In this message, we learn that making disciples is the response to meeting with God.
Alright everybody. Welcome to Valley Creek Church. I am so glad that you are here with us and we want to give a big welcome to whatever campus that you’re at, Denton, Venue, Flower Mound, everybody who’s watching online. Can we just celebrate them all together? We are so glad that you’re here and there’s only a few more weeks until we start getting to say and welcome to our Lewisville Campus — every single week. And so we are excited about that coming up and so it’s a perfect opportunity for us to start a new series called Multiply. And for the next few weeks, I want to talk about taking all the good things that God is doing in us and reproducing them in the lives of the people around us because man, it’s been an incredible, like month and a half, here at Valley Creek Church. I am honestly overwhelmed by what God has been doing in this last season. Just in 2017, it’s been — I mean, honestly humbling and breathtaking and kind of a — there’s not even like words to describe.
It is the most hungry. I’ve been here for 11 years, it is the most hungry I’ve ever seen our church for the things of God. It’s probably the most amount of movement I’ve ever watched God do in a short amount of time. I mean, if you just look at where we’ve been, whether it’s in the With series that we’ve just finished up or the 21 days of prayer and fasting or RE., a three-day encounter with God, I mean, God’s been moving. I’ve watched and heard stories of more miracles in the last like few months than I’ve heard in probably last few years of people that throughout the course of RE and our series that got healed out of wheel chairs, people whose spines were straightened and restored by the Lord. People with blood disorder that were cured and went to the doctors, and the doctors confirmed their separated shoulders put back together. Asthma, healed. People getting saved and experiencing breakthroughs and incredible provisions. Like God has been doing some incredible things. And so, I would say in that, it is worth celebrating the Lord in that.
And so what I would say is it is like — it’s a high watermark of faith for our church. It’s probably the highest watermark we’ve ever gotten of encountering the presence of God together, of having a big faith, of being hungry for the things of God. It’s a high watermark of God’s movement in the sense among our family, this church. And so the question I have for you is, what do we with that? Like how do we respond to what God has been doing? Or maybe let me make it real personal for you, what do you after you’ve had a personal high with God? What do you do and how do you respond? Or I’m going to give you an answer you probably weren’t expecting. Here’s what you do. You get involved in the lives of other people. To steward your encounter with God is to respond with obedience. In fact, every encounter that you have with God, there’s a corresponding step of obedience that He gives you. And that step of obedience, nine times out of ten, is by getting involved into the lives of other people and starting to serve them.
In fact, I would submit to you that making disciples is the only acceptable response to meeting with God. That’s why Jesus says, “To whom much is given, much is required.” And let me just give you some examples. Let me show you. This is the pattern all over the scripture. People meet with God and then the expectation is to get in the lives of other people. Think of Moses. Moses is a washed out, burned out shepherd on the back side of a mountain with a few little sheep hiding in his shame because he’s murdered somebody. And he’s running. And he’s kind of living in this nomadic existence. And then one day, God shows up in the burning bush. And Moses has this incredible encounter with the presence of God. Well, the whole point of the burning bush wasn’t for Moses to now spend the rest of his life warming his hands by the fire or roasting marshmallows. No. Do you remember what God says to him right after the encounter? “Moses, now get up and go and confront Pharaoh and set my people free and lead them to the Promise Land.”
God’s command to Moses after the encounter was go and lead two million people out of slavery and teach them how to live, His beloved sons and daughters, and bring them to my place of freedom. Or how about Elijah? Elijah is burned out. He literally has a ministry hangover. He wants God to take his life. He’s hanging out on this mountain, then God comes to meet with him. And if you remember the story, it’s amazing. The wind rips down the mountain and breaks open the rocks, and then an earthquake comes and God shakes the foundation of the mountain, and then a fire comes and rips down and burns everything in its path, and then came a gentle whisper. And God was in the whisper. He has this incredible encounter with Elijah. But the point of the encounter wasn’t so Elijah could live on this mountaintop experience for the rest of his life. No. What God says to him right on the other side of the encounter is, “Elijah, now go back the way you came. Go anoint this guy king, go and anoint this guy king and go get Elijah and start discipling him.” In other words, I’ve just had a great meeting with you.
