Meaningful Ministry – Rejection and Resentment

Meaningful Ministry – Rejection and Resentment sounds like a rough way to start a new sermon series, but that is the lot of the Christian who wants to minister to the people in his or her life.  How should we go about doin this?

God has a ministry plan, call it a plan of action outlined for Ezekiel and for us.  First God will outline his audience, the people to whom he is being sent.  This is terribly important.  As I was writing my first few sermons at the seminary one of the struggles was that I didn’t have a congregation to address.  I was writing to the ten or twenty congregations I might visit that summer as I went out practice preaching.  Or think of it this way.  Would you write the same way to your grandmother and your best friend?  Of course not.  Listen as God outlines Ezekiel’s audience.  3 He said: “Son of man, I am sending you to the Israelites, to a rebellious nation that has rebelled against me; they and their fathers have been in revolt against me to this very day. 4 The people to whom I am sending you are obstinate and stubborn.   I can just hear Ezekiel’s heart sink.  Ezekiel’s target audience would not be a very receptive one.  Many of the people in Ezekiel’s audience were the one’s responsible for Israel’s downfall.  And understand that these people were already sitting in Babylon with Ezekiel in exile.  As a Jew there could be no greater wake up call for you than to be ripped by a heathen nation from your Promised Land.  And yet these people still didn’t see their sin.  God describes them as obstinate and stubborn- stiff necked and hard headed.  They would neither change their actions or their attitudes.  They were sorry that they had been taken captive, but that’s it.  We don’t need to look very long into Old Testament history to find repeated examples of this behavior.  It becomes a tiresome sad story.  Why would God bother to send a prophet with his word to a lost cause?  The answer is divine love.

Want to hear more?  Watch this week’s message taken from Ezekiel 2 – Meaningful Ministry – Rejection and Resentment.