austin sparks, book ministry, christian ministry, daily devotional

August 20

20 AUG – Imparting Christ to Others

Ministry (speaking now of service) is not telling out truths. A good many people have thought that ministry is preaching sermons, giving addresses, or talking Christian doctrine. That is not ministry. If that were ministry this world ought to have been turned inside-out and upside-down a thousand times over. If that were ministry, then every weekend ought to see this world revolutionized with the amount of preaching that is going on. Ministry is not talking even the most orthodox doctrine. Service is not giving out by word of mouth things which may be perfectly true about Christ. Ministry is bringing Christ and imparting Christ. It is ministering Christ. It is communicating Christ. There is all the difference between giving addresses and preaching sermons, and communicating Christ. The measure of the success of our ministry is the measure in which other people come to realize that they have had Christ ministered to them, and that they are the richer spiritually. That is not just mental gratification, intellectual satisfaction, but something deep down in the innermost being, which is Christ. The Apostle would put it this way: “As ye received Christ, so walk in him…” Not: ‘As ye heard about Christ’, but: “As ye received Christ…”

A ministry like that is usually costly, and when we speak about ministry let no one think that that belongs to a certain class. We are all to minister. The business of every child of God is to communicate Christ to others; and, in so far as you can, by a simple word, communicate Christ, you are a minister of Christ. The effect of our being here on this earth as the Lord’s should be that others should say: ‘I received something of the Lord through that one; I came into possession of something more of Christ through such-and-such.’

There will be one, and only one, hope for God’s people: their knowledge of Him in Christ… and the power of His resurrection as a present spiritual reality. Not their activities, enthusiasms, organizations, enterprises, creeds, “churches,” orthodoxy, etc., but HIMSELF. That time, which is now coming upon us though imperceptible to so many who are preoccupied with plans and programs, will make manifest the principle of the “one Body”, for each of the Lord’s children will feel keenly the need of the fellowship of another, no matter of what connection, so long as that other knows Him.

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