You Have a Destiny
I. Three steps to finding your place in the Body of Christ
A. Make it a petition before God--ask Him where you belong
B. Pray in your heavenly prayer language (tongues)
C. Start doing something
1. Ask yourself the question "What would I like to do?"
2. Become involved in the areas where you have a desire to be involved
Ephesians 4:11-12 And he gave some, apostles; and some, prophets; and some, evangelists; and some, pastors and teachers;
For the perfecting of the saints, for the work of the ministry, for the edifying of the body of Christ.
II. Purpose of the five-fold ministry gifts
A. Perfecting the saints so they can go out and do the work of the ministry
B. Perfecting the saints so they can edify the body of Christ
Ephesians 4:10 As we have therefore opportunity, let us do good unto all men, especially unto them who are of the household of faith.
III. Finding where you fit begins in the local church
A. Ministry does not begin with the world
B. Ministry begins by ministering to those who are of the household of faith (believers)
Ephesians 1:3-5 Blessed be the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, who has blessed us with all spiritual blessings in heavenly places in Christ:
According as he has chosen us in him before the foundation of the world, that we should be holy and without blame before him in love:
Having predestined us unto the adoption of children by Jesus Christ to himself, according to the good pleasure of his will.
adoption: means maturity
IV. Adoption in the ancient world
A. Adoption occurred at age 12 in the Roman world
B. Adoption occurred at age 13 in the Hebrew world
C. Bar mitzvah, today, is equivalent to adoption in the ancient world
V. Modern day bar mitzvah
A. A son is considered a man when he turns 13
B. The son has adult responsibilities when he turns 13
C. This is the idea behind ancient adoption
Ephesians 1:5 Having predestined us unto the adoption of children by Jesus Christ to himself, according to the good pleasure of his will.
VI. The reason God chose us was because He wanted to
…according to the good pleasure of his will.
A. The theme of Ephesians 1, verses 4 and 5 is predestination
B. Jesus was the first one to be predestined
1. Jesus is the Lamb that was slain before the foundation of the world
2. Jesus came into the world with the plan of redemption already intact
3. Jesus learned about the plan and made his plan line up with God's plan
4. Jesus succeeded in fulfilling God's plan
C. Jesus was the prototype for us
D. God's will for our lives was planned before the foundation of the world
E. We can find God's will for our lives and succeed in that plan
F. We were predestined to be born again
Ephesians 1:4 According as he has chosen us in him before the foundation of the world, that we should be holy and without blame before him in love.
1. We were predestined to be holy
2. We were predestined to be without blame
3. We were predestined to be righteous
G. We were predestined to be adopted--to grow up and become mature
H. Predestined means to design beforehand
VIII. God planned the entire plan of redemption
A. He knew that Adam and Eve would fail
B. He planned the answer for Adam and Eve's failure
C. He planned for Jesus to go to the cross
D. He planned our entire Christian life
E. He planned for us to be in Heaven with Him forever and ever
F. God's planning is called predestination
IX. Our problems do not take God by surprise
A. God was here first
B. Satan was here after God
C. God is the answer to our problems
D. Satan is the problem
E. If God was here first and Satan was next, then the answer was here before the problem
X. God has made a way of escape
A. When we face tragedy, trouble, trial, heartaches, persecutions and tribulations, God has already seen what we are facing and has made a way of escape
B. If we have failed God for many years, He still has more ways of escape than we will ever have problems
XI. Our destiny is shared with Jesus' destiny
A. The time in which we were born was not an accident
B. God has a plan for our lives in this world and in this specific time in history
C. God placed you in this time in history to succeed and to change your world around you
D. Gideon did not immediately agree with God's destiny for his life
1. Gideon told the angel everything that was against him in succeeding in life
2. The angel called Gideon a "mighty man of valor"
3. The angel was declaring God's destiny for Gideon
4. When Gideon discovered God's destiny for his life he accomplished great things
XII. Christians often spend their lives using their faith for "things" which become more important than first seeking God's plan and purpose for their lives
Matthew 6:33 Seek ye first the kingdom of God, and his righteousness; and all these things shall be added unto you.
Ephesians 1:15-18 Wherefore I also, after I heard of your faith in the Lord Jesus, and love unto all saints,
Cease not to give thanks for you, making mention of you in my prayers;
That the God of our Lord Jesus Christ, the Father of glory, may give unto you a spirit of wisdom and revelation in the knowledge of him:
The eyes of your understanding being enlightened; that you may know what is the hope of his calling, and what the riches of the glory of his inheritance in the saints.
XIII. The hope of his calling
A. We should be using our faith to find what is the hope of our calling
B. Our place in the Body of Christ and the ministry to which we were called were known before the foundation of the world
Romans 1:1-3 I beseech you, therefore, brethren, by the mercies of God, that you present your bodies a living sacrifice, holy, acceptable unto God, which is your reasonable service.
