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The In Crowd

In his second letter to the Corinthian church, Paul begins to talk about some of the “super-apostles” that were traveling around at that time.  There were a number of them who associated together.  They looked down on ministers like Paul who was not a trained speaker.

This is like the associational or denominational groups of our day.  They have the temptation of thinking their group is the best.  Paul gives us some insight into these people.

We do not dare to classify or compare ourselves with some who commend themselves.  When they measure themselves by themselves and compare themselves with themselves, they are not wise.
2 Corinthians 10:12

The first word I want to look at in this verse is “classify.”  That’s an interesting word.  It literally means to judge in or to count among.

There’s a modern word that I think, best describes what Paul is saying here.  That’s the word, label.  Paul tells us that he doesn’t label himself as one of them.

We live in a society of labels.  We label people in regards to everything from appearance (race) to gender identification to religion, and politics, just to name a few.

I believe that labels have no place in the body of Christ.  As soon as you place a label on yourself, a barrier goes up that can begin to exclude people.

The next thing he says is that he doesn’t use that group as a standard of comparison.  What these other ministries do or don’t do has no bearing on what Paul is called to accomplish.

This should apply to us as well.  We have no business judging ourselves based upon what others are doing.  Each of us has a unique set of gifts and callings in Christ Jesus.

One of the biggest problems with the “super-apostles” that Paul’s talking about is that they commend themselves.  This means that they put themselves forward or display themselves.  That’s never a good idea.

In the church, we need to let our praise come from the Lord or others.  What I say about myself is immaterial.  Only those who have been affected can say what they have received from my ministry.

According to Paul, the problem with these other ministries is that they’ve come up with their own method of comparison.  It’s also a problem among church leaders today.  It’s all wrapped up in the word, measure.

That word is all about size.  How big is your church?  How many people are on your e-mail list?  How many subscribers to your blog?

Since when do these factors translate to your anointing?  It’s more about maturity, obedience to God, and the eternal effects of your ministry.

We need to stay focused on what really matters.  Don’t be looking at and comparing yourself to what others are doing.  Walk your own path with Christ.

Question: What is the number one calling upon your life right now?

© 2020 Nick Zaccardi

 
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Posted by on September 7, 2020 in Anointing, Leadership, Ministry, Spiritual Walk

 

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Christian – Why the Word Gets Bad Press #Christian

Dry2It used to be that if you were known as a Christian, it was considered a good thing in our society.  Now, if you use that term, you’re labeled everything from a loser, to a hypocrite, to emotionally disturbed.  Why is that?

It has a lot to do with how we portray ourselves to the world.  We say things about ourselves that give hope to the world only to let them down when they find out the real story.  I’m not talking about Christ, but about us.

I believe that if we truly portrayed Christ to the world, they’d have a different opinion of us.  It’s obvious, even today, that those churches and individuals who walk as Jesus did are drawing many to the cross.  What makes the difference?

A few months ago I wrote a post about what it means to be a disciple.  You can click here to read it.  In that post I said that disciples are more than just students learning what someone taught.  They want to become what the teacher is.

This requires us to follow, come near to, experience, and live in Christ and His Word.  It’s a deeper walk than many want to attain to in our generation.  The reason I bring this up, is a statement I read in the book of Acts.

The disciples were called Christians first at Antioch.
Acts 11:26b

It’s a very simple declaration.  The first time the disciples were called Christianslittle christs – was in a town named Antioch.

This was at a time when the church was walking in the power of God.  Even though they were small and suffering some persecution, they were turning their world upside-down with the Gospel of Jesus Christ.

Notice what Luke doesn’t say.  He doesn’t record that the believers were called Christians.  It wasn’t all those who attended church.  The disciples – those who were striving to live like Christ – were called little christs by the world.

This is why the world largely rejects our witness.  They look at how we live versus what we say.  They don’t see the same thing in modern Christianity that was evident in the early church.

I know, it’s too late to change our language now but, we can let God change us.  If I’m going to wear the name of Christ, then I need to let Him work His plan in me.  I want the world to see me in Him.

When we lift up Christ by our lives, the world will gain a different perspective of who we are.  It will be easier for them to hear the Gospel.  We need to follow the path of true discipleship.

If that’s already your heart’s desire – continue on and let nothing sway you.  If the Lord is convicting you about it, then repent and move forward right now.  Let the world see Christ through His church.

Question: How would Jesus minister to people in our generation?

© Nick Zaccardi 2014

 
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Posted by on March 12, 2014 in Revival, The Church, The Gospel

 

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