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An Honest Portrayal of the Harvest Field, Part 1

Wisdom for the Heart / Dr. Stephen Davey
The Cross Radio
September 21, 2022 12:00 am

An Honest Portrayal of the Harvest Field, Part 1

Wisdom for the Heart / Dr. Stephen Davey

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September 21, 2022 12:00 am

After years of teaching and equipping, Jesus now prepares some of His most faithful disciples to go out and preach the gospel to towns across Israel, proclaiming the coming of the Messiah and performing miracles in His name. But Jesus did not send them without a realistic expectation, a clear focus, and specific instructions for them to complete their mission. He offers the same principles and promises to us as we embark in the mission fields all around us today.

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You are divinely appointed for that place where you are today and that place is been divinely appointed for you. You might be today in hospital that are a board room that you might be the kitchen sink. Or you might be in front of student. This is the life appointed to us by God at this moment will understand a little better that life is not just an accident. It is thus prepared some of his most faithful disciples to go out and preach the gospel in towns across to Israel. They proclaim the coming of the Messiah and performed miracles in his name.

But Jesus didn't send them without a realistic expectation a clear focus and specific instructions for them to complete their mission. He offers the same principles and promises to us as we embark on the mission fields around us today. This message is called principles and promises near the end of World War II plane carrying 24 members of the US military crashed into the dense New Guinea jungle only three survived and they were badly hurt. Since suffering from gangrene and of starvation stranded deep in this jungle Valley, known for cannibal tribes who live there daring rescue attempt was going to need to be made which did it did succeed, the Army attacked a special Battalion of 66 men trained as a parachute unit, their Battalion leader was told to recruit 10 volunteers from this Battalion, including two medics. They would parachute into that Dennis jungle and guide the survivors out was a dangerous assignment when their Lieut. Col. stood before these men and told them what happened.

He informed them he needed 10 volunteers to step forward and former rescue squad. He then gave him a very honest portrayal of of their mission. First he said the area they be jumping into was marked unknown on the maps was unchartered territory. Secondly, he told them that the jungle was so thick it was the worst.

It was the worst drop location drop zone. A possible they might not get past the trees.

Third, if they survived the job the tribes that would surround them would prove hostile and want to kill them. When he finished he paused and then asked for volunteers. All 66 men stepped forward, but how's that for recruiting strategy can be difficult. You probably won't survive. People want to eat.

Who wants to sign up. The truth is, the mission, though different in many respects is the same for those who will serve the Lord around the world. Life will be difficult. It's unchartered territory. There won't be much rest along the way. The natives prove hostile to your message, but there are people in the Valley dying who will rescue them. This happens to be the training manual for 72 men who just been appointed to essentially risk their lives before they take off of for the jungle.

Jesus is going to give them and really to us and honest portrayal of the mission.

You take your Bibles and turn now to Luke chapter 10 you'll find the training manual that the Lord's training session of the 72 men will will take nearly half this chapter.

Chapter 10 as we work our way through the gospel of Luke and I want to tell you. Rather, frankly, is returning that the church needs to begin recruiting people along these lines that the church needs to start communicating the reality of the mission and honest portrayal of what what the face what it means to live and serve in the Valley of death.

This is unchartered territory.

The drop zone where God has placed you might be dangerous. It will be difficult.

The villagers you will encounter may prove hostile to your message affecting your presence what the Lord has to say in these next 20 verses is really packed for truth, but just back then for today.

This is an honest portrayal of the harvest field. Others too much in these 20 verses the cover in one sermon you're wondering how many it will take. I can promise you it will be less than 100 actually invented doing two sermons now verse one after this the Lord appointed 72 others and sent them on the head of 2 x 2 into every town and place where he himself was about to go and you might wonder where they come from. I know I have who are we don't know what author suggested Ivor Powell in his commentary that among this number, no doubt, were were men who had been healed.

Lane men blinded, paralyzed men letters menu had nowhere to go after they'd been healed. Primarily, they would've been unwanted because they would have been healed by Amanda was now hated by the religious leader so they would have remained for the most part outcast.

Jesus is not being followed by celebrities but by servants, volunteers who are willing to lay down their lives for their commander-in-chief. You'll notice here in verse one that the Lord is sending them out. 2 x 2. This not only provided encouragement for each other but also fulfill the Old Testament requirement of two witnesses to provide a valid test the timeless principle that I want to draw from this verse, even though we've hinted at some there are many, but is found in this word appointed the Lord notice appointed 72 others, and here's the principle of God is appointed you for a place in the place has been appointed for you. He writes after this the Lord appointed 72 others and sent them on the head of the word appointed means refers to someone being appointed to an office and being revealed as the appointed going public in their office. This is really loaded with implication though the Lord isn't just you know moving lives around haphazardly using these and throwing them to the win I will send you there you there and you there. I don't know maybe you go to another part of his divine plan, and everywhere they will go. Every place they canvas is according to his divine appointment that day and you are divinely appointed for that place where you are today and that place is been divinely appointed for you Street today. You're not just moving into some incidental neighborhood or workspace here just getting out of bed in the morning and heading off to some random skill all our job or random plays. You're not even buying groceries at a random store. You might be today in a hospital bed are a board room that you might be the kitchen sink.

