Getting On With God's Work

Bible Book: Acts  1 : 1-11
Subject: Missions; Progress in God's Work; Faithfulness; Commitment

As Christians, we absolutely need to get on with God’s work of world evangelization. Let me mention that there is a huge difference between doing God’s work out in His world and continuing to do chores inside the four walls of the church. I heard E.V. Hill speaking once about the difference between “chores” and “work.” Chores are done in and around the house and are necessary to keep things running smoothly, but they don’t make you a living. What you do outside is what brings the money in and keeps things growing and going. Most of what we do around the church could be  called “chores.” But doing God’s work of reaching out to the lost is what God is about…and that is His work. God is at work bringing people to Himself. What we need is to find where He is working and make sure we are working with Him. What we need to avoid is the idea that because we are caught up in the chores around the church we are doing God’s Work. This passage reminds us what we have as we get involved in “Getting On With God’s Work.”

I. We Have a Power to Fill Us

Acts 1:8 “But you shall receive power when the Holy Spirit has come upon you...”

God’s work requires God’s power. A car cannot operate without a motor, nor can a plane fly without an engine. We are helpless if we try to attempt God’s work without God’s power.

God promises His power and provision for His work. This is the Power Commission and is a promise of the Holy Spirit filling believers at Pentecost and beyond.

God’s power comes from God’s Holy Spirit. This is the only available power source for our work as Christians. Our education, abilities, talents are powerless in accomplishing eternal results without the Holy Spirit of God.

God’s Spirit is within every believer. When you became a Christian and received Jesus as your Savior and Lord, you received Him in the person of the Holy Spirit. You have all of the Holy Spirit you will ever have. When we sin and are away from close fellowship with God, the Holy Spirit does not have all of us that He needs to carry on His work. But as a child of God , you have the Holy Spirit inside of you and do not have to pray for a second blessing.

God’s work is only done by those who are “Filled” with the Holy Spirit. All Christians have the Spirit of God, but sometimes we need to be filled again and again with the Spirit of God. As someone has stated, “There is One Baptism, but Many Fillings.” Even after the great experience at Pentecost, the disciples needed to be filled again. “And when they had prayed, the place where they had gathered together was shaken, and they were all filled with the Holy Spirit, and began to speak the word of God with boldness” (Acts 2:31).

The filling of the Holy Spirit is yours by faith. Just as you prayed the sinners’ prayer to receive Christ as Savior and Lord, you can pray a similar prayer to make sure you are filled with the Spirit of God each day. It might be a prayer like this:

“Dear Lord Jesus,

I know that you are in my life, and I need You to help me today. Please forgive me of my sins of pride, and greed, and ….whatever (be specific) Fill me with your Holy Spirit as You promised You would do. Help me to do your work today as You fill me with Your Spirit. Amen.”

As you go out each day to do God’s work, always remember that we have a power to fill us.

II. We Have a Purpose to Guide Us

Acts 1:8 “....and ye shall be witnesses unto me.”

As Christians we have a tremendous purpose in this world. No child of God should ever be without purpose or meaning in his life. What is our purpose? Simply put, we are His witnesses. If you are a child of God, you are His witness. He said: “Ye shall be witnesses unto me.” He did not say that you “might be my witnesses,” that you “ought to be my witnesses,” but that “Ye SHALL BE witnesses unto me.” We may be poor witnesses, but we are His witnesses.

When we carry out His purpose for us and are faithful as His witnesses, we are promised that we will have positive results in winning people to Christ. Psalm 126:5-6 states: “He who goes to and fro weeping, carrying his bag of seed, shall indeed come again with a shout of joy, bringing his sheaves with him.” It has been proved that every time you witness to a person, whether it’s somebody you know or a rank stranger, one out of ten will receive Christ as Savior and Lord. One out of ten! That’s positively exciting! What car dealer or condo dealer wouldn’t be satisfied with that percentage of success! If you and I witness faithfully, we will have positive results.

When we are faithful as His witnesses, we will never lose our reward. Daniel 12:3 states: “And those who are wise shall shine as the brightness of the sky; and those who turn many to righteousness shall shine as the stars forever and ever.” We do not witness to win a reward, but as we witness for His glory, we should always remember that we would never lose our reward.

In addition to “A Power To Fill Us,” and “A Purpose To Guide Us ...

III. We Have a Passion to Enthrall Us

When Jesus told His early disciples that they were to be witnesses in Jerusalem, Judea, Samaria, and to the ends of the earth, I can imagine that they were totally “blown away.” Their minds and hearts could not take in the immensity of the task just assigned to them. We are the same today.

