Share This Episode
Finding Purpose Russ Andrews Logo

Marks of an Effective Ministry- Part #2

Finding Purpose / Russ Andrews
The Truth Network Radio
June 1, 2022 12:30 am

Marks of an Effective Ministry- Part #2

Finding Purpose / Russ Andrews

On-Demand Podcasts NEW!

This broadcaster has 170 podcast archives available on-demand.

Broadcaster's Links

Keep up-to-date with this broadcaster on social media and their website.

June 1, 2022 12:30 am

Today Pastor Russ Andrews continues his sermon in the book of Luke and answers 3 questions: "What are the characteristics of an effective church, what was the main purpose of Jesus's ministry, and what was His strategy?"

In Touch
Charles Stanley
Baptist Bible Hour
Lasserre Bradley, Jr.
Core Christianity
Adriel Sanchez and Bill Maier
Delight in Grace
Grace Bible Church / Rich Powell
The Christian Car Guy
Robby Dilmore

In Uganda, 40% of the people have to walk 30 minutes or more for clean water. Two-thirds of the world's population could face water shortages by 2025.

Do something today. Your gift could help install a Jesus well, providing water for an entire village for 25 years. Gospel for Asia has installed 30,000 of these wells, and they need your help to give life to thirsty people. Join Truth Network in supporting this cause. Go to or call 855-573-7351.

Let's bring the living water to the world. Hey, this is Jim Graham from the Masculine Journey Podcast, where we explore relationship instead of religion every week. Your chosen Truth Network Podcast is starting in just a few seconds. Enjoy it, share it, but most of all, thank you for listening and for choosing the Truth Podcast Network. This is the Truth Network.

This is part two of a special two-part episode. Do you feel like you're on a religious treadmill? Do you feel like Christianity is just a system of rules and regulations?

I can do this, but I can't do that. Do you feel like your efforts to reach God, find God, and please God are futile? Do you feel like your faith is dead or alive? Today, Pastor Russ Andrews will walk us through Scripture to answer these questions. Join us on Finding Purpose, glorifying God by helping men find their purpose for living. For more information and to connect with Russ Andrews and Finding Purpose, you can visit us online at or connect with us on Facebook.

Now let's listen to Russ Andrews as he teaches us how to be a Christian without being religious. This is where God wanted me to be. It was for the best years of my life, but I knew that He was calling me. I just didn't know what to do. Just right now, I got to go there. I got to throw away all my suits. I was tired of wearing a tie and put on blue jeans and a Lacoste and a backpack and show up, 45 years old, and I was older than some of the professors.

But you see, here's the problem today. Many men and women were never called. Did you know that? God didn't appoint them or sin for them. So why are they in the pulpit, men and women? Because they chose, they say, well, I think it'd be good to go to seminary. It used to be that ministers were really the most, the pastor of a church was the most highly respected person in the community. That's probably not the case today, but it used to be. And so it's a very respectable position, just like being a doctor or a lawyer.

And so that's what they chose to do. The prophet Jeremiah warns about people in the ministry who were never summoned by Jesus. You can read Jeremiah 23 carefully.

I just picked out a couple of key verses. Jeremiah 23 verses 30 and 32 says, therefore, declares the Lord, I'm against the false prophets. They tell you false dreams and lead my people astray with their reckless lies. This is God speaking to prophets and priests and preachers.

Yet I did not send them or appoint them, and they do not benefit these people in the least. Declares the Lord. When it's a declaration, God means it. So Jesus summoned the 12 and He commanded them to go.

Why? Because God the Father, Jesus volunteered, but God the Father basically summoned the Son and said, I want you to go to earth. And Jesus submitted to his heavenly Father's will and God sent him into the world on a divine rescue mission. Do you know what His mission was? To save us from our sins. John 3 17 says, for God did not send His Son into the world to condemn the world, but to save the world through Him.

Don't you love that? He did not come to condemn anybody. Think about the woman called an act of adultery. No condemnation.

What? He restored her. He drew, He called her to Himself.

Woman at the well, same thing. This was Jesus' sole purpose in life, to save us, to rescue us. So if that was His purpose, what was His strategy?

