Is God’s Power Predictable? #3 – God Uses Individuals (Strength is NOT in Numbers)

Welcome to the last post of this series. We are trying to determine one thing: is God’s power predictable? The previous two posts support the notion that God’s power is predictable, and that God wants us to know that  his power is predictable.

Our theme verse is:

Thus saith the LORD, Stand ye in the ways, and see, and ask for the old paths, where is the good way, and walk therein, and ye shall find rest for your souls. But they said, We will not walk therein. – Jeremiah 6:16 (KJV)

So far we have considered those things that have worked in the past, particularly in the issues of repentance and all glory going to God. We have examined Scripture that indicates that God himself never changes, leading to the conclusion that what worked before should work again. Based on our theme verse, we find that we should be looking for those things that used to work, and scrap our “new and improved” methods that may be new, but don’t improve a thing.

So you have a good preacher who’s preaching Bible-repentance, and seeks God’s glorification.  But for some reason, (be careful to not become judgmental), there seems to be an unshakable coldness.

Wouldn’t it be great if a church came together with one mind and decided to do whatever it takes to fix everything? If that many people did, there’s no telling how mighty the manifestations of God’s power would be in their church. But there’s just one problem: no matter how bad you want it, it doesn’t look like anyone else does (CAUTION: don’t always believe your perceptions!) What can you do to motivate people in your church to want God’s power just like you?

Today we’re going to see that God uses individuals to motivate other individuals to create a group movement. In all cases, individuals make decisions. Sometimes the actions of one individual spur similar actions on the part of another individual, and that is what we are interested in exploring. Thus, God’s power may be revived in a church because of the godly actions of a single individual. What if that individual is you? Does that sound like somebody you want to be?

So let’s consider the influence that individuals can have in two related yet different ways. Based on your behavior, you may:

  1. Directly motivate others
  2. Indirectly motivate others

1.  Directly Motivate Others

A.  Leadership

A new commandment I give unto you, That ye love one another; as I have loved you, that ye also love one another. – John 13:34 (KJV)

This portion is Jesus himself speaking to his first church. This applies to preachers teachers, moms, dads, grandmas, and grandpas, etc. When someone is an authority, it is their job to provide leadership. If others are in your care, you have a responsibility to exhort and teach them to be godly.

B.  Mentorship

Thou therefore, my son, be strong in the grace that is in Christ Jesus. – 2 Timothy 2:1 (KJV)

This applies to anyone who has experienced-based advice, and is typically senior to somebody eager to learn godly service. Here, Paul, is speaking to his trainee, Bro. Timothy regarding the ministry of being a pastor. Both New Testament epistles to Timothy contain a similar tone: as Timothy’s mentor, Paul teaches Timothy the specifics of his service.

The best way to learn how to teach Sunday school is to pair up a would-be Sunday school teacher with someone who has been doing it for years. What would otherwise take years to learn, and lessons that were learned the hard way may be learned much more easily by somebody with experience imparting their knowledge to an attentive candidate.

When I’m looking for advice on song leading, who should I ask? That’s right – Bro. Songleader who has been doing it for a long time. If a young man wants to become a pastor, who is going to train him better than anybody? Note: the answer to this question is almost never a Bible college professor who was never a pastor himself! Even some that were pastors aren’t much better, but you get the idea – new pastors need training from an experienced pastor.

The idea of mentorship strikes most of us as common sense; but for some reason, it is not very popular even among God’s people. Why? Because it requires submission – and that requires leaving one’s ego at the door. If you find somebody who’s been active in a similar service as yours for a long time, latch onto them and milk them for everything they know. Or, on the other hand, be willing to share what you know. You may be directly contributing to the greatest janitor, cook, usher, parent, teacher, singer, or preacher  of the next generation. I can only speak for myself, but I’d love to be part of that!

C.  Friendship

And Jonathan Saul’s son arose, and went to David into the wood, and strengthened his hand in God. – 1 Samuel 23:16 (KJV)

Jonathan and David were best friends. As this verse says, Jonathan was a friend who was a great help to David during the greatest trial of his life – his fugitive flight from Saul. What if David didn’t have Jonathan? He’d still have God, but future generations (we) would be missing this tremendous application of what a godly friend is.

We don’t need any friends except for God himself. You’re abundantly blessed, however, if you have one or two that you can count on no matter what. Within a good church, those relationships while naturally exist. And if you are saved, it should go without saying that the closest friends you have are saved too. If my “friend” can’t give me godly perspective, the closest relationship I’ll ever have with him is that of professed Christian brother whom I love as a church member.

Alternatively, you need to be a godly friend. Who can tell? If being a godly friend to somebody gets him through a very tumultuous time in his life, he could go on to do unheard-of things for God, and you’ll be part of the reason he was able to make it. Can that be said of you?

2.  Indirectly Motivate Others

A. Inspire Faith in Others

51Therefore David ran, and stood upon the Philistine, and took his sword, and drew it out of the sheath thereof, and slew him, and cut off his head therewith. And when the Philistines saw their champion was dead, they fled.

