Mobile version of this page Increase Text Size   Decrease Text SizeGet helpPrint this sermon

Previous sermon in this series This sermon is number 30 in a series of 57 Next sermon in this series

Studies in Mark - Part 30

"The Reproduction Of Power In Effective Service"

by David Legge | Copyright © 2007 | All Rights Reserved | www.preachtheword.com

'Preach The Word'Now we're turning in our Bibles to Mark's gospel chapter 6 please, and we are beginning to read from verse 7 - and the title of my message this morning is: 'The Reproduction Of Power In Effective Service'. Verse 7 of Mark 6: "And he called unto him the twelve, and began to send them forth by two and two; and gave them power over unclean spirits; And commanded them that they should take nothing for their journey, save a staff only; no scrip, no bread, no money in their purse: But be shod with sandals; and not put on two coats. And he said unto them, In what place soever ye enter into an house, there abide till ye depart from that place. And whosoever shall not receive you, nor hear you, when ye depart thence, shake off the dust under your feet for a testimony against them. Verily I say unto you, It shall be more tolerable for Sodom and Gomorrha in the day of judgment, than for that city. And they went out, and preached that men should repent. And they cast out many devils, and anointed with oil many that were sick, and healed them".

We ought to be with Him - that is our primary responsibility, that ought to be our priority. It's no good serving the Lord Jesus if we're not spending any time at His feet...

Now if you can remember two Sunday mornings ago, if you were here, in verses 1 to 6 of this chapter 6 we saw the Servant of Jehovah rejected in His hometown of Nazareth. There we see, because of their unbelief in Christ, the power of God, divine power, was restrained. Look at verse 5: 'He could there do no mighty work, save that he laid his hands upon a few sick folk, and healed them'. We entitled our message that morning: 'The Paralysis of Unbelief'. Now this morning we are seeing that the Servant of Jehovah sends forth His servants to preach His message. In verses 7 to 13 that we have read, we see the third tour of the Galilean villages that our Lord Jesus takes recorded by Mark. The first was in chapter 1 verse 14, the second in chapter 1 verse 30, and here we have the third. Rather than divine power being restrained, we find that the theme in these verses is: divine power is being reproduced in the twelve disciples.

Let me remind you of something that we've already studied, turn with me to chapter 3 of this gospel, verse 14. We saw that the Lord Jesus 'ordained twelve, that they should be with him, and that he might send them forth to preach, And to have power to heal sicknesses, and to cast out devils'. There He chose them, primarily, to take His place when He left this scene - but also to propagate His message. There He chose them in chapter 3 to be with Him. They were Peter, or Simon; Andrew, Peter's brother; James the son of Zebedee; John, James' brother; Philip; Bartholomew, who is also named Nathaniel; Matthew, or Levi; and Thomas; James the son of Alphaeus; Thaddeus, his other name Judas the son of James; Simon the zealot; and Judas Iscariot, the betrayer of the Lord Jesus Christ.

In chapter 3 He was calling them to be under His tutelage, He called them to be with Him with a view that He would eventually send them out to propagate the message in His place. Now in chapter 6 they are going forth as His glorious heralds of His message. So the time has come, having been at the Master's feet, when they must be launched out in service for Him. He is sending them, Mark says, if you look at it in verse 7. He sends them forth. Now the Greek word there is 'apostello' (sp?), the word we get 'apostle' from. 'Apostle' means 'sent one', 'apostello', 'to send them'. Literally here's a definition of it: 'To send forth as an ambassador on a commission to represent another, and to perform some task'.

Now let me pause there for a moment, and let us launch into the future, into this particular time where we are in the church of Jesus Christ - and we find that in the line of the early apostles, in one sense, though there cannot be any more twelve apostles, we are also ambassadors for the Lord Jesus Christ. In that sense we are 'sent ones' - 2 Corinthians 5:20, Paul said: 'Now then we are ambassadors for Christ, as though God did beseech you by us: we pray you in Christ's stead', in Christ's place, as Christ's representatives, 'be ye reconciled to God'. So there is much application for us today in a similar, though not an exact position; we too are representatives of our Lord Jesus Christ in this day and generation.