Well, here's what, here's His strategy. He'd go out and preach to the masses. However, He poured Himself into how many men?

The 12. And then according to Mark, He sent them out two by two. Now why did He send them out two by two?

I think for two reasons. First of all, you know, in a court of law, you need a testimony of two. And so you've got two men going out whose lives have been changed, and these are just common ordinary fishermen, and they start preaching with power and authority, but they're, and so you've got the testimony of two. They support each other.

People say, gosh, two of them. I believe it. Then He also wanted, I think, them to support each other and hold each other accountable. That's why lots of times, you know, you know, when you go to the mission field, you need to not go by yourself.

You go with somebody else. And so Jesus' strategy, listen, it should serve as a model for ministries. And this is why I'm so excited to have my brother, Jim Briggs, not sure where he is, to come on board. Jim felt God's call to come to the ministry, and he felt God's call to come to this ministry, thank goodness. And one of his main desires is to pour into our leaders, to develop them into greater leaders.

What's that called? Discipleship. That's another mark of an effective ministry or church.

They're actually discipling people. Remember, that's the great command. Go out and not make converts, but make what? Make disciples of all men. Number two, Jesus did not just send out His disciples. He gave them power and authority when He sent them. He just didn't tell them to go. He gave them, He poured into them power and authority. In other words, He anointed them, in this case for two special things. Preaching. Do you know what? If you're listening to preaching, and it has not been anointed by God, it carries no power and no authority, and nothing will happen.

Just hot air. But you can take somebody, like I remember, I read about when Charles Spurgeon was going to church when he was about 16, and it was snowing. He couldn't get to his church. So he went to this other church, and the preacher couldn't show up because there was too much snow.

So this deacon who was not educated, didn't have a seminary degree, he stood up and he went to one verse, which says, I think it's in Isaiah 22 something, it says, look unto me, all ye ends of the earth, and be saved. You know what he said? It's not too hard to understand look. Okay, just look. Look at him on the cross. Look at him sweating bloods of tears. Look. What does he say?

Coming to me, all the ends of the earth. He looked at this man, and he said, young man, you look miserable. You need to come to Jesus. It was Charles Spurgeon. Was that a great sermon?

Nope. It felt like something you'd hear down in Bethel, from a country preacher. But if it's endued with power and authority, it transforms the life of someone like Charles Spurgeon. The second thing that you want to do is a supernatural miracle, specifically driving out demons and healing the sick.

And so once again, we have a model here for what an effective church of ministry should do. Preaching, you catch this, and supernatural miracles. Now, before you think I've jumped on board the healing platform, I'm not endorsing at all Kenneth Hayden or Benny Hinn.

As far as I'm concerned, they're false teachers. But I do believe that God still performs supernatural miracles. But what's the greatest supernatural miracle He ever performs? Your salvation.

Think about it. He rescues you from God. He rescues you from the dominion of darkness and brings you into the kingdom of light, into the kingdom of the sun. That's the greatest miracle there is. And when you see it, you've seen a supernatural miracle. But I also believe, listen, the reason that they did supernatural miracles back then with the 12 is to affirm their message, because they did not have the written Word of God. They will listen to an oral message. And so to confirm that this was a true recorded prophet, the 12, because they were preaching the Word of God, He affirmed their ministry with miracles the same way He affirmed Moses with miracles.

This is my man. Look at these miracles. These miracles are confirmed. Jesus said, if you don't believe what I say, at least believe the miracles. Miracles affirm the anointing of someone. So why do we not have a lot of miracles in America?

And I think there's still physical miracles, but there are not many. You know why? We don't need them to affirm the message.

Why not? I've got about 75 Bibles in my office. There are Bibles galore in America. There's preaching on the radio. There are churches on every street corner, although most of them I wouldn't go to.

But there are a lot of good churches out there. We don't need miracles. Except for the miracle, changed hearts and changed lives. You go to somewhere like Iraq or Iran or Pakistan or the Ukraine, I guarantee they're seeing physical miracles there. I know for a fact that they're seeing the appearance of Christ in the flesh. That's a supernatural miracle.

