THE CALL TO THE MINISTRY AND CAN WE TELL WHEN OTHERS HAVE IT?

Charles Spurgeon said that there are three components to a call from God:
  1. A burden for the work
  2. An obvious, observable gift from God
  3. An opportunity for ministry
Every Christian ought to have some sort of burden for the work of the ministry. 
But the burden alone is not evidence of a call into the work of pastoring or planting a church.
The problem with planting a church is that the need is so great that 
a person, if not disciplined by his church, can find a place without a Gospel witness. But a town without a church is not evidence of a call to ministry
Therefore the deciding factor has to be that other Christians SEE the gifts of the ministry in the candidate
Not only that they are doctrinally sound and talented enough to deliver it but that they are stable enough spiritually, emotionally and with health to do the work without creating a excessive burden upon their marriage, their children or those they minister among.

THE CALL TO THE MINISTRY AND CAN WE TELL WHEN OTHERS HAVE IT?

Ecclesiastes 7:2-5 Make The Heart Better

Ecclesiastes 7:2-5 (KJV)
It is better to go to the house of mourning, than to go to the house of feasting: for that is the end of all men; and the living will lay it to his heart.
Sorrow is better than laughter: for by the sadness of the countenance the heart is made better.
The heart of the wise is in the house of mourning; but the heart of fools is in the house of mirth.
It is better to hear the rebuke of the wise, than for a man to hear the song of fools.

Though most of what is found in Ecclesiastes must be read carefully and in context (the preacher frequently projects the cynicism of his worldly years into this book) my gut tells me what we read here is on the money.

Modern man places a premium on happiness, ease and comfort. Unfortunately modern Christianity, at least the American version, does too. I am convinced that joy, contentment and blessing are biblical goals for any Christian. But I don’t necessarily agree with the current tactics many Christians embrace to get them. Hardship, it turns out, is a valid means to blessedness.

Notice in verse three, “by the sadness of the countenance the heart is made better.” Could it be that the moral climate of our world has been stunted precisely because we have grown too comfortable, too full, and too rich with joy? Could it be that, as our focus has been increasingly upon preventing anyone from suffering, we have produced degeneracy of heart?

I am not calling for a lack of compassion for the hurting but for a greater sacrifice from the comfortable. Only by visiting in the house of the mourning may we better our hearts and improve our character.

 

To my readers:
First of all, thank you! It is a great joy to me to know you read the thoughts and lessons God has given me in His word. Secondly, I would love to hear from you. Please feel free to leave comments.

For this and more than 4300 earlier Daily Visits with God visit https://mckenzie-visit-with-god.blogspot.com. There you will find daily visits going back to 2006.

If you have been blessed by this blog, please subscribe to my feed and share it with others.

For more resources from Pastor Marvin McKenzie visit http://puyallupbaptistchurch.com.

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Ecclesiastes 7:2-5 Make The Heart Better

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Ecclesiastes 5:8 Higher Than The Highest

Ecclesiastes 5:8 (KJV)
If thou seest the oppression of the poor, and violent perverting of judgment and justice in a province, marvel not at the matter: for he that is higher than the highest regardeth; and there be higher than they.

It seems obvious doesn’t it? Indeed God is “higher than the highest.”

  • He is higher than all the angels 
  • He is higher than Satan and his devils
  • He is higher than the earth and the power of disasters 
  • He is higher than kings and all who are in authority 
  • He is higher than the wicked who oppress the faith of Christ and
  • He is higher than the violent who attack without provocation 

We know God is higher than the highest but, when trouble comes, it’s good to be reminded. 

 

To my readers:
First of all, thank you! It is a great joy to me to know you read the thoughts and lessons God has given me in His word. Secondly, I would love to hear from you. Please feel free to leave comments.

For this and more than 4300 earlier Daily Visits with God visit https://mckenzie-visit-with-god.blogspot.com. There you will find daily visits going back to 2006.

If you have been blessed by this blog, please subscribe to my feed and share it with others.

For more resources from Pastor Marvin McKenzie visit http://puyallupbaptistchurch.com.

My books are available at:
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http://www.lulu.com/spotlight/marvinmckenzie

My author Page for Kindle/Amazon
http://www.amazon.com/author/marvinmckenzie

Ecclesiastes 5:8 Higher Than The Highest

Please consider helping our church’s teen department by signing up for cash back shopping at http://www.dubli.com/M04VB. This program has three levels of participation, the first being completely free.

