Generous in Ministry Luke 9:49-10:2

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1 Generous in Ministry Luke 9:49-10:2 We are looking at generosity from the gospel of Luke. When we hear the word generosity we immediately think money. But it s possible to be technically generous but not sincerely or holistically generous. Grace as the Template for generosity Generosity in relationships forgiveness Generosity in We are not ministry consumers but ministry providers, time, talents and gifts First: The Generosity of Service 10:1-2 Luke 10:1-2 is best understood in the light of 9:1-2. 9:1-2 - And he called the twelve together and gave them power and authority over all demons and to cure diseases, 2 and he sent them out to proclaim the kingdom of God and to heal. Jesus sent the 12 out to preach, cast out demons and cure the sick sent = missio Then in 10:1-2 he sent out 72 others. It s based on Genesis 10 and the naming of Noah s families There are 70 nations listed. 72 = the world, everybody, etc. The ministry is not just limited to the 12 apostles: Ministry is for everyone to everyone Every Christian is on mission. No one who is called in who is not also sent out Abraham - Genesis 12 I am going to bless the world through you. Now, get out of your own country. Joseph Genesis 37 - You are going to save the world. Let s figure out a way to get you out of Canaan POINT: God doesn t bless anyone without intending them to be a blessing. God isn t generous with anyone without expecting them to be generous.

2 Jesus is no blessing to the world as long as he is in heaven. He has to get out of heaven to bless the world. In this chapter, Jesus is in Samaria which is more than we can imagine in our context. The Jews hated Samaritans and travelled far out of their way to avoid Samaritan territory. This is why the Jews were horrified at Jesus story The Good Samaritan. Are we as generous as Jesus? We are most often willing to serve God but only in our comfort zone. The core of secularism = self-absorption. Don t interfere with my life. God is the Grand-Interferer Ephesians 2:10 For we are his workmanship, created in Christ Jesus for good works God doesn t save anyone for self but to serve God intends to use everything about you successes, failures, hurts, joys Luke 9:1-2 demons, sickness and preaching. There are some hands only you can hold (preach), some sickness only you can feel, some demons only you can cast out, etc. God s word to you is Get out of yourself! What would your marriage look like if you got yourself out of first place? What would your parenting look like if you really put your children first? What would your workplace look like if you served your co-workers? What would your school look like if you thought of others fir? What would the world look like if we preferred one another? Second: The Priority of Generous Service You will never give yourself to others until you give yourself to Jesus. If you say, I want to serve Jesus, we would say, Fantastic! Let s get you signed up. a) You re going to fast I am not going to win the world by winning elections. I m going to win the world through the cross. My win is suffering and loss. b) You re going to slowly Let me bury my father Let me say goodbye to my family

3 Yes but first 59 - The Jews buried their dead the same day they died so this is an excuse because the young man could follow Jesus that same day. Jesus is living in a patriarchal culture but Jesus is claiming he must be first. Following me is more important than following your family. Earning a degree Getting a vocation Starting a family Is there anything wrong with these things? Only if you put them first. Let the dead bury their dead because dead people are not alive. They are, in fact, missing out on life. If you don t put me first, you may as well be dead because you ll miss out on life. Whatever is on the other side of the but or if is your real master Plowing required looking ahead lest you hit a rock and break the plow which would be disastrous for a poor family We need an intervention. We need to see God as he really is. To do that, you don t need a microscope which makes small things look larger but a telescope which makes larger things look more realistic. ILL - According to the Guinness Book of World Records, the record vehicle mileage goes to a 1966 Volvo P-1800S with more than 2,850,000 miles. Owned by Irvin Gordon of East Patchogue, New York, the car is still driven daily. But Ivrin s record is only 3% of the way to the sun which is 92 million miles from the earth. It would take 177 years for us to drive to the sun. Even a commercial jet flying at 550 mph would take 19 years. How about a planet? Saturn s average distance from the sun is 891 million miles or 1,695 years in a car. That means if we started driving in 323 A.D. when ancient Rome still dominated the western world, we d finally arrive this year. In an airplane, you could get there in just 185 years. Hebrews 1:3 - he upholds the universe by the word of his power. And this is the person we generally ask to be our assistant, our co-pilot through life No sane person thinks about God like that or talks to God like that. To know God is to live all or nothing. Where does that kind of service come from? Jesus first! What is the heart of that kind of service? It s Jesus heart.