Or you might be you might be in front of students, you have been divinely appointed by God for this moment. At that place which is then making everything this divine appointment in life is another principle that emerges here it's this there's always more to do than you can accomplish verse two very well-known verse where Jesus says the harvest is plentiful but the laborers are why few so nice way of saying fellas like to be able finish the job all by yourselves bigger than you are. In fact, it's bigger than you even know it is its global right now you might think it's a little village but but is get a reach around the world. There's more to do then you can accomplish the potential will always be greater then the participants. You might not be able to go anywhere or give all that much, but this is for all of us. We can all pray. It happens to be priority number one. Pray to the Lord of the harvest, which means why that he's in charge of the harvest he determines the timing of the harvest he determines how big the harvest is going to be he determines is going to be sent there. He's easier to be the want to send them and then didn't get to determine how much fruit will come from them. He does that, which means nobody needs to stay awake at night worrying whether their efforts are going to be successful or not freaking we obey him, and the responsibility rests with him. He's the Lord over the global harvest field. We just get the privilege of being divinely appointed to it wherever it might be an even when we from time to time get out of breath. Sienna's training session for the 72 men hit the road. Jesus gives them an honest portrayal of the harvest field. Here's another principle from the training manual number three obedience to Christ will not automatically make your life comfortable. He says your verse 3 Go Your Way to hold I'm sending you out as lambs in the midst of wolves wait stop what Lord repeat that last line there little lambs can't run very fast. They don't stand a chance with Taylor little lambs are little lambs or dad meet literally Jesus is warning these men of severe opposition and even persecution signing up might be signing the death warrant.

Lambs don't last very long. In the midst of wolves, but I want you to know that the most important words Jesus wants them to hear are not necessarily the words lambs and wolves. Although I'm sure they heard those words. The most important words are these four words I am sending you as lambs among I am sending you that's another way of saying, to make sure you're not alone. I'm going to be with you see their defenselessness will be a daily reminder of their dependent on the one sending it. They live or die.

It will be by his appointment and only by his permission because she sent them. May I remind you that Jesus will eventually go before them and show them what it means to be a lamb. Jesus is giving is been an honest look with the means to live obedience to Christ will not automatically make their lives comfortable. To this day that opposition in whatever country you might live in in our country might just mean getting into trouble, minding your own business doing a good job might mean you're going to get into trouble because people know you're a Christian, you're one of those it might mean that you're going to get into trouble because you will follow the crowd, who do you think you will better than us. It might mean you get into trouble you strive to help people who has to remind me of a pastorate. Try to be helpful.

I was at this humorous news clip just couple of days ago from someone in our church family news item as the title just trying to help pastor was walking down the street, he noticed a small boy trying as hard as he could, standing on his tip toes to reach the door go there. The house across the street pastor walked over and placed his hand kindly on the boy's shoulder, leaned over and gave the doorbell a solid ring down and smiled and said now what little man in the bar responded. Now we run to the other principles you keep an honest view of ministry number for the Lord is just as interested in developing your walk as he is in you delivering the word notice the traveling instructions here in verse four carried no money back, no knapsack, no sandals and greet no one on the road versus element of urgency, and in this dependency hears sprinkler noticing in the specifics don't care your money back that your wallet, your knapsack note no carry-on. Not even an extra pair of sandals. More than likely is what he means, packed away.

This is not about not having enough time to pack. This isn't about trying to look poor and needy this and you know, in fact, just about delivering the gospel. This is about developing disciples and this is this is a developmental field trip where they are going to learn to trust Christ for everything they they they are not attacking a toothbrush you know razor they got no money for over a room along the way, which means that every meal is going to have to be an answer from God.

Every shot they might be given asleep on it. Night is going to be a miracle of God's providence. Everything they are to develop this sentence of what Hudson Taylor I referred to all refer to him again today but call this God consciousness, this sense that this conscious awareness that God is consciously aware of him of you practice managers.

