Saturday, April 9, 2011
Mat 10:2 Now the names of the twelve apostles are these; The first, Simon, who is called Peter, and Andrew his brother; James the son of Zebedee, and John his brother; 3 Philip, and Bartholomew; Thomas, and Matthew the publican; James the son of Alphaeus, and Lebbaeus, whose surname was Thaddaeus; 4 Simon the Canaanite, and Judas Iscariot, who also betrayed him. 5 These twelve Jesus sent forth
Have you ever thought about the criteria Jesus used to select His apostles? At first blush it seems He could have found some better candidates, but His ways are not our ways. He looked way down the road and saw what no one else could have ever seen in His original dream team.
Gothe said, "Treat people as if they were what they ought to be and you will help them become what they are capable of becoming."
Instead of faithless, faltering fishermen, publicans and zealots, He saw the men who would turn the world upside-down. Jesus knew that the two brothers and “sons of thunder” who wanted to call fire down upon their enemies could have that energy harnessed to write gospels, epistles and revelations, plant churches and do great things to change history. He knew that cussing, denying Peter would one day preach the Pentecostal sermon that would result in 3,000 converts and that he would hang upside-down on a cross for the faith.
"But what about Judas?" One might ask. "Wasn't that a poor choice for an apostle?" Jesus knew exactly what He was doing in selecting this 'demon' as a disciple. Prophecy had to be fulfilled. Jesus had to be betrayed into the hands of sinners, He had to have His own familiar friend lift up his heel against Him. Jesus foreknew that we would need to know that there are grievous wolves which enter into the flock to devour the sheep so that we could be on guard.
He also selected some "lesser light" disciples like Simon the Canaanite, Jude Thaddeus, Thomas Diddymas and Bartholomew. What's up with that? The church that Jesus established was a body made up of a mouth (Peter), backbone (James and John), heart (Andrew), etc. But every body needs parts to function which are less prominent. These are the Thomases and the Judes.
And that brings us to our body, the local church. You may not be on the platform from one Lord's day to the next. You may not have a prominent position or a glamorous ministry. You may be called to work in the trenches, unnoticed for the most part. It may be that you feel like you lack the gifts to do anything special. However, God takes the long look. Your day of Pentecost is coming. Sooner or later, you will have your part in God's scheme of turning the world upside-down.
Though your life may seem more like insomnia or a nightmare, you are indeed part of God's dream team.