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"Competent to be Used"

Date published: 04/14/2013
2 Corinthians 3:6 “He has made us competent as ministers of a new covenant — not of the letter but of the Spirit; for the letter kills, but the Spirit gives life.”  (NIV)  
Praise the Lord that you are a competent minister of the Christian Gospel!  God has made you competent to not only witness to His gospel, but to also disciple and encourage others in the faith.  Imagine a coronation where God just conferred on you the degree of “Competent Christian Minister.”  God now admonishes you to go forth and minister competently.  You might think a good first step to carrying out your duties would be to look at the instruction manual (Bible) to be certain you can competently carry out your ministerial duties.  As logical as that inclination is, it might not be the best step. It is true that the Bible is God’s primary mode of communication, but the intake of the Word without the inspiration of the Holy Spirit can quickly become “works.”  God’s greatest desire is that your life becomes a conduit of the Holy Spirit living through you – not just a Bible scholar.  Christians often feel inadequate to be competent ministers because they have replaced the Spirit-filled life with head knowledge about God. God does use His Word to help you be a competent minister, but apart from the work of the Holy Spirit, it can quickly become an instrument of condemnation, guilt, and frustration.  Paul preceded this verse with 2 Corinthians 3:4-5 by saying, “Such confidence as this is ours through Christ before God.  Not that we are competent in ourselves to claim anything for ourselves, but our competence comes from God.”  As mighty as the Word is, God does not want you to replace Him with His Word.  This becomes a religion apart from a relationship with Jesus Christ.  By faith you received the Lord Jesus Christ as your Lord and Savior; by faith you are to live your Christian life through the power of the Holy Spirit.  Your life in Christ is not for your making, but for God’s impression of His life into you. Your fruitfulness in Christ is not your work, but God’s expression of His life through you.  You are fully prepared for ministry because it is God who lives in you to do His will and purpose for your life.  Your job is to yield totally to Him and be obedient to His calling and work in your life. 
Matthew 10:19-20 “But when they arrest you, do not worry about what to say or how to say it.  At that time you will be given what to say, for it will not be you speaking, but the Spirit of your Father speaking through you.”  (NIV)