Sunday, August 18, 2013

Apostles and Envoys

UV 844/10,000 Apostles and Envoys Also I heard the voice of the Lord, saying, Whom shall I send, and who will go for us? Then said I, Here am I; send me. ISAIAH 6 V 8 The Lord does not compel anyone to go for Him. He looks for volunteers. The volunteers need to offer themselves willingly. He does not compel anyone to follow him. The closest He came to persuading any man was in the case of Moses and St Paul. Paul heard the voice of the Lord and obeyed. The disciples heard His voice and followed Him when He said, “ Follow me and I will make you fishers of men.” He loves a spontaneous response and a whole hearted commitment of our hearts and lives to Him. He asks us to tithe our money but give our hearts to Him 100 per cent. The Holy Trinity of the Father, Son and the Holy Spirit is referred to in the use of the plural in the question, “ …who will go for us?” The Father sends the Holy Spirit to cover the span of the entire earth right through human history to probe hearts and discover who could be a good candidate for the Lord in fulfilling His plan for Israel and the world. A good candidate for the Lord is one who always has a ready-to-go-anywhere attitude, a “ can-do attitude” and who is candid or frank with the Lord. When the prophet Isaiah heard the voice of the Lord asking, “ Whom shall I send?” , he volunteered, “ Here am I, send me.” Isaiah was prepared to go wherever the spirit of the Lord took Him. He was willing to share the message that the Lord gave to His people. God was pleased with His whole-hearted response. He was candid with the Lord and said that he was a man of unclean lips and needed a coal from the fire of God to touch his lips to sanctify it. The Holy Spirit took the live coal which is the Word of God and touched his lips and sanctified it. Consequently, the 66 chapters of the book of Isaiah is said to be the entire Bible in capsule, an executive summary for mankind to read and hear the voice of God. Isaiah had acted as an amplifier for God. St Paul’ s frenetic journeys all over the then known world sowed the seeds of the gospel and formed what is today called western civilisation among the then savage and pagan warring tribes of Europe. Each of us is called to amplify the vision that God has given to us so that it reaches the largest number of people in our lifetime. Recently, I heard the Lord telling me, “ When I asked whom shall I send? – you responded , “ here am I, send me.” I answered the Lord, “ I don’t recall having gone anywhere for you, Lord.” He said, “ Wherever you are, when you speak for me, you are sent out for me.” The word apostle itself means “ sent out.” When we speak to God and for God wherever we go, whenever we go, we are apostles for the Triune God. We are the envoys or messengers or ambassadors for Christ in a godless world. An ambasssador, it is said in jest, is a person who lies abroad for the sake of his country but an ambassador for Christ is one who lives in the world but is not of it, who speaks the truths of God to those who live in the world. That is why we are called as foreignors in this world and we live as foreignors. The Lord gives us diplomatic immunity- we cannot be punished for not following the rules of this world that are contradictory to our faith. Prateep V Phiip

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