Are You a Competent Minister?
“He has made us competent as ministers of a new covenant — not of the letter but of the Spirit; for the letter kills, but the Spirit gives life.” – 2 Corinthians 3:6
How do you measure up as a minister?
No, I don’t mean as a pastor, I mean as one who ministers to people in the name of Jesus. As followers of Christ and those who have been made His children, we all minister to those around us.
Sometimes we may not feel like we are doing very well, but what are we measuring against?
- Do you measure against the Ten Commandments?
- How about the over 600 laws found in the Old Testament?
- What if we go with the simplified, “Love the Lord your God with all your heart, soul, and mind and love your neighbor as yourself?
We Are Not Ministers of the Letter
If we were ministers of the Law (or the letter), none of us would measure up very well. Sure, it may seem like some others do pretty well, but it also seems on Facebook like all my friends have the perfect job, family, and life. We’re all pretty good at making it look like our lives are better than they are.
The truth is our lives are all filthy with sin.
Thankfully, we aren’t ministers of the letter, but of the Spirit.
That is to say, we are ministers of Gospel, a salvation that comes not from our obedience to the Law, but by grace through faith in Jesus Christ, which is a gift from the Spirit. Our filthy, sinful lives have been washed clean by Jesus.
Rather than having to perfectly know and obey the over 600 Old Testament laws or the 10 Commandments or even the 2-Commandment summary Jesus gave, we simply need to know two things:
- We are all sinners, every one of us, including you and me.
- Jesus died for our sins and so, whoever believes in Him, their sins are forgiven and they will be saved.
If we can do this and try to love others, we’ll do well.
What if I sin badly and others find out?
You might, but when your message is that you are a sinner like everyone else, it’s not surprising that you would…you know…sin. Remember, we aren’t pointing to ourselves for salvation, but to Christ. When we sin before others, we actually get to set an example by confessing and receiving God’s forgiveness.
I’m still not sure I can do it.
If that’s what you’re thinking, that’s ok. Notice the first part of our Bible verse, “He has made us competent ministers.” Yep, you can’t really do it yourself, but God can. He gives us the words to say. He equips us for the things we’ll do. He works through our messy, broken attempts to minister to people and does miracles.
Truthfully, I can’t tell you how many times I’ve walked away from a conversation and felt like I totally blew it only to, later, have that person tell me how meaningful what I said was to them. It’s not what I did or said. It’s what the Holy Spirit did in that person’s life through those words and actions.
So, trust me, you are a competent minister…because God made you a competent minister.
You have worked the miracle of faith in my heart through the words and deed of others who shared the Gospel with me. Work through my words and deeds that I would share the Gospel with others and they would receive faith by the power of Your Holy Spirit.
In Christ’s Service,