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Friday: Further Thought – Mission to the Powerful — 11 Comments

  1. This week, and previous weeks, we have seen that to be a part of the light of the world, there is more than enough for us to do. Meeting the physical and spiritual needs of the needy, and those we associate with. Also those in power, the rich, and the intellectual as exemplified by the three N's , Nicodemus, Naaman, and Nebuchadnezzar, maybe in need of our Christian love. We may not have the privilege to encounter, this weeks class of people. Now if we do get the privilege, let us be ready to give an account of our faith. And if we don't, that time spent being ready to give an account, may come in handy with our neighbors, who are those we associate with.

    Maybe it is just living a Christian life, which is done by giving up self-righteousness, going to Christ with humility of a child, repenting our transgressions, and staying in His forgiving love. Watch out though by living a Christian life, an account of our faith may be asked of us. We be ready. By now we have learned that giving into Christ is essential to our discipleship.

    • It is a high prevliege of ours to be disciples of Christ to the rich, powerful, the poor, to any class we come in contact with, as God's representives.

      But the people of Israel lost sight of their high privileges as God's representatives. They forgot God and failed to fulfill their holy mission. The blessings they received brought no blessing to the world. All their advantages they appropriated for their own glorification. They shut themselves away from the world in order to escape temptation. The restrictions that God had placed upon their association with idolaters as a means of preventing them from conforming to the practices of the heathen, they used to build up a wall of separation between themselves and all other nations. They robbed God of the service He required of them, and they robbed their fellow men of religious guidance and a holy example AA 14.2

      It is the privilege of every soul to be a living channel through which God can communicate to the world the treasures of His grace, the unsearchable riches of Christ. There is nothing that Christ desires so much as agents who will represent to the world His Spirit and character. There is nothing that the world needs so much as the manifestation through humanity of the Saviour's love. All heaven is waiting for channels through which can be poured the holy oil to be a joy and blessing to human hearts.—Christ's Object Lessons, 419. ChS 19.1

  2. Sometimes I think that our mission to the powerful is tainted. We want to convert them because they are useful to us. We want scientists to become Seventh-day Adventists because they can argue our case for origins with authority, We like politicians to think highly of us so they can protect our religious freedoms and interests. A converted businessman who becomes a committed Christian has the potential to become a good tithe-payer. We put a bit of window dressing on our ambitions at times but sometimes the covert intent is still there. I still hear comments like, "They would make good Adventists" or "It id great to have friends in high places". I have at times, seen lists of "Who's Who" Seventh-day Adventists.

    More than anything else, in the lessons we have had this week we need to come to terms with the notion that we are all equal in the sight of God and salvation now is not about extracting privilege from those around us. And in dealing with relationships with the rich, powerful, and influential in terms of our spiritual journey we need to remind ourselves that we should have the fruits of the Spirit to share with these folk

    • the opinion expressed here is true. it challenges those of us taking mission to the the powerful to have the right motives. let the motive be saving a souls for the the eternal kingdom not merely seeking "political correctness" or seeking for social standing. Perhaps that is why the Elisha told the rich man Naaman to "Go in peace"; indicating that salvation of his soul was paramount. Elisha was not interested in the gifts but the soul of Naaman.

  3. Our treasure is where our heart is. What's most important to you? Because the best things in life are free, sometimes we don't value them. What is your meaning for success?

  4. Jesus said for what shall it profit a man if he gain the whole world and lose his own soul. Or what shall a man give in exchange for his soul.

  5. The more powerful or rich a person is perceived, the more particular we should assume he/she will be with use of time.

    Poor people who are industrious are also usually careful with their time.

    Anyone of any income level may be extremely careful with use of time.

    But since the exceptionally rich and powerful typically have the least amount of free time, and have strong negative reactions to wasting of their time, we need to take extra caution to make whatever is designed for these people efficient.

  6. I concur with all the ideas listed, but I want to put another spin on this. I have seen where inlfuential and rich persons have joined the church, and have been so bombarded by members for job and needs that they choose to leave. What is your thoughts on having a congregation for them to be worshiping by themselves? We have one such congregation where I live.

    • I am not a powerful or famous person, but at one time I did work in a small town as the only health care provider.

      People never saw me for who I was but only for what I did. Every conversation was about their health or health concerns or to flatter me or ask me to speak or give my opinion on some topic. I had to withdraw from the community to find rest. This was the worst in the local church.

      I had no desire to be placed in the positions of influence that people wanted to have me. The expectations become such that how can any human meet them. They meant no harm.

      I just wanted to be able to relax and rest with a friend who enjoyed me for who I was (not my education or what I did). To share in mutual hobbies and interests and be able to be vulnerable to and discuss the concerns and struggles that I experienced with someone who was concerned about my well-being not about what I could do for them.

      It is lonely to have everyone want your time and energy but not really know you.

      I eventually left the local church and began to attend a church where no one knew who I was. It was easier to find unity with people who did not know what "hat" I wore the other days of the week.

      We need to be careful the pedestal where we place individuals in the church and in our communities. It is detrimental to us and to them.

      I do not think that separation should be the first or primary approach. The body of believers needs each other, but no part of the body should be placed above another, and Christ should always be at the head.

  7. “Jesus broke down caste and class barriers when ministering to the rich and the poor during His earthly ministry”:

    Because -
    Rom. 2:11 - “for there is no respect of persons with God”
    John 4:23-25 – “But a time is coming and has now come when the true worshipers will worship the Father in spirit and in truth, for the Father is seeking such as these to worship Him. God is Spirit, and His worshipers must worship Him in spirit and truth.”

    How do we address this issue of ‘rich and poor’ which sets man against man fostering envy and strife? By considering that our heavenly Father does not see mankind in this way; He sees in all of mankind His children, some closer to Him than others. He interacts equally with man through the Holy Spirit which is given to all who believe to personally interact with our Creator.

    As long as man sees himself and his fellow man differently than God sees man, he will attempt through wars and ‘social justice’ programs to make everyone seem equal based on man’s understanding of ‘equal’ - the world’s way - which accommodates the flesh. God created all man equal in spirit and breathed life into us. This Truth needs to always be in the forefront of all our outreach and interaction with each other.


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