Now, it’s time for you to go take that and get involved in the lives of other people. Or how about Jesus? Jesus gets baptized. Do you remember that? And He says, “The heavens open, the Father speaks from heaven, the spirit of the living God descends upon Jesus.” Well, the point of that encounter wasn’t so Jesus could just hang out on the river for the rest of His life. What does He do? He gets up and He goes to seek and save the lost. Or how about Adam when God takes the dust of the earth and scrapes it together, breathes into Adam, brings him to life. Adam opens his eyes and the first thing he sees is the face of love. And the first thing God says to Adam after that encounter is, “Adam, now go and be fruitful and multiply. Fill the earth and subdue it. Go get involved in the lives of other people.” Or one more, how about Peter? Peter denies Jesus to a servant girl. When Jesus is dead and gone, Peter is full of shame and condemnation. He’s hiding out on his fishing boat trying to get away from it all. The resurrected Jesus comes and has this encounter with him, restores Peter from his shame and his brokenness and his failure. And the very next thing Jesus says to Peter is, “Peter, feed my sheep.”
In other words, I have just set you free from your shame and your condemnation and it’s not about you Peter, it’s now about you going and getting involved in the lives of other people. That’s why the resurrected Jesus in Matthew 28 stands before the disciples, shows them the scars in his hands and in his side, and then looks at them and says in Matthew 28, “All authority in heaven and in earth has been given unto me. Therefore, go and make disciples of all nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father, the Son, and the Holy Spirit, teaching them to obey everything I’ve commanded you, for I will be with you always.” You see, all over scriptures, no matter what story you want to look at, you will find this truth, a genuine encounter will lead you — a genuine encounter with the presence of God will lead you into the lives of other people because that’s where God is working. You and I are not meant to live on the mountaintop. We meet with God but the point of it isn’t to have this emotional high or this personal euphoria or just to express and experience all our own personal freedoms. No. God reveals himself to you so you can reveal Him to others. Whatever God does for you is meant to be released through you into the world around you. And if you will be faithful with the little, He promises He’ll entrust you with even more of Himself.
Like I don’t know if you have ever pieced this together or not, but God’s love language is obedience. Do you know that? It was just Valentine’s Day. So hopefully you knew you are the love language of that person in your life. Some people like gifts and some people like acts of service and some people like words of affirmation and God likes obedience. You say, “Where do you get that?” Well, John 14, here’s what he says, “Whoever has my commandments and obeys them, he is the one who loves me. He fly out and says, “Hey, my love language is obedience. If you would just do what I will ask you to do, that’s how you communicate love for me.” And then catch this, “He who loves me will be loved by my Father and I too will love him and show myself to him.”
In other words, he says, “Hey, if you want to experience even more of me, then obey what I’ve asked you to do and I’ll give you an even greater encounter than you’ve already had.” There is a unique measure of the presence of God that is only available to people who are willing to obey Him by getting involved in the lives of the people around them. So any church that is serious about meeting with God will become serious about making disciples because they know that’s God’s love language and that’s how they get more of His presence and more of encounters in their own life. Does that make sense to you? We have to steward well what God has been doing. And so if you’ve got your bible, flip open with me Acts 26. Acts 26, this is the story of the Apostle Paul and he’s on trial before King Agrippa. He’s kind of sharing his testimony or his story of how he met with God and how he became the man that he became. And so picking up with me in verse 9 and here’s what it says.
