What is God’s Mission-Part 8
An Ear Towards God
Call me crazy, but God speaks to me. Some of you might be wondering how I know God speaks to me and I’m not hearing my own thoughts. I have, over the years, learned to discern His voice. God doesn’t speak to us the way we speak to each other. I think we have two choices: we can be jealous of Moses since God spoke to him with an audible voice or we can be open to how God chooses to speak to us. I have chosen the latter.
In this blog, we are going to explore how God does speak to us. This is important if we are going to be on mission with Him because this is God’s mission. He is the one that has made us and I have come to the conclusion that He knows best. God will speak to you, if you are willing to listen to Him in the way that He wants. Will you join me on this journey to learn how he speaks to us?
Gentiles and Circumcisions
In my last hub, I shared from Acts 10 how the gospel started to go to ends of the world by welcoming Gentiles into the faith. After Acts 10, this question arose, do Gentiles need to be circumcised? Circumcision was the sign of the Jewish covenant with God and Jesus was seen as the Jewish Messiah. The death of Jesus was about offering salvation to all people. In the end, the question became, do Gentiles need to become Jews and circumcised in order to be saved?
That is the question that the council at Jerusalem was was answering. It is a pivotal moment in the church and they needed to get it right. They took the time to listen and discern what God wanted to do. Before we go much further, open up your Bible to Acts 15 and read the account. Then read the rest of this hub and join me in listening to God.
Peter Shares His Story
How God Speaks
God speaks in four ways: directly, through scripture, experience, and others. In this chapter, we see all four ways.
Experience: Paul and Barnabas explain the signs and wonders that God has done through them for the Gentiles.
Others: Peter stands up and tells of his experience and the importance that God is choosing Gentiles to be saved because of the grace of Jesus, not for something they are doing.
Scriptures: James shared a passage from Amos to explain what it is God is doing among the Gentiles. Amos says that Gentiles will seek God.
- Directly: Paul, Barnabas, James, and Peter all had interactions with God about the Gentiles. They all shared what God was saying to them. Peter saw a vision (see Acts 10), Paul knows what it is that God was doing, and James heard Him during all the discussion.
Song and Verses on God Speaking to Us
It was decided not to make it difficult for Gentiles to believe. In order to come to Christ, no one needed to become Jewish first. This is amazing! We just need to come as we are. In the end, they were given a list of sins to avoid instead of having to add something to their lives in order from them to be saved.
My friend, who are you praying for to come to Jesus, just as they are? Pray for them, but also listen to God on how best to reach them. Remember not to add anything to the message of salvation. What ministries are you apart of? What is God saying to you about your ministry? Here are some suggestions on how to do this:
Don’t neglect reading your Bible
Pause and reflect
Share what you are hearing with others to check it out
Ask God if you are hearing Him correctly
- Finally, act on what you are hearing
Avoid Sin, Not Add Something to Salvation
Get out There
Part 9 of this series is this: Pray and engage in God’s mission. Share with us how God is speaking to you so that we can pray for you. Read the rest of Acts. It is filled with all kinds of stories of Paul engaging with God’s mission. I look forward to hearing how God is working through you in your ministry.
I have enjoyed writing this series. I look forward to what God has in store for me next.
In the meantime, pray, pray, and pray. Early and often.