Join us today for an episode about the reason we often have our community affirm our call...
Today's episode is focused on Deuteronomy 18: 15-20 and Mark 1: 21-28...
In today’s Spiritual Foundation Episode, I talk about Deuteronomy 18: 15-20 and Mark 1: 21-28. I share how we often have a call within our community that we fear. I also share how community is meant to support our call.
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Episode 1395: Among your Own People
[00:00:00] Scott Maderer: Thanks for joining me on episode 1395 of the Inspired Stewardship Podcast. I'm
[00:00:08] Linda Bjork: Linda Bjork. I challenge you to invest in yourself. Invest in others, develop your influence and impact the world by using your time, your talent, and your treasures to live out your calling. Having the ability to transform your life with hope is key.
[00:00:26] And one way to be inspired to do that Is to listen to this, the Inspired Stewardship podcast with my friend Scott Maderer,
[00:00:44] Scott Maderer: and we need to be as quick to call out what is wrong within us and what is bad within us, even quicker than we point out how bad things are out there. How everything's going wrong in the world, how there's a [00:01:00] plot that's out to get us, how the world is against us, how everything is a plot. Welcome and thank you for joining us on the Inspired Stewardship Podcast.
[00:01:11] If you truly desire to become the person who God wants you to be, then you must learn to use your time, your talent, and your treasures for your true calling. In the Inspired Stewardship Podcast, you will learn to invest in yourself, invest in others, and develop your influence so that you can impact the world.
[00:01:38] In today's Spiritual Foundation episode, I talk about Deuteronomy chapter 18, verses 15 through 20, and Mark chapter 1, verses 21 through 28. I share how we often have a call within our community. That we fear and also share how community is meant to support our call Deuteronomy [00:02:00] chapter 18 verses 15 through 20 says The Lord your God will raise up for you a prophet like me from among your own people You shall heed such a prophet.
[00:02:11] This is what you requested of the Lord your God at Horeb on the day of the assembly when you said, If I hear the voice of the Lord my God anymore, or ever again see this great fire, I will die. Then the Lord replied to me, They are right in what they have said. I will raise up for them a prophet like you from among their own people.
[00:02:31] I will put my words in the mouth of the prophet, who shall speak to them everything that I command. Anyone who does not heed the words that the prophet shall speak in my name, I myself will hold accountable. But any prophet who speaks in the name of other gods, or who presumes to speak in my name a word that I have not commanded the prophet to speak, that prophet shall die.
[00:02:55] Mark chapter 1 verses 21 through 28 says, They went to Capernaum, [00:03:00] and when the Sabbath came, he entered the synagogue and taught. They were astounded at his teaching, for he taught them as one having authority, and not as the scribes. But then there was in their synagogue a man with an unclean spirit. And he cried out, What have you to do with us, Jesus of Nazareth?
[00:03:17] Have you come to destroy us? I know who you are, the Holy One of God. But Jesus rebuked him, saying, Be silent, and come out of him. And the unclean spirit convulsing him and crying with a loud voice came out of him. They were all amazed and they kept on asking one another. What is this? A new teaching with authority.
[00:03:37] He commands even the unclean spirits and they obey him at once. His fame begin to spread throughout the surrounding region of Galilee. When we think about community, one of the opportunities and one of the tasks that comes before the people of God is one of. As communities meet [00:04:00] together for worship and for fellowship and for learning, hopefully they're also listening for the call of God who will be working within individuals within the community to cultivate their gifts, their inclinations, and perhaps even lead them into certain roles within the life of the church.
[00:04:19] As Paul wrote, some are gifted to be apostles, some prophets, some evangelists, some pastors, Teachers, which is in Ephesians. These are roles that obviously the church needs, and these are roles that God has determined are necessary for a church to fulfill its mission. If you look at the text from Deuteronomy, it also shows that God promises to raise up a prophet from among our own people.
[00:04:51] Now I don't know about you, sometimes I wonder how do we know when that is happening? How do we know when it's a real prophet of God? Is there some sort [00:05:00] of indicator light that goes off over their head? Or are they delivered a special uniform? Or is there a task or a miracle that they can perform that makes it obvious?
[00:05:12] And what's more, I think we often worry, we see the experience of Jesus and others, and we think if we step forward and take a leadership role, it's going to be a difficult proposition at best. You might have others within the community cry out, who do you think you are? Maybe there'll be groups of that get together and think to themselves and maybe even say out loud, anyone but her, anyone but him, not that person.