He called them to be with Him with a view that He would eventually send them out to propagate the message in His place...

Now here's the lesson for us right away: we ought, like the early disciples, the twelve apostles, to be with Him - that is our primary responsibility, that ought to be our priority. It's no good serving the Lord Jesus if we're not spending any time at His feet. He called them first to be with Him, then there had to come a time when they were no longer only with Him but with others. Here we see this realised in chapter 6: He is launching them out in service. Now let me ask you, child of God: have you got that balance, and indeed that order intact in your Christian experience? Priority: be with Him, then launched out into service.

Now Judaism understood a kind of legal recognition that an action performed by authorised individuals on the behalf of another was considered as the actual action of the person represented. Now maybe that's complicating you, let me simply put it like this: their Jewish law of the land acknowledged the sent one as the man who commissioned him. The sent one was as if he was the man who commissioned him. So if you were appointed as a representative, in the legal sense of the term you where that person. In keeping with that thought, we find in verse 30 that, having come back from their mission, 'the apostles gathered themselves together unto Jesus, and told him all things, both what they had done, and what they had taught'. They were reporting to Him, because they had been operating on His behalf, as if He was operating. How that fits in so well with the theme of this portion, because what we witness here is not the power of the apostles, it is the power of the Lord Jesus Christ reproduced in His representatives. Like us today, as ambassadors for Christ, as apostles with a small 'a', as ones He has sent out to represent Him, we also are called upon to reproduce His power.

Now let us see how He sent them out. Look at verse 7, we see that He 'began to send them forth by two and two' - so He sent them out in pairs. Now Mark alone notes that the Lord Jesus sent the twelve out two by two. Luke, in chapter 10 of his gospel, notes that the Lord sent out the 70 two by two. The big question is: why did He send them out two by two? Well, one answer to that question might be that it gave them authenticity in a legal sense - as they were bringing testimony, the law required that in the mouth of two or three witnesses a truth should be established. So they were going out to propagate the truth of this message from Christ on His behalf, as His representatives, and it would fulfil the law's requirements that they went in twos.

But I think there might be a second reason as well. We read in Matthew chapter 18 that the Lord Jesus said: 'If two of you shall agree on earth as touching any thing that they shall ask, it shall be done for them of my Father which is in heaven'. There is a great strength in praying with other people, and operating in service with other people, not just on your own. Prayer ministry would have been multiplied in going two by two. But a third reason for sending them out two by two may be the simple and most common sense reason, that it gives encouragement, companionship and cooperation. Of course Solomon in Ecclesiastes said these words: 'Two are better than one; because they have a good reward for their labour. For if they fall, the one will lift up his fellow: but woe to him that is alone when he falleth; for he hath not another to help him up. Again, if two lie together, then they have heat: but how can one be warm alone? And if one prevail against him, two shall withstand him'. Now there Solomon tells us that when we go out with company to serve the Lord we have assistance, we have comfort, and we have a defence. Later on he actually says in verse 12 of Ecclesiastes chapter 4 that three, additional to two, also has with it its advantage: 'a threefold cord is not quickly broken'. Now please notice that I think this is fulfilled in the Lord Jesus sending the disciples about two by two, because the Lord sent them in twos, but He was working with them and in them - so that in the two disciples and the Lord Jesus empowering them, there is a threefold cord of fellowship that is not easily broken.

Now the question is: ought we to obey these injunctions today? Literally, should we be going out two by two?

Now we see that that is something that was reciprocated right throughout the whole ministry of the apostles - not necessarily that they went two by two, but they all went in cooperation with the Lord Jesus. Turn to the last chapter of this book of Mark, and the last verse of the last chapter: 'And they went forth, and preached every where, the Lord working with them, and confirming the word with signs following' - that is exactly what we have here in chapter 6. The two in cooperation, but all of them, both of them in cooperation with the Lord. So here we have the first ingredient of the recipe of effective service for the Lord: one, fellowship with one another; two, in fellowship with the Lord - now that is vital. We need to be in fellowship with one another, in fellowship also with the Lord.