4 Third: The Generosity of Grace a) Read He s doing good things but he s not one of us. John s purpose of selfish. He wants to control Jesus ministry. He wants to control who gets in the inner circle. But Jesus is different, he s generous in and with ministry b) Read In 2 Kings 1 and in this same region, Elijah called fire down on heaven on two companies of 50 soldiers who tried to arrest him. The third commander begged for mercy and Elijah complied. If rejecting Elijah was wicked and it resulted in fire, certainly fire should fall on those who reject Jesus. But Jesus rebuked them. What s the difference? When soldiers really did come for the ultimate Elijah, Jesus in the garden, Peter cut off the ear of one of them and Jesus healed him. When those soldiers crucified Jesus, he forgave them. What s the difference? Luke 12: I came to cast fire on the earth, and would that it were already kindled! 50 I have a baptism to be baptized with, and how great is my distress until it is accomplished! What fire? What baptism? Jesus came to be baptized in God s fire, God s judgement. Jesus didn't come to bring judgment but to bear judgement. You will never be able to give yourself away to others until you see how Jesus gave himself for you. Your response will be to give yourself to him and then to what he loves. ILL In the days after 9/11 a TV commentator said Fundamentalism always leads to violence. That depends on your fundamental. Have you ever seen an Amish terrorist? If your fundamental is a man dying on a cross for others, it will not drive you to terrorism but tears, not judgement but justice, not selfishness but service. Conclusion Luke 10:1-2 - After this the Lord appointed seventy-two others and sent them on ahead of him, two by two, into every town and place where he himself was about to go. 2 And he said to them, The harvest is plentiful, but the laborers are few.

5 When we get a glimpse of Jesus generous service, there will be plenty of laborers. Community Group Interaction: 1. Read Genesis 12:2 - And I will make of you a great nation, and I will bless you and make your name great, so that you will be a blessing. a) What had God promised Abraham? To make him a great nation and bless him. b) Why did God promise these things? So that Abraham would a blessing. c) Why does God save anyone? So that they will be a blessing to the world d) If someone asked you, How are you a blessing to the world? how would you answer? e) How could you begin blessing the world? Think about your immediate family, friends, church family, co-workers. f) How does the so that principle change the way you view your place in the world? g) How does it change your daily attitude and actions? 2. How is God the Grand-Interferer? a) Explain how God interfered with your life to save you? b) How has God interfered in your life this past week? c) How does knowing God interferes to bless you and make you a blessing change the way you react to interruptions? 3. Read 2 Corinthians 1:3-4 - Blessed be the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, the Father of mercies and God of all comfort, 4 who comforts us in all our affliction, so that we may be able to comfort those who are in any affliction, with the comfort with which we ourselves are comforted by God. When Paul understood that God uses affliction and comfort to bless others, it changed his attitude into one of blessing God and Jesus. What a) successes do you have that God could use to bless others? b) failures have you experienced that God can use to bless others? c) Afflictions have you suffered through that God can use to bless others? d) Scripture has God used in your life to bless others? 4. Read Luke 9: a) Were any of these excuses valid? b) What excuses do we have for not serving God?

6 5. Think about the illustration of how big the Universe is. Why is it hard to trust our lives to the God who holds all of that together? Is any reason valid? 6. In Luke 9:54, James and John wanted Jesus to judge the Samaritan village who rejected him. But those Samaritans didn t reject Jesus as Lord and Savior but because he as a Jew on the way to Jerusalem (v 53). What was Jesus response? (vs 55-56) a) Is our temperament more judgmental or merciful? b) Is there anyone in particular we feel judgmental toward? c) How can God change our temperament to better reflect God s grace? 7. Jesus is the generous Server. a) How are you serving Christ? In your home? On the job? In your school? In the church? b) What areas need servants? Will you begin to pray for God to raise up servants at Heritage? c) What areas of service could you begin to bless with your life?

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