Why? They don't have access to the written Word of God like we do. So in those circumstances, I believe that God does supernatural things to affirm His message and for a purpose. To draw people to the sky because He's a healer?

No. So that people will believe and be saved. Now Jesus ignored the Twelve with the power and authority to do what? To preach the good news about the kingdom of God.

Why? Because this is what He did. Listen, He poured into Twelve and He sent them out to do the same thing He was doing. The very first thing that you see John the Baptist and Jesus doing is they preach the message of repentance for the forgiveness of sins.

Mark 1, 14 and 15 says, After John was put in prison, Jesus went into Galilee, proclaiming the good news of God. The time has come, He said, the kingdom is at hand. Repent and believe the good news. When's the last time you heard that message in your church? Y'all think I'm down on the church a little bit? I am, but not on the true church, okay? I'm for true churches.

We live in a very dark world right now. It's time to recognize what is true and what is false. And the way you do that is you study God's Word so that you can discern the truth from error. Did you know in the last chapter of Mark, so Jesus began His ministry preaching a message of repentance for the salvation of sins? In other words, the Gospel, the good news. That's the last thing He said to the disciples before He ascended. Mark 16, the last chapter of Mark, Jesus said these are His last words before He ascended.

Go into all the world, Twelve, and preach the good news to all creation. Whoever believes and is baptized will be saved. The baptism doesn't save you, but that's just to follow your salvation. It's the evidence that you've been saved.

But whoever does not believe will be condemned. At the Lord Jesus had spoken to them. He was taken up into heaven and He sat at the right hand of God. Then the disciples went out and preached everywhere. And the Lord worked with them and confirmed His Word by the signs that accompanied it.

He confirmed His Word. Number three, notice that Jesus sent them out with the command, go out into all the world. See, here's another mark of an effective church or ministry. It's a sending church. It sends missionaries out into the city, out into the state, out across the world.

Out across the world. And that's what a lot of, that's what really good seminars are doing. They're sending missionaries all over the world. Any effective church or ministry must do the same thing. Preach the good news to all creation.

So what is the good news? It's the gospel of Jesus Christ who came to save men from their sins that they might have eternal life in Him. Think about that. The gift of eternal life offered to the world on a plate. And all you have to do is eat it, receive it. This is why Jesus said you must be what? Born again. Another phrase you never hear in church, rarely. Number four, Jesus commanded His disciples to take nothing with them. Look at verse four. Jesus told them, take nothing for the journey. No staff, no bag, no bread, no money, and no extra tonic. Now I've got news for you.

When I go on a trip, my bag weighs more than 75 pounds when I get to the airport because I don't want to leave anything out that I might need. So why did Jesus send them out without nothing? Why do you think? As Jeff said, to get them to rely on Him and Him alone. In 1825, some of you all have heard this story. It's a famous story. Shortly after getting out of prison, George Muller placed his trust in Jesus Christ. And then he later married and he settled down in Bristol, England where he actually began to grow in his faith and he began to notice all over London all the children, homeless children that were running around wild and didn't have much clothing.

They were begging for food and money. And so on December the 9th, 1835, at a public hearing, he presented a plan for an orphanage. God put the desire to build an orphanage in his heart. And after he presented the plan, contributions began to pour in. And shortly after, thereafter, his first orphanage opened and they took in 26 children. And so that was the beginning of his orphanage ministry. Now listen, this is what I admire about Muller.

From the beginning, he never asked for money. And some of you all are going, well Russ, why don't you practice that? Well, that's another sermon. That's another sermon. Listen, I admire his faith. And he never went around telling about the ministry needs, which is what I was going to do tonight, but now I'm not going to do it. See, he believed in praying earnestly and trusting the Lord to provide.

And the Lord did, although sometimes at the last moment. So one morning, all the children in this one orphanage were down. And they had all the plates and the utensils and the glasses. And there was nothing to eat and there was nothing to drink.

And George Muller said, let's bow our head. He said, Lord, he said the Lord's prayer, give us this day our daily bread. And there was a knock on the door. And there was a knock on the door. And the man at the door was a baker.

