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Wordwise Insight, Issue #106
June 14, 2013


BIBLE INSIGHTS (and Reader Q & A): Where Ministry Begins--the foundation of ministry for Christ

WORDWISE HYMNS: My Blog called Wordwise Hymns for you to check out!

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Where Ministry Begins

(Ministry begins with seeing as Jesus sees)

When we consider the ministry of the gospel, we often begin with the Great Commission. That's stated most fully at the end of Matthew's Gospel (Matt. 28:18-20), but it's found in various forms in the other three Gospels, and in Acts (Mk. 16:15; Lk. 24:46-48; Jn. 20:21; Acts 1:8).

That's our mandate. In the power of the Holy Spirit; we're to proclaim the Word of God, and take the good news of salvation to all the world. But there's a significant passage in Matthew which concerns something that comes before that. In a real sense it lays the foundation for the Commission to come. The Bible says:

"When He [Christ] saw the multitudes, He was moved with compassion for them, because they were weary and scattered, like sheep having no shepherd. Then He said to His disciples, ‘The harvest truly is plentiful, but the labourers are few. Therefore pray the Lord of the harvest to send out labourers into His harvest'" (Matt. 9:36-38).

As we ponder the work to which the Lord has called us, there's a great deal in these three verses that provides food for thought. Basic things that can effectively undergird and animate our service. And the first, it seems to me, is the most fundamental of all. Christ "saw the multitudes."

But we all know there's seeing, and there's seeing. Go to a shopping mall, and you'll see people, milling, jostling, pressing on their way–or sitting in the food court, chatting over coffee or a meal. It's much the same in all the marketplaces of the world.

And we can look upon them with curiosity, or with a critical eye. ("Why has he painted his hair green? It looks ridiculous!") Or perhaps we see the crowds and complain, because they get in the way of us finishing what we've come to do. I can be as guilty of this as the next person.

However, the Lord Jesus saw something different. He saw people ...

For the rest of this article, click on Where Ministry Begins.


Come and Pay Us a Visit!

I have developed a blog that is called Wordwise Hymns. As the title suggests, it is about hymns, and church music in general.

But as many of you will know, a blog is especially designed to facilitate a conversation on its particular subject. Readers can easily post comments about what they see, and I'm able to reply. I hope you will take part in the discussion!

Through 2010, almanac entries dealt with what happened in hymn history on each day of the year. Beginning in 2011, I hope to analyze hymns from a biblical standpoint, linking to the material that has come before.

My hope is that the blog will add to the value of the website and this newsletter, and promote some profitable exchanges on the subject of sacred music.

What happened on this day in hymnology? To find out, click Wordwise Hymns.

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