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1 Corinthians 9:11
"If we sowed spiritual things in you, is it too much if we should reap material things from you?"

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Relationship With Jesus
The Key To Effective Ministry

Section 2, Chapter 4

How We Relate To Jesus
To Get The Answers To Our Needs

Page 1 of pages 2, 3, 4
Study Questions

FIRST, GET ALL THE OBJECTIVE FACTS

The first step to getting the answer to our needs is studying and investigating all the objective facts related to the problem we need an answer to.

OBJECTIVE: Dealing with things external to the mind like a person, a book, an apple, etcetera; rather than with thoughts or feelings (1 John 1:1-4).

SUBJECTIVE: That which is not tangible in physical reality but rather thought, imagined, perceived, or discerned in the spirit, soul, mind and heart. (1 Cor 2:9-11).

There are two sides to Biblical Christianity that lean to two extremes: the Conservatives and the Charismatics. The Conservatives tend to reject anything subjective as a means of the discernment of truth. The Charismatic tends to reject anything to do with the intellect stating that they are led by the Spirit. Both are right and both are wrong.

The Conservative is right in that before we put stock into anything subjective we must first take into consideration the objective facts before us. God gave us a mind and he expects us to use it. When we reject the use of the mind we are not rejecting the Holy Spirit but one of Godís created avenues in our personality to help us discern what is true.

When we reject the subjective leading of the Holy Spirit, though, we are equally in error. Jesus said, Do not judge according to appearance, but judge with righteous judgment. (John 7:24). In other words Jesus was saying that if we trust in our intellect alone and in just what we see objectively we will also fall into error. Why? Because what we see objectively does not always reflect what is going on in a personís heart and mind. It doesnít reflect manís motives for what he does or does not do. Many times when a personís motive are taken into consideration we realize he is innocent to charges based only on objective facts alone.

One example in Scripture on this point is when the Prophet Samuel was looking over Jesseís sons who were prospects to become king of Israel. One of Jesseís sons, Eliab, for some reason caught Samuelís attention objectively so that Samuel said to himself, "Surely Yehovahís anointed is before Him." What was Yehovahís reply?

"But Yehovah said to Samuel, ĎDo not look at his appearance or at the height of his stature, because I have rejected him; for I do not see what man sees, for man looks at the eyes, but Yehovah looks at the heart.í" (1 Sam 16:7).

This is why the Scribes and Pharisees always judged Jesus wrongly. They judged by what they saw in man outwardly. They would say things to Jesus like, "Donít you know what manner of person this is that is touching you or you are dealing with?" The Scribes and Pharisees only saw the outside of the man. Jesus saw what was in the heart.

The reason why we start with the objective facts first though is because it is more easy for us to be deceived subjectively. We need to investigate the objective facts first so that when we turn to Jesus in prayer for insight on the things we cannot see (subjective facts), we can determine whether what we believe we are receiving subjectively is true by comparing it with what is absolutely true objectively. Subjective truth will never contradict what is true objectively. What it will do is give us the ability to see the objective facts in proper and true perspective. The Bible states that even Satan disguises himself as an angle of light (2 Cor 11:14) so it is very dangerous to rely on subjective impressions alone.

Another reason why it is dangerous to rely on subjective impressions alone is because we are not without sin like Jesus. Our flesh is hopelessly corrupt. Because of the corruptness of our flesh, often what we think is the Holy Spiritís leading is nothing more than our prejudice response to a personís beliefs, our subconscious prejudices and presuppositions coming to the surface. Getting the objective facts first will help us to discern that what we think is Holy Spirit insight really is Holy Spirit insight and not just self projecting his or her own beliefs and prejudices.

It is because of our corrupted flesh, hidden presuppositions and prejudices, that we also must never say, "The Lord has shown me this about you." Maybe the Lord has and maybe he has not. When you make a statement like that you are forcing the individual to submit to your conscience, not Jesusí. Because you have a corrupted nature, you can never be sure that what you receive subjectively is absolutely true. For this reason you should say, "I could be wrong, but could this be the problem?" Or, "I could be wrong, but I think the Lord is showing me this about you." This is an indirect way of telling the person what you think Jesus is showing you about his problem. This then frees the Holy Spirit to confirm or deconfirm to the individual that what you said is true or false and leaves the discussion open for further prayer for insight into the true nature of the problem. Any other approach is evil and fraudulent to the individual you are ministering to because again you are asking him to trust in your conscience and integrity whereas the approach suggested above gives God the freedom to confirm or deconfirm that what you say is true and thus he is submitting to Jesusí authority, not your authority. (Jer 17:5-8, 9).

The first step then to effective ministry and counseling is getting all the objective facts related to the need being ministered to.

SECOND, TAKE IT TO JESUS IN PRAYER

After getting all the objective facts about a personís problem or need, take this objective information to Jesus through prayer to get the Lordís insight on these problems.

Depending on how serious or urgent the issue is, it is good to sit on what you believe is the Lords answer to you for a couple of days. Give Jesus and the Holy Spirit ample time to confirm to you that what you believe is His answer really is His answer.

If these insights relate to a friend, share them with them and then let them respond. You may need to seek the Lord two or three times about their problem before getting all needed information related to the true root of the problem and to the true root solution.

What we want to deal with now is how we approach Jesus for the answer to our and otherís needs.

THROUGH WORSHIP AND PRAISE

Christianity is relationship with Jesus, and the way to get to the root of our problems, whether it be in relationship to ourselves, Jesus, or others, and know how to pray or minister in a given situation, is by going to Jesus, the answer to all our needs, through worship and praise.

JESUSí COMMAND

The writer of Psalms states, Enter His gates with thanksgiving, and His courts with praise. Give thanks to Him; bless His name. (Ps 100:4). Scripture commands us clearly that when we come to Jesus with a problem we are to approach Him first through worship and praise.

JESUSí PROMISE

When we obey Jesusí instructions in how to approach Him, He promises to manifest Himself to us, and give us the answer to our needs. Jesus states,

"He who has My commandments and keeps them, he it is who loves Me; and he who loves Me shall be loved by My Father, and I will love him, and will disclose Myself to Him." (John 14:21).

Why is it so important that we approach Jesus through worship and praise? First, it gets our eyeís off of ourselves or the person we are trying to minister to, the problem; and on to Jesus, the Way, the Truth, and the Life, the solution to all our problems. Second, it frees us from our own ideas and our own strife so that we can be free to receive Jesusí ideas and instructions concerning the problem. The Prophet Isaiah, speaking for the Lord, said,

"For My thoughts are not your thoughts, neither are your ways My ways. . . . For as the heavens are higher than the earth, so are My ways higher than your ways, and My thoughts than your thoughts." (Isaiah 55:8-9).

HOW WE APPROACH JESUS
THROUGH WORSHIP AND PRAISE
THROUGH LIFTING OF HANDS

How do we approach Jesus through worship and praise? First, by lifting up our hands toward heaven. Paul wrote, "Therefore I want the men in every place to pray, lifting up holy hands, without wrath and dissension." (1 Tim 1:8). Jeremiah tells us that when we lift up our hands toward God in worship and praise we are lifting up our spiritual heart to Jesus. He states, "We lift up our heart to hands toward God in heaven." (Lam 3:41). This is important because we want Jesus to deal with our hearts so that we can minister His heart to the heart of the individual we are talking to. The end result will be that the root of the personís problem will be ministered to and then they will be healed or have their need truly met.

Study Questions
Continued on Pages 2, 3, 4
Bibliography & Notes
Section 2 Chapters
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