Day 29 - Read Daily29-11-2019 | Emily Middleton | YOUTH
Day 29 - Mission
Questions for Reflection
- If you’re a follower of Jesus, do you accept that God is calling YOU to share the Gospel? In day to day life, in regular conversation, how intentional are you about doing such?
- Do you take an interest in missionaries here and around the world? Identify some ways in which you can daily support them.
- ‘If your actions display the Gospel, you never have to speak it’. Why is this statement false?
Devotion Transcript (Watch on Baptist Youth Youtube Channel)
Worldwide, 41.8% of people groups have never been reached with the Gospel. 41.8% of people groups are dead in sin and hopelessly perishing. Yet, out of every dollar that Christians give to causes, less than one penny goes to pioneer church planting among unreached people groups. (The Joshua Project, September 2019)
How missional are you? Are you like the famous evangelist D.L. Moody, pledging to share Christ with at least one person every day? Is mission something that you just reserve for teams over the summer? Or do you avoid it, believing either that it’s only for chatty people or for those in full-time ministry?
If you’re a follower of Jesus, your purpose is to bring Him glory. Bringing Him glory means declaring it. Declaring His glory is declaring the Gospel.
No matter your age, no matter your personality, no matter how dark your past - God is calling you to be involved in mission. The ‘Great Commission’ is not the ‘Great Suggestion’. It is what God is commanding you to do.
Throughout the letter that Paul wrote to Titus, he urged the Cretan followers of Jesus to live godly lives, displaying how they had been transformed by the Gospel. By doing such, they would ‘adorn’ (ch2 vs10) the Gospel and impact its spread on the island of Crete. Now in these final verses, Paul instructs them to aid his missionary endeavours elsewhere.
Firstly, Paul explains that he is sending someone else, either Artemas or Tychicus, to take the place of Titus. Artemas is only known by name and he isn’t mentioned anywhere else in the New Testament, however, Tychicus is. For example, in Paul’s letter to the Colossians, he describes Tychicus as a ‘beloved brother and faithful minister and fellow servant in the Lord’ (Colossians ch4vs7). When either of these two men arrived in Crete, Titus was to leave the work there and travel to Nicopolis - presumably to minister there alongside Paul.
It’s interesting that Paul typically carried out his ministry alongside others - Barnabas, John Mark, Silas and Timothy are just to name a few. Paul didn’t rely on his individual efforts but recognised the advantage of teaming up with others to share the Gospel. It’s modelled by Jesus in Luke ch 10 where it says that He ‘appointed seventy-two others and sent them on ahead of Him, two by two, into every town and place where He Himself was about to go’ (Luke ch10vs1).
If mission is a daunting concept for you, be encouraged that God is not calling you to serve Him alone. Of course, God is always with you - at the end of the Great Commission in Matthew 28, Jesus says ‘And behold, I am with you always, to the end of the age’ (Matthew ch28vs20) - but He has also given you a body of believers to accompany or uplift and pray for you.
In Titus ch3 vs13, Paul then instructs Titus, ‘Do your best to speed Zenas the lawyer and Apollos on their way; see that they lack nothing’. While Titus is still in Crete, he is to help these other men who also served alongside Paul. Just like Artemas in vs 12, Zenas is only known to us by name however, Apollos is described in Acts ch18 vs 24 where it says that he was a Jew, ‘a native of Alexandria’ and ‘an eloquent man, competent in the Scriptures’.
As the Cretan followers of Jesus were visited by Zenas and Apollos, they were to show them hospitality, making sure ‘that they lack nothing’, so that they were then able to journey on to
where they had been called to minister. Therefore, Titus and these Cretans were not only involved in furthering the Gospel on their island but also further afield - a challenge for us, as followers of Jesus today, to play a part in mission beyond our local area. Jesus has called us ‘into all the world’.
John Piper explains that from what the Bible teaches us, if you’re not going and you’re not sending, then you’re disobeying. Not all of you will be called to full-time ministry but you can still go and you can still send. As you go into your classroom or lecture or workplace, do you have a sense of intentionality about sharing the Gospel? Do you pray for opportunities? How deeply do you love your peers or colleagues? Deeply enough to deal with the awkward topic of sin in order to magnify the love of Jesus?
And what does this sending look like? It could be as simple as taking as taking a missionary’s prayer card and being disciplined to bring their requests before God; it could be taking a global interest and endeavouring to pray for God to work in different countries; it could be in caring for missionaries on the field by encouraging them or by supporting them financially; it could be allowing missionaries to rest when they come back home. ‘Seek first the Kingdom of God’ and He will guide you in how He wills you to serve Him missionally.