[00:05:43] They're not the right person. Or at least often that's what we fear will happen that if we feel this call within us to step forward and do something, we fear that others will tear us down. It's [00:06:00] a stereotype of what happens, and I will tell you it does happen at times, but truthfully, sometimes the community of faith can be a rather supportive incubator for those who are discerning a call to leadership or ministry of various kinds.
[00:06:18] It's also a way through which those individuals can begin to hear and understand the call that God's putting on them as it's echoed back to them from members of the community. When we hear affirmation of speaking or taking on leadership, when we're given encouragement for our attitudes or our empathy, when voices tell us that you're good at that or we see that as a gifting of yours.
[00:06:46] We can begin to feel the call of God more clearly being confirmed to us in the life of the congregation. That's often how it happens within a church. As a [00:07:00] church, sometimes just like a business, we work with outside experts or consultants, and they often bring in valuable services and overlooked perspectives, but sometimes too, they cloud the issue because It's from within our own community that we often are called to cultivate and to rise up and to train new leaders.
[00:07:25] It happens whether we're rising up a lay person for leadership or even working with the clergy of the church. That is part of the shaping for the service of God that we do as a community of God. And it's not easy. There are struggles in discerning the call. There are struggles in following it out.
[00:07:50] Deuteronomy calls out warnings about it. You've got to get it right. If you get it wrong, then it can lead to death, not [00:08:00] life. It needs to come forward to represent the God we've come to know in Jesus, or else there's problems. Those that we rise up and bring up into leadership positions can cause damage within the community as well.
[00:08:17] Sometimes a leader might speak for another god, whether that's a god of power, or wealth, or ego, or lust, or fear, or anger, or hatred. A voice of alienation instead of one of welcome, and love, and community. And I think you can think of examples where that's happened either in your church or in other churches.
[00:08:41] We've seen that play out and we've seen the destruction and the damage that comes as a result in the gospel text. There's that. What have you done? What are you doing to us Jesus? There's this question from the demonic [00:09:00] voice, the reluctance of the community to follow the authority of Christ. The encounter with the unclean spirit or the man with the unclean spirit is the main part of the text, but notice it actually starts with people recognizing the authority and teaching of Jesus and that it's different than what's come before.
[00:09:23] It's not like the scribes. It's not just about tradition and law and following the rules and getting it right. It's different in a way. It's something more present. It's something more real. It's something more immediate, and it's something more accepting. We talk about demonic as an incomprehensible evil.
[00:09:49] That's oftentimes why we have a difficulty labeling any human action in that way. But there are things, there is evil in the world that is [00:10:00] greater, that is bigger. And our response is either to live in fear and some suspicion of everyone and everything, or to stand against such evil, evil with the power of Jesus wrapped up in the community of faith.
[00:10:16] That's part of the reason that we have rituals like baptism, where we ask people to resist evil, and we ask the community to help that person doing that. Sometimes our call is to silence those voices of anger and hate, but usually our call is simply to present a better and different narrative, to tell a better story about how the world can work in God's kingdom, how the church can be a different relationship, a different place, not a place of shouting and pointing fingers and raising everyone's blood pressure, but a place to bring healing [00:11:00] to a broken world with kindness and gentleness.
[00:11:04] It's not avoiding confrontation, but it's just refusing to play the same game. Like the prophet that we rise up from within the community of God. Sometimes those evil voices, those demonic voices, rise up there as well. And we need to be as quick to call out what is wrong within us and what is right within us.
[00:11:28] Bad within us even quicker than we point out how bad things are out there, how everything's going wrong in the world, how there's a plot that's out to get us, how the world is against us, how everything is a plot, everything is an evil, everything paints us in the place of victimhood. The evangelism of the church is Both a [00:12:00] great thing and sometimes a handicap, because often why we are out saying we have a different message, we're actually doing it in the same way that the world does.
[00:12:13] Instead of recognizing that we are called to be a different place for the transformation. The world. Thanks for listening.
[00:12:28] Thanks so much for listening to the Inspired Stewardship Podcast. As a subscriber and listener, we challenge you to not just sit back and passively listen, but act on what you've heard and find a way to live your calling. If you enjoyed this episode, do me a favor, go over to facebook. com slash inspired stewardship and like our Facebook page and market that you'd like to get [00:13:00] notifications from us so that we can connect with you on Facebook and make sure that we're serving you to the best of our abilities with time and tips there.
[00:13:11] Until next time, invest your time. Your talent and your treasures develop your influence and impact the world.
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In today's episode, I talk with you about:
They were astounded at his teaching, for he taught them as one having authority, and not as the scribes. – Mark 1: 22