He says, “I too was convinced that I ought to do all that was possible to oppose the name of Jesus of Nazareth and that is what I did in Jerusalem. And the authority of the chief priest I put many of the saints in prison, and when they were put to death I cast my vote against them. Many a time I went form one synagogue to another to have them punished and I try to force them to blasphemy. In my obsession against them, I even went to foreign cities to persecute them.” Okay, can we all agree, he is not a nice guy. “On one of these journeys, I was going to Damascus with the authority and the commission of the chief priest about a new known king. As I was on the road, I saw a light from heaven brighter than the sun glazing all around me and my companions. We all fell to the ground and I heard a voice saying to me in air and like, Saul, Saul, why do you persecute me?” It is hard for you to kick against the goads. Then I asked, “Who are you, Lord?” “I am Jesus whom you are persecuting,” the Lord replied. “Now, get up, stand on your feet. I have appeared to you to appoint you as a servant and as a witness of what you have seen of me and what I will show you.
I will rescue you from your own people and from the Gentiles. I am sending you to them to open their eyes and turn them from darkness to light and from the power of Satan to God so they may receive the forgiveness of their sins and place among those who are sanctified in me by faith. So then, King Agrippa, I was not disobedient to the vision from heaven, I steward it well first to those in Damascus, then to those in Jerusalem and all the Judean and the Gentiles, I also preached they should repent and turn to God and prove their repentance by their deeds.” Okay. That is awesome. The Apostle Paul, formerly known as Saul, not a symbol, just a man named Saul. That was a joke but it didn’t go very well. Just trying to get your attention. He wasn’t a good guy. He was a blasphemer. He was a violent man. He was a murderer. Paul says about himself, he was the chief of all sinners and yet he has one encounter with the resurrected living Christ and everything changes because the presence of God is the greatest change agent on the face of the earth.
And he literally goes from being a guide that is killing disciples, destroying the church, to meeting with Jesus. And the very next thing he does is he goes and he starts making disciples. And after Jesus, Paul is probably the greatest disciple maker in all of human history. He said, “How?” Because he had an encounter with God and he stewarded it well. Encounters with God are the training ground for disciple-making. If you want to know how to make a difference in the world or live out your purpose, you’ve got to encounter His presence because that’s the very thing that sets you apart and changes you for what he has called you to do. And so there’s three things that I really want all of us to grasp, where we are in the season of our church, where we’re going, this really important for you. Are you ready? Are you with me on this? Okay. First thing is this, here’s what encounters do. An encounter will change your perspective.
I mean have you ever had someone or something and you had this defined perspective about them and then you actually met them or had an experience with that thing and your perspective changed? Like did you ever look at somebody and you’ve got this perspective defined by and you’re like, they’re just a total jerk, that’s what you think about them. And then you have an engagement with them and you walk away, you’re like, “They’re not so bad. I think I like to be friends with them.” Or you got an opinion about a business and then you engaged with that business. You were like, “This is pretty good.” Or a restaurant, everybody on Facebook has told you how bad it is, but you actually go to it and you’re like, “Man, this was really good.” It’s amazing how an encounter with something can dramatically change your perspective about it. That’s Paul. He’s got this defined perspective about Jesus. He’s got an opinion about the people of God and he’s got a pretty defined opinion about what should happen to them. And there was no amount of preaching of men that could ever change his mind. Maybe you know someone like that.
And then he has an encounter with God and his entire perspective about everything changes. Why? Because when you have an encounter with heaven, you ultimately end up with a heavenly perspective. It changes. I mean, when you have an encounter with God, do you know what starts to happen? What starts to happen is the repentance process. It gets set in motion. And remember, the word, repent, it just means to change your thinking. Repentance doesn’t mean coming up to the front of the altar weeping, being sorrowful, like being like all sad and down and — I don’t know. Repentance means to change your mind. And if you take the word, repent, and break it down. Repent, re, means to go back, pent, think pent house, top floor view. You’re looking down and you have a completely different perspective. So repent means go back and get God’s perspective on that situation on that thing or what’s happening in the world around you. That’s repentance. That’s why the bible says in Romans 12, “To be transformed by the renewing of your mind, change the way you think and it will change the way you live.
