Our ministry as the royal priesthood is found in the kingdom of God. Under the Old Covenant, God devoted the men of 1 of the 12 tribes to serve Himself and the people of Israel as priests. In the New Covenant, Jesus Christ made all believers priests to His God and Father to minister to God and His kingdom people. God created us in Christ Jesus to do good works and walk in them. “For we are His workmanship, created in Christ Jesus unto good works, which God hath before ordained that we should walk in them” (Eph 2:10 KJV). Cf: 2 Cor 5:17; Eph 4:1
Grace and peace to you from the One who is, who was, and who is coming; from the seven spirits [the sevenfold Spirit] before His throne; and from Jesus Christ, the faithful witness, the firstborn from the dead and the ruler of the kings of the earth.
To Him who loves us and has set us free from our sins by His blood, and made us a kingdom, priests, to His God and Father — the glory and dominion are His forever and ever. Amen. Revelation 1:4b-6 HCSB Cf: Ex 19:6; 1Pt 2:9; Rev 5:10; Rev 20:6
What God has made us is to the praise of His glory.
In previous articles, we have considered how God made us righteous and fit for the kingdom of God. Our righteousness is God’s covenant justice in action. Through the act of God’s covenant justice, God declares us to be in the right (Ro 3:25). God has created in Christ Jesus and cleansed by His blood in an instantaneous salvation process (Eph 2:1-10), which includes our regeneration, our again genesis for life in the kingdom that is. For, God has rescued us from the tyranny of darkness and transferred us into the kingdom of His Son (Col 1:13-14). So, what God has made us is to the praise of His glory. Our being is God’s doing, “…to the end that we should be unto the praise of his glory, we who had before hoped in Christ” (Eph 1:12 ASV).
Our ministry as the royal priesthood is God being through us.
Whatever we do as royal priesthood (1 Peter 2:9-12) is motivated by God’s love (1 Cor 13). Anything we do that is motivated by God’s love is ministry of the first order. The kingdom of God is in the Spirit (Ro 14:17-18) and God pours His love into our hearts by the Spirit (Ro 5:1-5). And, the fruit of the Spirit begins with love.
The Spirit, on the other hand, brings a harvest of love, joy, peace; patience towards others, kindness, benevolence; good faith, meekness, self-restraint. Gal 5:22-23 WNT
Dear friends, let us love one another; for love has its origin in God, and every one who loves has become a child of God and is beginning to know God. He who is destitute of love has never had any knowledge of God; because God is love. God’s love for us has been manifested in that He has sent His only Son into the world so that we may have Life through Him. This is love indeed—we did not love God, but He loved us and sent His Son to be an atoning sacrifice for our sins. Dear friends, if God has so loved us, we also ought to love one another. No one has ever yet seen God. If we love one another, God continues in union with us, and His love in all its perfection is in our hearts. 1 John 4:7-14 WNT
Whatever we do as the royal priesthood is by God’s Spirit in us.
So then, my beloved, just as you have always obeyed, not as in my presence only, but now much more in my absence, work out your salvation with fear and trembling; for it is God who is at work in you, both to will and to work for His good pleasure. Php 2:12-13 NASB
I, then, the prisoner for the Master’s sake, entreat you to live and act as becomes those who have received the call that you have received– with all lowliness of mind and unselfishness, and with patience, bearing with one another lovingly, and earnestly striving to maintain, in the uniting bond of peace, the unity given by the Spirit. There is but one body and but one Spirit, as also when you were called you had one and the same hope held out to you. There is but one Lord, one faith, one baptism, and one God and Father of all, who rules over all, acts through all, and dwells in all. Eph 4:1-6 WNT
Now the Lord is the Spirit, and where the Spirit of the Lord is, there is liberty. But we all, with unveiled face, beholding as in a mirror the glory of the Lord, are being transformed into the same image from glory to glory, just as from the Lord, the Spirit. 2 Cor 3:17-18 NASB
Each of us has been given grace for the work of ministering.
Yet to each of us individually grace was given, measured out with the munificence of Christ. Eph 4:7 WNT
Christ has appointed leaders to equip us for the work of ministering. The primary purpose of those God has gifted to lead is to equip us to do the work of ministry to build up the body of the Messiah.
And he gave some to be apostles; and some, prophets; and some, evangelists; and some, pastors and teachers; for the perfecting of the saints, unto the work of ministering, unto the building up of the body of Christ. Eph 4:11-12 ASV
The work of each one of us is vital to the growth of the body of Christ.
But speaking the truth in love, let us grow in every way into Him who is the head — Christ. From Him the whole body, fitted and knit together by every supporting ligament, promotes the growth of the body for building up itself in love by the proper working of each individual part. Eph 4:15-16 HCSB
Our work of ministry
Paul exhorts us to be taught by God’s grace to live sensible, honest, and godly lives in the present age. That is paramount to what we do.
For the grace of God that bringeth salvation hath appeared to all men, teaching us that, denying ungodliness and worldly lusts, we should live soberly, righteously, and godly, in this present world; Looking for that blessed hope, and the glorious appearing of the great God and our Savior Jesus Christ; Who gave himself for us, that he might redeem us from all iniquity, and purify unto himself a peculiar people, zealous of good works. Titus 2:11-14 KJV
We feel the tug of Christ’s love. This life flow of the Vine motivates and empowers us to bear much fruit. The righteousness, peace and joy of the Spirit of our Messiah wells up within us. His nature and His power helps us love and be loved in word and in deed. In John 15; Jesus tells us He helps us be fruitful branches of the Vine —faithful, humble, kind, courteous, hospitable, forgiving, and helpful —life sharing fruit bearers. Thus, we supernaturally, naturally do the good works of the kingdom and walk in them.
