Family Bible Study lesson for Nov. 18
November 1 2001 by David Edgell , Acts 13:1-6a, 13-16, 47-48; 14:26-27

Family Bible Study lesson for Nov. 18 | Friday, Nov 2, 2001

Friday, Nov 2, 2001

Family Bible Study lesson for Nov. 18

By David Edgell Acts 13:1-6a, 13-16, 47-48; 14:26-27 "Calling out the called" is a phrase the church of the 21st century must rediscover. The needs of the world and our culture are astounding. America exists in a postmodern era with cultural moorings that are rapidly collapsing. Its Christian underpinnings are either tearing loose or are held in much disdain by the academic and cultural elite.

Most of Europe is largely secularized with Christianity holding only an historic reference. Asia and Northern Africa contain more than 1.6 billion people who have never heard the message of the gospel and who face resistance to Christian beliefs at every turn. Large parts of Africa and South America also remain mixed as these continents struggle with political, religious and economic uncertainty.

But whom will God use to take the message of Christ to this world? Who are those that will follow the example of the church at Antioch?

Several lessons can be learned from this church as it "called forth those that were called." First, the church selected and sent forth those with a call of God on their lives. Among the five prophets and teachers, two of the men were "set apart" by the Holy Spirit.

We must remember it is God who places the call on our lives and not ourselves, not even a majority vote of the church can place the call of God on our lives if it is not already there. Only God can call someone into His work.

It is the church's job to be in touch with the Holy Spirit and notice the work that God has already accomplished. God called these men and the hand of the Lord was upon them. The church recognized God's work while they were "ministering to the Lord" (Acts 13:2). Worship can be defined as "ministry to God." It was during a time of worship that God spoke to the church and the church set apart these men for His work.

Second, the church recognized worship as key to its ministry to the world. Sacrifice in worship and passionate spirituality seem to have been characteristic of the church at Antioch. Worship meant ministering to God at all costs. It was in the midst of this attitude of worship that God moved to call out His called.

Could it be that the church that is willing to deny self and worship God at all costs is the body of believers God desires to work through? These men would be willing to pay the ultimate price to be Christ's ambassadors. They would reflect the church's heart of worship as they fulfilled their calling.

Third, the church sent these men as God's representatives to take the gospel to the world. They would not be the representatives of the church in Antioch, but representatives of the most holy God (2 Cor 5:20). Their allegiance would not be to men but to God (Acts 4:19-20).

Who will God call to reach the nations? Only God and those He calls know the answer to that question. But the church must fulfill its role by calling out the called. People who have been called "only" by God, who understand sacrifice and worship and who understand for whom they work, these are the ones God can use to take the gospel to the ends of the earth.

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11/1/2001 11:00:00 PM by David Edgell , Acts 13:1-6a, 13-16, 47-48; 14:26-27 | with 0 comments
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