Sunday, February 6, 2011

Black and Gold + Man of Peace

Song=Black and Gold

"“Man (or Woman) of Peace”
Luke 10:5-9 “When Jesus sent out the 70 to preach the Good News, He commanded, "When you enter a house, first say, 'Peace to this house.' If a man of peace is there, your peace will rest on him. ... Stay in that house, eating and drinking whatever they give you. ... Do not move around from house to house. ... Heal the sick who are there and tell them, 'The kingdom of God is near you,'"
Most people who can’t give how much they want to financially end up not giving at all.
Most people who give financially stop there.
I personally challenge you to be a Man or Woman of Peace in your sphere of influence (friends, church, small group, family.) to extend the opportunity to share about France further than I can alone. You can do more than you think.
          A Southern Baptist missionary in Asia discovered the power of that advice when he entered a potentially hostile unreached village with a co-worker:
"We prayed, 'God we know you're at work here or we wouldn't be here. We need a man of peace who will take care of us until we can feel our way around this village and know if it's safe or unsafe.'"I started my stopwatch. We walked into the center of the village where the well was. A person approached me out of nowhere and said, 'Have you eaten?' We said, 'Not yet.' He said, 'Well, come to my home.' His name was Li, and he was the person of peace we wanted. I stopped my watch: three minutes, 21 seconds."
          Li fed them, then properly introduced them to the village's hard-faced leader -- who might otherwise have ordered the strangers killed with long knives. Li told the village [leader], who was ill, that the newcomers' God "is a great God, and they will pray for you." They prayed; the leader got better. He soon became a man of peace in his own right, opening his heart -- and the whole village -- to the Gospel.
          Who is a man -- or woman -- of peace? You can identify him or her by three R's, according to Thom Wolf, a leading proponent of the concept who teaches at Golden Gate Baptist Theological Seminary. The person of peace (1) is receptive to the Gospel; (2) possesses a reputation to gain attention for the message among family and community; and (3) effectively refers the bearers of good news to that larger group.
The Roman centurion Cornelius was such a person, "a righteous and God-fearing man ... respected by all the Jewish people," (Acts 10:22 NIV). Encouraged by a divine vision, he invited Peter into his home, warmly welcomed him and called together his family and friends to hear the apostle's words. [As a] result, Cornelius, his family and many others believed and were baptized.
          Wolf contends that Cornelius' "sphere of influence" -- his "oikos," as the Greek New Testament calls it -- was the normal focus for the first evangelists. Michael Green, author of "Evangelism in the Early Church," agrees that the oikos, "consisting of blood relations, slaves, clients and friends, was one of the bastions of Graeco-Roman society. Christian missionaries made a deliberate point of gaining whatever households they could as lighthouses ... from which the Gospel could illuminate the surrounding darkness."
          Today, such lighthouses shine in many places. One group's region in India was long known as a "graveyard for missions" -- and the literal grave of at least six Christian martyrs in recent years. Instead of giving up, a mission team trained workers to quietly enter villages, pray and seek men of peace. If they didn't find one, they were to leave the village. If they did, they were to build relationships and share Christ with that person's natural network of family and friends. Hundreds of churches have been planted among the people in the years since.

How would God desire to use you in your sphere of influence? Ask Him.
Father where and how are you asking me to be a man or woman of peace? Who can I influence for your Kingdom? Where is the harvest heaviest and the laborers fewest?

Click the link below to read The Walker's Walk, my Feb 2011 newsletter!!!

Borrowed heavily from an article originally printed under the title
Biblical 'Man of Peace' Approach is Key to Effective Outreach 
by Erich Bridges 

Baptist Press
Find the article in it's entirety at

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