PART 18 – GOD’S WILL? MAKE DISCIPLES (GOD'S WILL REVEALED IN THE GREAT COMMISSION PART 1) (18/3/20)
Updated: Mar 19
Here's Sunday's message if you were unable to gather with the church.
‘Your will be done, on earth as it is in heaven’
If we pray “Your will be done”, it’s important that we search His word in order to know and do His will. Can you imagine saying to someone that you love, “I really want to do something special for you.” But then fail to think or ask “What do they want, love, treasure…?” God has revealed His will in His Word, and the Great Commission is a very important aspect of God’s will. We read,
“When they saw him, they worshipped him; but some doubted. Then Jesus came to them and said, “All authority in heaven and on earth has been given to me. Therefore go and make disciples of all nations, baptising them in the name of the Father and of the Son and of the Holy Spirit, and teaching them to obey everything I have commanded you. And surely I am with you always, to the very end of the age” (Matthew 28:17-18).
Jesus’ last words on earth are very important, as are anyone’s last words. These are a summary of God’s will for all of us. The Great Commission follows the structure of the first section of the Lord’s Prayer:
i) “They worshipped Him” – Hallowed be your name
Worship is our priority. We will not pray “Your will be done’ unless we first say “Hallowed be your name”! If we don’t love and worship Jesus we won’t seek His will as we should. It’s God’s will that we worship Jesus. All that we do flows from this.
Take a moment - Are you beginning each day with worship? Or are you caught up with the news and the many other things that press in on us? How could you give quality time each day to worship?
ii) “All authority has been given to me”- Your Kingdom come - He’s the King.
Jesus comforted his disciples by reminding them of his kingly authority and that he would always be with them. We will not be able or open to obeying His will unless we trust His great love, power and authority.
Take a moment – Express your trust in Jesus authority and presence.
iii) “Go and make disciples…teaching them to obey everything I have commanded you” – Your will be done
An essential aid to doing the Father’s will is that we are taught everything that Jesus’ commanded. This teaching is not to be academic, it’s ‘teaching to obey’.
Take a moment – Do you read the bible with a view to obedience? When was the last time your life was changed by reading or teaching from God’s word?
Finally, it’s not only God’s will that you are a disciple, but it’s also His will that you make disciples. The church is meant to multiply as each member reaches and teaches new people. This is a radical mind-shift. You are called to help to grow others. So the question is, who are you discipling? Who are you meeting with in order to help them to grow in their faith? Too busy? no-one should be too busy to obey Jesus!
Take a moment – Who could you disciple? Pray that the Father would lead you - it’s His will for you and me! Perhaps it’s time you stopped discounting yourself!
During this series, let's aim to memorise and meditate on The Lord's Prayer.
TIPS ON MEMORISING SCRIPTURE
We will only do this, and persevere in doing this, if we believe that it's truly important to hide God's word in our heart. So get faith!
Don't disqualify yourself if it's hard - it is hard!
Write the text somewhere that's easy to find and use - a note on your phone, a post-it on the fridge...
Include the reference (book/chapter/verse) throughout the process
Read it slowly and carefully x 10 (Don't rush or dismiss this accurate repetition)
Recall it, without looking as much as possible x10
Do this a few times through the day - a habit is best formed by doing this at the same times, and places each day.
Revise regularly (and revise previously memorised verses)
Make it a habit to learn new verses - skill comes over time
USE IT! Actively use it to pray, worship, counsel, prophecy, and counter temptation and lies by quoting truth - it’s the sword of the Spirit (Ephesians 6:17).
TIPS ON BIBLICAL MEDITATION - THE 'COME TO JESUS DAILY METHOD'.
Biblical meditation is to prayerfully read, repeatedly, a section of the bible and pray, worship and respond as God leads. Here are a few tips and questions, what I call the 'come to Jesus daily method', to help you when meditating:
PRAY - Ask for the Spirit to help you and to speak to you. Keep the goal in mind - having a relationship with God!
WRITING- Writing/journaling is often a great help as you answer the questions below. Remember, don't allow worry about spelling, punctuation, grammar, perfection... to stop you from writing - it's between you and God. In meditation, I encourage you to write in the first-person, speaking to God - "I see that you are...I sense you speaking to me about...I pray for...."
GOSPEL- What does God, through this text, say to you about salvation through Jesus?
UP- What does God, through this text, say you about Himself – His worth, character, attributes, will, promises…?
IN- What does God, through this text, say about you, His church and how we are to relate?
OUT- What does God, through this text, say about non-believers and our mission?
RESPONSE – Is there anything else that you want to pray, worship God about, do, ask forgiveness about, ask God to help you to change…?
COMMUNITY GROUP STUDY
Has there ever been a time when your really wanted something but it didn't happen? How did you learn to deal with it?
Introduction - please read in your group
I guess you may be wondering why we have not stopped this teaching series in order to take about the Coronavirus. My answer is that I believe that the Father would want us to learn to pray as a result of the current crisis. It’s God’s will that we learn to pray, and I’m praying “May you will be done earth’ in this regard.
This week we have come to the phrase "your will be done on earth as it is in heaven". This is not a promise that every sickness will be healed, everyone will be saved, every difficulty removed. It is, firstly, a prayer that Jesus would come again; because, only then will His will be fully done on earth as in heaven. Secondly, it's a prayer for what we read in the bible and what we believe to be God's will to be done on earth. It's an encouragement to pray and expect big things to happen.
Read The Lord’s Prayer
“This, then, is how you should pray: Our Father in heaven, hallowed be your name, your kingdom come, your will be done, on earth as it is in heaven. Give us today our daily bread. And forgive us our debts, as we also have forgiven our debtors. And lead us not into temptation, but deliver us from the evil one.” (“…For yours is the kingdom and the power and the glory forever. Amen.”) (Matthew 6:9-13)
i) God's general will
God’s ‘general will’ is revealed in His word. Christians are to obey the whole Bible. The Bible reveals God’s will for you and me. David wrote, ‘Your word is a lamp for my feet, a light on my path.’ (Psalm 119:105).
Do you allow the bible to form your prayers and do you have any examples? How is the bible informing your prayers in the current crisis?
ii) God's specific will
Throughout God’s word, He speaks specifically to people about His specific will for them. God has definite things for you and I to do for Him. The Holy Spirit reveals His will through portions of the Bible that ‘speak’ to us, prophecy, dreams, visions, inner conviction (faith), encouragement from others, circumstances…
Have you any stories of God giving and fulfilling promises for you? Do you have any promises from God that you are waiting for Him to fulfil?
Go around your group, each one sharing what they would like prayer for at the moment. Pray for each person in turn.