Right now, we do minister to God and one another, primarily to our own family; extending to our community of saints, local neighbors, people at work and to the world. Godly family relationships reflect and are a major part of our body of Christ work of ministry in which we are built up together. They are the primary setting for walking worthy of the calling to which we are called. When family relationships are harmonious, they bring glory to God. As we love and nurture one another, we bear fruit that doesn’t pass away. Beyond that, godly family relationships are essential to civilized society. Closely connected with our family ministry is ministry to God’s family in our local church community, particularly in small groups.
As we partake of the divine nature, we get better at it.
Simon Peter, servant and apostle of Jesus Christ, to the people who by the righteousness of our God and Savior Jesus Christ were given a faith as precious as ours. As you know God and our Lord Jesus, may you enjoy more and more of His grace and peace.
By His glory and might He once gave us very great and precious promises and now has called us. When we got to know Him, His divine power gave us everything for life and godliness to help you escape the corruption that lust brought into the world and to partake of the divine nature. In view of that, try very hard to supply to your faith moral power to moral power knowledge, to knowledge self control, to self control endurance, to endurance godliness, to godliness brotherly kindness, to brotherly kindness love [for Pagans]. If you have these and they grow more and more, they keep you from being useless and unproductive in the knowledge of our Lord Jesus Christ. But if anyone doesn’t have these, he’s blind, shortsighted, and has forgotten that his old sins were washed away.
Be all the more eager, then, fellow Christians, to make sure you’re God’s called and chosen ones. If you do this, you will never fail. Then with rich gifts you will be welcomed into the everlasting kingdom of our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ. 2 Peter 1:1-11 AAT
Let us put more of what God has given us to use
Therefore be careful how you walk, not as unwise men but as wise, making the most of your time, because the days are evil. So then do not be foolish, but understand what the will of the Lord is. And do not get drunk with wine, for that is dissipation, but be filled with the Spirit, speaking to one another in psalms and hymns and spiritual songs, singing and making melody with your heart to the Lord; always giving thanks for all things in the name of our Lord Jesus Christ to God, even the Father; and be subject to one another in the fear [reverence] of Christ. Eph 5:15-20 NASB
If you can do it, do it.
As God gave me His gift of love/charis for every one of you, I tell you, don’t think too highly of yourselves, but take a sane view of yourselves, everyone according to the amount of faith God gave you. We have many parts in one body, and these parts don’t all do the same thing. In the same way, many as we are, we are one body in Christ and individually parts of one another. We have gifts /charisma that are different according to what His love gave us.
- If you can speak God’s Word/prophesy do it according to the faith you have.
- If you can serve/minister, then serve.
- If you can teach, teach.
- If you can encourage, encourage.
- If you share/give, be generous.
- If you manage anything, do it eagerly.
- If you help people in need, do it cheerfully.
- Love sincerely. Hate evil; cling to what is good. Love one another tenderly as fellow Christians. Outdo one another in showing respect. Don’t be backward in zeal. Glow with the Spirit. Serve the Lord. Ro 12:3-11 AAT
Now there are different kinds of gifts, but the same Spirit gives them. Also there are different ways of serving, but it is the same Lord being served. And there are different modes of working, but it is the same God working them all in everyone. Moreover, to each person is given the particular manifestation of the Spirit that will be for the common good. To one, through the Spirit, is given a word of wisdom; to another, a word of knowledge, in accordance with the same Spirit; to another, faith, by the same Spirit; and to another, gifts of healing, by the one Spirit; to another, the working of miracles; to another, prophecy; to another, the ability to judge between spirits; to another, the ability to speak in different kinds of tongues; and to yet another, the ability to interpret tongues. One and the same Spirit is at work in all these things, distributing to each person as he chooses. 1 Cor 12:4-11 CJB
What is it then, brethren? When ye come together, each one hath a psalm, hath a teaching, hath a revelation, hath a tongue, hath an interpretation. Let all things be done unto edifying. 1 Cor 14:26 ASV
But the end of all things is at hand: be ye therefore of sound mind, and be sober unto prayer: above all things being fervent in your love among yourselves; for love covereth a multitude of sins: using hospitality one to another without murmuring: according as each hath received a gift, ministering it among yourselves, as good stewards of the manifold grace of God; if any man speaketh,’speaking as it were oracles of God; is any man ministereth, ministering as of the strength which God supplieth: that in all things God may be glorified through Jesus Christ, whose is the glory and the dominion for ever and ever. Amen. 1 Peter 4:7-11 ASV
This is how we learned what love is: He gave His life for us. We should give our lives for our fellow Christians. If anyone has this world’s goods and sees his fellow Christian is in need but shuts his heart against him, how can he still be loving God? Children, let us not love only in words or in talk, but let us put our love into action and make it real. 1 John 3:16-18 AAT
Putting ministry into eternal perspective
- “Whoever keeps acting wickedly, let him go on acting wickedly;
- whoever is filthy, let him go on being made filthy.
- “Also, whoever is righteous, let him go on doing what is righteous;
- and whoever is holy, let him go on being made holy.”
“Pay attention!” [says Yeshua,] “I am coming soon, and my rewards are with me to give to each person according to what he has done. I am the ‘A’ and the ‘Z,’ the First and the Last, the Beginning and the End.”
How blessed are those who wash their robes, so that they have the right to eat from the Tree of Life and go through the gates into the city! Rev 22:11-14 CJB