In Mark's Gospel chapter 1, Jesus said the words “come and follow me.” And then he goes on to say, “I'll send you out to fish for people.” And then verse 18 says, “At once they left their nets and followed him.” Isn't that a powerful phrase? I wondered about the immediacy of our willingness to follow God. And when God calls us and God engages with us, I think He gauges our love for him by our obedience. To love and obey all kind of inextricably linked; to love somebody is to do what they want. And the desire of our hearts is we love God with all our heart, soul, mind and strength to do what He wants us to do. And so the passion for the world that God has, is to say, “I wish you to fish for people”. Now Matthew 28:19 and so on speaks about making disciples of all nations. And therefore, the word “éthni”, you know, “nations”, is every single level of the ethnicities within our cultures. And so there is a Harley Davidson culture or there is a yuppie culture or there is a hip hop culture, or there is whatever - you with me? All these subcultures are the groups that you have affinities with. And Jesus says, “You don't have to go and climb mountains. You don't need to go the furthest ends of the world. You just need to go to the affinity groups of the people that you know and love. And those are the people that you need to fish for!” Those are the levels of the cultures in which we live that God has placed us so that we can make disciples in those contexts. Think about your affinity groups. Think about the people that you rub shoulders with. How can you help them in that - their gathering moments - to say, “Maybe today we could think of reading a verse and just hearing what God says to us today” and evolving that into a moment where you share the Scripture? Three people: one person with the Scripture, another person reads the Scripture in another translation, and a third one paraphrases it and you say, “What is God saying to us today?” And then God draws the people to himself. The book Miraculous Movements tells us that right around the world, these affinity groups are the multiplying ways in which God is growing the kingdom amongst us. So think about the people you could rub shoulders with and how can you turn your affinity groups into an encounter with God so that it can be an incredible blessing. Because that's how we are obedient to going to fish for people. Spend time today thinking and praying about the people that you can bring into a loving community where you can experience the risen Jesus.
As we continue in Mark's Gospel, I pick up the second part of chapter 1 verse 17, and Jesus says, having said, “Come follow me”, he now goes on and says, and “I will send you out to fish for people.” There is a powerful thing which we don't really take seriously enough in our world today, and that is the word “go”. And sending out is the nature of the church. The word “ecclesia” is the Greek word for church and it's the called out ones, the sent ones, the summoned ones. And so right from the beginning of Jesus's ministry, he's modeling for us what church should really be. And that's a church that is being sent. And he says, “and I will send you out”. Now the word “go”... Just think for a moment as you read the Bible, have you encountered the word “go”? The word “go” appears in the Bible over 1500 times. And so if we are not going, then we are simply a gathering of disobedient Christians, because right at the essence and the beginning of Jesus's ministry, he says we should “go”. The word “stay” in the Bible only appears about 60 times. He is saying to us, only 6% of the time, “stay here, be replenished, be able to recover and be strengthened in the spirit.” But the dominant 94% of the times Jesus is saying “go”! Stay, yes, but go 94% and therefore we are encouraged to be those who follow Jesus in the going. The going is to people who need the good news, people who need to hear that God loves them. And so we are transmitters of God's love and power. We are passing that on. We don't have to invent the good news. It's already there for them to know that they are utterly, irrevocably, unconditionally, extravagantly and eternally loved. That's our offer to people: Come get to know this, Jesus, and I've been sent to you in his name. And so today, be prayerful around the names of people that come to mind, but also the people you rub shoulders with. Maybe God is sending you to that person to be an instrument of good news in this day and you can drop a seed into their life of the Gospel of God's love. Plant seeds of God's love in every conversation. God bless you.
Today we're picking up verse 17 where Jesus continues in his engagement with people and says to these folk, both Simon and Andrew and others, “Come, follow me.” Let's stay with those three words for the moment. Understand that God is the inviting God! As Dallas Willard reminded me, God is the great includer. And He continues to invite - invite to the banquet, invite into his presence, invite children. Jesus looks at you in the face today and says, “Come, come to me, come to me.” This is a personal encounter. This is not just religiosity. This is not a religion. This is not a set of rules and regulations and oughts and shoulds and musts and have tos and things that are tasks for us to do to be religious. This is Jesus seeing us for who we are and saying, “Come to me. This is deeply personal, this is deeply real, and I take you seriously. I know you by name. I know who you are. I've seen you through your entire life. And I want for you to experience something that is about you and me in a relationship.” That coming is great because Jesus says, “come as you are, and I will do something with you.” Then the second and third words are “Follow me.” And there are many books written in our world today about leadership. But show me the number of books that are written about followership. And so therefore, Jesus is saying, “I will be your leader. I'm the greatest leader that ever lived.” Not that he used those words himself, but we know him to be. He's saying, “Come follow me. Live your life as if I was you. Live as I lived. And follow my example. Follow me. Because I go with you into those experiences.” And so today, as you enter into whatever you are doing, Jesus invites you into his presence throughout the day and invites you to follow Jesus’ example in each of the events and every encounter through this day today. God bless you. #dailydevo #dailydevotional #bibleteaching #bibleverse #dailybible
Rev. Christopher Harrison is sharing with us this week! We’re journeying this week through Mark’s gospel chapter 1 verse 16, where Jesus walked beside the Sea of Galilee and saw Simon and his brother Andrew casting nets and so on. Let's hold on to this. In our world today, Jesus is the risen one who's walking alongside of you, and He is the one who is incarnate. He walks amongst us, holding into our presence the love of God right here and right now. We're not just talking about a historical figure. So picture your day today, that Jesus is walking beside you. He's your closest companion. He's your deepest friend. He's the one who knows you best and has the best desire for your life. But then the verse goes on and says, “He saw Simon.” Understand this: Jesus is seeing you. You’re not just a number. He looks into your face and sees you. And one of the most powerful things is to realize that the most magnificent person who ever lived, to ever walk on the face of this earth, Jesus Christ - sees you, sees what you are doing, and takes you seriously. As you journey through today, as you go through the events of the day that is in front of you, as you meet the people that you engage with as you go about the work that you are to do, pick picture the fact that Jesus accompanies you in that experience and is seeing you - that you matter, and what you do matters to Jesus and the world in which you live, because you are a reflection of God's glory. You are created by Jesus Christ to do good works. And in this day, God is working alongside you and is seeing you do what you do and says, “Well done, good and faithful servant.” Work alongside Jesus today in everything that you do. God bless you.
