Psalm of the Day: Psalm 24
Proverb of the Day: Proverbs 16:1-17
Scripture Reading: Luke 3:1-6
Let us notice in this passage the account which Luke gives of the calling of John the Baptist into the ministry. We are told that "the word of God came to John, the son of Zachariah." John received a special call from God to begin preaching and baptizing. A message from Heaven was sent to his heart and under the impulse of that message, he undertook his marvelous work.
There is something in this account which throws great light on the office of all ministers of the Gospel. It is an office which no man has a right to take up, unless he has an inward call from God as well as an outward call from man. Visions and revelations from Heaven, of course we have no right to expect. Fanatical claims to special gifts of the Spirit must always be checked and discouraged. But a man must have an inward call from God, before he puts his hand to the work of the ministry. The word of God must "come to him" as really and truly as it came to John the Baptist, before he undertakes to "come to the word."
In short, he must be able to profess with a good conscience, that he is "inwardly moved by the Holy Spirit" to take upon him the office of a minister. The man who cannot say this, when he comes forward to be ordained is committing a great sin, and running without being sent!
Let it be a part of our daily prayers, that our churches may have no ministers except those who are really called of God. An unconverted minister is an injury and burden to a church! How can a man speak of truths which he has never tasted? How can he testify of a Savior whom he has never seen by faith, and never laid hold on for his own soul? The pastor after God's own heart is a man to whom the Word of God has come. He runs confidently and speaks boldly because he has been sent by God.
Prayer for the Day: Dear Lord, please bless my pastor today. He has a difficult task to do your will in this dark world. Use me to encourage him today.
Action Plan: What can I do to be a blessing to my pastor today?
This devotional was taken from The Gospel of Luke by J.C. Ryle published in 1858
and adapted by Pastor Tim Lewis of New England Shores Baptist Church.