Introduction: Start by considering the lyrics of the song: Seeking the Lost. Take note of the line: “Jesus the lamb for sinners was slain.” This is the overriding theme of the New Testament. Jesus teaches in Luke 15 we learn “every person matters.” Every single mission we engage in matters! Jesus teaches His mission of mercy: just one sheep, just one coin, one son. We should have a heart that says: Lord show me, lead me, and use me. This is a lesson or mindset Jesus wants His disciples.
Define the word “mission.” An important assignment conducted for political, religious, or other purpose. Commission, expedition, errand or aim. A strongly felt calling, ambition or aim. Goal, purpose, objective.
Define the word “mercy.” Benevolence, forgiveness, kindness, compassion. Such things show toward someone whom it is with one’s own power to punish, harsh or judge. Leniency, clemency, pity, love, compassion.
2022 is the time for us to show mercy, the Manchester Church: mercy in our church family, mercy in our families, mercy for those we work with, mercy in our community, mercy in our nation, mercy in our world. Showing mercy is the start of repentance. Mission – singular, each mission you do being lead and used by Jesus Christ our Lord.
1.BE HUMBLE, Matthew 18:1-4 The disciples of Jesus were good hearted guys, yet good hearted guys can have issues with self-evaluation, self-worthiness, and pride. When I try to go out and speak to others if I have any such attitude or disposition then I am unfit to represent Jesus in the work of evangelism. Jesus told His disciples they needed to be “converted!” I thought they were-this proves their lack of being where Jesus wanted them. Jesus wanted them to learn the lesson of humility in becoming a child. Why a child? A child is dependent on another. We will always need Jesus. Do we ever lower ourselves to where we really are??? We are dependent on the Lord; I want to stay on the “hands” and “lap of Jesus!”
Scripture: John 13:1-14, Matthew 18:1-4, Ephesians 4:2, Colossians 3:12. Paul an example: 1 Timothy 1:12-17
Our message must be: “you need Jesus”! Because He can give you hope, make you whole, save you from you sin, and give you mercy.
BE CAREFUL, Matthew 18:5-11 Jesus now warns His disciples. In the work of the mission of Jesus, He teaches His disciples to consider their interacts with others and with Christians. Please, please be careful! Children are impressionable and needy, and we must treat them. Receive those who are “like a child”! Be careful because you can be the cause of why others stumble, fail and fall! Your approach, your words, your finger are important. If not- Jesus said such a one ought to be thrown into the water with a millstone around their neck and be depleted of oxygen (drown). Do not despise one of such little ones! This is such an essential lesson we need to understand and practice. Define “despise”: to make another of no account, a nobody, regard them as nothing or treat with contempt.
Scripture: Mark 9:33-37 When you see that “soul” you see Jesus you have understood Mark 9:33-37! Jesus’ message is: put yourself last. If you receive this child- you receive Me and you receive My Father. Are we unkind to the “sheep” of Jesus? Treatment of other Christians?
BE USEFUL, MATTHEW 18:12-17 This passage is about “fellowship” not really disfellowship, here we have guidance from Jesus in how to get the lost back into the fold! How we keep them, help them! So often we look at our wayward brethren as a “problem” or a “huge project!” But we ae talking about one of Jesus’ sheep, one whom Jesus died for! Do not give up-keep trying and trying.
To be useful is to love like Jesus loves. That means: to seek, go, try, and help! We go and love them. We will be careful and kind and humble-because Jesus teaches this and this is effective. Yes, it is good to pray for the lost and wayward brethren, we can be a good example when you are around them, if they come to “church” you speak to them – that is good! But Jesus teaches DO MORE!!!!!!
Scripture: Galatians 6:1-2, James 1:26-27 (Pure and undefiled religion involves going to find them and doing something for them! Help others in their need and watch what you say!)
BE MERCIFUL, MATTHEW 18:21-35 “Story of the ungrateful & unmerciful servant.” Jesus last teaching is about mercy. A known phrase: “To err is human, to forgive is divine!” (From an English poet Alexander Pope who in 1711 used this phrase in “An Essay on Criticism.”) Being forgiving and merciful is being like God. This story that we just read – is YOUR STORY! What is our story? We sin and sin and sin and sin!!! But God continues to show mercy and compassion! There is not one day that Jesus will not forgive you in fact He forgives you so many times in one day! This is a lesson that the disciples of Jesus MUST learn! Do you know what makes God angry? When we show inequity in showing mercy or in being merciful. Have you ever had someone hurt you or really wrong you? Do you think due to that it is not necessary for us to show mercy?? I suggest you go to Jesus and ask Him about it! What advice would Jesus give you?
1 Corinthians 5 & 2 Corinthians 2 (A brother in the Church living in serious sin! There was a lack of humility in the Church. The sinful man repented so the instruction to the Corinthian brethren was to get off his back, bring him in and show mercy. Love him and treat him as the Good Shephard would!
Scripture: Luke 6:36, Proverbs 3:3-5, Ephesians 4:31-32
CONCLUSION: Let us never forget the mission that has been placed upon us by our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ. Let us stop us and ask ourselves “Am I Seeking the Lost?” going on a “Mission of Mercy?” Jesus helps us prepare so that on that mission we will be successful because we have emptied ourselves of ourselves, put ourselves in the hands and lap of Jesus. Jesus will help us to: be humble, be careful, be useful and be merciful! Matthew chapter 18!
“Jesus, the lamb for sinners was slain.”
Come to Jesus today whatever your need may be!