This week our service was a little different than normal. We had some powerful time of ministry in Worship and a wonderful message on the ministry of Jesus Christ in us and through us.
Pastor Dan spoke on Isaiah 61:1-3
The Year of the Lord's Favor
61 The Spirit of the Lord God is upon me,
because the Lord has anointed me
to bring good news to the poor;[a]
he has sent me to bind up the brokenhearted,
to proclaim liberty to the captives,
and the opening of the prison to those who are bound;[b]
2 to proclaim the year of the Lord's favor,
and the day of vengeance of our God;
to comfort all who mourn;
3 to grant to those who mourn in Zion—
to give them a beautiful headdress instead of ashes,
the oil of gladness instead of mourning,
the garment of praise instead of a faint spirit;
that they may be called oaks of righteousness,
the planting of the Lord, that he may be glorified.[c]
Jesus has set us free and He wants us to continue His ministry by letting Himself move in our lives through the power and anointing of the Holy Spirit in the manner listed in scripture above. As recorded in Luke 4:16-22 Jesus stood up in the temple and declared with power that he was the ultimate fulfillment of this prophetic word. Jesus is the only one in history who could claim this. He was, and is the anointed one, the Christ, the Messiah, the savior. Jesus is the one who was able to do what Isaiah 61 prophesies, to turn heavy spirits into garments of praise and take broken hearts and bind them up
At the same time, Jesus commands us to continue walking out this anointed ministry by the power of the Holy Spirit. The scripture below is referred to as the "Great Commission"
Matthew 28:18–20(ESV) — And Jesus came and said to them, “All authority in heaven and on earth has been given to me. Go therefore and make disciples of all nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father and of the Son and of the Holy Spirit, teaching them to observe all that I have commanded you. And behold, I am with you always, to the end of the age.”
The Great Commission is a purpose statement for followers of Jesus, but it also brings great encouragement to those who walk in it. Jesus does not call us to operate in our own authority to cary out the ministry outlined in Isaiah 61, but rather under His preeminent authority as the king of Kings. Also we can be reassured that His authority will not be removed from the Church but will be with us and accessible to us until the "end of the age"
Therefore I exhort us to GO! GO with confidence that Jesus' authority and presence is with us. Go with boldness to do the ministry of Christ! We need to have faith that God is still moving and wants to move in our lives. We don't want a smidgen of doubt in our hearts. It works against us and makes us to work in our own strength and to not wait on the Lord to move (because in our hearts we don't think He will.) God really loves this congregation and this city more than we ever could and He wants to see it move by His power. He wants to use us. He just does. He wants to work through us. He doesn't need us but He has chosen to work through us. He loves His children and He wants to see us grow in our love and faith. Don't let doubt of God's faithfulness slither in. Have faith in God and seek Him. ~ Pastor Dan