|Robert Houk Hitchcock|
II Corinthians 5:17-21
Therefore if any man be in Christ, he is a new creature: old things are passed away; behold, all things are become new.
And all things are of God, who hath reconciled us to himself by Jesus Christ, and hath given to us the ministry of reconciliation;
To wit, that God was in Christ, reconciling the world unto himself, not imputing their trespasses unto them; and hath committed unto us the word of reconciliation.
Now then we are ambassadors for Christ, as though God did beseech you by us: we pray you in Christ's stead, be ye reconciled to God.
For he hath made him to be sin for us, who knew no sin; that we might be made the righteousness of God in him.
God has given to the church the joy and responsibility of reconciling men to Himself. We walk in Christ's stead here on earth to bless, to heal, to comfort, and to edify others. What a joy and what a blessing you can be to others! We are ambassadors. We carry God's love and God's message of deliverance to others. You as an individual, and we as a church, can really make a difference in people's lives.
And he spake this parable unto them, saying,
What man of you, having an hundred sheep, if he lose one of them, doth not leave the ninety and nine in the wilderness, and go after that which is lost, until he find it?
And when he hath found it, he layeth it on his shoulders, rejoicing.
And when he cometh home, he calleth together his friends and neighbours, saying unto them, Rejoice with me; for I have found my sheep which was lost.
I say unto you, that likewise joy shall be in heaven over one sinner that repenteth, more than over ninety and nine just persons, which need no repentance.
The ONE, the individual, is always what is most important to the Father. Every individual counts as one, and no one counts more than one, nor less than one. We are to reconcile men to God one by one; we can bless people one by one; we can help people one by one; we can make a difference in people's lives one by one. The world affects people by the masses- The Word of God blesses people by individuals.
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 hath dealt to every man the measure of faith.
Every born again one has tremendous abilities in Christ. God is the Father of each born again one. Each and every one of us has the same ability, the same measure of faith. Certainly every one in the Body can make a difference in people's lives, can help and encourage and bless and honor and edify others! There is no lack in terms of ability, that's for sure.
Whereof I am made a minister, according to the dispensation of God which is given to me for you, to fulfil the word of God;
Even the mystery which hath been hid from ages and from generations, but now is made manifest to his saints:
To whom God would make known what is the riches of the glory of this mystery among the Gentiles; which is Christ in you, the hope of glory:
Whom we preach, warning every man, and teaching every man in all wisdom; that we may present every man perfect in Christ Jesus:
Whereunto I also labour, striving according to his working, which worketh in me mightily.
No one takes a "back seat" when it comes to ability! We have Christ in us! Do you think that that would enable you to bless a couple of people from time to time? How about every time you walk into your office at work? Every time you walk into a restaurant? Every time you enter into the grocery store, the gas station, the Stop N Go, the school, the department store-every where you go- it's Christ in you. You bring the presence of God into the place, into the situation. If you are there, then God can act on your behalf.
We need to consider the greatness of the new birth and act in light of it and not our 5 senses evaluations of ourselves. The born again one brings the presence of God into each and every place that he or she walks. Talk about potential!
But what saith it? The word is nigh thee, even in thy mouth, and in thy heart: that is, the word of faith, which we preach;
That if thou shalt confess with thy mouth the Lord Jesus, and shalt believe in thine heart that God hath raised him from the dead, thou shalt be saved.
For with the heart man believeth unto righteousness; and with the mouth confession is made unto salvation.
THE Word of faith is Romans 10:9-10. Did that little verse make a difference in your life? That's the understatement of all understatements! It gave you eternal life when you heard and believed that. Those words on your lips will make available eternal life to the unsaved. Those words on your lips can bring someone from death unto life as they believe. Those words on your lips will make available reconciliation to God for one who is unreconciled. Those words on your lips will make available the Will of God for one who is seeking God. Not only can we make the new birth available, but for those who are already born again, we can make a difference to them, also.
A word fitly spoken is like apples of gold in pictures of silver.
How often the heart longs to hear the word fitly spoken! To have another believer say just the right thing to remind you of God's love and grace, or to remind you of God's sufficiency in your life, or to remind you of your righteousness in Christ. You can change the way their whole day is going, their whole week is going- indeed, their whole life is going by simply speaking that word fitly spoken! It doesn't always take a major teaching session. It doesn't always take a major healing session. It doesn't always take a major meeting or seminar or fellowship. What it often takes is a WORD fitly spoken. Just a few sentences of what God wants spoken- that takes care of the need!
The Lord GOD hath given me the tongue of the learned, that I should know how to speak a word in season to him that is weary: he wakeneth morning by morning, he wakeneth mine ear to hear as the learned.