And be not conformed to this world: but be transformed by the renewing of your mind, that you may prove what is that good, and acceptable, and perfect, will of God.
For I say, through the grace given unto me, to every man that is among you, not to think of himself more highly than he ought to think; but to think soberly, according as God has dealt to every man the measure of faith.
XIV. Until we present our bodies as a living sacrifice, we have not really started fulfilling the will of God
A. Presenting our bodies is the point of ultimate consecration
B. Presenting our bodies is the place that we present ourselves for Christian service
1. This is where we find out the place we belong in the Body of Christ
2. This is where we find out what we are to fulfill for God
C. Growth is a result of presenting our bodies a living sacrifice
1. We begin to grow in God's will for our lives from the good, to the more acceptable, and finally to the perfect will of God
2. The growing process occurs as we fulfill the ministry that God has for us
XV. The main purpose for the measure of faith is for believers to fulfill the offices in the Body of Christ
A. The measure of faith is given in order to be perfected in the office to which we are called
B. As our faith grows, so does our ministry
Romans 12:4-8 For as we have many members in one body, and all members have not the same office:
So we, being many, are one body in Christ, and every one members one of another.
Having then gifts differing according to the grace that is given to us, whether prophecy, let us prophesy according to the proportion of faith;
Or ministry, let us wait on our ministering: or he that teaches, on teaching;
Or he that exhorts, on exhortation: he that gives, let him do it with simplicity; he that rules, with diligence; he that shows mercy with cheerfulness.
XVI. We need to find where God has placed us and be content with that place
A. Just as the foot cannot do the work of a hand, when we try to function in another's office, we are not as effective as we would be in the office to which we are called
1. A pastor can do the work of an evangelist, but he cannot be an evangelist
2. Any spirit-filled believer can prophesy, but there are those who are specifically called to prophesy
B. Romans 12:6-8 tells us to find the office to which God has called us, and to operate in that office
C. If we were able to possess every gift and every office, there would be no need for anyone else in the Body of Christ
D. Jesus had the Holy Spirit without measure, but we have the Holy Spirit by measure
1. We need to be content with the measure we have been given
2. We need to learn to function with the measure we have been given
XVII. Functioning in the offices in the Body of Christ
Romans 12:6 …whether prophecy, let us prophesy according to the proportion of faith.
1. The simple gift of prophecy is for edification, exhortation, and comfort
2. Everyone in the Body of Christ can seek to prophesy
3. There are some called specifically to prophesy
a. More proficient in prophecy
b. More mature in the gift of prophecy
c. Prophesy more frequently
Romans 12:7 Or ministry, let us wait on our ministering.
1. Diakonos is the Greek word for ministry/ministering meaning deacon
2. This refers to those who are called to help other Christians
3. The helps ministry
c. Security, etc.
Romans 12:7 …or he that teaches, on teaching.
1. This refers to one called to teach but not necessarily called to the five-fold ministry
2. Those who have a strong desire to teach
3. Teachers who are as faithful over two or three as they would be over two or three thousand
Romans 12:8 Or he that exhorts, on exhortation.
1. An exhorter is one who can encourage and lift up
2. Exhorters make excellent counselors
3. Exhorters know the Word of God
4. Exhorters are excellent at witnessing to others
5. Exhorters have a gift, love, desire and an ability to encourage people whether they are Christians or sinners
Romans 12:8 …he that gives, let him do it with simplicity
1. They are called by God to be givers in the last days above the normal giving to which God has called all believers
2. They have an ability to make money because of the call on their lives to be givers
3. They funnel great amounts of money into the Body of Christ
4. They do not want their giving to be known about by others, they just desire to be a blessing to the Body of Christ
simplicity: not for outward show
Romans 12:8 …he that rules, with diligence
1. Those who watch over the business affairs and spiritual affairs of the church
e. Sunday school teachers
f. church boards
2. They have a great reputation in the local Body of Christ
3. They have an ability and desire to help rule over the local church
G. Showing mercy
Romans 12:8 …he that shows mercy, with cheerfulness.
1. All believers are commanded to be merciful
2. There are those who are called to mercy
a. They are great intercessors
b. They are gifted in visiting others in the hospital
c. They have the ability to take upon themselves the hurts and problems of others and exchange them for God's mercy
d. They are strong in mercy and also become strong in cheerfulness
XVIII. Every Christian has a destiny
A. Just because a believer is not called to the five-fold ministry does not mean that they do not have a destiny
B. Some are called to go into battle
C. Some are called to stay by the stuff
D. Those that stay by the stuff will be rewarded equally with those who were sent into battle