He said, Mr. Muller, I couldn't sleep last night. Somehow I felt you didn't have bread for breakfast. So I got up at 2 a.m. and baked some fresh bread.

Do you need any? Here it is. Then there was a second knock. The milkman was driving along and he lost the steering in his truck and it just careened off the road right in front of the orphanage. So it was loaded down with eggs and milk and cheese. And he went up and knocked on the door and he said, look, I've got a truck full of eggs and milk and cheese and I don't want it to spoil.

Do you need it? How about that? I call that a supernatural miracle.

And stories like this became the norm for his work. And during the course of his 99 years, Muller housed more than 10,000 orphans, prayed in millions of dollars, traveled to scores of countries preaching the gospel, and recorded 50,000 answers to prayer. Why don't we pray more? You want to know why you have not? Why I have not? Because we ask not.

In Matthew 6, 25 and 33, Jesus says, Therefore I tell you, do not worry about your life, what you will eat or drink, or about your body, what you will wear, but seek first His kingdom, men. And all these things will be given to you as well. Right now, that couple I told you about, Ira and Sergei, and their two little children, she sent me a picture yesterday morning, Sunday morning, because I asked them, I asked her, are you still alive? Because I hadn't heard from her in a couple of days.

She said yes. And I said, I'd like to see a picture of where you are. And by the way, do you need any money? We can get some money sent to you. First of all, she sent me back and said, first of all, she sent me back and said, we have food right now. I'm ashamed to even ask you for money.

You've got to be kidding me. Ashamed to ask us for money? And we're rolling in dough over here, a lot of us.

And we live in luxury. We should be just pouring our money into the Ukraine right now. Ministries like Samaritan's Purse and others that are giving. By the way, if anybody wants an orphanage to support, one of the guys at our church, Jim Young, shared about an orphanage that you can send money to.

So if you want that, send an email, I'll send it to you. But then she sent me a picture of her two children in the bomb shelter, where they are. They go when the bombs start. They're in Harkiv. That place has been pummeled with bombs. They looked totally at ease. They had a smile on their face.

It was like in a basement in your house, and they had a little rack over here with food and other items and a computer. And that's the computer I'm sure that Ira is communicating me with. Seek for His kingdom, men. All these things will be given to you as well. Number five, Jesus authorized them to share the truth and then to move on. Look at verses four and five. This is an interesting command. He says, Whatever house you enter, stay there until you leave that town. If people do not welcome you, leave their town and shake the dust off their feet as a testimony against them. Why did Jesus say this?

Well, here's what He did. Have you got someone that you've been sharing the gospel with for 30 years? I don't know.

30 years I do, and I'm about ready to... I'll never do it though, but I kind of want to go shake the dust off my feet and go, What else can I say to you? But what does it mean to shake the dust off? Does it mean you just desert them?

No. What it means is you're handing them over to God and leaving them in God's care. And then I would advise you to keep praying. I believe that God will answer your prayers if you pray for somebody to be saved. Pray. Keep praying. See, by moving them on, you're leaving them or that place in the hands of God. See, some people, as Jesus said, will be ever hearing but never believing and never understanding.

Turn these people over to God and keep praying. One last comment about these nine verses. Here it was confused about who Jesus is, just like many people today who are confused. Are you confused? Do you know and understand exactly who Jesus is? Have you been forever hearing but never really understanding?

See, your faith, your belief in your mind is not enough. You can know the facts. I know all about George Washington.

I believe it to be true, but I don't know George Washington. If he's in heaven, I believe it will be. I'll get to know him then. But I know Jesus. Do you know Jesus? See, here's what I believe about Jesus.

There are only three possible options. Jesus is either Lord, liar, or lunatic. If he is not who he claimed to be and he knows it, and he knows it, he's the greatest heretic that's ever walked this earth. He's the greatest liar that's ever existed. How if he thought he was God and yet he was not, then he's crazy. Remember, that's what the people said about him. He's out of his mind. I mean, his family said he's out of his mind. But listen, I believe that his miracles, and particularly the resurrection, prove that he is who he claimed to be. Therefore, I don't believe he's a lunatic.