And so Paul has an encounter with God and his beliefs changed, so what happens? His behaviors changed. He stops destroying the church and he now gives his life to start building it. You see, the reason an encounter will change your perspective is because you become like whoever you hang out with. We kind of know this is true. Like Proverbs 13:20 says, “He walks with the wise becomes wise but a companion of fools suffers harm.” [Bible flat out] [0:14:32.6] says, you will become like whoever you hang out. And every parent in this room, you know that’s true and that’s why you care about who your kids hangout with. Because if they hang out with the wrong kids, they start to become the wrong kind of people. Like my son just in the last few weeks, he said to me and said, “Dad.” He said, “I was at school today” He said, ”Then all of a sudden his work came out of my mouth that I had never said before, and we’re not allowed to say it at home.” And I said, “Really?” And said, “Why?”
And he goes, “Because, dad, I realized all the kids in school say it all the time so it got in my mind, it got in my heart and it just came out of my mouth.” You become like whoever you hang out with. And we always know it’s true for our kids, why don’t we think that’s true for us as adults? Like why do you think you are above hanging out with those people that talk a certain way, act a certain way, do a certain thing and somehow that’s not going to impact to you? And usually, we think about it in terms of the negative. But think about it in terms of the positive. Like when I first met Coleen, we couldn’t have been more different. Man, we were like as opposite as opposite gets. I like the outdoors, country music and meat and potatoes, okay? And Coleen, she liked 80s music, musicals and arts and she liked all kinds of exotic food. And so we were about as different as different could be. And when we first started dating and got married, like all of her likes, I’d kind of tolerated them. I didn’t enjoy them, I tolerated them. I didn’t enjoy them. I tolerated them.
But the more we spent time together and the more the years went by, it’s amazing, without even consciously choosing it or thinking about it, I actually started to personally love the things that she likes. Like my highlight of last year was we got to see Les Mis on Broadway. Hands down, it was my favorite thing all year. I like 80s music now. And I will even entertain some vegetables, okay? I changed and genuinely now enjoy the things that she love that I used to just not like so much and tolerate within her because we spent time together. Okay? That’s what happens when you have encounters with God. You start to become like Him. 2 Corinthians 3:18 says, “We, with unveiled faces, are constantly reflecting and being transformed more into the image and likeness of God.” Or 1 John 3 says, “But we know that when Jesus appears, when we see Him, we shall be like Him for we shall see Him as He is. When you spend time with God, you start to become like God. You start to like what He likes, love what He loves, be passionate about what He’s passionate, go where He wants to go, get involved with what He’s doing, make disciples because that is where He is at, think like He is thinking. Everything changes. And all of a sudden, what you used to tolerate, you enjoy and you don’t even know how it happened. You just get transformed from the inside out.
In fact, this is how I would describe the verse of 1 Samuel 10, it says, “The spirit of the Lord will come upon you. You will have an encounter with God. And you will prophecy and you will be changed into a different person.” As King Saul turned to leave Samuel, God changed Saul’s heart. An encounter with God changes everything about you. That’s what happened to Paul and that’s what’s happening to us. So my question for you, is your perspective on some things starting to change? Are you with me on that? An encounter will change your perspective. The second thing is this, an encounter will change your direction.
I mean you could just read it in the text. Paul had a pretty defined mission. He had a mission and he was very clear about what that mission was, to destroy the church of Jesus at all cost. And man, he was good at it. If you even just mention the name Paul in the first century, all the Christians would go into panic because this guy had a mission and he knew how to live that mission out. And then he has an encounter with the resurrected Jesus. And overnight, his mission changes. No longer is he destroying the church, he’s building it. No longer is he killing disciples, he’s making them. You see, whether you realize it or not, like Paul, you have a mission. You have a defined mission in your life. You may not even be aware of what it is, it may be subconscious in your life, but every day you have a mission. You wake up and that mission drives you. Your mission might be to build a business, to make some money, to have a great reputation, to turn your kids into supersonic all-stars. Your mission might be to gain a bunch of possessions, to be the most popular person around. It might be to advocate for a cause. Your mission might just be to get through the day. But make no mistake about it, you have a mission. And that mission drives everything you do.