The Difference Between Influence and Power

A conviction is something from God and cannot be altered. God never changes. Those things that come from Him could therefore never change.

I am convicted, for instance, that the King James Version of the Bible is without error. 

  • Academic proofs won’t change that. 
  • More popular versions won’t change that. 
  • Pressure from others won’t change that. 

I am also, for instance, convicted that the church Jesus built is a Baptist church.

I could therefore never go to any other sort. It’s not about convenience, programs, proximity, popularity. It’s not about the personality of the pastor or the friendliness of the congregation. It is about doctrine and authority. I am so convicted of this that I could only attend a Baptist church that is equally convicted.

My convictions come not from what a man has taught me. That would be mere convincing. My convictions come from personal study of the Word of God, an understanding of church history and the work of the Holy Spirit upon my conscience.

Ecclesiastes 3:11 What God Has Put In Our Heart

Ecclesiastes 3:11 (KJV)
He hath made every thing beautiful in his time: also he hath set the world in their heart, so that no man can find out the work that God maketh from the beginning to the end.

Wow! There is so much in the phrase, “He hath set the world in their heart.” The Hebrew word is one that has to do with perpetuity and eternity. Because of this scholars have disagreed.

Does the passage have to do with the physical world?
No doubt man has a heart to:

  • know his world,
  • possess its treasures and
  • conquer its resources

It is so vast and expansive and our lives are so brief we can but understand mere bits of it.

Does the passage have to do with life after death?
It is easy to see that the heart of every man possesses some awareness of a life after this. Even those who deny eternal life like to believe that there is some remainder of them in their memory. They will at least attempt to perpetuate themselves in their children and children’s children.

The Hebrew word translated “world” carries as its primary meaning the concept of concealment. God has made us to know there is something beyond ourselves, something we cannot completely comprehend. God has given us this awareness, in many respects declared by creation, that these few short years must not be all there is. We know man must be capable of so much more than we ever attain.

God has put in the heart of man – the knowledge that God is.

 

To my readers:
First of all, thank you! It is a great joy to me to know you read the thoughts and lessons God has given me in His word. Secondly, I would love to hear from you. Please feel free to leave comments.

For this and more than 4300 earlier Daily Visits with God visit https://mckenzie-visit-with-god.blogspot.com. There you will find daily visits going back to 2006.

If you have been blessed by this blog, please subscribe to my feed and share it with others.

For more resources from Pastor Marvin McKenzie visit http://puyallupbaptistchurch.com.

My books are available at:
My author spotlight at Lulu.com:
http://www.lulu.com/spotlight/marvinmckenzie

My author Page for Kindle/Amazon
http://www.amazon.com/author/marvinmckenzie

Ecclesiastes 3:11 What God Has Put In Our Heart

Please consider helping our church’s teen department by signing up for cash back shopping at http://www.dubli.com/M04VB. This program has three levels of participation, the first being completely free.

Ecclesiastes 3:11 What God Put In Our Heart

Ecclesiastes 3:11 (KJV)
He hath made every thing beautiful in his time: also he hath set the world in their heart, so that no man can find out the work that God maketh from the beginning to the end.

Wow! There is so much in the phrase, “He hath set the world in their heart.” The Hebrew word is one that has to do with perpetuity and eternity. Because of this scholars have disagreed.

Does the passage have to do with the physical world?
No doubt man has a heart to:

  • know his world,
  • possess its treasures and
  • conquer its resources

It is so vast and expansive and our lives are so brief we can but understand mere bits of it.

Does the passage have to do with life after death?
It is easy to see that the heart of every man possesses some awareness of a life after this. Even those who deny eternal life like to believe that there is some remainder of them in their memory. They will at least attempt to perpetuate themselves in their children and children’s children.

The Hebrew word translated “world” carries as its primary meaning the concept of concealment. God has made us to know there is something beyond ourselves, something we cannot completely comprehend. God has given us this awareness, in many respects declared by creation, that these few short years must not be all there is. We know man must be capable of so much more than we ever attain.

God has put in the heart of man – the knowledge that God is.

 

To my readers:
First of all, thank you! It is a great joy to me to know you read the thoughts and lessons God has given me in His word. Secondly, I would love to hear from you. Please feel free to leave comments.

