Nepaug Bible Church - - Pastor's Prayer Meeting Lesson Notes -

Part XVIII: Hiding Within God's Supplied Resources To Disciple Others Effectively
(Mark 6:7-13)
  1. Introduction
    1. Often the believer is called upon of God to carry out a ministry of discipling others, and he sometimes can miserably, painfully fail while at other times succeed.
    2. The difference between success and failure is often one of using proper resources as Mark 6:7-13 shows:
  2. Hiding Within God's Supplied Resources To Disciple Others Effectively, Mark 6:7-13.
    1. When Jesus sent out the disciples to preach that men should repent, Mark records simply His command regarding what message to bring in Mark 6:12.
    2. However, He went into detail as to how these disciples were to use God's supplied resources to DO so:
      1. Item One - Jesus paired off His disciples to minister for mutual spiritual support, Mk. 6:7a. Thus, it is important that believers use God's supplied relationships in ministry as it is necessary, cf. 2 Tim. 2:22.
      2. Item Two - Jesus supplied spiritual power for the believers to perform miracles which would certify their messages before the hearers, Mk. 6:7b. Thus, it is crucial for the believer to function in the area of his supernatural gifting to be successful in ministry, cf. the context of 2 Tim. 1:6-7.
      3. Item Three - Jesus commanded His disciples to avoid the appearance of greed that would detract from their credibility in ministering, and doing so by using possessed resources well, 6:8-10. The disciples would be guests in Jewish homes by way of common Jewish hospitality so they were to go as guests, not as those seeking to make a profit in the process. Thus, Jesus put a limit on what the disciples were to carry with them materially so that it would not seem that they were greedy freelo aders taking advantage of Jewish social hospitality, Mk. 6:8-9,10.
        1. In Mark's Gospel, Jesus permits His disciples to use a staff and sandals, Mk. 6:8,9.
        2. Matthew's Gospel records both as being forbidden and Luke permits the sandals but forbids the staff, Bible Knowledge Commentary, New Testament, p. 128.
        3. The harmonization of this apparent discrepancy is solved in noting that Matthew used the Greek word, ktaomai meaning "to acquire" where Mark and Luke use simply airo, "to take or carry along." Mark noted Christ's permitting the disciples to take what they already HAD where Matthew simply noted the command not to purchase any additional resources, Ibid.
        4. In keeping with this command regarding what resources to take, Jesus forbade the disciples from appearing to be freeloaders by moving from house to house in a city, Mark 6:10.
        5. Thus, the disciples were to make their handling of finances or possessions a non issue in ministering so that their hearers would not be negatively influenced to their words by suspect actions!
        6. Because the disciples were impeccable as to their handling of their resources, they would be able to critique negative responders with power, Mk. 6:11. (a) Jesus told the men to wipe off the dust from their sandals before the people who rejected them, 6:11. (b) This practice was a social custom performed by Jews when they left Gentile territory upon entering Palestine to show that they were dissociating themselves from that Gentile land, Ibid., p. 128. (c) Thus, the disciples would leave a powerful critique against those Jews who rejected them and did not even give them hospitality by this practice. (d) However, such a practice could be effective only if the people were convinced that these men were not freeloaders or greedy because they had followed Jesus' former commands!
    3. The disciples went out and had a very effective ministry amongst their Hebrew countrymen, Mark 6:13.
Lesson: Not only were the disciples to rely upon (a) the relational resources God had given them in their partners, not only were they to use (b) their supernatural gifts to certify their messages, but they were also (c) to avoid discrediting their messages by not appearing to be greedy men when shown typical Jewish hospitality, and that by using to the full the material resouces God ALREADY supplied.

Application: To be effective in discipling, we must never seek to acquire additional resources on our own, whatever they may be. We must work within the divinely provided resources of relationships, spiritual gifting and material provisions God leads us to have or risk certain ministry failure!