Now the question is: ought we to obey these injunctions today? Literally, should we be going out two by two? Well, William Irvine took these verses literally - and Matthew 10, and Luke 9 and 10 - and established the Cooneyite movement which we still have with us today in our land. They went out two by two, and were called the 'Two By Twos'. Their gospel became known as 'The Jesus Way', because they espoused that salvation is not by grace through faith, but by following the example of the Lord Jesus. Their preachers became known as 'tramp preachers', because they lived in poverty, obeying to the letter these words that we have read together this morning. They had only one change of clothes, they took no money with them, they lived in other people's homes and desired to obey literally these injunctions that the Lord Jesus gave to the twelve apostles and His 70 disciples.

So should we be obeying these words literally today? Now this is very instructive for us in how we understand to apply the word of God in our own contemporary situation. Here are a few problems if we are to obey these verses literally: the first is found in chapter 10 of Matthew, turn with me to it please, we're going to do a bit of a Bible study! Matthew 10 verse 5, this is the same situation, Matthew's record: 'These twelve', verse 5, 'Jesus sent forth, and commanded them, saying, Go not into the way of the Gentiles, and into any city of the Samaritans enter ye not: But go rather to the lost sheep of the house of Israel'. Problem number one: when the Lord Jesus sent forth the twelve in this manner, He didn't send them to the Gentiles - in fact He expressly told them not to go to them, but to the lost sheep of the house of Israel. So if we are to obey these commands literally, we're not allowed to go and preach to Gentiles - as the Cooneyites, incidentally, do - we should be all emigrating to Jerusalem and preaching to Jews. There's something different going on, it's obvious, in this portion.

Here's a second problem that arises in the next verse of chapter 10 of Matthew, verse 7: 'As ye go', the Lord Jesus says, 'preach, saying, The kingdom of heaven is at hand' - that is a different message than we are called to preach today. Let me just explain it briefly without going into too much detail: the kingdom of heaven was at hand for these Jews, because their Messiah was with them in the land offering Himself to them as their Messiah. He is not in the land today, and that same message is not being preached today. So it was a different message, and they were told to go to different people.

A third problem with this, if you turn to Luke 22, a third problem with taking these injunctions literally is that here in Luke 22 verses 35 and 36 these initial injunctions are now revoked by the Lord Himself, and opposite instructions are given. Luke 22 and verse 35: 'And he said unto them, When I sent you without purse, and scrip, and shoes, lacked ye any thing? And they said, Nothing. Then said he unto them, But now, he that hath a purse, let him take it, and likewise his scrip: and he that hath no sword, let him sell his garment, and buy one'. William Irvine and the Cooneyites failed to understand that these commandments in Mark 6 that we're looking at today, these were particular commands, to particular disciples, to fulfil specific stages of the ministry of our Lord Jesus Christ while He was here on earth.

We must make sure that when we interpret the Bible, that we're not applying things literally that were commands intended for a specific person or people at a particular time in biblical history...

Now here's a fourth problem if you're not convinced yet: in Matthew 28 we have the final commission of the Lord Jesus to the twelve. In Matthew 28:19-20 He says: 'Go ye therefore, and teach all nations', not now just to the Jews, but all nations, 'baptizing them in the name of the Father, and of the Son, and of the Holy Ghost: Teaching them to observe all things whatsoever I have commanded you: and, lo, I am with you alway, even unto the end of the age'. This was another message, a message not just to the Jew but to the global nations, a message of grace through faith.

Now here's a fifth problem if we are to take these verses literally in Mark 6: in the book of the Acts, the church did not practise these injunctions, the apostles also did not practise them. Now sometimes they did send people out in twos, but other times they sent folk out alone, and up to - I think I've counted it right - some were sent in a company of eight. So they did not obey these verses literally. So that's a good lesson for us: we must make sure that when we interpret the Bible, that we're not applying things literally that were commands intended for a specific person or people at a particular time in biblical history.