For this and more than 4300 earlier Daily Visits with God visit https://mckenzie-visit-with-god.blogspot.com. There you will find daily visits going back to 2006.

If you have been blessed by this blog, please subscribe to my feed and share it with others.

For more resources from Pastor Marvin McKenzie visit http://puyallupbaptistchurch.com.

My books are available at:
My author spotlight at Lulu.com:
http://www.lulu.com/spotlight/marvinmckenzie

My author Page for Kindle/Amazon
http://www.amazon.com/author/marvinmckenzie

Ecclesiastes 3:11 What God Put In Our Heart

Please consider helping our church’s teen department by signing up for cash back shopping at http://www.dubli.com/M04VB. This program has three levels of participation, the first being completely free.

Ecclesiastes 1:9-11 Good Old Things

Ecclesiastes 1:9-11 (KJV)
The thing that hath been, it is that which shall be; and that which is done is that which shall be done: and there is no new thing under the sun.
Is there any thing whereof it may be said, See, this is new? it hath been already of old time, which was before us.
There is no remembrance of former things; neither shall there be any remembrance of things that are to come with those that shall come after.

There is an arrogance in man that is seldom well tamed. We have this idea that we can discover what has never been known before. The preacher of Ecclesiastes knew something of this arrogance and discovered it to be vanity. The weakness of a man is that, as soon as he finds that which is new, he learns it has been discovered before. This in no way implies man should stop learning, searching and discovering. It may be that what he learns, though by no means new, has been all but forgotten.

I read my Bible through two to three times a year. Very often the passage the Holy Spirit leads me to focus on is one that I have focused on in years gone by. Early on that would bother me. But then I realized that, though I had forgotten I had studied that passage in my daily visit with God before, there is always something I missed in a previous study and there is delight in revisiting what I had searched out before.

Who knows what men before us knew? We have forgotten the skills to build the pyramids of Egypt and the Aztecs. We have no clue what the civilizations before the flood had learned. So what if we one day discover that they had already discovered those things we have only just now discovered.

The joy, the delight, is not in finding something that was never known before. The delight is in discovering what we personally did not know before.

To my readers:
First of all, thank you! It is a great joy to me to know you read the thoughts and lessons God has given me in His word. Secondly, I would love to hear from you. Please feel free to leave comments.

For this and more than 4300 earlier Daily Visits with God visit https://mckenzie-visit-with-god.blogspot.com. There you will find daily visits going back to 2006.

If you have been blessed by this blog, please subscribe to my feed and share it with others.

For more resources from Pastor Marvin McKenzie visit http://puyallupbaptistchurch.com.

My books are available at:
My author spotlight at Lulu.com:
http://www.lulu.com/spotlight/marvinmckenzie

My author Page for Kindle/Amazon
http://www.amazon.com/author/marvinmckenzie

Ecclesiastes 1:9-11 Good Old Things

Please consider helping our church’s teen department by signing up for cash back shopping at http://www.dubli.com/M04VB. This program has three levels of participation, the first being completely free.

Hebrews 1:1 All Three Persons. And They Are One

Hebrews 1:1 (KJV)
God, who at sundry times and in divers manners spake in time past unto the fathers by the prophets,

God.
Sometimes all the truth we need is that.

  • God is
  • God knows
  • God cares

God.
All three Persons and they are one

  • God the Father
  • God the Son and
  • God the Holy Ghost

God.
Salvation is all of Him

  • He so loved the world
  • He for ordained our Saviour
  • He gave His only begotten Son

God.
Draw nigh and He will draw nigh to you

  • He hears our prayers
  • He comforts our fears
  • He carries us in trouble

God.

 

To my readers:
First of all, thank you! It is a great joy to me to know you read the thoughts and lessons God has given me in His word. Secondly, I would love to hear from you. Please feel free to leave comments.

For this and more than 4300 earlier Daily Visits with God visit https://mckenzie-visit-with-god.blogspot.com. There you will find daily visits going back to 2006.

If you have been blessed by this blog, please subscribe to my feed and share it with others.

For more resources from Pastor Marvin McKenzie visit http://puyallupbaptistchurch.com.

