Do you ever wish that you could minister to others the way your pastor does? Or your neighbor? Or your best friend?
2 Corinthians 3:6 tells us that we are ALL able ministers. Here is a quick little guide to help you become the light that leads others.
First, and most important, Jesus tells us is LOVE. A new commandment I give unto you, That ye love one another; as I have loved you, that ye also love one another. John 13:34
You can’t pick and choose who you love, who you give grace to….you must love the neighbor who brought you the casserole when you got into a car accident as much as the drunk driver who hit you.
1 Timothy gives us even more direction as ministers of Christ. Let’s break down Chapter 4, verses 1-6:
1 Now the Spirit speaketh expressly, that in the latter times some shall depart from the faith, giving heed to seducing spirits, and doctrines of devils;
It is sad to me to have personally seen two men of God who were instrumental in my early walk with Christ to turn their backs and God and profess Buddhism or atheism now. I don’t know what happened in their lives, but I can only pray that they see the error of their ways and come back to Christ.
What infuriates me, though, is seeing “evangelists” preach the gospel and then tell viewers they can have the same blessings if they are obedient to God and send money right away. I’m not talking about 9.99 for a book or video. I get publishing costs. I’m talking about the ones who tell you not to worry about going in debt by sending $100 or $1000 because God will wipe your credit card debt away because you were faithful. SCAM ALERT! Salvation is free. God’s blessings are free!
Minister to those freely. Give freely. Don’t be swayed by those who don’t speak the truth and don’t speak anything but truth when you talk.
2 Speaking lies in hypocrisy; having their conscience seared with a hot iron;
“Do as I say and not as I do.” Yeah, right. What kid ever obeyed that? It is the same with us as ministers. We can’t act one way in church and another outside of church and expect anyone to see Christ in us.
I did business with a man for five years. He asked how the church was, asked us to put people on our prayer list, talked about God every time we placed an order. When the quarantine came and we were unable to order anything from him, his language changed considerably. The sarcasm and profanity-laden conversation completely changed my view of him. I’d always felt like I was talking to a fellow Christian. One conversation and his torch was snuffed. Now, the truth is, I don’t know if this guy was just really struggling as so many of us did during the shutdown or if the quarantine conditions caused his true colors to come out. But it didn’t matter. We found a new distributor because of it. The same will happen with you. You cannot minister to others and pop off with a bad attitude one day and expect people not to notice.
Do you have to be perfect? No. But you do have to remember there are consequences when you do not guard your words and actions around others.
3 Forbidding to marry, and commanding to abstain from meats, which God hath created to be received with thanksgiving of them which believe and know the truth. 4 For every creature of God is good, and nothing to be refused, if it be received with thanksgiving: 5 For it is sanctified by the word of God and prayer.
Let’s be frank here. We are bigger than ever. The additives, the preservatives, the supersized meals…there are more fat people in America than ever. I struggle with my weight too and it’s frustrating. It’s obvious that a plant-based diet is good for the body. There’s no doubt that an Old Testament diet is good for you as well. But this is NOT a point of salvation. God gave us meat to eat. It’s not wrong to eat it; it’s not wrong to abstain from it. It’s only wrong when you make it biblical issue. Basically, you can dine with The Beverly Hillbillies’ Granny as long as you receive your roadkill with thanksgiving in your heart.
(To address the forbidding to marry part: Timothy is referring to priests who said it is better to remain alone and devoted to God than to marry. His response is that it is not biblical to forbid marriage in the priesthood.)
6 If thou put the brethren in remembrance of these things, thou shalt be a good minister of Jesus Christ, nourished up in the words of faith and of good doctrine, whereunto thou hast attained.
There you have it! In a nutshell, to be a good minister of Jesus Christ, you should speak the truth, let your light shine before men (even when darkness is rumbling in your mind), and don’t get caught up in religious rules that don’t affect salvation.