Sabbath: Releasing Into Ministry
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Read for This Week’s Study:

Exod. 18:13–26Matt. 7:17-18Acts 6:1–8John 4:36Acts 15:36–40.

Memory Text:

“And how shall they preach unless they are sent? As it is written: ‘How beautiful are the feet of those who preach the gospel of peace, who bring glad tidings of good things!’” (Romans 10:15, NKJV).

Key Thought:

It is not enough for people to be trained for evangelism and witnessing work; they must actively work for souls.

Many church members lament the fact that although they are prepared to attend witnessing and evangelism training seminars, they are not encouraged to become involved when they return to their home church. Consequently, many churches that are not very active in witnessing and evangelistic activities are unaware of the well trained people in their midst. Occasionally some will voluntarily offer their services, but many others conclude that they are either not needed or wanted. The most successful way to stifle member involvement in any church activity is to deny them involvement in areas in which they are equipped to function. It is the responsibility of every local church to discover where, and how, each member can contribute to the witnessing and evangelism strategies of the church. All who are willing do have a place. The key is to find that place.

This week we will explore the concept of intentionally sending out gospel workers and the ways in which maximum member involvement contributes to overall church harmony and spiritual and numerical growth.

Study this week’s lesson to prepare for Sabbath, June 2.

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Sabbath: Releasing Into Ministry — 7 Comments

  1. We must be doing something right. USA Today reported on our church recently. We are the fastest growing Christian church in the United States. Another sign of Christ soon return. "This gospel of the kingdom shall be preached to all the world, and then shall Christ return." Matthew 24:14. I knew we were growing rapidly over seas, but until this recent news paper clipping, I didn't know we were excelling at home. Yes God is blessing our church in spite of our mistakes. Why? Because we have the love of Jesus in our hearts, don't compromise on His laws and Biblical principles, and we heed to the advice of God's prophets, old, new testament, and 'extended new testament prophet' alike. Jesus took some uneducated and some educated men and formally trained them for full time witnessing and evangelism. Isn't that what we have been doing for over 120 years? Herein lies our success. The reporter of USA Today did not understand our success. We do!

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    • I must admitt John that is impressive. What is more impressive is to see the statistics from the General Conference Office of Archives, Statistics, and Research on North America (http://www.adventiststatistics.org/view_Summary.asp?FieldID=D_NAD) and to realize that during 2010 we had a 1.68% growth.

      Now I am not about to question statistics or attempt to analyze anything but we all know very well that often when there is a baptism it is hard for a church to drop that person from the books if he/she stops attending. Besides I really don't know how many in that growth figure represents biological growth do you?. Also, during the last decade there has been numerous reports on the fact that in North America and Europe the church is basically in maintenance mode which is the last point in the evolution of the church before death.

      There are churchs in North America that are growing very well, Doug Batchelor's church in Sacramento California is one of them but by in large most churches have essentally stagnated. I know that is so in the majority of the churches I have been in. So yes John we can be thankful but I really think we could be doing much, much better.

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      • Tyler, I don't know if that represents biological growth or new members. I do believe that the percentage growth reported in USA Today was over 2%. I though can tell you that our church in the last 6 months had 9 new births in Christ in the church baptismal waters and we are only a city of 32,000 people. June 23rd we have another baptism, coming up, I do believe it will be the pacemaker victim that couldn't get baptized on the 5th of May and another who had a emergency hospitalization who had to cancel, plus several school kids. We give God the glory. When I lived in Florida, Tampa 1st church had over 2000 Bible studies going, there growth rate I was never privy to. But over 2000 Bible studies going on at one time was impressive. We have this hope and we need to hang onto it. Zech. 8:23; Heb. 3:14; Heb. 4:14;
        Your point is the very reason prayer 777 is needed not only in 2011 but until Christ returns. I really think that I will leave numbers up to Christ after this. Thank-you for the website.

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      • I gather from the discussion that church growth is important. At a 2% growth rate it would take the church 36 years to double its membership. I agree that we could do much better. Even the fastest snail in the herd is still a snail. If we become convinced that being a snail is more righteous than being a hare, then we doom ourselves to never going any faster than the fastest snail can crawl. To avoid that we must learn to embrace some change as positive, even change introduced by hares and not snails.

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  2. Good illustration Stephen. I can sense a revival brewing and I think with 777 prayer for the Holy Spirit following through into 2012 and 2013 and beyond we will see more of our members spending time holding onto their crown (attending witnessing training, Sabbath, Wed, Friday night, maybe even Tuesday once a month, and if we are attending witnessing training it is assumed that we have a good personal relationship with Christ), rather than the plow all the time. Rev. 3:10-13.

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  3. Am so glad to notice about that change. Also in uganda last sabbath we baptaised over 25 new converts.

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  4. The discussions are informative.

    Just wish to say that we all have a responsibility in the work of the gospel. It is time we stop seeking entertainment and get busy with the Work. Afterall, we have been commissioned by God.

    Time to "Go and tell"

    Happy Sabbath

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