Sunday: Why Evaluate?
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Evaluation will take place whether we realize it or not. Evaluation is being undertaken every Sabbath and at every public meeting. People evaluate the content, clarity, and even the length of the sermon, and those who attend public meetings expect a high level of professionalism. Wherever and whenever people have expectations there will be evaluation. Although we cannot point to a text where formal evaluation was carried out, it is evident that evaluation was a serious part of early church life.

What do the following texts tell us about the importance of evaluation? And what kind of evaluation do the following verses suggest? 1 Tim. 3:1–131 Cor. 11:282 Cor. 13:5-6.  

Image © Krieg Barrie from GoodSalt.com

When God’s Word sets a standard, expects or prescribes specific actions, or issues a command, our responses are open to evaluation. Evaluation asks very important questions. “How are we doing in this particular ministry?” “How can we be more effective?”

The fact that Paul gave certain qualifications for deacons and elders shows that some kind of evaluation was to take place. This would be evaluation of fitness for the position and also an evaluation of effectiveness in that ministry.

Read through the gospel commission of Matthew 28:19-20. What evaluative questions would you ask when considering your church’s response to this command?  

As God’s servants we are entrusted with the immeasurably valuable gospel truth. Considering that this gospel message is to go to all the world, it should not surprise us that God also has an evaluative process. God is interested in the progress of the work that is entrusted to those who have responded to His call to be colaborers for souls.

Read again 2 Corinthians 13:5. What does the text say to you personally? How can you apply it to yourself? What evidence do you have that “Jesus Christ is in you”?

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Sunday: Why Evaluate? — 10 Comments

  1. I'm not sure how to think about the word Evaluate, I find in the Christian life, our biggest critic is ourselves and I know from my own personal experiance too much evaluation can stop you from growing in your faith, and also stop one from leading out in ones church. e.g quite often I don't think I'm good enough for God because I fail his tests so often, if I'm asked to lead out in church, will I do a good job or will I be (Evaluated/Judged) by a few people watching me who think they can do a much better job feeling it's their duty to tell you. I kinda like the way Jesus picked/Evaluated the people he wanted to do his work for him, people with no or little education, no experience of public speaking and in some cases very unpopular in there community. My final thought is, what happened to take me as I am Lord and even though I stumble, and am as dirty rages, use me and refind me in my journey of life because in most peoples eyes and also my own, if I'm constantly Evaluated I will never be good enough.

    God bless
    Dave

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    • >"if I’m constantly Evaluated I will never be good enough."

      But this is exactly the attitude of humility that Jesus wants us to have! Evaluation is important because how else are we to see that we are not measuring up to Jesus' perfect standard? "Beloved, do not believe every spirit, but test the spirits, whether they are of God; because many false prophets have gone out into the world." 1 John 4:1. Any who claims to follow Jesus and witnesses to other people on His behalf is for all practical consideration, a prophet of God (in the same sense that Aaron was a prophet for Moses when they appeared before Pharaoh). Those who fail to evaluate themselves on a continual basis are the ones that Jesus spoke of in Matthew 7:21-23 when He says, "I never knew you; depart from me..." Self-evaluation is not so much about introspective navel gazing as it is about beholding Jesus. "...let us lay aside every weight, and the sin which so easily ensnares us, and let us run with endurance the race that is set before us, looking unto Jesus, the author and finisher of our faith..." Hebrews 12:1-2. It is by beholding our perfect example that we learn which things of our lives that we need to put away.

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      • Ken, I understand what you are saying. It's just that I would be uncomfortable with pushing the evaluation concept as far as you do. Certainly we should be aware of where we are and as you have said the only way that can be done is by comparing ourselves to Christ who is the standard. The problem is that if we do that constantly then we become introspective and focus on our doing which is the problem with being under the old covenant. The simple fact is that there will be no time in our existence this side of Heaven where we will be literally perfect. Those who are saved won't even see themselves as doing what was required even though they conform perfectly (see Mat 25:31-40).

        The really big problem we have is in obtaining a new heart (born again Jn 3:3-8). We cannot do it ourselves - that is something that requires an outside power to accomplish which is why the new covenant is so important. We can try with all our strength to copy the master but until we embrace what Jesus said, "I am the vine, you are the branches. He who abides in Me, and I in him, bears much fruit; for without Me you can do nothing" (Jn 15:5 NKJV) we will only end up accomplishing little or nothing. As Peter said, "by which have been given to us exceedingly great and precious promises, that through these you may be partakers of the divine nature, having escaped the corruption that is in the world through lust" (2 Pet 1:4 NKJV). It is through the promises of divine power that is at the heart of the new covenant that provides the means by which our corrupt heart is changed. By beholding our Lord (2 Cor 3:18) we are automatically changed just as the wheat grew in one of Christ's parables (Mk 4:26-28). It is the reason why Peter was able to walk on water until he took his eyes off the master.

        So, yes, we are to conform to the law of Heaven but there is only one way we can accomplish it. Neither should we expect it to happen overnight. Sanctification is a work of a lifetime. As we follow Jesus little by little we are changed, "Not by might nor by power, but by My Spirit,' Says the LORD of hosts" (Zec 4:6 NKJV).

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    • Evaluation should be on individual basis i.e evaluating your own personal lifestyle. It should not be to another person because when evaluation is being done to other people it could lead to discouragment and lost of zeal for service. On the other hand, evaluation could also lead to making exploit if done positively.

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  2. Why evaluate? As Christians we must first start with that person we see every morning in the mirror! Is it a reflection of the things in heaven? let us examine 1st and 2nd cor. this morning seiso. As 7th day Adventists are we living up to the expectation of the gospel commission and being effective in our everyday lives? We should be leading people to the saving grace of Christ, the core is believing! 2 Corinthians 13:5 leads us to examine ourselves. What disqualifies us? Isaiah 8:20 "to the law and to the testimony! if they do not speak according to this word, it is because there is no light in them." Our harshes critics will be from our own homes and churches. 1 Peter 3:16 "having a good conscience that when they defame you as evil-doers, those who revile your good conduct in christ may be ashamed." Just like the apostles and saints before us we will suffer for that noble name which we are called by! Give thanks and praises!!!

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  3. I think there is a place for evaluation so that we may be able to assist each other where one struggles. However, this has been abused in some degree where it has been used to undermine others. The church is a place where our members should feel free & be able to ask or comment without being judged or seen as inferior.

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  4. Evaluation is a touchy but important subject. I belive before we can properly evaluate anyone else we must first evaluate ourselves. In the end God will use us as He sees fit. We are only to make ourselves ready for His work. 2 Corinthians 13:5 says it all. God Bless, Great lesson!

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  5. In the context of this quarter's lessons, to me this particular lesson is not about evaluating people - it's about evaluating the effectiveness of ministerial processes for the purpose of evangelism. Each church needs to find the most effective way to evangelize their community. That can't be done without looking at the different ways it is and has been done and to determine how successful that method is or was.

    We also need to realize that different styles seem to work best for different people and that there are different ministries within each church. What the church needs to do is to find out what works for the church as a whole and then use it as the general method for the church as a group. That should not eliminate individual methods but should become the general strategy of the body.

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    • It is all about HIM not about us.
      If I don't have a relationship with Jesus I have nothing to tell so I suggest don't go. till you do.
      Then until I go I have nothing to report!!

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  6. I totally agree with you Tyler, It is not about evaluating individuals on how they are perfoming their duties, it is about the product of our ministry. We have to be very careful with this subject of evaluation, it is not about criticism. Their is a potential danger of us sitting in church listening to summon but our intention is simply to critic the speaker. This can easily make us miss the message.

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