REVIEW: The Leader 101 Course (around 12 months): Cultivating Habits of Highly Effective Spiritual Leaders
- Lesson One (June 2015). Cultivating the habit of joy
- Lesson Two (July 2015). Cultivating the habit of praying 10:2b
- Lesson Three (August 2015). Cultivating the habit of looking expectantly for 10:2b answer
- Lesson Four (September 2015). Cultivating the habit of carrying people (especially 10:2b answers) in your heart.
*Watch the video below and then come back to this place
KEY CONTEXT: HIGHLY LIKELY THAT PAUL AND HIS TEAM PRAYED 10:2B
Strong assumption: Paul and the others on his apostolic teams regularly (daily?) prayed Lk 10:2b as Jesus had instructed. How did he learn to do this?
- Likely Paul learned this from Barnabas (Acts 9:27). (Or, possibly he learned it directly from Jesus. Gal. 1:12)
- Possibly Barnabas learned it from his cousin, Mark (Col. 4:10, the writer of the Gospel of Mark.) Mark’s mother, Mary, likely had a church meeting in her home (Acts 12:12)
- Possibly Mark learned it from Peter. (Mark’s Gospel is really Peter’s Gospel as Mark wrote down what he learned from Peter.)
- The point is that, although this prayer isn’t mentioned after Luke 10, it is reasonable to assume that it was regularly taught and obeyed in the early church as part of being disciples of Jesus.
WHAT PAUL DID WITH 10:2B ANSWERS (THOSE THE LORD OF THE HARVEST SENT)
*The Lord of the harvest at work in Thessalonica
10:2B ANSWERS IN THESSALONICA (49-50 AD)
From Acts 17, the first house church is planted in Thessalonica. Some of the Jews were persuaded (by Paul’s preaching) and joined Paul and Silas, as did a large number of god-fearing Greeks and not a few prominent women… (The Jews who were unpersuaded said) “These men who have caused trouble all over the world have now come here and Jason has welcomed them into his house.” Acts 17:4,6,7. So, when Paul left abruptly after only three weeks there was likely at least one functioning house church.
Note: Jason was likely a Hellenistic Jew. As such, he and others in this group, already had a rich spiritual background. Starting a church in this context (which is similar to church goers today) can often happen quickly (three weeks or less) and easily. Church planting with people who do not have this background is often slower and more difficult.
THE HEART OF AN APOSTOLIC FATHER (51-52 AD)
From 1 Thessalonians, Paul’s heart is revealed for those in Thessalonica. About a year later, Paul writes his first letter to the Thessalonians. There we see that Paul related to these believers as a spiritual parent. (It may be that there were several house churches by then. Multiple leaders are implied in 1 Thes 5:12.) Paul writes: We were gentle among you, like a mother caring for her little children… We dealt with each of you as a father deals with his own children, encouraging, comforting and urging you to live lives worthy of God… 1 Thes. 2:7, 11, 12. Even though Paul had been with them for only a short time, as a spiritual parent, he had a deep emotional bond with them. They were always in his thoughts. But, brothers (family term!), when we were torn away from you for a short time (in person, not in thought), out of our intense longing we made every effort to see you. (1 Thes. 2:17)
*The Lord of the harvest at work in Philippi
10:2B ANSWERS IN PHILIPPI (49 AD)
From Acts 16, the first two house churches are planted in Philippi. Again, keep in mind that Paul and his companions were praying 10:2b and looking expectantly for answers from the Lord of the harvest. Assignment: Read Acts 16. This time I would like you to read for yourself about Paul’s experience of finding 10:2b answers in Philippi. Who were the two “people of peace” (houses of peace) that he connected with there? Do you think Paul was surprised at who they were?
THE HEART OF AN APOSTOLIC FATHER (62 AD)
From Philippians, Paul’s heart for the Philippians is revealed. In Paul’s letter to the Philippian house churches, written more than 10 years later, we again see his heart. While he doesn’t use the word “father”, he does use family language. And, you can see the deep emotional bonds. Therefore, my brothers, you whom I love and long for, my joy and crown…” Phil. 4:1
In understanding Paul’s relationship with these people (10:2b answers), I want you to focus on the fact that they occupied a place in his heart. They were not a task, they were not part of a program. They resided in the deepest part of Paul. To help us fully understand this key idea and to see how it applies to us today, I have two assignments for you. In both cases, the goal is not just to learn information but to enter into a learning dialogue with the Coach.
1. Assignment: Meditate day and night during this month on Phil. 1:7. Ask the Coach to teach you what it means to carry people in your heart. It is right for me to feel this way about all of you, since I have you in my heart…“
2. Assignment: Read Phil 1:3-11 with the Coach. (ie, the context of Phil. 1:7) Read until the Coach stops you. Dialogue (journal) with him about that idea or phrase. Key question: what did it mean for Paul to have these people in his heart? Lord, what does it mean for me? In my spiritual journey, did I have a spiritual mother or father? What difference did that make? Do I currently have people in my heart like this? Share what you learn from the Coach with your CO2 partner and with your Leader Team. (In addition to sharing in your Google hangout, you might send your Team an email sharing what you are learning.)