Now, all that being said, there are general principles found in these injunctions in Mark 6 that are related to service, their service and our service, because these principles are timeless - and it's those I want to concentrate on this morning. The first we have already hit on: if we are to have effective service for the Lord, we must be in fellowship with one another, and in fellowship with the Lord. Now here's the second: we have looked at how He sent them out in pairs, look at verse 7 again because He also sent them out with power, He gave them 'power over unclean spirits'. Now here we are seeing the One who, in these first six verses of Mark 6, could do no mighty works because the divine conditions of faith in the hearers were not met; and now He is giving power to others - it is obviously a divine power, so the power is being reproduced.

It's one thing to cast out demons, which the Lord did, but only God can confer these powers on others. As Darby said: 'Any can work miracles if God gives the power, but God alone can give it'. Here we see the deity of our Lord Jesus Christ imparting the power to work miracles on the earth. But here's the point we need to grasp: as the Lord Jesus wanted these disciples to serve Him in power, He wants us to serve Him in power today. The word for 'power' is the word for 'authority'. He gave them authority to exorcise the demons. You remember - we'll not take time to look at it - in chapter 1 and verses 26 and 27, the people marvelled at the Lord Jesus because He cast out the devils. They marvelled at His power - the word is His 'authority'. Now He is giving this to His disciples. This same power and authority is being reproduced in His representatives.

Now, we haven't got time to go into all this today: we cannot do what the apostles did in many respects, but the fact of the matter is - as far as we are concerned - the Lord Jesus Christ came down from heaven, He died on the cross, He was buried, He rose again, He went up to heaven and after He went up to heaven the Holy Spirit came down from heaven and empowered the church to go out, and to touch men and women for heaven. We are to serve the Lord with His own divine power. Now that word for 'gave them power' over the spirits is in the imperfect tense, that means He kept on giving them the power all through their tour of Galilee. It was a limitless supply of power - Hallelujah, for that is available to us: God's commandments are always His enablements!

Do you remember what Paul said in 2 Corinthians 3? 'Not that we are sufficient of ourselves to think any thing as of ourselves; but our sufficiency is of God; Who also hath made us able ministers of the new testament; not of the letter, but of the spirit: for the letter killeth, but the spirit giveth life'. Do you know that power in your life? Do I know it in mine? Do you know it in your service for the Lord? Do I know it in mine? I'm reminded of that statement of the puritan Philip Brooks: 'Do not pray for tasks equal to your powers, pray for powers equal to your tasks'. Do not pray for tasks equal to your powers, for your powers are pathetic; but pray for powers, divine powers, equal for your tasks, for the things that God is calling you to do.

Do you know that power in your life? Do I know it in mine? Do you know it in your service for the Lord? Do I know it in mine?

How did He send them out? He sent them out in pairs, He sent them out with power, thirdly He sent them out promising provisions - verses 8, 9 and 10. Now we have a problem here - and the problem is with us of course, it's always with us whenever there's a problem with the scriptures - the first problem is this: Matthew 10 in his record, in verses 9 and 10, tells them in the same instance to take no shoes, nor staves; whereas Mark in his record says the Lord Jesus told them to take sandals and a stave. That's a problem. In Luke chapter 9 and verse 3, he records that the Lord told them not to take staves also. Now some try and reconcile this by saying that these staves that they weren't allowed to take with them were fighting staves, but they were allowed to take with them a walking stick - that was permitted to get over the terrain, and some of those people would say that the shoes here are different than sandals. That may be the case, but if you note: Matthew and Luke use the plural of staves - you're not allowed to take staves with you, and you're not allowed to take shoes with you. So, bringing them into harmony: you're not allowed to take staves and shoes, but you can take one pair of sandals and one staff - and that interpretation is completely in keeping with the whole meaning of this portion. What is it? 'Don't take extra provisions to rely on your own ingenuity, but rely on My promise of provision! I will care for you!'.

