Equipping Mission Volunteers
The previous post was about worship as a weapon of our warfare. Worship was God’s chosen weapon to deliver Judah from destruction. There are three things we also need to know:
- Worship is one tool of fully equipped mission volunteers
- The words of Jesus teach this truth
- We need a deeper understanding of this mighty weapon
Worship – Essential for Mission Volunteers
Every Christian is a mission volunteer. You weren’t drafted. Remember Revelation 3:20. Jesus stands at the door of our hearts and knocks. He doesn’t beat the door down. Surrendering our lives to Him is synonymous with volunteering to serve. That said, the our lives are on mission for Him and the missions come from Him. That’s how Jesus lived on earth and it’s how we are to live. The proof is here:
As the Father has sent Me, so send I you.
Not only are we on mission, we have been equipped to succeed in our assigned missions. And that equipping is also an important lesson. I have often written about mission volunteers. In most instances that refers to people who are part of a short-term mission team. I talk about the need to equip those volunteers for they work they have been called to do. Why do they need equipping? So they can succeed in their mission and complete the work at hand.
Think about it! By His grace, Jesus has equipped us for every good work. Since one of our missions is to sow the seed of the Gospel, how does He equip us for that work? Notice:
Now He who supplies seed to the sower and bread for food will supply and multiply your seed for sowing and increase the harvest of your righteousness.
He supplies the seed, multiplies it, and increases the harvest. He thoroughly equips us. This reminder of how Jesus equips us should also encourage us to be like Him. Imitating Him means we have the opportunity (responsibility) to equip those He has called to His service.
David was inspired to write many of the Psalms. Psalm 8 is one of those. There we find:
From the mouth of infants and nursing babes You have established strength because of Your adversaries, to make the enemy and the revengeful cease.
Please notice the word strength. The Hebrew word for strength is oz. In the Old Testament it is translated as:
- Strength, 60 times
- Strong, 17 times
- Power, 11 times
- Might, 2 times
- Boldness, 1 time
- Loud, 1 time
- Mighty, 1 time
In Matthew 21, Jesus quotes this verse when the Pharisees told Him to quiet the crowd at the Triumphal Entry. There we see this:
[They] said to Him, “Do You hear what these children are saying?” And Jesus said to them, “Yes; have you never read, ‘OUT OF THE MOUTH OF INFANTS AND NURSING BABIES YOU HAVE PREPARED PRAISE FOR YOURSELF’?”
Now, the New Testament is written in Greek. Did you notice how Jesus changed the words? Here, Jesus says God has ordained praise. The Greek word for praise is ainos. It is used only two times in the New Testament and both times it is translated as praise. See:
Did Jesus misquote the Scripture? That’s not really possible since He is the Living Word of God (see John 1). So what are we to conclude based on the fact that Jesus is the One speaking? For Christians,
Praise (Worship) = Strength (Power)
That’s the only thing we can conclude because God is not a man that He should lie. He cannot misquote His own Word.
Toward a Deeper Understanding
Is worship just that time you spend at church on Sunday morning? For some preachers it’s what they have to sit through before they preach. Is worship just the music we use (contemporary or traditional)? The enemy has deceived many regarding their understanding of God’s great worship gift. Our enemy is delighted if our understanding of worship runs no deeper than these surface examples. Worship is truly a deep subject!
Volumes have been written on worship. I will offer only two examples to spur your thinking. But rest assured there is much more to be said and learned. Two apostles show us the nature and depth of God’s gift of worship power:
Peter calls us a royal priesthood. That means:
- We belong to the King
- We are not our own
- Priests served at the temple 24/7/365
In Romans, Paul called us to be living sacrifices.
- A sacrifice was whole, not part
- Giving of ourselves is continual – all of me, all the time
- Our sacrifice is our service of worship
Worship is all of the time we spend in our community of faith. It is all the hours of every day. And it is all to be presented to God as a pleasing sacrifice. We are called to it, equipped for it, and will be blessed by it. God’s winners are worshipers!
Soli Deo Gloria!