Living life to the fullest with faith, hope, and love!
Tuesday, September 17, 2013
The Master Plan of Evangelism - Impartation!
And when he had said this, he breathed on them, and said unto them, Receive you the Holy Spirit: (John 20:22)
He Gave Himself Away
Jesus wanted His followers to obey Him. But in recognizing this truth, He realized that His disciples would discover the deeper experience of His Spirit. And in receiving His Spirit they would know the love of God for a lost world. That is why His demands were accepted without argument. The disciples understood that they were not just keeping a law, but were responding to One who loved them, and was willing to give Himself for them.
His was a life of giving---giving away what the Father had given Him (John 15:15;17:4,8,14). He gave them His peace by which He was sustained in tribulation (John 16:33;cf.,Matt.11:28). He gave them His joy in which He labored amid the sufferings and sorrows about Him (John 15:11;17:13). He gave them the keys to His Kingdom against which the powers of hell could never prevail (Matt. 16:19;cf.,Luke 12:32). Indeed, He gave them His own glory which was His before the worlds were made, that they all might be one even as He was one in the Father (John 17:22,24). He gave all He had---nothing was withheld, not even His own life.
Love is like that. It is always giving itself away. When it is self-contained, it is not love. In this sense, Jesus brought clearly into focus before His followers just what was meant when "God so loved the world" (John 3:16). It meant that God gave all He had to those He loved, even His "only begotten Son." And for the Son, in incarnating that love, it meant renouncing His own right of living and giving His life for the world. Only in this light---when the Son is put in place of the world---can one even begin to understand the cross. Yet in this realization, the cross of Christ is inevitable, for the infinite love of God can express itself only in an infinite way. Just as man by his sin had to die, so God by His love had to send His Son to die in our place. "Greater love hath no man than this, that a man lay down his life for his friends" (John 15:13).
The Principle Issue Today
The whole thing revolves around the person of the Master. Basically His way of life. And so it must be with His followers. We must have His life in us by the Spirit if we are to do His work and practice His teaching. Any evangelistic work without this is as lifeless as it is meaningless. Only as the Spirit of Christ in us exalts the Son are people drawn unto the Father.
Of course, we cannot give something away which we do not possess ourselves. The very ability to give away our life in Christ is the proof of its possession. Nor can we withhold that which we possess in the Spirit of Christ, and still keep it. The Spirit of God always insists on making Christ known. Here is the great paradox of life---we must die to ourselves to live in Christ, and in that renunciation of ourselves, we must give ourselves away in service and devotion to our Lord. This was Jesus' method of evangelism, seen at first only His few followers, but through them it was to become the power of God in overcoming the world.
But we cannot stop there. It is also necessary for one to see in us a clear demonstration of the way to live His life. Thus, we must understand another obvious aspect of Jesus' strategy with His disciples.
Thanks again for reading this far my friends! This post speaks for itself. May God bless you and keep you in Jesus' mighty name! JESUS LOVES YOU AND SO DO I!!!...:-).