real humility were like you know I'm just not I'm not real good at that that's OK that's understandable God says look I'm with you always to the end of the age my host here is with you is going to come upon you you can be witnesses me we say yeah but I'm just not that good at it and God says you're not believing what I'm saying you understand and then you get to a point where look you don't don't feign humility now you're just you're just refusing to do with the Lord called you to do you don't trust him is gone able to use us reading it on here it says it implied a fear that God was unable to qualify him for the great work to which he had called him or that he had made a mistake in the selection of the man has God made a mistake in selecting You don't say don't ever say yes to that God does make mistakes I know the temptation I know the temptation of the yes you have made a mistake Lord you didn't but God doesn't make mistakes he knows what he has to deal with and he knows what you're capable of if you trust in Him goes on to say he Moses was overwhelmed with a sense of his incapacity to be a mouthpiece for the God of Israel but having one sick scepter the work which he ended up doing he entered upon it with his whole heart putting all his trust in the Lord the greatness of his mission called into exercise the best powers of his mind GOD BLESS HIS what. Ready obedience and he became eloquent hopeful self-possessed and well fitted for the greatest work ever given man what a powerful statement there's a reason that for our manual logo I could use Matthew because Matthew says Jesus said follow me and I'll make you fishers of men but Mark is the only Gospel that throws this word in there follow me and I'll make you become fishers of men I really love that reading of it because to become something means you didn't used to be it I mean you didn't have the special gift or talent so to speak that so many people it means that if you give yourself to God He can make you become anything and that's what this statement is saying that when Moses put his trust in God God blessed his willingness that's what I said is ready obedience he medians he blessed his willingness and Moses became what he wasn't before God can make you whatever he needs you to be if you give yourself to him he became eloquent hopeful self-possessed and will fit into the greatest work ever given to man this is an example of what God does to strengthen the character of who those who trust him fully and give themselves unreservedly to his commands a man will gain power in efficiency as he was except the responsibilities we would love to have that power before like God give me some kind of evidence now because you've got to step forward you answer the call and you'll see the power will be there a man will gain power in efficiency as he accepts his responsibilities that God places upon him and with his whole heart seeks to qualify himself to bear them a right however humble his position or limited his ability that mammal attain true greatness who trusting to what kind of strength Divine Strength seeks to perform his work with Fidelity or with faithfulness. Now we talk about qualifications and I like to talk about the disciples and I have a spelled out here because when we say I'm not qualified Now here's Moses that's a good example Moses example but honestly. I'm not qualified what is qualified look like and let me ask you this do any of the Disciples of Christ fit the description now I'm going to say this with all of most respect to the Disciples of Christ but I praise God for choosing those disciples of Christ. What if he had picked people they didn't have any flaws you watch Peter in his pride going out in the water and then looking back at his friends and their Look at me you see Peter going to the defense a Jesus with the sword is going to cut off the cut the probably cut the head of the High Priest off he's a bad name I don't know he's a fisherman not a sword fighter but you see. The Bible talks about doubting Thomas if you look through here I've got them listed out in a handout under letter D. Peter was impetuous and forward and outspoken and I have a little note there from Mark 9 verse 6 mark number 6 is Mark's version of the Mount Transfiguration when the disciples saw Jesus up in the mount with Moses and Elijah and the Bible says that when Peter saw it he said Lord this is good to be here that we're here maybe we should go get 3 tents one for you and one for Moses and one for a lie just remember that and the Bible goes on to say this Marco's on to say this this Peter said because he didn't know what to say now here's a good rule of thumb a little tip for you if you don't know what to say just don't say anything. This is a good rule of thumb that I hardly ever follow. And so I relate to Peter I read that I'm like oh God pray that God is not just me and he can use Peter he can use me right so we see Peter always going forward incidentally Peter gets a bad rap for falling in the water but he's the only one that got out of the boat think about that for a minute. Philip you know we talk about doubting Thomas but it was Philip who said after after one of the miracles of the loaves and the fishes they come to the next account in their lives like we're going to find bread for all these people pardon me Philip didn't we just do that you know recently here I mean and he had the example already and so it wasn't just Thomas who was a doubter Philip was a doubter Philip was the one who said Lord OK show us the Father and it's sufficient for us and Jesus like Philip don't you get it haven't you been with me long enough to know that if you've seen me you've seen the Father he dealt with these in consistencies or imperfections in his disciples of course we know doubting Thomas unless I see the print of the nails in the hand and Jesus said blessed are those who don't see and yet believe right so Jesus' disciples had their challenges James and John what were James and John nicknamed by Jesus what did that mean the Son Why do you call them the sons of thunder. I mean what kind of temper must use of their be called a son of thunder somebody could probably tell me they get called me but anyway I don't know but none of the decide if I should I take it back there was one of the disciples of Jesus that looked pretty promising. You bet you bet the most promising from a human standpoint the most promising disciple was Jews. OK And Judas wasn't destined to be lost Jews had the same opportunities others when a point is this we talk about not being qualified well you're in good company because the Lord is always called people as unqualified as us and done great things with them and he'll do the same thing with us because not about us it's about him it's not our mission is his mission what do you think those stories are in the Old Testament for I mean how does God take somebody like. Like Jonathan in an armor bearer and defeat a whole army of Philistines I mean how does David go up against Goliath and rout the whole army of the Philistines How do you have God's people going out and blowing trumpets and marching around Jericho in the most fortified city falls the walls fall in I mean how does this happen why do you think those things are there on record God is trying to show us that I can do