EQUIPPED FOR GOOD WORKS

Hebrews 5:4

4 And no man takes this honour to himself, but he who is called by God, just as Aaron was.                                                        

In 1994, I had just been told by my senior Pastor then, that, I was being appointed and to be ordained as the associate Pastor for the church we were attending then, which was also an Elim Church.

This information came to me with mixed emotions as I tried battling my excitement with trepidation wondering if I could fulfil this role. I was not sure I was equipped for this call of God. I was not sure if I had the qualification for it, or was it just a fleshly desire? So, when it came to the ordination / commissioning time, I decided I was not going to attend the ceremony at Westminster Central Hall.

One night whilst singing and praising God in our room, I heard clearly in my Spirit, this scripture from Hebrews 5:4 no man takes this honour upon himself except he who is called of God.

That same night, as I switched on my radio to Premier Christian Radio, the same scripture was read by someone whose name I cannot even remember.

God was confirming His call upon my life.

I realised that night, that every believer has been called to something higher than themselves, not just being part of a denomination.

Paul tells the Corinthian Church in 1 Corinthian 12:27-28

27 Now you are the body of Christ, and members individually. 28 And God has appointed these in the church: first apostles, second prophets, third teachers, after that miracle, then gifts of healings, helps, administrations, varieties of tongues. 29 Are all apostles? Are all prophets? Are all teachers? Are all workers of miracles? 30 Do all have gifts of healings? Do all speak with tongues? Do all interpret? 31 But earnestly desire the best gifts. And yet I show you a more excellent way.

Every believer has been called and equipped by God for good works. We are not saved by our good works, but we have been saved unto good works that God calls us to. The good news is that God never calls without equipping. We have not been called into something that God has not made preparation for.

In 2 Timothy 3:16-17 Paul encourages his protégé Timothy that

16 "All Scripture is breathed out by God and profitable for teaching, for reproof, for correction, and for training in righteousness, that the man of God may be complete, equipped for every good work."

This scripture verse highlights the importance of God’s Word as the tool used in preparing believers for their God given tasks. The Word of God is profitable, there is benefit to every believer in being taught, reproofed, corrected, and trained, so that every believer will be completely armoured for every good work."

In the book of Ephesians, Paul also highlights the importance of the ascension gifts of Jesus as tools for equipping the body for good works.

Ephesians 4:11-12

11 And He Himself gave some to be apostles, some prophets, some evangelists, and some pastors and teachers, 12 for the equipping of the saints for the work of ministry, for the edifying of the body of Christ,

For the body of Christ to effectively carry out the assignment of God, the body needs to recognise that these gifts are available to each one of in the body. Before Jesus ascended into heaven, He commanded His disciples to remain in Jerusalem until they were endowed with power.

Acts 1:4 -5

4 And being assembled together with them, He commanded them not to depart from Jerusalem, but to wait for the Promise of the Father, “which,” He said, “you have heard from Me; 5 for John truly baptized with water, but you shall be baptized with the Holy Spirit not many days from now.

and verse 8

8 But you shall receive power when the Holy Spirit has come upon you; and you shall be witnesses to Me in Jerusalem, and in all Judea and Samaria, and to the end of the earth.”

When Jesus said to His disciples in John 14:12 that greater works than this will you do, He knew they could not do it without being equipped. So, He gave them the power to do the same works that He did.

He did not want His disciples to go out ill-equipped. I believe the same applies to us today.

In 1 Peter 2:9 Peter tells us that we have been handpicked by God for a purpose. What is that important purpose that we have been handpicked for? We are called and equipped to sing forth His praises.

9 But you are a chosen race, a royal priesthood, a holy nation, a people for his own possession, that you may proclaim the excellencies of him who called you out of darkness into his marvellous light.

We have been equipped to show forth His excellence. We have endowed with power to bring Him glory.

There are many today who will tell you that spiritual gifts stopped when the Apostles died, but they miss the fact that the scriptures tell us in John 17:20-23

20 “I do not ask for these only, but also for those who will believe in me through their word, 21 that they may all be one, just as you, Father, are in me, and I in you, that they also may be in us, so that the world may believe that you have sent me. 22 The glory that you have given me I have given to them, that they may be one even as we are one, 23 I in them and you in me, that they may become perfectly one, so that the world may know that you sent me and loved them even as you loved me.

So, Jesus’ prayer and equipping was not just for His disciples, but for all those who believe in Him through their words.

Every person God calls He equips them for good works. He has endowed every believer with gifts, so we can serve in His kingdom and serve humanity.

These are ministry gifts, manifestation gifts, motivational gifts, and the ascension gifts. Every believer is equipped so they can flow and serve Christ’s church and God’s kingdom in an effective way. Spiritual gifts are part of the benefits of every born-again believer.

Colossians 3:12

12 Therefore, as the elect of God, holy and beloved, put on tender mercies, kindness, humility, meekness, longsuffering.

These are part of the qualities every believer who has been called is expected to put on as these contribute to our effective service in the Kingdom.

We have all been equipped to impact the world through acts of love, compassion, and service.

May we never lose sight of the call of God in our lives.

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