Newcastle Baptist Church
Weekend outreach to Cape town
By JJ van Kampen | Outreach Ministry | 12-16 October 2017
It was Thursday morning, 3:45 am when we were ripped from a deep sleep to the reality that we had to drive to the airport in time to catch our flight to Cape town. It was the third year that we’ve had the privilege to be part of the Reformed Faith Mission’s Pastors seminars in Bellville South. This was the 24th seminar and I had the privilege to minister in Afrikaans.
Aware of the fact that we were going to face peak hour traffic on our way to Oliver Tambo International Airport we started our journey at 4:00 am. All went well and we arrived with more than enough time to have a bite to eat before flying to Cape Town at 32000 feet above the earth and at a speed of 780km/h. This by the way was nothing in comparison to the 37000 feet altitude and speed of 1004 km/h on our return flight. The question which needs to be answered is: “Who was in a hurry and why?” We will most probably never know, but both pilots, regardless of their respective motives landed the planes safely and by the grace of God we enjoyed smooth flying and good landings.
On Thursday evening we were taken to Mfuleni High school where Pastor Mario teaches on a weekly basis. The students are in their final term of the first year and I was asked to teach a survey on the Gospel according to Mark. Needless to say; I still had quite a few things to say by the time it was indicated that my time was up. I wonder why a watch was invented?
After the lecture, the students were challenged on their personal walk with the Lord.
After enjoying a Friday of leisure time and later some final preparation; Saturday was the day of the Pastors Seminar. The theme was: “The Reality and Implications of a Word-Centered Revival.” The theme was divided into three sessions:
Session 1: Why do we need a Word-Centered revival?
Session 2: What is a Word-Centered revival?
Session 3: What are the implications of a Word-Centered revival for me?
The portion of Scripture used for the three sessions was Jude verses 1-25. We know that God’s Word is timeless and it was as if Jude was speaking directly to us. It is such a blessing to minister the Word and to experience the truth of Hebrews 4:12 where we read: “For the Word of God is living and powerful and sharper than any two-edged sword, piercing even to the dividing apart of soul and spirit, and of the joints and marrow, and is a discerner of the thoughts and intents of the heart.” (MKJV)
In some or other way we were all challenged by Jude and we could walk out the door of the venue knowing – The Word of God has spoken. Those who heard the Word should go and apply it to their personal lives and their respective ministries. May the Lord grant that each Church represented at the Pastors Seminar will experience a Word-Centered Revival.
On Sunday morning we joined our brothers and sisters of the Reformed Faith Missions Community Church for their worship service. The service was held in a School hall and during the service we experienced God’s common grace as the rain fell freely from the clouds all around us.
During the sermon the question was asked: Why did God save us? This time the question was not intended to make us think about the benefits of our salvation, but rather the question was asked as to how our salvation related to God. Why did God save us for Himself? The passage was John 17 where we find the Lord’s prayer for His disciples and for us who would believe through their preaching.
Three reasons were shared as to why God saved us for Himself:
If there is one thing we will always experience when we spend time with fellow brothers and sisters, it is special moments of blessing. These blessings can come in different forms. In each one of our many moments of blessing we would zoom into some or other Biblical truth. During one of these moments of blessing we discussed the question: When are we serving Christ Jesus?
In the conversation that followed it became clear that we serve Christ when we are actively involved in the lives of our fellow brothers and sisters. When there is a need; we serve Christ by meeting that need if it is within our ability. If we refrain from doing something we are actively rebelling against Christ instead of serving Him.
There are believers today who will pray for a brother or sister’s need, but they will not act on that need even though they have the means to meet that need. They believe they are serving Christ when in fact they are not fulfilling their Christian “duty”.
We read in Matthew 25:35-40 “For I was hungry and you gave me food, I was thirsty and you gave me drink, I was a stranger and you welcomed me, I was naked and you clothed me, I was sick and you visited me, I was in prison and you came to me.’ Then the righteous will answer him, saying, ‘Lord, when did we see you hungry and feed you, or thirsty and give you drink? And when did we see you a stranger and welcome you, or naked and clothe you? And when did we see you sick or in prison and visit you?’ And the King will answer them, ‘Truly, I say to you, as you did it to one of the least of these my brothers, you did it to me.’”
Whenever we do something for a fellow brother or sister we are doing it to Christ Jesus. Whenever we withhold something from a fellow brother or sister in need, we are withholding it from Christ, who gave us everything in the first place. When we are saved we become part of the body of Christ and from that moment on we no longer live for ourselves but for the Head; which is Christ Jesus our Lord.
Another moment of blessing was when we discussed Ephesians 4:11-16. The apostle Paul wrote to the Ephesian believers that they received certain gifts which they should use to edify one another. In using their God given gifts to minister to one another it reflects the unity which is in the body of Christ. After explaining to the believers that they received gifts from God, he writes to them that God also gave certain men as gifts to the church.
Paul writes in Ephesians 4: 11-12 “And he gave the apostles, the prophets, the evangelists, the shepherds and teachers, to equip the saints for the work of ministry, for building up the body of Christ…” The apostles and the prophets were gifts to the church to lay the foundation of the church. The evangelists, shepherds and teachers are gifts to the church to build on that foundation and to equip the members of the church for their work of ministry. The church needs to understand that these men are called, equipped and given to the church as gifts to equip the saints for their ministry.
Our moments of blessing reminded us of truths which we should hold dear to our hearts. We should spend more time with other believers around the truth of Scripture and we will all enjoy those special moments of blessing!
A special word of thanks to the leadership, brothers and sisters of the Reformed Faith Mission Community Church for your love, hospitality, care and ministry into our lives during our visit. May the Lord richly bless you and keep you, may His face shine upon you and may He give you His peace.
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