Sent by God
For whoever will call upon the name of the Lord will be saved.
How then shall they call upon Him in whom they have not believed? And how shall they believe in Him whom they have not heard? And how shall they hear without a preacher? And how shall they preach unless they are sent? Just as it is written, "How beautiful are the feet of those who bring glad tidings of good things!" (Romans 10:13-15)
Notice how related these statements are to each other. One proceeds from the other, and the last one is the forerunner of all the others. It says a person cannot preach if he is not sent. It follows from this that people cannot hear if they are not preached to. From this, we find that people cannot believe if they do not hear. They cannot call upon God if they do not believe, and they cannot be saved if they do not call upon God.
The source of salvation depends upon God's sending. If God doesn't send them, preachers preach falsely. Such preaching is worse than no preaching because the hearers hear falsely. If they believe, they believe falsely. Those who invoke God based upon their false beliefs, call upon Him in error, and their eternal future is questionable. "Then they will call upon Me, but I will not answer; they will seek Me diligently, but they shall not find Me." (Proverbs 1:28)
For the time will come when they will not endure sound doctrine; but wanting to have their ears tickled, they will accumulate for themselves teachers in accordance to their own desires; and will turn away their ears from the truth, and will turn aside to myths. (2 Timothy 4:3,4)
False preachers (teachers) attract people to themselves by flattering them. We live in a time of intense deception. As some Christian dynasties crumble, others become greater. Many have bought the lie that "big is God." We naturally assume that every growing ministry does so because God blesses it. That is not necessarily so.
The media exposes us to preaching and teaching everywhere we turn. We need discernment like never before, to determine if the one to whom we listen has really been sent by God.
Then the Lord said to me, "The prophets are prophesying falsehood in My name. I have neither sent them nor commanded them nor spoken to them; they are prophesying to you a false vision, divination, futility and the deception of their own minds." (Jeremiah 14:14)
"I did not send these prophets, but they ran. I did not speak to them, but they prophesied. (Jeremiah 23:21)
Behold, I am against those who have prophesied false dreams," declares the Lord, "and related them, and led My people astray by their falsehoods and reckless boasting; yet I did not send them or command them, nor do they furnish this people the slightest benefit," declares the Lord. (Jeremiah 23:32)
False preachers say, "We have the truth; we believe; we hear from God; we call upon God." But that isn't sufficient proof. Something is not from God simply because we imagine it to be. God confirms His word, and promises and prophecies precede it. Defects in preaching always come from somewhere outside the word of God.
False preaching sounds the way the preacher and his followers want it to sound. This way, their thinking remains unchanged and their wills unbroken. They refuse to receive the word counter to what they think. They receive it instead according to their own ideas.
The word of God really comes in opposition to our selfish and wishful thinking. It doesn't let our thinking prevail, even what we hold most sacred. Instead, it uproots and scatters and destroys every belief that makes us feel comfortable. "Is not My word like fire?" declares the Lord, "and like a hammer which shatters a rock?" (Jeremiah 23:29)
One who carries the word of God in his heart is never really satisfied with himself. The word crucifies his self-satisfaction. It teaches him to have satisfaction and joy and confidence in God alone. He is one whom God will send.
That person doesn't preach the Gospel for personal advantage or self-glorification, he preaches out of obedience to God. His feet are called beautiful because everywhere he walks he tells the world about the Lamb of God who takes away its sin. He sets free those who are in bondage, and shows them the way to peace through faith in Jesus Christ.
This doesn't mean that only those officially ordained by the church can be sent to preach the word. A person is sent by God, not by man. The sending comes out of the being. We must be with God in our quiet time, before we are sent by Him.
In our quiet time, we learn to hear God's voice and to act in obedience. When we are rightly related to God, in obedience, He continually pours Himself through us to others.
We must ask ourselves if we want to be one sent by God. If so, we strengthen our relationship with Him in our quiet time. We learn to hear His voice, and we develop the courage to step out in obedience to His direction.
Once that lifestyle is in operation, we join the ranks of those sent by God to bring glad tidings of good things to the world. Then our feet will be called beautiful.
Jesus is King!
P.S. What are you doing of eternal value?
Question for today: Am I ready to be sent by God? If not, why not?