My favorite missionary statesman I was reading again from his biography volume's worth reading sir. Christ in China for 50 years. On one occasion he was visiting the states and he was expected to be in New York to preach he was taken to the train station by a local pastor who plan to surprise Hudson with the train ticket that he had purchased for him the day before. Once I arrived at the train station. He casually asked Hudson he purchased his ticket yet, only to find out that Hudson did not any money to purchase the ticket without the pastor produces ticket and gave it a Hudson but said lock it if I had not purchased this ticket yesterday. You wouldn't have made it to New York to your appointment but you still came to the train station's amazing faith on on on your part.

How did you know what happened. Hudson said I did not know, but my father father.

She when you're serving the Lord is easy to become more interested in what God is doing through you, then what God is doing for you and miss what he does those moments when you have to say while my father for these men something of what God was going to do indeed involve the place to stay.

Verse five. Notice there says whatever house you enter, first say, peace be of this house word peace say rain a reflexively Hebrew counterpart, shalom Shirley Lee more like a benediction greeting you're saying that household may God grant you peace for six of the centerpieces there that is there agreeing with you. Believing the message, your peace will rest upon. But if not I will return you to become a sort of balance often back to you. You don't know how to respond.

Some will believe some will not.

But here's Sears this next principle I want to draw out of this text. It's this. Don't forget the people you encounter are to be served not as for seven remain in that house, eating and drinking what they provide for the laborer deserves his wages. Do not go from house to house. That doesn't seem like these disciples are to remain in in one village for very long. And in this probably wise me. For one thing they could easily wear out their welcome.

They stay too long as this principle also of course help the disciples avoid another problem which would be that villagers might begin to compete for their attention. After all, they're going to be healing thing to be performing miracles. This is going to be stunning. This is put that house on the map so to speak, then then again other people might feel like will they weren't good enough. The disciples ever stayed within their home was a good she concealed his principal avoided so many problems. The wisdom of God was obvious here stay in that first house that offers you hospitality. Make it your house of your base of operation. Let me give you another principle. If I was number six. Expect your personal comfort zone to be stretched beyond what you expect in ways you didn't expect or say whatever you enter a town and they receive you eat what is set before you men.

This is a tough verse to obey me. This defines persecution in a whole new way doesn't it eat what is set before you. I mentioned some time ago that little poem are missionary mother told us four boys as we travel to the homes of our supporters. This verse must've been where she got that from my minutes right out of the training manual where he leads me I will follow what he feeds me. I will swallow this pretty good that works on the mission field at work around your dining room table with your get your grandkids to learn and sit with me where he leads me I will follow what he feeds me. I know you sound really excited about that. That's imagine or remember the here's the point. A lot of people who think that serving the Lord is going to be just an extension of the life that they know as they know it, you get to do what you want enjoy chew on you what you want relaxed when you want no expect to have your comfort zone stretched to new limits. I do need to add some New Testament scholars believe that the text implies the eating of nonkosher food could be the interesting this precedes acts chapter 10 we will know by the time you reach acts chapter 10 Gentiles and Jews are all eating from the same one more principle. I want to highlight principle number seven.

Make sure you reflect any praise and glory back to God. Verse nine. Heal the sick, and it and say to them the kingdom of God has come near to you uses the perfect tense. This is a lasting effect. This is another words, miracles that indicate the king is near the fullness of the kingdom is still future.

Isaiah the prophet declared that the healing of the sick would be a sign of the dawning of the kingdom may sneer not here yet. I did still in 2000 years. It's not here yet but it's really much nearer than it has ever it's near you can you can just imagine can you the excitement of these villages over these disciples.

Miracle workers.

By the time the Lord is has a right before he gives us our commission and it isn't to perform miracles simply to proclaim the message make disciples teach them immersed in water for them. This is the authentication that they are from God approve it and blame him walk the blind woman in the city so you can imagine the villages that would receive. Think of all this happening paralyzed her up and walking the lame writing the blind seeing the village leaders are going to want to meet 100. Thank them invitations and read notice carefully. They are saying this while they are healing. The kingdom is near numbers. This is not about us is not even about the miracle says about the fact that the king is near. This is the power of the king. This is a foretaste of his kingdom.

It's all about the king. Yeah, I might've been the one that parachuted in so so you deflect all the accolades and you reflect it back to Stephen called this message and honest portrayal of the harvest field part one. Principles and promises will bring you part two on our next broadcast. Stephen is the pastor of the shepherd's church in Cary, North Carolina. You can learn more about us. If you visit our website which is wisdom online.org you'll have free access to the complete library of Stephen's Bible teaching ministry. Stephen has been teaching the Bible for over 36 years in that time he's preached hundreds of sermons all of those are posted to our website you'll find that collection of sermons organized by book of the Bible. If there's a particular book that you want to study. And if Stephen has preached through it. You can listen or read each message.

All of that content is available to you free and on. You can access it anytime@wisdomonline.org join us next time. For part two of this message right back here on wisdom for the heart