52And the men of Israel and of Judah arose, and shouted, and pursued the Philistines, until thou come to the valley, and to the gates of Ekron. And the wounded of the Philistines fell down by the way to Shaaraim, even unto Gath, and unto Ekron. – 1 Samuel 17:51-52 (KJV)

Recall that during Saul’s reign as King, there was nothing happening on the battlefield, as Goliath would come out and mock the armies of Israel – they were scared to death. Goliath was an obstacle to God’s people – he caused them to be afraid. As the Scripture says, when David killed Goliath, the Philistines took off running, and Israel (God’s people who were previously oppressed) chased after them. David took Goliath out, and it caused others to believe that victory was possible.

So how can you or I inspire faith in those around us? There’s lots of ways. Maybe God has done something for you – give a testimony, and tell how the Lord helped you – someone in something similar may need to hear that you were able to make it through to make it through temselves.

Don’t be afraid of praising God publicly – if the Lord moves on you, don’t be afraid to shed some tears; don’t be afraid to praise him during a song. It may be that somebody else is going to see your boldness and become bold enough to praise the Lord right behind you. That shouldn’t be the whole point for doing it, the whole point should be to glorify God. You just never know what your obedience could stir up in someone else.

B. Provide Relief to Others

30Then the men of the city said unto Joash, Bring out thy son, that he may die: because he hath cast down the altar of Baal, and because he hath cut down the grove that was by it.

31And Joash said unto all that stood against him, Will ye plead for Baal? will ye save him? he that will plead for him, let him be put to death whilst it is yet morning: if he be a god, let him plead for himself, because one hath cast down his altar. – Judges 6:30-31 (KJV)

This story really does something for me. Gideon’s father was a Baal worshiper who knew better. Israelites weren’t supposed to worship Baal, they were to worship Jehovah. God tells Gideon to throw down his father’s altar to Baal, and build one to Jehovah in its stead, which Gideon does one night.

The men of the city find out that Gideon is responsible, and they want to have him killed. Gideon’s father, a former Baal worshiper stands against them, telling that if Baal has a problem with it, Baal should do something about it. In other words, Gideon’s actions prompted his dad to get right with God. If Gideon hadn’t obeyed, his father may have continued in evil.

If you’re involved in public wickedness that seems covered up, confess it and forsake it publicly. This will convict the fire out of anyone else in the same boat, and could give them the necessary prodding to get things right themselves. Your obedience may relieve others of those things that hold them back.

There is just no telling how huge of an impact a simple act of obedience can have on others. Can you impact other people, possibly several other people at once? Absolutely – do what God leads you to do, and see what happens. Other people are watching a whole lot more than we realize, and if someone is going to step up, it might as well be you and me.

Conclusion

We find that individuals in Scripture influenced others with their actions. And just like back then, individuals today can influence in similar ways. But just because we are saved, does that mean that we automatically will influence others for good? There’s a chuckle.

Simon Peter saith unto them, I go a fishing. They say unto him, We also go with thee. They went forth, and entered into a ship immediately; and that night they caught nothing. – John 21:3 (KJV)

Don’t you just love Bro. Peter? At this point Christ was resurrected, and Peter, who days before had denied Christ made the decision to go back to doing what he did before he was useful to the Lord – he was going to go back to being a fisherman. But he’s not the only one – he took others with him! In this case he used his powers of persuasion for the forces of evil, not good.

If you go down the wrong path, you run the risk of taking other people down the same dangerous road with you, whether they realize the danger in it or not. Just as you can influence people for good, your example has the potential for destroying lives if you’re a bad example. Be mindful of that.

So which will it be? Ultimately we decide one way or the other. To not decide, we are deciding wrongly. Do you have opportunities to be a direct influence to somebody under your care, who is learning to serve like you serve, or just needs to see somebody else do it first? If so, rather than thinking there’s not a lot you can do, know today that you are a lot more capable of affecting others than you think!

Remember what God told Gideon when the army to fight the Midianites was whittled down from 32,000 to 300?

And the LORD said unto Gideon, The people that are with thee are too many for me to give the Midianites into their hands, lest Israel vaunt themselves against me, saying, Mine own hand hath saved me. – Judges 7:2 (KJV)

God has always accomplished more with less. So is God’s power predictable? I believe the answer is a firm yes. Do powerful manifestations typically require the majority of the members of a church to be right? Usually. Can you as a singular individual be reasonably sure that godly living on your part has a very serious potential for bringing about revival in your church? There’s no doubt about it.

No matter who we’re talking about, an individual CAN accomplish abundantly above all we ask or think with heaven’s help. What God needs are more individuals who understand and believe that. The more people we can get believing that God can, God will, and God wants to, the more God will be enabled to start stirring the brew.

So to close this series, let’s remember one thing: God’s power IS predictable, as Bro. Jeremiah reminds us:

Thus saith the LORD, Stand ye in the ways, and see, and ask for the old paths, where is the good way, and walk therein, and ye shall find rest for your souls. But they said, We will not walk therein. – Jeremiah 6:16 (KJV)

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About Adam Tigges

KJV Bible-believing Baptist
This entry was posted in Is God's Power Predictable? (3-part series) and tagged , , , , , , , , , , , . Bookmark the permalink.

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