I don't believe he's a liar. I believe he's Lord. The question is, is he your Lord? I also contend that most people today don't really care. We're so consumed with wealth and pleasure that we just don't have time for God.

We're too busy. Who Jesus is is really no big deal to a lot of people. But what about you? Who do you say Jesus is? Let me tell you who Jesus is.

Jesus is God in the flesh. He's the great I am. He's the promised Messiah of the Old Testament. He's the light of the world. He's the bread of life. He's the true vine.

You remain attached to him and you'll have power and authority. He's the door of the sheep. You enter through the door to get to heaven. He's the Good Shepherd. And He will guide you and protect you. He's the way and the truth in life. And listen, no one will ever come to the Father except through who?

Jesus, because He's the only way. Lindsey Glagg, I didn't know who he was until today, was a great English evangelist who lived from 1882 to 1975. And Billy Graham used to quote him. He was still preaching the gospel in his 90s. Time and what?

Fruit. Glagg said this about Jesus, there are as many paths to Christ as there are feet to tread them. Think about that. There are as many paths to Christ as there are feet to tread them. How many feet are in the world? Everybody's got a feet. So everybody's got a path to Jesus.

Everybody. But there's only one path to God. And that's through Jesus. John Newton, the converted slave trader, said this about Jesus from His deathbed.

He said, I remember two things. I'm a great sinner. And Jesus is a great Savior.

That's what I want on my tombstone. Oh, besides, you know, I told you I was sick. All right, this brings us to the last section.

I'm almost done. And I can't say a whole lot about it, but I do want to say this. All of Jesus's physical miracles, including the feet of the 5,000, were pointing to a greater spiritual reality. And that is the most important thing that you can learn from this miracle of feeding the 5,000. It's about salvation.

Our own personal salvation, as I said, is the greatest miracle any of us will ever witness. So when Jesus fed the 5,000, it says they all ate until they had their plates were flowing. They had more food than they could eat.

And there were 12 baskets full of scraps left over. So what's the spiritual truth that we learned from this story? Jesus did not come primarily to feed our physical hunger. He came to feed our souls. That is, He came to give us life, He came to give us life, eternal life, and really abundant life. Not material prosperity, but prosperity of your soul. That's the only prosperity gospel I believe in is when it's the prosperity of your soul.

If the other comes with it, that's up to God. John 10 says, the thief comes only to steal and kill and destroy. I have come, Jesus said, that they may have life and have it abundantly. Jesus told the woman at the well, who was basically a prostitute, listen carefully to what He said. Remember, she was trying to get the water out of the well. Everyone who drinks this water will be thirsty again. But whoever drinks the water I give him will never be thirsty. Indeed, the water I give him will become in him a spring of water welling up to eternal life. Do you come in tonight empty?

Are you thirsty for this living water? Jesus says, come to me all you who are weary and burdened and I'll give you what? Rest. You're talking about rest for your souls.

Do you want to have rest for your soul? Come to Jesus. Jesus is the living water. Drink His water and you'll never be thirsty again. The sisters of the world will never satisfy.

He's the only true sister. Did you know the Bible ends with one last invitation? Revelation 22 17 says, listen carefully guys, I think there are 22 or 23 verses in Revelation 22. Bill, do you remember?

Something like that. So verse 17 in Revelation 22 says, the spirit and the bride say come. Let him who hears say come. Whoever's thirsty, let him come.

And whoever wishes, let him take the free gift of the water of life. Being a Christian is not about being religious, but about having a dynamic, alive relationship with Jesus Christ. You've been listening to Finding Purpose with Pastor Russ Andrews, glorifying God by helping men find their purpose for living. You can discover more about finding your purpose in life by checking out the resources at or connect to Finding Purpose on Facebook. Pastor Russ would also like to extend a special invitation for you to join him and over 300 other local men to study God's Word together every Tuesday night at 7 p.m. in downtown Raleigh. Find out more at This is the Truth Network.
Whisper: medium.en / 2023-04-09 22:29:34 / 2023-04-09 22:40:23 / 11

Get The Truth Mobile App and Listen to your Favorite Station Anytime