My books are available at:
My author spotlight at Lulu.com:
http://www.lulu.com/spotlight/marvinmckenzie

My author Page for Kindle/Amazon
http://www.amazon.com/author/marvinmckenzie

Hebrews 1:1 All Three Persons. And They Are One

Please consider helping our church’s teen department by signing up for cash back shopping at http://www.dubli.com/M04VB. This program has three levels of participation, the first being completely free.

1 Timothy 4:7-8 In Them, There is Life

1 Timothy 4:7-8 (KJV)
But refuse profane and old wives’ fables, and exercise thyself rather unto godliness.
For bodily exercise profiteth little: but godliness is profitable unto all things, having promise of the life that now is, and of that which is to come.

A good minister of Jesus Christ chooses his battles. There are some things worth suffering for. There are others that are not. The difference is that which the Spirit speaks expressly and that which is just fable. In other words we are to teach and command what the Bible teaches. At the same time we are to avoid the subjects of religion. Our faith is not based in superstition. We do not have extra words of knowledge or visions outside the Bible. We do not make much of men nor do we build shrines to past Christians. We don’t speculate on those things we do not know.

We stick to the Bible. We stick to it doggedly. We give not an inch. We compromise no part. We condemn what the Bible teaches is wrong. We lift up what the Bible teaches is right. In these we do not waiver.

  • We flinch not though the lost hate our standards.
  • We shrink not though the atheist believes scholarship proves us wrong.
  • We hold forth the Words of life because we know that, only in them, is there life.

 

To my readers:
First of all, thank you! It is a great joy to me to know you read the thoughts and lessons God has given me in His word. Secondly, I would love to hear from you. Please feel free to leave comments.

For this and more than 4300 earlier Daily Visits with God visit https://mckenzie-visit-with-god.blogspot.com. There you will find daily visits going back to 2006.

If you have been blessed by this blog, please subscribe to my feed and share it with others.

For more resources from Pastor Marvin McKenzie visit http://puyallupbaptistchurch.com.

My books are available at:
My author spotlight at Lulu.com:
http://www.lulu.com/spotlight/marvinmckenzie

My author Page for Kindle/Amazon
http://www.amazon.com/author/marvinmckenzie

1 Timothy 4:7-8 In Them, There is Life

Please consider helping our church’s teen department by signing up for cash back shopping at http://www.dubli.com/M04VB. This program has three levels of participation, the first being completely free.

2 Samuel 5:1-16 He Took The Strongholds

So long as you do as the Word says you will find that, though you still have struggles, you have answers and help through those struggles.

If, whether it is through rebellionstubbornness or, as in the case of David and those kings who followed him, pride what you will discover is that those struggles that are natural in this world, become calamities with supernatural consequences; mostly for your children.

THE CONQUEST OF JERUSALEM
2 Samuel 5:6-9 (KJV)
And the king and his men went to Jerusalem unto the Jebusites, the inhabitants of the land: which spake unto David, saying, Except thou take away the blind and the lame, thou shalt not come in hither: thinking, David cannot come in hither.
Nevertheless David took the strong hold of Zion: the same is the city of David.
And David said on that day, Whosoever getteth up to the gutter, and smiteth the Jebusites, and the lame and the blind,that are hated of David’s soul, he shall be chief and captain. Wherefore they said, The blind and the lame shall not come into the house.
So David dwelt in the fort, and called it the city of David. And David built round about from Millo and inward.
One of the first actions of David, once he was king of the whole of Israel, was to take the city of Jerusalem from the Jebusites.

THE CREATION OF A FRIENDSHIP
2 Samuel 5:11 (KJV)
And Hiram king of Tyre sent messengers to David, and cedar trees, and carpenters, and masons: and they built David an house

THE CONCEPTION OF GOD’S BLESSING
2 Samuel 5:10 (KJV)
And David went on, and grew great, and the LORD God of hosts was with him.

2 Samuel 5:12 (KJV)
And David perceived that the LORD had established him king over Israel, and that he had exalted his kingdom for his people Israel’s sake.

THE CONCUBINES AND CHILDREN
2 Samuel 5:13-16 (KJV)
And David took him more concubines and wives out of Jerusalem, after he was come from Hebron: and there were yet sons and daughters born to David.
And these be the names of those that were born unto him in Jerusalem; Shammua, and Shobab, and Nathan, and Solomon,
Ibhar also, and Elishua, and Nepheg, and Japhia,
And Elishama, and Eliada, and Eliphalet.

 

2 Samuel 5:1-16 He Took The Strongholds