And so the question I want to ask you is, is it the right mission? Are you trying to fit God into your mission or are you trying to fit into God’s mission? Because Proverbs 14:12 says, “There is a way that seems right to a man but in the end, it only leads to death.” There is a mission that may look good to you but in the end, it’s going to steal, kill and destroy everything about you if it’s not His mission. I mean you remember the story of Isaiah. I love that story. He has an encounter with God. He’s just doing his own thing, living his own life, listen to this. “In the year that King Josiah died, I saw the Lord seated on a throne, high and exalted, and the train of his robe filled the temple.” He has this encounter with the living God of the universe. “Above Him were angels, each with six wings, two wings covered their faces, two covered their feet, two, they were flying.” “And they called to one another Holy, Holy, is the Lord Almighty. The whole earth is full of His glory. At the sound of their voices, the doorpost and the threshold shook and the temple was field with smoke. Then I heard the voice of the Lord saying whom I shall I send and who will for us and I said, ‘Here I am. Send me.’” I love this. Isaiah is doing his own thing, living his own life and God, all of a sudden, brings him up to the heavens throne. He has this incredible encounter with God. And God says, “Whom shall I send? Who will go for us?” And Isaiah very quickly steps forward and volunteers. He says, “Here I am. Send me.” Now, catch the humor in this. He doesn’t even know what God is asking him to do. He doesn’t know what the assignment is. He doesn’t know how hard it’s going to be, what it’s going to look like, where he’s going to go, but Isaiah didn’t care. Because a genuine encounter with God will always create within you a servant spirit.
You don’t care where you’re going, what it looks like, how hard it will be, when it will be over, you just say when you see Him, “Here I am. Send me.” The more clearly you see God, the more you will trust His heart and you will be willing to follow Him wherever He asks you to go. So my question for you is when is the last time you said to God, “Here I am. Send me.” Come on, let’s be honest, we say, “Lord, there they are. Send them.” Right? “They can go for us, Lord. I got a good idea.” Or “You know what, God? I don’t want to do that thing. Like not that one but I’ll do this thing. If you need someone to do this God, I’ll do this.” Why? Because to change your direction requires sacrifice. To change your mission and your direction, to be like Isaiah or like Paul, means you got to give up your comforts, your conveniences, your preferences, your rights, everything that you’ve got sorted and figured out, the control of your own life. I mean, think about Paul. Do you understand what he had to give up to change his direction? We don’t think about it like this but Paul is the fairest, he’s golden boy. He’s the man. He’s got experience and tenure and fame and fortune. He can do whatever he wants. Like he is the man. And then he meets Jesus and he says, “I’m done with all of that. Here I am, send me.”
I mean listen to what Paul says. Philippians 3, “But whatever was my profit, all that stuff, I consider it a loss for the sake of Christ. What is more, I consider everything a loss compared to the surpassing greatness of knowing Christ Jesus, my Lord, for whose sake I have lost all things. I consider them rubbish that I may gain Christ.” In other words, Paul says, you can have the tenure, the experience, the money, the fame, the fortune, I want more of that encounter. So you know what? I’m going to change my direction, go make some disciples, because I know that’s where I’m going to find more of God because that is what He is doing, so that is who I want to be because I want more of Him. You never lose when you give up something to follow Jesus. Never. So what do you need to give up and is your direction changing? Because that’s what an encounter will do. And then the last thing is this, an encounter ignites a multiplying life. An encounter with God will ignite a multiplying life and I really wrestled with whether or not to use the world multiplying here because I realized this is not like a bottom shelf word, it’s not a vocabulary we’re comfortable with or familiar with but as I wrestled with it, I was like, no, we need to put that word back out here for the church of Jesus and raise our perspective of what we’re called to be and who we are called to — what we are called to do and who were called to be because we are called to be much more than spectators. We are called to be participators.