To walk in the wisdom of the spirit of God enables you to have those words to speak to another! How refreshing it is to speak the word in season, the right word, the appropriate word, the word from God to someone who is weary. How comforting! How excellent! We listen for God's guidance and we speak His Word to bless, to heal, to comfort, to edify.
While he yet spake, there came from the ruler of the synagogue's house certain which said, Thy daughter is dead: why troublest thou the Master any further?
As soon as Jesus heard the word that was spoken, he saith unto the ruler of the synagogue, Be not afraid, only believe.
And he suffered no man to follow him, save Peter, and James, and John the brother of James.
And he cometh to the house of the ruler of the synagogue, and seeth the tumult, and them that wept and wailed greatly.
And when he was come in, he saith unto them, Why make ye this ado, and weep? the damsel is not dead, but sleepeth.
And they laughed him to scorn. But when he had put them all out, he taketh the father and the mother of the damsel, and them that were with him, and entereth in where the damsel was lying.
And he took the damsel by the hand, and said unto her, Talitha cumi; which is, being interpreted, Damsel, I say unto thee, arise.
And straightway the damsel arose, and walked; for she was of the age of twelve years. And they were astonished with a great astonishment.
And he charged them straitly that no man should know it; and commanded that something should be given her to eat.
You know, it was just one girl. What a difference Jesus Christ made in her life! Do you think that Jairus, his wife, and his daughter remembered that incident for a few years? That was a deliverance that totally changed someone's life wouldn't you say? WOW!
The same is true for you as well as you walk by the spirit and bless people's lives. Maybe what others need is not as great as this situation, but you can bring the deliverance that IS needed! A Word fitly spoken. A deed to bless and encourage. A thoughtful consideration to love. A kind note. An edifying comment. You can make a difference in someone else's life each and every day that you live.
Now Peter and John went up together into the temple at the hour of prayer, being the ninth hour.
And a certain man lame from his mother's womb was carried, whom they laid daily at the gate of the temple which is called Beautiful, to ask alms of them that entered into the temple;
Who seeing Peter and John about to go into the temple asked an alms.
And Peter, fastening his eyes upon him with John, said, Look on us.
And he gave heed unto them, expecting to receive something of them.
Then Peter said, Silver and gold have I none; but such as I have give I thee: In the name of Jesus Christ of Nazareth rise up and walk.
And he took him by the right hand, and lifted him up: and immediately his feet and ancle bones received strength.
And he leaping up stood, and walked, and entered with them into the temple, walking, and leaping, and praising God.
Peter and John were simply doing the Word, and an opportunity came upon them to bless and to heal! They didn't premeditate this happening. They didn't go to the temple thinking, "Remember that lame beggar? Let's go and heal him today." They just were simple doing the Word, fellowshipping together, going to prayer. What a difference they made in one man's life. I suppose that being lame from your mother's womb would have made life a bit inconvenient for you. What a tremendous difference two men made on this one little day at about 3:00 in the afternoon. Just another day? I don't think so for the lame man.
If there be therefore any consolation in Christ, if any comfort of love, if any fellowship of the Spirit, if any bowels and mercies,
Fulfil ye my joy, that ye be likeminded, having the same love, being of one accord, of one mind.
Let nothing be done through strife or vainglory; but in lowliness of mind let each esteem other better than themselves.
Look not every man on his own things, but every man also on the things of others.
Let this mind be in you, which was also in Christ Jesus:
To esteem another better than ourselves is not to esteem ourselves lowly and others highly. It is to LOOK on the things of others first, and our own "things" second. To really look to bless, to help, to honor, to protect, to encourage, to edify, to heal another believer. Your heart of love can and does really make a difference. But you have to concentrate. You have to focus. You have to apply yourself to blessing that one person.
Jesus Christ blessed the world one by one, and by so doing, blessed the entire world. Your words, your love and your heart can and does bless and heal others. It takes a commitment of the heart to look on the things of others, then the words fitly spoken will be there to accomplish God's blessings.
Let us therefore follow after the things which make for peace, and things wherewith one may edify another.
We are to follow after (pursue) the things which make for peace and which edify.
I have a Labrador retriever named "Cowboy." He's what you call a
"ball dog," for those of you who have had retrievers. He lives to retrieve
that ball. When the ball is thrown, he PURSUES that ball with all his might
until he runs it down. He runs faster than the ball is thrown many times
and just runs it down. That's this word, "pursue." You go after it. It's
important to you. It's something you want very badly. As you pursue that,
you will find that your life makes a tremendous difference to others. You
will be bringing peace, you will be edifying. You will be a blessing. You
will be encouraging, comforting, full of grace and mercy bringing God's
love to people one by one. You will be speaking a word fitly spoken that
just might change someone's life. You can and do make a difference.
© Copyright January 1998