Rev. As we dip into the Scriptures this week, taking us to Mark's Gospel chapter 1 and verse 15. “The time has come,” says Jesus. “The Kingdom of God has come near.” Just think about that at the moment - what we think about is time. How are we using our time? And of course there is lineal time, which is - kind of - starts and ends in a kind of a line. But there’s Kairos time, and that is God's time, and God invites us into the Greek word “zoe” life. That's a life that's outside of time, that's eternal, that's abundant, extravagant. And so when we think of living in God's timing, we are stepping into the reality of God's world, which is the Kingdom of God, the place where God's rule is, where His will has sway, where God's life is flowing into us. And we are living according to God's life. So I'm inviting you today to realize that the time that you have through this day has been given to you by God. And so live an eternal perspective of the time that you have today. What can I do with my time today that has eternal significance? What can I do with this moment that God has entrusted to me to reflect something of God's kingdom vision for the world? So don't just waste your time today. Make the most of every opportunity. Because Jesus is saying to you, believe this good news I've given you this day. Use it for Kingdom values and Kingdom vision. May God bless you in this day.
It's great to bless others out of the abundance you have - but ultimately, we need to bless them with the saving love of Jesus, which has eternal benefits. #dailydevoswithluke #dailydevotions #dailybible #bibleverse #abram #blessings
God blessed Abram - why? So that he could bless others. He does the same for you and me. #dailydevotions #blessed #blessings #bibleteaching #bible #dailydevos #abram
Do you feel like you don't have what it takes to share the faith? Don't worry. None of us do. But we have the Spirit of Jesus with us, and it He who does the work, not us. #GreatComission #evangelism #evangelist #sharethelove #sharingyourfaith #bibleteaching #dailydevotional #dailydevotions
Ron Rand's FRIEND evangelism is a great way to learn about sharing faith in different stages. #GreatComission #evangelism #sharethelove #dailydevotional #dailydevotion #bibleteaching
Paul didn't bludgeon people with the truth! He took it case by case and humbly shared the gospel in thoughtful ways. We can learn from his thoughfulness. #GreatComission #evangelism #sharethelove #bibleteaching #dailydevotional
Why do we share our faith? Because it is our joy to do so! And how great to have others share in the joy we found in Jesus. #GreatComission #evangelism #sharethelove #dailydevotional #bibleteaching
Our sacred places are important, but we are called to go out from them into the world to bring light into darkness. #light #dailydevotional #go #sent #bibleteaching www.lukepowell.co.za
David welcome those who were under attack, promising to protect them. Jesus does the same for us today. Do you need to run to him for protection in the midst of an attack?
The only place to find contentment is in Jesus. When we are discontent, we can run to him, and find the satisfaction we desire. www.lukepowell.co.za #dailydevotional #dailydevotions #bibleteaching #content #contentment
When King David hid from Saul in a cave, the distressed in the land joined him. Jesus offers the same for us today. Go to him, if you are in distress, and find rest. www.lukepowell.co.za/daily-devotions
Dr. Carla Sunberg shares the story of Church of the Nazarene's founder Phineas Bresee always saying "Good Morning!" no matter what time of day it was. Why? Because good things were always on the horizon. #goodmorning #nazarene #bibleteaching #dailydevotional #hope
Dr David Busic shares a powerful truth - that the church is not on the defence, but hell is on the defence as the church of Jesus attacks! #hell #spiritualwarfare #dailydevotion #bibleteaching #nazarene
God is wanting to pour out truckloads of love over you. Do you know this? Do you believe it? #GodsLove #LoveofGod #dailydevotional #bibleteaching #nazarene
Dr Crocker reminded us that while God could've accomplished the work of redemption any way He wanted, He chose to say "follow me" to ordinary people like you and me. #followme #followJesus #nazarene #dailydevotions #bibleteaching
Dr. Eugenio Duarte inspired us to live at Jesus speed - slow enough to tend to the needs of others, but not too slow that we don't go where he sends! #dailydevotion #dailydevotional #bibleteaching #nazarene #GA2023 #Jesus
The greatest testimony to Jesus' claims was the very voice of God booming down from heaven on three separate occasions. #Jesuschrist #dailydevotional #dailydevotion #bibleteaching #godthefather #testify