Today we concluded our study of the Book of Leviticus as we looked at Leviticus 17-27. Our focus however was on chapters 19 and 26 in which God calls upon His people to be holy and promises to bless those who are faithful to Him and discipline those who are not. The blessings and the discipline are both an expression of God’s love.
Our class discussion migrated toward the question about how separated from the world should we Christians be. I suggested that we might do well to ask ourselves if we spend too little time ministering to the lost because we spend most of our time fellowshipping with other believers. Please know that I’m not suggesting that the time we spend in fellowship with saved people is wasted. But I am asking if we’re spending enough time ministering to the lost as our Lord did.
In His prayer of intercession for His disciples in John 17 and indeed for all “those who will believe in Me” John 17:19 (that’s us), Jesus asks for their protection from “the evil one” as we go into the world. “I do not pray that You should take them out of the world, but that You should keep them from the evil one. They are not of the world, just as I am not of the world” (John 17:15-16). Is it God’s intention to only use us when we are fellowshipping with other believers? I’m reminded of the account in Mark 2:16-17 of Jesus being criticized by the Pharisees for associating with “sinners” – “And when the scribes and Pharisees saw Him eating with the tax collectors and sinners, they said to His disciples, “How is it that He eats and drinks with tax collectors and sinners?” When Jesus heard it, He said to them, “Those who are well have no need of a physician, but those who are sick. I did not come to call the righteous, but sinners, to repentance.”
Please note that next Sunday, Dec. 3, we will begin our study of Acts 13-28 with a focus on Acts 13. In this chapter we see how Paul and Barnabas were sent out by the church in Antioch to share the gospel with people very different from themselves. We also see how universally appealing the power of the gospel message was.
Please save Sat., Dec. 9 (2:00-6:00pm) as the date of our class Christmas fellowship. Look for details in a forthcoming email.