“Laboring in His Harvest”
Dr. John Ewart, Southeastern Baptist Theological Seminary
**Henderson’s First Baptist Church was delighted to have Dr. John Ewart with us from Southeastern Baptist Theological Seminary. Dr. Ewart is the author and creator of REACH (Reaching Every Available Household) and led a REACH Level I Seminar while he was with us this weekend. The following are notes from his Sunday morning sermon.
To join Him in His harvest…
1) We Must Recognize the Christ (9:35)
Then Jesus went about all the cities and villages, teaching in their synagogues, preaching the gospel of the kingdom, and healing every sickness and every disease among the people.
Note the “who” here as well as the “what” and the “why.” Who has the authority to heal every sickness and every disease? Only God. This verse is not just a statement of what Jesus is doing but Who He is!
Being evangelistic is the overflow of a relationship with the Lord and His people to the world and its people. Being evangelistic is the overflow of relationship #1 flowing into relationship #2.
1 Peter 3:15, “Sanctify the Lord in your hearts” flows into “Give a reason for the hope you have.”
Great commandment: “Love the Lord” drives “Love your neighbor.”
2) We Must React with Compassion (9:36)
But when He saw the multitudes, He was moved with compassion for them, because they were weary and scattered, like sheep having no shepherd.
The word “compassion” is a Greek word from which we get our English “spleen.” It’s the strongest word in the New Testament to describe compassion, concern, or care. Literally, the word refers to one’s “inner parts.” Jesus was “sick to His stomach,” for the lost. He had a “gut-wrenching” experience in looking at the lost. This is “God doubled-over” in hurt.
The word “weary” means “torn to shreds (AT Robertson).”
“Scattered” means “to be knocked down and you can’t get up by yourself.” This is a picture of lostness. A person cannot help himself, can’t save himself.
These verbs are in continual sense, continually being knocked down.
Sheep won’t go to water if it’s a hundred yards away; sheep need guidance, need protection
3) We Must Realize the Crisis (9:37)
Then He said to His disciples, “The harvest truly is plentiful, but the laborers are few.
Plentiful comes from Greek word from which we get our English word “pollution,” i.e., it’s everywhere.
“We’ll never share unless we care.”
4) We Must Resume the Cry (9:38)
Therefore pray the Lord of the harvest to send out laborers into His harvest.”
“Pray earnestly (ESV)” is literally, “To spew forth,” coupled with the verb “to send” is to ask God to “push out,” or “drop kick” laborers into His harvest. Please FORCE us into His harvest. And it is His harvest–I can’t make people saved.
“Testify” is a better word than “Witness.” A witness isn’t any good if he is silent!
5) We Must Respond to His Commission (10:1-8)
And when He had called His twelve disciples to Him, He gave them power over unclean spirits, to cast them out, and to heal all kinds of sickness and all kinds of disease. Now the names of the twelve apostles are these: first, Simon, who is called Peter, and Andrew his brother; James the son of Zebedee, and John his brother; Philip and Bartholomew; Thomas and Matthew the tax collector; James the son of Alphaeus, and Lebbaeus, whose surname was Thaddaeus; Simon the Cananite, and Judas Iscariot, who also betrayed Him. Sending Out the Twelve These twelve Jesus sent out and commanded them, saying: “Do not go into the way of the Gentiles, and do not enter a city of the Samaritans. But go rather to the lost sheep of the house of Israel. And as you go, preach, saying, ‘The kingdom of heaven is at hand.’ Heal the sick, cleanse the lepers, raise the dead, cast out demons. Freely you have received, freely give.
In chapter 9 Jesus demonstrates His authority; in chapter 10 He delegates His authority
Get out there!
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