Luke 2 – 48And when they saw him, they were amazed: and his mother said unto him, Son, why hast thou thus dealt with us? Behold, thy father and I have sought thee sorrowing. 49And he said unto them, How is it that ye sought me? Wist ye not that I must be about my Father’s business?
Jesus emphasized to his parents the importance of being about His Father’s business; He was preparing for His earthly ministry to establish kingdom principles here on earth.
At its core, our Father’s business is the people business. Jesus’ ministry was people-centric; healing, forgiving, teaching, feeding. The church eventually developed leaders and facilitators, but growth happened because everyone was involved in personal interaction and relationship. The same holds true today. The building and leadership are needed, given for the equipping of the saints in order to go about our Father’s business. But the growth and success of the church is not solely dependent on a building and leadership; it is dependent on each and every person in the church taking ownership and going about our Father’s business.
Jesus said that He came to seek and to save that which was lost. What was lost? Relationship with man in its purest form, as it was with Adam before man fell into sin. Jesus gave the parable of the Good Samaritan to teach about loving your neighbor, more specifically who is considered our neighbor. Samaritans and Jews hated each other, so a Samaritan coming to the aid of a Jew transcends race, prejudice, hatred, social commentary. It is man showing unconditional love, as Jesus loves us unconditionally. That is the foundation of that relationship Jesus came to seek and to save, and it is key to going about our Father’s business.
Having gone through hundreds of years of being led by judges, the Israelites began pining for a king, which upset Samuel. God assured Samuel that the people were not rejecting him so much as they were rejecting God. This was never an issue about whether there should be a king, but rather an issue of timing. There were prophecies in Genesis that Abraham’s lineage would produce kings. So God showed the Israelites what their king would look like, versus what His king would look like. Saul was anointed by the Israelites’ impatience; he was a product and representation of the Israelites focused on their own business. David was about God’s business and his anointing and promotion were a result. David’s brothers were all sanctified by ritual (man’s business) but David was sanctified by relationship (God’s business).
One day, Jesse sends his son David to check on his brothers who are out to war with the Philistines and to bring them some food. When David reaches the military encampment, the Israelites and Philistines are lining up for battle. He finds his brothers, and as they’re talking. Goliath shows himself now for the 41st time, submitting the challenge for a one-on-one fight, defying God and His people. The Israelites draw back in fear, and David starts asking questions like, “Who does this fool think he is, what’s the prize for killing him, and why is no one stepping up? This angers David’s brother Eliab, who confronts him, tells him to stick to being a shepherd, accuses him of being prideful, just wanting to be a spectator of battle. David’s response? “Is there not a cause?”
David is a type and shadow of Jesus Christ. While David’s family thought he should have been at home, he was instead in a place and position that was setting him up to fulfill his call, and his response to his family was, “Is there not a cause?” While Jesus’ family thought he should have been at home, he was instead in a place and position that was setting him up to fulfill his call, and his response to his family was, “Don’t you know that I must be about my Father’s business?” Now switch David’s response and Jesus’ response. David’s response to his brothers could have just as easily been, “Don’t you know I must be about my Father’s business? And Jesus’ response to His parents could have just as easily have been, “Is there not a cause?” They were both, in essence, saying the same thing; it’s time to get down to business.
What’s one of, if not the biggest threat to being about our Father’s business? Getting too comfortable. We cannot be caught sleeping on the job. Water, when allowed to become stagnant (no flow, no movement) is a breeding ground for terrible odors, nasty bacteria, and disease-ridden bugs, among other things. Water must go through a process to flush out impurities. Whether it’s the precipitation cycle, man-made filtration, or naturally-flowing water, as long as water is somehow moving, it’s less of a problem to drink, wash in, etc.
If you are injured or diseased in some way that prevents you from moving some, most, or all of your body, your muscles will begin to atrophy (waste away). Muscles must be engaged to prevent atrophy.
If food is left uncooked or uneaten for too long, it will spoil and then is wasted. If you try to consume spoiled food, you will fall ill.
If a car is left unused for too long, it won’t start, fluids may seize, and animals may make a new home under the hood and chew up wires.
When we get comfortable and set in our ways, we become stagnant, we atrophy, we spoil, we seize up. We become short-sighted, closed-minded, and much less accepting of change, sometimes even to the point of being territorial and selfish. Been there, done that. When change comes about we feel threatened. Being unwilling to change and go with the flow sets us up for failure.
This is not a competition. This is not about titles and positions. Your identity is not found in title or position. This is about eternity. This is about securing your salvation, then bringing others along in helping them secure theirs, and equipping those people to do the same for others. Souls are on the line. Eternity is on the line. We are to act in love, give in service, and live to transform. If we do our part to take care of His business, He’ll do His part to take care of ours.
1 Corinthians 3 – 6I have planted, Apollos watered; but God gave the increase. 7So then neither is he that planteth any thing, neither he that watereth; but God that giveth the increase. 8Now he that planteth and he that watereth are one: and every man shall receive his own reward according to his own labour.
Psalm 128 – 2For thou shalt eat the labour of thine hands: happy shalt thou be, and it shall be well with thee.
We cannot get comfortable to the point of apathy. “What does it matter?” It matters because we don’t know how much time we have left. “What difference can I make?” Your circle of influence is different from others in the church, so there are some people who only you can reach. “What’s the point?” Eternity.
It’s one thing to make sure you and/or your family are saved. But if we are going to get serious about our Father’s business, shouldn’t we help as many as we can to be saved as well?
God took care of people who were about His business: Gideon, Moses, David,
What specifically can we do to be about our Father’s business?
Witness/give your testimony
Be generous in giving; time, energy, finances, love
Encourage/support one another
Every guest should feel welcome/loved
It’s time to labor. It’s time to get to work. It’s time to get down to business.
Excerpted from a sermon preached by Pastor Michael Lagle.
For the full YouTube audio/video, click here.
If you are looking for an Apostolic Pentecostal church and are in the Chicagoland area, come check out The Life Church located at 3030 Central Road in Glenview, IL. Services are Sundays at 1pm and Wednesdays at 7pm. We would love to see you there!