Now, a second problem that we might have is that in the light of Luke 22 that we read together, should we assume that because this particular injunction in Mark 6 was revoked by the Lord Himself, that the Lord's provision would no longer be given? Of course not! In fact the Lord says in Luke 22: 'When I sent you out without these things, did you have need of anything?', and they said 'No' - that was the lesson He was trying to get across to them. Now in Luke 22 the point only is that they were about to face worse opposition and hospitality than they ever met in their first mission, and therefore it was important that they learned how to trust the Lord without anything.

The command in verse 8: 'Don't take a scrip', that is a begging bag - only sandals, the sandals are for protection; and only a staff, that's maybe for protection from wild beasts, and getting over the rugged terrain. The point was: they were to trust the Lord for everything else! I want you to picture the scene as these twelve go out, there wasn't any danger of them being envied because of their possessions. People would never have been attracted to Christianity by the prospect of becoming rich quick! Not with these twelve! I think it's an interesting point that the church today often think they must attract unbelievers by being attractive - I agree with that, but attractive in what sense? Because in worldly terms, these early disciples were unattractive, but they were attractive in this respect: that they manifested divine power! The likeness and power of Christ was in them - and there's a lesson in that for us all.

Then verse 10, they were told to abide in one home wherever they were until they departed again. Now why was that injunction given? Well, it stopped them shopping around for more comfortable lodgings. I'm thinking of John Wesley, riding all over the United Kingdom and further afield on horseback, and when night fell he gets off his horse, lies in a hedge, and sleeps there all night. This convicts me, I'm sure it convicts many of us in this materialistic, affluent age. What the Lord Jesus was saying to these disciples was: if you're engaged in evangelism, you can't be fussy about your food or your accommodation, you've got to realise that your mission is a matter of life and death to the hearers! Everything else is secondary to that! Is that how I operate, is that how you operate? You see, their mission, they were being sent out as representatives of the One who did not please Himself, who was not self-seeking, and they were not to compromise the message by seeking luxury, comfort or ease.

I wonder are people not able to hear our message today because of the discordant note of our lives that is a distraction, and maybe even a contradiction of the One whom we represent?

I wonder are people not able to hear our message today because of the discordant note of our lives that is a distraction, and maybe even a contradiction of the One whom we represent? I know this for a fact: many unbelievers are turned off by tuning into TV evangelists, the get rich quick schemes that they propound - all, of course, in the name of the penniless Man of Nazareth! The apostolic church could say: 'Silver and gold have I none, rise up and walk'; much of the modern church can say neither. Why is that? Simply put: because we often rely on our own resources rather than God's supernatural provision. Is that true?

So here are a few things that the servants of the Lord must learn, attributes that are needed in the servants of the Lord. One, this is what we find in these injunctions in verses 8, 9 and 10, one: we need dependence on the Lord, not dependence on wealth. Now that, put in one word, is faith. We need dependence on the Lord, not on wealth - faith. You see, the minimum of provision was meant to call these disciples out in the maximum of faith. They didn't have any resources, and so they had to be totally cast upon the Lord. Had they not been taught the Lord's social security plan in Matthew chapter 6 and verses 19 and following? 'Lay not up for yourselves treasures upon earth, where moth and rust doth corrupt, and where thieves break through and steal: But lay up for yourselves treasures in heaven' - and that was a 100% guaranteed policy! 'Trust in me, and I will provide for you' - as Hudson Taylor put it, 'The Lord pays for what He orders'.

What the Lord was teaching the servant was: 'As long as you're doing my work, I will supply your need'. Now we see this exemplified in Paul's letter to Timothy, when he said these words, 1 Timothy 6: 'Godliness with contentment is great gain. For we brought nothing into this world, and it is certain we can carry nothing out' - now mark these words - 'And having', one, 'food and', two, 'raiment let us be therewith', three, 'content'. Food and clothing, and that word 'clothing' could also mean 'covering', so it might be a roof over your head - but with food and covering for your body and for your family, be content. He goes on: 'But they that will be rich fall into temptation and a snare, and into many foolish and hurtful lusts, which drown men in destruction and perdition. For the love of money is the root of all evil: which while some coveted after, they have erred from the faith, and pierced themselves through with many sorrows'. He's not saying it's wrong to have a few pounds in your pocket, he's saying it's wrong to depend upon that resource and not depend on God.

