This message was preached by Colin D Cruz at Word of Grace Church on the 20th of Jan 2013 . You can listen or download to the audio by clicking here
Acts 15:35 Paul and Barnabas return to Antioch and they along with many others taught the Word of God. We often skip the bit that says “others”. This is my prayer for Word of Grace that many will begin to teach and preach the Word of God.
Great things happened in 2012. Some of the highlights were :
The 10 Year Celebration.
We had 450 visitors at word of Grace last year of which 50 have joined us.
13 Graduated from IDT. Acts 11:36. Teaching the Word of God systematically is very important.
We had several baptisms last year and we look forward to many more this year
Gift Day – We got a little over 5 lakhs which was a huge target for a church of our size to achieve.
At Christmas we distributed 700kgs of food grain to the poor.
Serving Teams are growing and new people like Sunny, Jeevan and Austin are leading them.
The Worship Team has seen new additions in Rakhi, Austin and Jerome and we are looking to add more in the future.
There has been visible spiritual growth in the lives of many people.
With 2013 before us what can we expect?
God will do even greater things in our lives individually and corporately. Habbakuk 1:5 “Look at the nations and watch— and be utterly amazed. For I am going to do something in your day that you would not believe even if you were told.” I believe God will do that and all we need to do is believe.
We need to find out what is God’s purpose and we need to fit in.
Hab 2:14 “ For the earth shall be filled with the knowledge of the glory of the Lord, even as the waters cover the sea” God’s desire from eternity past to eternity present is to fill the earth with His glory.
Throughout the Old Testament God’s appeared in glory to the Israelistes. Acts 7:2, Ex 33:18. God the father displayed His glory .
In Heb2, Jn1:14 we see the Son displays God’s glory. Jn16:13-14 The Holy Spirit brings glory to the Son.
Creation declares the glory of god ( Ps 19:1), Is 6:3 says the whole earth is full of His glory.
What about man ? God’s desire is that we ( 1Cor 10:31) too will display the glory of God. In anything we do we can demonstrates the glory of God.
2 Thes. 2:14 God tells us how man displays the glory of God. When someone believes in Jesus an sis a new creation we share in God’s glory. A Christ follower is a bearer of God’s glory. Jesus is the light of the world and then he tell us : you are the light of the world. All mankind are created in God’s image but its only when we are saved do we demonstrate the glory of God on earth as well.
How will the earth be filled with the glory of God? As more people bear the glory of God. Therefore we need to put all our energies into taking people who only bare the image of God to becoming his glory bearers as well.
Mk16:15 There are 4 Calls
1. Call from above – Matt 28:18-20. We are told to go into all the earth.
2. Call from below – Luke 16:19 Hell is a real place of real agony. This is not a fairy tale because the story teller is Jesus himself. The rich man is being tormented and wants to warn his family.
3. Call from within us. 1 Cor 9:16 I am compelled to preach. Woe to me if I do not preach.
2 Cor 5:14 Christ’s love compels us . Do we have the love to Jesus in our heart – the you can’t sit still while people are perishing.
4. Call from beyond. Acts 16:9 There are many groups of people who are calling who need the gospel to be shared with them.
What will we do?
All over the world God is using new wine skins – they are house groups. We start up little groups everywhere.
Jn 4:39-40 the Samaritan woman had no qualifications. She only had her story. God uses weak people . The whole town gets impacted because of one person’s story.
Mk5 the demonized man is set free by Jesus and the whole region gets to know about it.
At Word of Grace we can start 30 groups this year. All it requires is for you to say God use me . From our city it will go beyond.
What will it take?
1. God wants our availability not our ability.
2. Give your time- pray and meet people. You can meet them anywhere- Coffee shops, super markets, at your home etc.
3. How many people? For starters you and another person is all you need to begin.
4. What do you do? Share your story and what Jesus has done for you. The power of these groups is that from one you start the next and so on.
5. What do you teach? Stories from the Bible. They are full of truth and power.
Next Sunday I will share part 2 of this vision for 2013.
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