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Message

Salvation Army - Part 4, The Least of These
Miles McPherson - March 6, 2005

Message Recap

This Sunday Pastor Miles exhorted every person who attends the Rock church to get involved in ministry. In the beginning of the service he asked for all those who are already involved in ministry to stand to their feet. Then he proceeded to ask those who were standing, "Who's the Man?" They called out Jesus! Then he asked everyone who wasn't standing to rise, and as a church body to call out the name Jesus.

As the entire church together called out the name of Jesus the voices were much stronger, then when the fraction of those involved in ministry stood up and called out Jesus' name. The point is, if the whole the church were serving in ministry, imagine how much greater the effectiveness of the Rock Army would be!

As we have looked at over the past few weeks, the Rock's Salvation Army is a group of people trained and armed to fight for the souls of unbelievers. Just like a soldier joins the army to serve his or her country, every soldier in the Rock Army is required to serve.

Ministry and Service

This week we looked at the M in ARMY, which stands for, ministry and service. You can't not serve and walk with Christ sincerely for very long. Pastor Miles took us to Matthew 25 in which we read from Jesus' Sermon on the Mount of Olives. This sermon was known as the Kingdom Come sermon.

Matthew 25:31-33 states, when the Son of Man comes in his glory, and all the angels with him, he will sit on his throne in heavenly glory. All the nations will be gathered before him, and he will separate the people one from another as a shepherd separates the sheep from the goats. He will put the sheep on his right and the goats on his left.

Sheep Qualifications

We are special to God

Matthew 25:34-36 states, then the King will say to those on his right, come, you who are blessed by my Father; take your inheritance, the kingdom prepared for you since the creation of the world. For I was hungry and you gave me something to eat, I was thirsty and you gave me something to drink, I was a stranger and you invited me in, I needed clothes and you clothed me, I was sick and you looked after me, I was in prison and you came to visit me.

God created us with a purpose and an eternal destiny. We are special to God, and to serve and minister unto others for Him is a special blessing.

It Does Not Require Recognition

Matthew 25:37-40 states, then the righteous will answer him, Lord, when did we see you hungry and feed you, or thirsty and give you something to drink? When did we see you a stranger and invite you in, or needing clothes and clothe you? When did we see you sick or in prison and go to visit you? The King will reply, I tell you the truth, whatever you did for one of the least of these brothers of mine, you did for me.

Serving "the least of these" won't necessarily increase our status, pay us back, or express gratitude, however, serving should not be about the recognition we may or may not receive. Serving must be enough in and of itself.

It is Not Always Calculated and Planned

Matthew 25:41-45 states, then he will say to those on his left, Depart from me, you who are cursed, into the eternal fire prepared for the devil and his angels. For I was hungry and you gave me nothing to eat, I was thirsty and you gave me nothing to drink, I was a stranger and you did not invite me in, I needed clothes and you did not clothe me, I was sick and in prison and you did not look after me.

They also will answer, Lord, when did we see you hungry or thirsty or a stranger or needing clothes or sick or in prison, and did not help you? He will reply, I tell you the truth, whatever you did not do for one of the least of these, you did not do for me.

Ministry is not always predictable. This passage doesn't mean that if there is a missed opportunity to serve, that it is straight to hell for that person, but rather a reminder to be available for the needs of others. Ministry won't always follow our own personal schedules. We must be open, ready, and willing to serve.

It Provides Help in Everyday Needs

Effective ministry doesn't require spectacular methods of serving. Pastor Miles gave an example of a time when he was driving and he passed a man on the street that was holding a sign asking for water. Pastor Miles handed him a water bottle because that is simply what the situation required.

Effective ministry is often very simple

Effective ministry is often very simple. It can just be about food, water, or spending time with someone. This Sunday all the ministries of the Rock church were presented in a ministry fair. There is an outlet for everyone to step up and use their gifts to serve.

Pastor Miles noted several ministries within the Rock that are in need of help such as the Parking Ministry. As the Rock soon adds a service on Saturday night more people are needed to serve in the Parking Ministry.

Also the Usher/Greeter Ministry is in need of more volunteers. As of right now there are about ten people serving per service, and the desire is to have about twenty-five volunteers per service. There are many other ministries as well that are in need of more volunteers. The variety is great, so everyone can find a place to serve.

It Always Brings Eternal Blessings

Matthew 25:40 states, the King will reply, I tell you the truth, whatever you did for one of the least of these brothers of mine, you did for me.

Ministry to others is ministry to Jesus Himself. Sometimes our most powerful encounter with Jesus is when we are in the act of helping someone else. Are you ready to take the next step? Find a ministry and begin serving.

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