Principles for effective ministry part 1 - Mathew 10 verses 5 - 15
Principles for effective ministry (Part 1) Mathew 10:5 to 15
I – Historical and contextual background After studying the 12 men whom God has chosen to spread the Gospel of the Kingdom . we now study the principles of effective ministry as taught by Jesus to his apostles. Mathew Chapter 10 can be divided into 3 parts. The first section (vs. 5-15) deals with the basic task of the ministry. The next section (vs. 16 to 23) the reaction of the ministry and the last section (vs. 24-42) the cost of the ministry. In these text, Jesus is laying down the principles on how toeffectively do his work. At this time, Jesus was telling them how to dotheir short term missions with some specific instructions, applicableonly at that time. However the basic concepts apply to every believerdoing ministry work. Those who are doing the work of the ministrycannot effectively minister if they do not follow the principles thatJesus laid down.
I – A DIVINE COMMISSION“These twelve Jesus sent forth, and commanded them, saying” – Mathew 10:5a . The 12 did not volunteer to become apostles, they weresovereignly called and commissioned just as the prophetJeremiah was called by God. (Jer. 1:5) The particular ministry that the apostles were sent toprobably lasted only a few weeks but it was of course significantbecause it was the first time the Gospel of the Kingdom waspreached by others than Christ himself. Christ is now sendingeach one of them in his behalf in fulfillment of the purpose ofwhich Christ had asked them to follow him. Today, God’s calling and sending may not be as direct asthat but there are three ways in which a believer can determinewhether or not he is called to do ministry work or not.
The following criteria will help a believerdetermine if he is called to ministry work:1.) A strong desire - God’s Word says .that if we delight ourselves in Him, he willgive us the desires of our heart. TheChristian who loves the Lord and wantsabove all to please Him is sensitive to hiswill. When one’s life is centered inobedience it is appropriate to see a placeof ministry in the Lord service. 1 Timothy3:1 says that if a man desires the office ofa bishop “it is a fine work he desires todo.” The closer we walk with the Lord,the more certain we can be that ourdesires are his desires.
2.) Confirmation of other believers When a person feels the strong desire to. preach but does not have the encouragement and support of other believers who know him well, he should reevaluate his feelings. The Lord uses other believer within the church to confirm his call to individuals. (1 Timothy 4:14) The qualifications by which church leaders are to be measured is found in 1 Timothy 3 and Titus 1. 3.) Opportunity – God will open a clear door of service if a person is really called to do ministry work.
The 12 were called and sent out by direct spokencommand of Jesus. “Parangello” the verb behind “commanded”means to bind a person to make the proper response to aninstruction just as a soldier is bound to obey the orders of hissuperiors. When one realizes his calling is of the Lord, he has nochoice but to respond to his superior. God sets the standards andgives the orders, our responsibility is to obey. (Acts 26:19) In general every believer is commissioned by the Lord tomake disciples. But not everyone is called to be a preacher,teacher, pastor or missionary. So the first and most essentialelement for ministry is understanding that one is sovereignlycalled. As Christians we do not make our own destiny or mark ourown plans. We are under divine orders and our concern must beto submit to Christ in all things.
II – A CENTRAL OBJECTIVE“Go not into the way of the Gentiles, and into any city of the Samaritans enterye not: But go rather to the lost sheep of the house of Israel.” – Mathew 10:5b-6 . The second principle for ministry is having a central objective. Aministry that is not focused on certain priority objectives is a ministry doomed tomediocrity. God gives us different objectives and from time to time changessuch objective. But he never ask a person to do everything in sight. The Apostles were instructed not to at this time carry the Kingdommessage into an area belonging to the Gentiles or the Samaritans. This wasonly a temporary command considering Jesus instruction in the GreatCommission and the fact that he already ministered to several Gentiles andSamaritans. The redemption of the whole world has always been in God’s plan butJesus instruction here has a certain purpose which are probably as follows:
1.) The special place of the Jews in God’s plan.They were the chosen people. John The Baptistpreached the Gospel of the Kingdom first to a .Jewish audience. Jesus begin his own ministryfirst to the Jews and explained to the Samaritanwoman that “Salvation is from the Jews” (John4:22) This is in fulfillment of God’s promise thatthrough his seed all nation’s of the earth will beblessed. Israel was the launching point for takingthe Gospel to the rest of the world.Had the Apostles gone first to the Samaritans andGentiles, the Jews would have been very reluctantto listen to them because they would say that theapostles were bearing a pagan religion.
2.) A matter of effectiveness - The apostles were barely up to the task of witnessing effectively to their own people. much less witnessing to the Gentiles and Samaritans whose cultures and ways they little understood and greatly despised. Except for a few isolated cases, the Gospel had little impact in the Gentile world, until the Lord raised up the Apostle Paul. Although a former Pharisee and a Jew in the truest sense of the word he grew up in the Gentile city of Tarsus and learned Gentile literature, religion and culture.
3.) A matter of practicality – The 12needed a special point of attack, alimited and familiar field in which theycould concentrate their efforts. An .unfocused ministry is a shallowministry. We can see how Jesus limitedhis own earthly ministry. In contrastself-styled messiahs are always egotistwho expect to win to win the worldimmediately.The effective worker for Jesus Christputs his primary energy and effort intothe task the Lord has assigned him. Heis concerned for all the Lord’s work, buthe does not try to do all himself.