the same mighty things not just in physical battles but in the spiritual battles as we're seeking to win souls for his kingdom my favorite example of the unqualified disciples are not people we think of his disciples but they were the demoniacs or the demoniac depending on which Gospel you're reading and what they're highlighting of the Gadarene to remember the disciples were in the storm on the lake they think they're going to die Jesus comes to the boat combs the storm gets in the boat there to the shore where they're going they're getting out of the boat glad to be on land you read about this in desire of ages I love the way desire of a just paints this picture just flashes it out so much as they get out on the shore you can just imagine listen when you're on a storm on a lake and your lifelong fisherman and that's a scary storm that is a scary storm. When fishermen are glad to get out of the boating you know land I mean you're like that was a bad storm so the thing you know finally we're inland and what meets them but a man coming out of the tombs with chains and long hair and scarabs in blood and how a living running out at them and Ellen Weiss says this happens and this demoniac comes out toward the disciples they actually turn and hightail it the other way. You know I keep forgetting the poor guy on the camera back there somebody told me today you move too much. You've got to be able to visualize it so they hightail it the other way and they get only so far and there look you know you never run with a group of friends you're wrong with a group of friends and lose when your friends like hey wait a minute where's Joe right there running along the way wait a minute where Jesus go. And stop and look back and Jesus is standing in the same spot and the demoniac is coming right up to him and Jesus just hold his hand out and the man falls down to his knees and then the demons cry out and said Are you going to torment us etc etc You're right and Jesus heals the demon possessed man Bible says He comes out you know again with the naked and and bleeding and wounded and with but Jesus casts out the demon and the next time we see him of course he has that conversation about the the Legion and what have you and the next time we see the demoniac it says he's sitting clothed and in his right mind with Jesus and it says to us tells us in Scripture that when Jesus got back into the boat to depart from there that man was ready to go with Jesus and Jesus told him no he said I want you to go and I want you to tell everybody what I've done for you now this is a man that just hours before was possessed with over 2000 demons Let's talk about qualification. He never even heard a complete sermon of Christ and Jesus in him out to be His witness and were told that Jesus had a mighty harvest of souls there when he came back because of the wind is at that man now don't tell me you can't do it don't talk qualifications the Lord will use you want you to look at this quote at the top of page 15 and then we're going to take a break topic page 15 there's a quote there says God takes minutes they are you see that gun takes men as they are that includes women with the human elements in their character and trains them for his service if they will be disciplined and learn of Him They are not chosen because what they are perfect but notwithstanding their imperfections that through the knowledge and practice of the truth through the grace of Christ they may become what transformed into his image all the disciples had what kind of faults or serious faults when Jesus called them to his service even John who came into close association with the meek and lowly one was not himself naturally meek in yielding he and his brother were called the sons of thunder while they were with Jesus any slight shown him arouse their indignation and combativeness right the one time when the Samaritans rejected him a let's call fire down on him the sons of thunder evil temper revenge the spirit of criticism were all in the beloved disciple speaking of John he was proud and ambitious to be 1st in the kingdom of God But day by day in contrast with his own violent spirit he beheld the tenderness in forbearance of Jesus and heard his lessons of humility and patience he opened his heart to the divine influence it became not only a hearer but a doer of the Saviour's words self was hit in Christ he learned to wear the yoke of Christ and to bear his burden. I'm going to tell you Jesus can use you to reach souls for him I want to finish up this 3 little quotes toward the end to the bottom of the page I want you to follow along there where the 1st is from some 126 we have a hymn based on this one. Bringing in the sheaves right says those who so in tears shall reap enjoy if you plant you're going to harvest and you if you sow in tears if your heart is in it if your passion is in it if you're going out to sea can save the lost as it were you're going to have a harvest notice it doesn't say those who so interior might reaping joy those are so in tears shall reap enjoy He who continually goes forth weeping bearing seed for sowing might come again. Shall what don't let's come again with rejoicing bringing your sheaves with him there is going to be a harvest if you use the slightest bit of talent that you have there is going to be a harvest there the Lord will use you to win souls in his kingdom and brothers and sisters there's nothing in this world that's going to compare to us being in the kingdom of God and realizing that even one soul is there because of us being willing to use what we have for Christ and the know somebody has gained eternal life look at the next statement this is one of my favorites press object lesson 363 says when we give ourselves wholly to God in our work follow his directions he makes what he makes himself responsible for its accomplishment you know blaming us because we messed it up he makes himself responsible he would not have us conjecture as to the success of our honest endeavors not what's the next word not once should we even think of failure we are to cooperate with one who knows no failure and finally. Christian Service want to one says if you fail $99.00 times in $100.00 but succeed in saving the one soul from ruin you have done a noble deed for the Master's cause So what do you say the Lord has called us to be his witnesses here I am Lord send me ma'am let's pray and then we're going to take a break and we'll resume after that Father in heaven we just thank you so much for your willingness to use us to equip us to empower us to transform us in spite of our shortcomings in spite of our weaknesses knowing that our association with you will help us to reflect your image more fully now Lord I pray that you would be with us as we continue in our classes here as we take a break or. Refresh our our minds and keep us alert and awake for our last session today may be effective more be that we may become more effective witnesses for you we ask in Jesus' name and in this media was brought to you by audio 1st a website dedicated to spreading God's word through free sermon audio and much more if you would like to know more about audio 1st if you would like to listen to more sermons lead to visit W W W audio verse or.


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