Text: Matt. 4: 23 – 25
Today’s study which is “Our Model In Ministry”, seeks to spotlight the issue of ministry in a believer’s life, taking cue from the Lord Jesus. Ministry in our context refers to “Service”.
Doing ministry is a matter that concerns every believer. The reason we are still in this world after having being saved is to do God some service (cp. 2Cor. 4:1; Phil. 4:3).
As most people who claim to be in Christ do not actually bother about being His followers indeed, so also a vast majority of those who minister for Him could not care less about taking cue from Him in ministry (contrast Heb. 12:2,3; 1Pt. 2:21).
Let’s now go into the study proper as we consider these points:
(1) Christ Went About All Galilee (Matt. 4:23). Galilee, the Northernmost section of the 3 regions in Palestine, West of the River Jordan, is a vast region with Nazareth, Tiberias and Capernaum as its most prominent cities. Other cities in it include: Cana, Magdala, Chorazin, Bethsaida, Gennesaret, Nain, etc. Jesus, knowing who He was and what He came for, and knowing the circumstance of man, did not wait for the people to come to Him. He went about meeting them and giving them what He had, which they badly needed, although majority did not know their real need (cp. Matt4:23; Acts 10:38). Jesus staked all the pains going about the cities of Galilee and environs, preaching the gospel of the kingdom (Mk. 1:38; Jn. 4:3-6).
This teaches us that we must take pains to get across to the needy with the gospel of the kingdom. We should meet them wherever they are: in the houses, on the streets, in the markets, at the hospitals, in the prisons, etc. This should be particularly so for those of us who have received such an urgent and great task of bringing the multitudes of unsaved folks (both religious and non – religious) to the saving knowledge of Christ and influencing the multitudes in the Christendom back to the original biblical standard, thus causing them to be ready for the imminent rapture ( Eph. 4:11-13; 5:26, 27 ). This equally underscores the importance of missionary outreaches (both at home and abroad).
(2) Teaching / Preaching The Gospel of The Kingdom (Matt.4:23; Acts 20:21,25). Jesus’ major thrust was preaching / teaching the gospel – the good news of the kingdom (Matt. 4:17,23). This is the gospel of salvation and holiness / righteousness, without which no man shall see the Lord (Jn. 3:3-5; Heb. 12:14). Note that Jesus began with the message of salvation (cp. Matt. 4:17; Mk. 1:14,15) and went on teaching details of the life style that guarantees eventual admittance into the kingdom (see Matt. 5 – 7).This is what He called His disciples for (Lk. 9:60). This is what He charged them with while He left (cp. Matt. 28:18-20; Lk. 19:13). And this is what they preached (Cp. Acts 20:21,25).
- Healing The Sick and Delivering The Oppressed and Possessed of Devils (Matt. 4:23, 24).
Healing the sick and delivering the oppressed and possessed of devil is part and parcel of the gospel of the kingdom. As Jesus went preaching / teaching the gospel so also did He heal the sick and cast out devils (Matt. 8:1-3, 5-9, 13-17; Lk. 5:15-17; 6:17-19). It is however important to note that even though Jesus was healing the sick and casting out devils, that was not per se, His message. Healings, deliverances and other signs and wonders were necessary to prove the authenticity of His message (the gospel of the kingdom). Besides, healing, deliverance, signs and wonders served the purpose of baits in fishery. It should be the same with us today.
For any gospel minister to anchor his messages / ministry on healing and signs and wonders is to be sidetracked like the foolish fisher man who for whatever reasons, began to major on the baits, not bothering any more about the fishes. It should be noted as well that those who shy away from the ministry of healing the sick and casting out devils for whatever reasons are not taking cue from Jesus, all the same.
Jesus is our model minister. His ministry is our model. We should bring the complete gospel to the people. As we focus on the total gospel, multitudes from far and near will be trooping in to receive at our hands as it was in the case of Jesus (cp. Matt. 4:25).
Let’s rise and pray. Fellowship Songs: (HSCF 29 & 197)