We've got to serve in faith. Cameron Thomson put it like this: 'God pours out His choicest blessings on those who are anxious that nothing should stick to their hands. Individuals who value the rainy day above the present agony of the world will get no blessing from God'. Dan Crawford, that servant of the Lord, said of his own experience: 'A society missionary friend expostulated with me as a married man not claiming a fixed salary, something sure was his idea. It was then that God spoke to me out of His word. What settled the matter as to faith being the only definite thing was the following truth of God, 'The promise was by faith that it might be sure''. The promise was by faith that it might be sure - in other words, the only sure thing is faith. Our resources, whether they are financial, or whether they are technological, or intellectual - none of them are sure, but God is sure, and our dependence is to be in Him and Him alone!

As one has said, we must beware of the soft and effeminate luxuries that kill the soul...

The servant of the Lord needs to depend on the Lord, not on wealth, that is faith. Secondly, the servant of the Lord needs a readiness to relinquish comfort, a readiness to relinquish comfort. Now there is no virtue in becoming a monk, putting sackcloth on your back for no reason - but the servant of the Lord must be willing, when it is called upon him, to relinquish comfort. If the first attribute is faith, the second is sacrifice. Now, I know my flesh loves pampering and luxury - but that is not ideal for the servant of the cross. As one has said, we must beware of the soft and effeminate luxuries that kill the soul. William MacDonald put it like this: 'So disciples must make a deliberate choice. On the one hand there is poverty, hunger, tears and unpopularity for the Son of Man's sake; on the other there is riches abundant, food, gaiety and man's approval. Those who choose the latter receive their reward now and remorse later; those who choose the former inherit the kingdom with all the joys that go with it'.

This is the basic point: the Lord Jesus was the poor Servant of Jehovah who did not please Himself, and yet He is able to pledge Himself to provide the needs of His servants if they go out with nothing. Do you believe that? Do I believe that? Do you act upon that? Do I act upon it? The poet said:

'Give of thy sons to bear the message, glorious;
Give of thy wealth to speed them on their way.
Pour out thy soul for them in prayer, victorious;
And all thou spendest, Jesus will repay!'.

He sent them out in pairs, He sent them out with power, He sent them out promising them provision; and fourthly in verse 11 He sent them out prepared for rejection: 'Whosoever shall not receive you, nor hear you, when ye depart thence, shake off the dust under your feet for a testimony against them'. They were not obliged to remain and cast their pearls before swine. In public testimony against those who rejected the message of Christ, they were to shake off the dust under their feet - symbolising God's rejection of the hearers. Now, you see, the Jews often did this when they were in a Gentile village or city and went out, a heathen place, they would shake the dust from off their feet. The Lord is commanding them to do this against the Jews, who rejected Him as their Messiah!

Now don't misunderstand: the disciples were not being called by the Lord to be rude or hostile in their approach, but this actually was a merciful prophetic act. This was intended to shock the hearers into realising that the judgement of God was upon them. It was designed to prick them into thinking about their destiny and standing before God. Ultimately it was a pronouncement of judgement that was to bring them to repentance - and let me tell you, it wasn't just for the time when our Lord was upon the earth. For in Acts 13 we read that Paul and Barnabas shook off the dust from their feet when the citizens of Antioch in Pisidia had rejected the gospel of God's grace.

Here's another attribute that the servant of the Lord needs. We've seen that they need faith, they need sacrifice, but thirdly they need candour - truthfulness, directness. They need to be prepared to preach judgement! There's a sense of urgency here, look at verse 11: 'Verily I say unto you, It shall be more tolerable for Sodom and Gomorrha in the day of judgment, than for that city' that rejects Christ, or that person that rejects Christ. If you're a person in this building this morning who rejects Christ, you've got to know that you're in a worse situation than Sodom and Gomorrah, and fire rained down from heaven upon them! You've heard, they hadn't heard the gospel, you've heard. You have a Bible, they never had a Bible in their hands. You have sat in gospel meetings, evangelistic campaigns, they never had that - but God judged them because they rejected Him with less than you have, what will God do to you?

