Tuesday, March 31, 2015

Finding Faithful Men (April 2015 Newsletter)

As You sent Me into the world, I also have sent them into the world. And for their sakes I sanctify Myself, that they also may be sanctified by the truth. I do not pray for these alone, but also for those who will believe in Me through their word – John 17:18-20

The Father sent Jesus into this world on a mission of love and reconciliation. He brought and was the Good News of God’s mercy and righteousness. His self-sacrifice and resurrection brought us into new life and made us new creations in Him. Jesus not only paid for our sins to be removed, but brought us into His identity, giving us a new birth in Him. He prayed not only for His disciples, but for future generations of men and women who would believe. His vision went all the way to you and me, and His vision included the faithfulness of eleven flawed fisherman who were transformed by the Holy Spirit.
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Lunch after a disciple-making training.

In the same way that the Father sent Jesus, Jesus has sent us (John 20:21). His example not only includes holiness and miracles, but also discipleship and investment in people. We are to sow the Word of God, the message of Christ, and the character and experience of Jesus into our relationships. Paul wrote in 2 Timothy 2:2 “And the things that you have heard from me among many witnesses, commit these to faithful men who will be able to teach others also.” Paul’s instruction to Timothy was to reinvest the kingdom seeds that Paul had sown into his life into others. Timothy was instructed to find and invest in faithful men.
Both John 17:18-20 and 2 Timothy 2:2 point to four generations of discipleship:
The Father>Jesus>His Disciples>Those who will believe
Paul>Timothy>Faithful Men>Others
Every day I ask God for faithful men and for four generations of disciples in my life and ministry. A large part of my ministry is searching for “people of peace” (Luke 10) and “Faithful men” who will receive the Good News and multiply thirty, sixty, and one hundred fold. I am excited at what God is doing around the nation to answer these prayers: Nathan in Indianapolis leading addicts to Christ and training and discipling men who are witnessing to the lost and beginning to train others, Steve in Nebraska who is witnessing to many people groups and seeing Muslims come to faith, B____ and others here in the Detroit area who are coming into faith and sharing the Good News with others. All of these men are proving their faithfulness and reinvesting what I have taught and sowed into their lives by the grace of God.
This multiplication of the Gospel and God’s Word is His work, which He has entrusted to me, just as Jesus entrusted the spread and multiplication of the Gospel to eleven flawed fisherman and a former persecutor of the church, Paul. We are all a testament to God’s mercy, love, and grace.
Please join me in prayer as I seek the Lord to send Laborers into the harvest (Luke 10:2), to multiply the work of those I am training, and to give me faithful men who will teach others and spread the Kingdom of God. I know the best is yet to come.
Read the rest of the April 2015 Newsletter.