7 “If you had known Me, you would have known My Father also; from now on you know Him, and have seen Him.”
8 Philip *said to Him, “Lord, show us the Father, and it is enough for us.” 9 Jesus *said to him, “Have I been so long with you, and yet you have not come to know Me, Philip? He who has seen Me has seen the Father; how can you say, ‘Show us the Father’? 10 Do you not believe that I am in the Father, and the Father is in Me? The words that I say to you I do not speak on My own initiative, but the Father abiding in Me does His works. 11 Believe Me that I am in the Father and the Father is in Me; otherwise believe because of the works themselves. 12 Truly, truly, I say to you, he who believes in Me, the works that I do, he will do also; and greater works than these he will do; because I go to the Father. 13 Whatever you ask in My name, that will I do, so that the Father may be glorified in the Son. 14 If you ask Me anything in My name, I will do it.
15 “If you love Me, you will keep My commandments. [John 14]
Don Merritt, another editor of Church Set Free, did seminary teaching in “Applied Theology”, rather than Systematic Theology. I subscribe to this worldview. Rather like when…
1Jesus spoke these things; and lifting up His eyes to heaven, He said, “Father, the hour has come; glorify Your Son, that the Son may glorify You, even as You gave Him authority over all flesh, that to [a]all whom You have given Him, He may give eternal life. 3 This is eternal life, that they may know You, the only true God, and Jesus Christ whom You have sent.”[John 17]
There is a kingdom’s worth of difference between “knowing ABOUT” God, the Father, Jesus, the Holy Spirit… between studying, memorizing, analyzing, arguing, discussing, striving to comprehend all there is to know ABOUT God… And (in the biblical sense of “know Thee”, as Jesus uses here) Intimately KNOWING the Father, the only true God, and Jesus Christ whom He sent.
A vast body of resources exist for talking ABOUT ministry, the scriptural underpinnings, what is worthy, what is not, what to teach, how to teach, what to think, what to believe, what to preach. There is no shortage of opinion, discussion or debate about what to think, believe, or feel… to be Christian.
But aside from talking, whether about what “church people” should (or must) BELIEVE ABOUT God, or about how to MANAGE “church people” and what they believe, what money they give, how often they attend church, or what kind of music they listen to in official times of worship in the church building… there isn’t really a whole lot out there about HOW to DO “ministry”.
This section of this blog considers “ministry” to mean “servanthood”, in the sense of the scriptural word “Doulos” or “bondservant”. A minister may be “official” or not, “ordained” or not, “male” or not, “adult” or not. A minister, as considered in this section of this blog, is any person who can say, as did Jesus’ mom… “behold the ‘duolos’ of the Lord”. A minister, of any size, shape, age, or persuasion… simply acknowledges “belonging to the King”.
“Applied Ministry” then, will focus not just on the “will” of the Father (and Jesus), or the “words” of the Father (and Jesus), but on the “works”, the “acts”, the “deeds”… the “servanthood” that PERFECTLY REFLECT(ED) the will of the Father through Jesus! This section does not primarily focus on the “What” or the “Why” of Church Matters… but the “How”.
Questions, comments and concerns are more than welcome! How to execute servanthood in the name of Jesus to heal, restore, and love hurting broken people in a world of shadows… How to grow in our own servanthood… How to grow in our love and our embrace of the Intimate Presence of God… These are the matters I hope to address in this section, from a variety of perspectives.
Welcome! Please speak, contribute, ask! I hope this will be and become a place where, “You’ve got questions… He has answers!” Differing views, respectfully expressed… MORE than welcome!
Joy and Grace to you, Gentle Reader!
The Little Monk