It literally means this: to make a public proclamation with such gravity, formality, and authority as must be heeded. Are those three ingredients in our preaching? Gravity, formality, and authority?

This candour was evident in their preaching, for in verse 12 'they went out, and preached that men should repent'. Please note first of all that preaching was their main task. They were to preach the gospel, and it was the preaching that led to the expulsion of demons and healing of the sick. Sometimes there are groups of people calling on unbelievers to come and get healed, and not even giving them the gospel. We see them on our streets round about this district, having little prayer clinics for people's healing of the body when their souls are damned! That's not Christ's order: He preached to them, and the word used here for 'preach' is 'kerusso', and it literally means this: to make a public proclamation with such gravity, formality, and authority as must be heeded. Are those three ingredients in our preaching? Gravity, formality, and authority? Basically what I'm saying is: how can you preach judgement at an evangelistic fancy dress party? You can't do it. Therefore, a lesson for us is: we must beware in our methods - and I believe there are many - but we must beware in our methods that we do not lose our message.

The message they preached was 'Repent', change your attitude toward God, change your attitude toward self, change your attitude towards sin - and in verse 13 there were signs followed. They anointed people with oil and they were healed. The oil, I believe, is symbolic here of the ministry of the Holy Spirit - and we ought to be anointed with that holy oil of God's Spirit as we serve Him in effective power. Now let me recap, lest you've missed anything. What is effective service that will reproduce the power of the Lord Jesus? One, fellowship with one another in the fellowship of the Lord. Two, availing of divine power which He gives us constantly with a limitless supply. Three, dependence on the Lord, not wealth, that is faith. Four, readiness to relinquish comfort, that is sacrifice. Five, preparedness to preach the truth faithfully.

How do we figure? How do I measure up? How do you? The Italian patriot, Garibaldi, was standing on the steps of St Peter's Basilica in Rome, and he said to the men gathered around him: 'I offer you neither pay nor provisions. I offer you hunger, thirst, forced marches, battles and death. Let him who loves his country with his heart and not with his lips only, follow me'. The Lord Jesus similarly says: 'Whosoever will come after me, let him deny himself, and take up his cross, and follow me'.

Father, You alone know who among us has truly heard Your voice, and what the Spirit says to those in the churches. We pray this morning that that word that may have found a place in someone's heart will stay there, and be cultivated and bear forth much fruit to the glory of God. Help those who are struggling with the matter of surrender, and may they go through with God. We pray too for those who may be under the judgement of God where they stand just now because of their unbelief. May they trust the Saviour before it's too late. Thank You for Your word, thank You for Your presence. We ask Your blessing now as we go, in the name of our Lord Jesus Christ we pray, Amen.

Don't miss part 31 of our Studies In Mark: "The Silencing Of A Servant" Jump To Top Of Page

------------------------
Transcribed by:
Andrew Watkins
Preach The Word.
October 2007
www.preachtheword.com

This sermon was delivered at The Iron Hall Evangelical Church in Belfast, Northern Ireland, by Pastor David Legge. It was transcribed from the thirtieth recording in his 'Studies In Mark' series, entitled "The Reproduction Of Power In Effective Service" - Transcribed by Andrew Watkins, Preach The Word.

All material by David Legge is copyrighted. However, these materials may be freely copied and distributed unaltered for the purpose of study and teaching, so long as they are made available to others free of charge, and this copyright is included. This does not include hosting or broadcasting the materials on another website, however linking to the resources on preachtheword.com is permitted. These materials may not, in any manner, be sold or used to solicit 'donations' from others, nor may they be included in anything you intend to copyright, sell, or offer for a fee. This copyright is exercised to keep these materials freely available to all. Any exceptions to these conditions must be explicitly approved by Preach The Word. [Read guidelines...]