We’re not just called to show up and receive, we’re called to receive and then release. We are literally created to be a multiplying people. I mean, you understand, the moment he has an encounter with the presence, Paul becomes a multiplier. He takes exactly what Jesus just did in him and he just starts giving it away to everyone and everything around him. Most of the New Testament of Paul making disciples who make disciples who ultimately end up planting churches. We have got to, as the people of God, recapture the multiplying life of Christ. I mean, John 12, here’s what Jesus says. He says, “I’ll tell you truth.” Every time Jesus says, I’ll tell you the truth, it makes me laugh. It’s like, hey, like I hope — you know I don’t lie so I hope you get this when I say, I’ll tell you the truth, this is important, this kind of what it means. Hey, this is important. Unless a kernel of wheat falls to the ground and dies, it remains only a single dies. But if it dies, it produces many seeds, it multiplies. The man who loves his life will lose it while the man who hates his life in this world will keep it for eternal life, whoever serves me must follow me where I am, my servant will also be.
Jesus says, “Hey, think of a kernel. You put the seed in the ground, it dies to itself but it creates a multiplying life that produces much fruit and much seed.” And he’s talking about himself. He says, “When I die on the cross, I’m literally going to die to myself but my life is now going to be multiplied to create a movement and changed the course of human history”. And he says, “Oh, by the way, if you are my servant, you’ll live that same kind of life. You’ll die to yourself and multiply what I have done in you into the world around you.” See, way too many of us, we spend all our time trying to live a life of addition. We want to add. Add more money and possessions and commitments and activities and things and stuff. We want to add all these things into our lives. The only problem is as well we’re so busy focused on adding, it actually results in a life of subtraction, or even worse, division. That’s why Jesus in Luke 9:25 says, “What good is it for the man the gain the whole world and yet lose or forfeit his soul?”
He says, you can be so focused on adding things in your life, but in the end, it’s actually a life of subtraction, you’re losing it all. Or even worst, it becomes dividing. Matthew 12:30, “He who is not with me is against, he who is not gathering is scattering.” So you can be so focused on doing your own thing that you actually become divided for me. You’re called to be multiplier. Genesis 1:28, the primary commandment of human kind, be fruitful and multiply, fill the earth and subdue it. That’s your created purpose. And until you step into a multiplying life, you’re going to be exhausted because you’re living beyond your created design. Like have you ever tried to use a pair of pliers as a hammer or a hammer as a screwdriver? It didn’t work all that well and we get hurt. I think that’s what Jesus was saying to Paul when he says, “Paul, you’re kicking against the goads.”
A goad is a sharp pointy stick that a plowman would use and he would hold it against the back of the oxen’s legs that as they try to kick back or go into a different direction, it would poke them so they would go in a direction the ox-man wanted him to go. So what he’s saying is he’s saying, “Paul, you’re spending your whole life doing the wrong thing and it’s like kicking against the goads. It’s like the Holy Spirit is constantly pricking your conscience and you will never have peace because you’re trying to go in a different direction than I’m going.” You can’t spend your life going in the opposite direction that God is going. You’re just kicking against the goad. If God is going this way, you’ve got to choose to get in alignment with where he is going and not where you want to go. Are you with me on that? I mean, you have understand, this whole journey with Jesus, this is where it starts with. It starts with come and see and it ends with go and make. John Chapter 1, this is the first account of Jesus talking to the disciples. Turning around, Jesus saw them following two guys, and he says, “What do you want?”
The says, “Rabbi, where are you staying?” “Come.” he replied, “And you will see.” First thing he says to the disciples, come and see. So they went and they saw where he was staying. And they spent the day with him, it was the 10th hour, Andrew, Simon, Peter’s brother was one of the two who heard what John had said about those had followed Jesus. And the first thing Andrew did was find his brother, Simon, and tell them, “We have found the Messiah and he brought him to Jesus.” Come and see, the first thing Jesus says, John 1. In Matthew 28, the last thing Jesus says in the gospels is, “Therefore, go and make disciples. Come and see and then go and make. And I love the story of Andrew and Peter because it’s a perfect picture of multiplying life. He comes and sees Jesus, and the first thing he does — he didn’t know how to preach the gospel, he didn’t know how to heal the sick, he didn’t how to lead the serve team, he didn’t know how to help a kid in the kid’s room, he didn’t know how to develop a student and [indecipherable] [0:29:00.9], he didn’t know none of that stuff, he just knows.
