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APOSTOLIC PERSPECTIVES OF MINISTRY

Torchworld Ministries
An Article by Apostle Mintah
Ministry Monday


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I want to begin a series on the above topic. This series looks at ministry from the perspective of the early Apostles in the Bible. You can call it ancient wisdom for ministers. We can rely on the things the early Apostles said and did because they were the custodians of the mysteries of God for the Church.
They laid the foundation for our Christian faith. I want to start with Apostle Paul’s teachings on ministry in the book of Timothy.

PERSPECTIVE NUMBER 1: THE MINISTER AS A SOLDIER
The Apostle Paul painted some pictures of what ministry is or who a minister is. The first picture he pointed to Timothy is that a minister is like a soldier.

2 Timothy 2:3-4
“You therefore endure hardness, as a good soldier of Jesus Christ.”
“No man that wars entangles himself with the affairs of this life; that he may please him who has chosen him to be a soldier.”

We will go ahead and look at aspects of a soldier’s life that is just like a minister’s life.

A) THEY ARE ENLISTED
Ministry starts with a calling. It is not deployment of talents or the pursuit of a hobby. It is a definite call. He will call you and show you what you must do. The calling can be different from the assignment. Sometimes people hear the call and take off running, speeding without direction. You can feel His calling in your heart but it is first a call into relationship. Before God shows you your assignment, He will first of all call you into intimacy. The assignment will be rolled out progressively. Some people are actually given a clue and a foretaste of the assignment of God for their lives. But even that does not warrant your taking off. You must prepare yourself.

Luke 12:47
“And that servant, which knew his lord’s will, and prepared not himself, neither did according to his will, shall be beaten with many stripes.”

Its not enough to know His Will (the call). You must prepare yourself to do His Will.

B) SOLDIERS HAVE SIGNED THEIR LIVES OVER TO THE STATE
One scary thing about being a soldier is that you become the property of the state. You don’t own your life anymore.
True ministry calling is a calling unto death. Its a call to surrender your life unreservedly to the kingdom. Your plans, purposes, ambitions and pursuits are all put on the altar. Your preoccupation is His Will, you put down your ambition and carry His Vision, you put down your goals and start pressing on toward the goal.

Therefore, a call into ministry is not a trivial thing. If nothing dies in you in response to the call, check it again. You might just be trying to meet a need in the church. Every true calling will always be an interruption. The way The Lord enlists His people always gives them very few options. It is truly a call unto the narrow way and the strait gate.

Luke 9:59-60
“And he said unto another, Follow me. But he said, Lord, suffer me first to go and bury my father.”
“Jesus said unto him, Let the dead bury their dead: but go you and preach the kingdom of God.”

It was almost unthinkable in Jewish culture to miss the funeral of your father. It is just like African culture. Imagine Jesus asking the man to boycott his father’s funeral to follow Him. This is almost unthinkable in Jewish culture but that was exactly what Jesus asked him to do if he really wanted to respond to the call.
Every real call will always be an interruption. Looking the way, the Lord called His disciples, it was obvious that they were being enlisted into an army of a sort. One instance that always keeps me thinking is how He called James and John.

Mark 1:19-20
“And when he had gone a little farther thence, he saw James the son of Zebedee, and John his brother, who also were in the ship mending their nets.”
“And immediately he called them: and they left their father Zebedee in the ship with the hired servants, and went after him.”

The question is, didn’t the Lord know that these two brothers were helping their aged father in the family business? He knew. But guess what? The king’s business requires urgent attention.
If you are thinking of following the call of God, think like a soldier. Soldiers are enlisted and they sign their lives over to the state. Soldiers have a mentality that they are already dead. That is exactly the mindset we must possess in ministry.

Blessings

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