The Role of Marketplace Christians in this Century
The puma and bear: While the obvious reaction to the clip is a sigh of relief that baby bear is safe and secure, the underlying fact is that there is gross weakness when we operate in isolation. Chances of success for the puma would have been high if there was a counterpart. The growl of the baby bear went unheard until its joined by the senior bears.
Lesson: When you are alone, you are weak. Whether hunting or being hunted. We are better together. Human beings are created to belong.
The last two Sundays, pastor Tony enabled to see through scripture, the essence of being connected in a small group and what should generally be expected whenever the groups come together. He laid a very good foundation on the theme “I belong”.
Today we look at the “The Role of Marketplace Christians in this century”
As a result of leadership vacuum created as a result of king Saul’s disobedience and ultimately his death, the Israelites realized that it was time to ordain as the new king, the man David Whom God had chosen for them.
God quickened masses to defect and pledge their new allegiance to the son of Jesse, David even way before Saul died. The ground was shifting. The Bible records in 1 Chron12:22,that as a result of that, David had a great army, like the army of God.
David was committed to a greater causefor God. His reputation had gone wide and far. He is quoted in Acts 13: 36as serving God’s purpose in his generation.
The attraction to David was so much that even the Levites who were exempted from military service (Numbers 1:47-50) are also listed as being part of David’s army. Why?
- Perhaps they were attracted to the greater cause
- Or they just didn’t want to be left behind on this national movement(Revival)
- Or they were influenced by their leaders.
The Bible however zeros in on a particular tribe “The Tribe of Issachar”
1chron12:32 “From the tribe of Issachar, there were 200 leaders of the tribe with their relatives. All these men understood the signs of the times and knew the best course for Israel to take”NLT
- They discerned the times and made solid judgment necessary to guide the nation.
- This is no different from what God expects from the marketplace Christians to know what is happening in the society and help the church to plan the best course of action for the church.
Mac Pier in his bookA Disruptive Generosityquotes the late Billy Graham, one of the greatest evangelists of our times, saying “Marketplace Christians are to the gospel in this century what medical missionaries were to the gospel in the last century”.
- Marketplace Christians of that century understood the times and sort to take medical help alongside the gospel to the nations.
- It is our turn in this dispensation as marketplace Christians to be to the gospel what men of Issachar were to David time. How do I know that?
The Bible places a premium on the talents and skills we have been endowed with as being for a greater purpose beyondour obvious spheres of influence like the immediate family or close associations.
- Gen50: 19 -Joseph’sas the prime minister in Egypt, gifted in administration, strategic planning, execution, found himself in a privileged position. When the brother feared revenge from him after the death of their father Jacob, he helped them understand that all these happened for a greater purpose “For the saving of a nation”.
- Daniel 9: 1-3 –Daniela civil servant and a competent administrator in different regimes, given to prayers, understood from Jeremiah 25:11,that the 70 years of captivity as prophesied by Jeremiah had come to an end. He understood the time and knew the best cause of action. He took action in prayer by repenting for his sins and the sins of the nation.
- Luke 1: 1-4-Dr Luke, a medical doctor and the writer of the book of Luke and Acts, endowed with writing skills, understood the significance of capturing a well investigated and orderly account to Most Excellent Theophilus, and by extension to us today.
- Acts 9:36-42-In the City of Joppa, Tabithaalso known as Dorcus, endowed with the gift of kindness impacted her community through her philanthropy…gifts to the poor. Rather than wishing you had gifts like Peter and Paul, use the gifts that you have.
- Dr Jim Denison, says that Mother Teresa was once opening an orphanage in a global setting. During a press briefing, a skeptical reporter shout at a her the question: “How will you measure the success of this?” The Albanian nun turned to the glare of the camera, smiled and said, I don’t believe our Lord ever spoke of success. He spoke only of faithfulness in love”.
- Be faithful in your CG, MEG,…the quorum of God is where 2 or 3 are gathered.
- Nextgen ministry, Usher, Counting, security, Prison ministry, Hospital ministry, Worship team, as a pastor in your docket…be faithful.
- Revelation2: 8-10:To the church of Smyrna “…be faithful even to the point of death, and I will give you life as your victor’s crown”
Like the tribe of Issachar, we need to understand the signs of our times and know the best course to take. Every talent, skill, training and experience, gifts is for a greater purpose beyond our individual desires. The skills and horned and made more effective in a group setting. The church creates that platform and a sense of commonality.
Characteristics of the Marketplace Christian
Paul was largely a market place Christian, with the best training of the time under professor Gamaliel. He had passion in whatever he did. God was watching and waiting to use those gifts.
- Paul in 2Tim2:2 refers to such groups asreliablemen. These are men who are:-
- Competent…Have natural capacities and skills or they are trained and ready to deliver in their area of profession or trade.
- Committed…Total allegiance to the higher cause and to the leadership.
- Character…men of right standing with no split personality both in private and in public.
Every effort made by these believers in the market place helps to accelerate the gospel. The good news is urgent. Good news is only good news if it gets there in good time.
A man told Andrew Palau, the evangelist that the reason why he is not involved in serving is because he has not been called. In response he said, don’t wait for another call, the call went out 2000 years ago.
There are men and women who have understood that in our generation. We find them in our churches. They do ministry together with the clergy.
They serve God through what is popularly known us the three Ts
- Talent-Skills, experience, calling, passions, influence
- Time-Prayer, fellowship, Bible study, teaching
- Treasure-Resources (Financial, material or otherwise)
Seek to join the accountability groups and professional forums that will enable you to respond effectively to issues of life and ministry as a family. You must belong, I belong, do you belong?
We will seek to enlist in the coming days and weeks and months:Doctors, nurses, counselors, clinical officers, administrators, youth workers, children experts, security persons, Sound engineers, IT professionals, Media teams, lawyers, the list is endless.
Pastor Benson Omondi