He just saw something really good. So there first thing he does is he goes and gets Peter and brings him to Jesus. And Peter ends up being the guy that preaches the first gospel message, the next chapter, two to three thousand people gets saved. That is the multiplying life. Just like that, that’s multiplying. That’s the journey. Come and see. So think about it, they came and they saw. They just experienced Jesus for a while. They watched him walked on water and raise the dead and calm the storm and do miracles, open blind eyes, it was amazing. And then they started to learn. And Jesus never expected them to preach right away but he certainly expected them to participate right away. When you read the gospels, you find out really quickly that right out of the gate, the disciples were called to organize the crowd and pass out bread and fish and bring people to Jesus. And as they kept doing that, they learned and grew and then they started healing and casting out demons. Then they grew some more and they started developing people and taking over the work of Jesus.
And these guys who started in the beginning, sending the crowds away, end up as guys who are willing to die for the crowds. Come and see turned into go and make. And they started to live a life bigger than themselves and everything changed. Jesus leads us in small steps, not giant leaps, but you actually got to get up and start following. I mean, that’s why in Matthew 4:19, okay, this is — take a breath. Ready, everybody? Let it out. This is going to be big and you’re not going to like it. Matthew 4:19, Jesus says, “Come follow me. I will make you fishers of men.” Come follow me. I will make you fishers of men. He says, “If you walk with me, you really follow me, you’ll become a disciple-maker.” So if we’re not actually making disciples, we have to ask ourselves the question, “Am I actually following Jesus?” I don’t know what other conclusion you could draw from that statement. Come follow me. I’ll lead you one next step at a time, it’s not going to be overwhelming, I’m not going to throw you off the deep end and I will make you. You follow, I’ll make you into someone. You will be a fisherman, you will be involved in my redeeming purposes on this earth. So if we never are involved in helping other people come to Jesus and grow in Jesus, we have to ask ourselves the question, “Am I following him?” because that’s where he’s going. You see there’s two types of sins. There’s the sin of commission and then there’re sins of omission, okay? There’re sins of commission, which these are the sins I commit, actions I do. These are the things when God tells us, “Do not do something.” Do not commit adultery, do not lie, do not steal, we’re told very clearly on some things, some things were not supposed to do.
So if I do them, it’s sin of commission, I’m doing something God’s asking me not to do. But there’s also something called sins of omission. Things that I omit from my life, things God asks me to do, that I choose for whatever reason, not to do, thinks like tithe, and serve, and forgive, and make disciples. The same mouth that said, “Do not commit adultery,” is the same mouth that said, “Go and make disciples of all nations.” So to not get involved with God’s redemptive purposes on this earth, is sin. And it’s the same level in weight as committing adultery, it’s the same God, same mouth, we just don’t see it that way, because we don’t really want to do this. It’s easier to say I don’t do that, than it is to say, okay, God, I will do this. That’s why James 4:17 says, “He who knows the good he ought to do, and doesn’t do it, to him, it’s sin.” If you know God has asked you to do, and you don’t do it, that’s sin. Listen to me, you are God’s plan A, and there is not plan B. You’re His plan A to change this world, there is no back up plan. You’re it. So catch me, we’re about to multiply to Louisville in like three weeks. It’s going to be incredible, and so need you, we need you to step up and get involved, and you say, what does that mean? What does it mean to make disciples?
