The ministry of Jesus on earth involved the teaching of the Word of God, preaching the gospel of the Kingdom, and healing every kind of sickness and disease Mt.4:23. The first four modes by which this work of the Father is done may be practised by all who believe: talking about Jesus to advertise God’s goodness – His promises – to those who believe, living a Lifestyle of faith in God to glorify His Name, engaging the help of the Holy Spirit to do the supernatural, that men may believe our God and be drawn to Him, and praying to the God of the harvest for the redemption of lost souls. The next two are the commission of Jesus to those called, chosen, and set apart for the work of ministry.
Whereas disciples are all ministers, evangelists, ‘called trees of righteousness, the planting of the Lord, that He may be glorified’; named ‘the priests of our Lord’ and called ‘the servants of our God’ Is.61:3,6, given authority to go into the world to ‘make disciples of all the nations, baptising them… ‘ and teaching them the words of Jesus Mt.28:20, not all will be chosen to dedicate themselves to this work. Jesus has ‘opened (our) understanding, that (we) might comprehend the Scriptures’ Lk.24:45; He has fulfilled the promise that all who believe in Him will be ‘endued with power from on high’ v.49, able to do greater works than He did Jn.14:12. We are all branches purposed to bear much fruit as we remain connected to the Vine Jn.15:5, but not all will disciple nations, baptized, teach the Word, or preach the Gospel.
Each must function in the capacity to which he is called, ‘placed in the church’ 1Cor.12:28-30, using the measure of faith he is given, with love, to draw grace to do His own part to make the whole Body of Christ effective at the work of the Father. However, some who, like Peter are commanded to feed His lambs and tend His sheep Jn.21:15-16, will have passion for the work; they are anointed, prepared and sent as the Father sent Jesus Jn.20:21. Like Paul, these are chosen vessels Acts.9:15.
In the next few posts we will examine the work of missionaries and their training.