To make disciples, it’s so simple, it means to help someone else take a next step on their journey with Jesus, I think we even got it for you in the slide. That’s all in this, okay? Don’t like let that word overwhelm you, you’re like, well, disciples, I don’t know. I don’t know how to preach. Can you do what Andrew did? Can you just go get Peter and say, “I just saw something really cool, come check it out.”? Then you can make a disciple. Hold the door open for someone, help them get a seat, make a cup of coffee, serve in the kids’ room, invest in a student, chose to start tithing, open up your home, have a small group, let your worship and your music ability come and be a part of what’s happening here. Get involved with production. There’s a thousand things you can do. Jesus wants you to start where you are, but he wants you to start. You’re not responsible to reproduce what you don’t know; you are responsible to reproduce what you do know. That’s why he says to Paul in verse 16, “I have appeared to you, to appoint you as a servant,” an encounter with God, leads to getting involved in people’s lives. There is no other way around this in the bible.
“I have shown myself to you, and I have now appointed you as a servant, and as a witness of what you have seen, and of what I will show you.” It says, Paul, you’re starting with what you know, and you don’t know much right now. And that’s okay. Be faithful with what I have showed you. And get ready for what I’m going to show you. That’s why I say to you, churches that are serious about meeting with God, becomes serious about making disciples because the know that is the journey to more of God’s presence, and more of God’s heart. So many of us, we’ve been coming and seeing, and that’s awesome, I’m so glad you’re coming and seeing, but if you never take a step towards go and make, you’ll get stuck, and you’ll start to stagnate, and unwind, and you’ll find yourself getting frustrated, bitter, offended. Here’s what I would bet, if you have come and seen, but you haven’t and you sat for a while, and you’ve not moved any direction towards go and make, you’re going to start getting – you’re going to start becoming critical, you’re going to start complaining, you’ll start walking in and out, and saying, “Nah, it’s kind of an off week. Nah, worship wasn’t great. Nah, the message was kind of boring.” Was he angry tonight, like what was up with that? But if you’re moving towards go and make, you don’t think those thoughts, because the holy spirit is continually changing you more into the image and likeness of Jesus.
So you’re hungry and you’re thirsty, and you’re soaking it all up, and you’re saying, “Here I am, God, I don’t even know what that means, or what you’re asking me to do, but I’m saying to you today, here I am, because I want you.” I mean you realize we’re only here because Paul lived to multiplying life. And he met with Jesus and said, that was so cool, like everything was awesome, I’m going to go home, let me know when the next one is. You wouldn’t be here right now. You are a product of his multiplying life. Who’s going to be a product of your multiplying life? When the love of God touches you, you can’t help but let that love float out of you into the world around you. So the only question I’m trying to ask you today, is how are you going ot respond to what Jesus has been doing among us? One little step in the right direction, and watch what he’ll do. So close your eyes with me, and let me just ask you, what do you think God is saying to you? For a moment, think past like all the excuses and the reasons, and the overwhelms and the church baggage, just – what does He want to say to you? I think God wants to say to a lot of us today, just, “Hey, I want to show you more of me, and I’m involved in people’s lives, so come follow me there. And I’m not asking you to make a leap, I’m just asking you to move a little, to invite someone, to sign up for something, to take a next step, to get involved, to say, I want to live my God given purpose, not just be a church spectator.”
Because you understand, when Jesus promises you an abundant life, part of the promise of an abundant life, is an invitation to a godly purpose. Multiply, as simple as taking what He’s done in you and releasing it into those around you. I can’t determine how you’re going to steward what God’s been doing, all I can do it point out to the scriptures, and say, this is how God moves among people throughout history, and what He then invites them to do, and when they do it, they get so much more of Him. Church, I want so much more of him. And so I want you to move, on this journey, so we can all experience the fullness of Jesus. So Holy Spirit, would you choose to move in our hearts and in our lives, prick our consciences where it needs to be pricked, poke us where we’re going in the wrong direction, and give us the courage and the wisdom, to be like Isaiah, to just say, I don’t even know what you want me to do, but here I am, I’m willing, I’m available, because I want you, Jesus. We love you, Lord. In your name we pray. Amen.