We have a worldwide task, beginning where we are, but this task is never finished until we have reached the farthest extremes of the earth. Doesn’t that just take your breath away? But it’s true! God has given us the greatest task that anyone could ever have. We are to be missionaries to the whole earth! This applies not only to the original hearers, but to all believers in all churches, in all denominations, and in all the centuries since then. May this tremendous task be a passion that continues to enthrall us every day of our lives!

Our lights must burn brightly at home, in our Jerusalem. When the first persecution of Christians began at Jerusalem, we are told that there may have been as many as 125,000 believers in that city, all meeting in houses, continuing the traditions of temple and synagogue worship they had known all their lives. They had reached so many people for Christ that the religious and civil authorities were threatened to the point that they began persecuting Christians, beating them, hauling them to prison, and even killing them. When have we been so bold in our evangelism that we have become an open threat to the establishment? We must be serious about reaching our Jerusalem.

We must also reach our Judea, the state of Georgia. Judea was one of the provinces in Palestine of that day and corresponds to our states today. We are not reaching our state for Christ. Years ago, Dr. Searcy Garrison, former executive director of the Georgia Baptist Convention, told us that one out of every three people in Georgia was a Georgia Baptist. Today in 2006, with almost nine million people in Georgia, only one person out of six in Georgia is a Georgia Baptist. We need at least a thousand new churches that will multiply themselves until we reach our Judea for Christ. We need every church on fire with evangelistic zeal reaching people for Christ.

We must reach our Samaria for Christ. Remember that Samaria was a people group nearby who was “different from us.” They were half breed Jews who worshipped God on Mount Gerizim rather than in Jerusalem. There are many people groups who are different from us in our great United States. And it is our responsibility to reach every last one of them with the Gospel of our Lord Jesus Christ.

The Hispanic population of the United States comprises the largest minority in our Lord. According to the 2000 census figures, there were 37.9 million Hispanics in the United States compared to 37.2 million blacks. Are we really concerned about reaching people who are different from us? Are we willing to invite them into our churches? Are we willing to start new churches for them so that God can be glorified as they are reached for Him.

Yesterday, November 19, 2006, I attended a dedication of a new Hispanic church building in Moultrie, Georgia. Jesus La Roca Firme (Jesus The Solid Rock Baptist Church) hosted the dedication service for their new facility. The building would seat more than 200 people, but we had to bring out more than 50 chairs to accommodate the overflow crowd that was there yesterday. It was a tremendous celebration of God’s over the past fifteen years to reach Hispanics in Colquitt County for Christ. Dr. Jorge Houed, pastor of the church, was ecstatic in his praise to God for the great things God has done.

We must reach our Samaria for Christ. Our task is never complete until we reach the “uttermost parts” of the earth with the Gospel of our Lord. I have grateful to have a small part in helping more than 5000 missionaries around the world reach out with the Gospel. These countries are in 127 different countries, and are assisting in 24 other countries. Then add those 33 other countries where we have an ongoing relationship, and you come to a total of 184 countries. I understand that there are some 225 countries in the world. We Southern Baptists have a right to be proud of our great missionary force.

But these 5000 missionaries cannot do the job alone. Many more missionaries are needed. All the volunteer missionaries, all the career missionaries are not enough to accomplish the task. We must give to support those who are there. We must pray that the Lord will send more and more. We must go ourselves as we have the opportunity.

Remember what Jesus said, “And this gospel of the kingdom will be preached in all the world as a witness to all the nations, and then the end will come.” Matthew 24:14.


We have a power to fill us, a purpose to guide us and a passion to enthrall us. What more could we want?

What is the most widely recognized shape of any commercial product in the world? You are right, it’s a Coca Cola bottle. Let me tell you one of the reasons that is so. The aggressive marketing strategies of the leaders of Coca Cola have led to its worldwide acceptance as a drink of choice. “Coca Cola” is one word that is the same in any language.

Robert C. Goezueta was chairman of Coca-Cola from 1981 until 1997. During those sixteen years, assets of Coca-Cola rose from $4 billion dollars to $96 billion dollars. On one of his last appearances before the Coca-Cola board, before he died on October 18, 1997 and was replaced as chairman by Douglas Ivester, he stood to his feet and said something like this:

“One billion hours ago, man first walked on the face of the earth. One billion minutes ago, Jesus Christ walked the hills of Galilee. One billion seconds ago, the Beatles were playing in England. One billion cokes ago was yesterday morning.”

Can you imagine that –One Billion Coca-Colas Consumed Every 24 Hours! I would say that the directors of Coca-Cola are serious about selling their product around the world.

When we become as serious about doing God’s work as they are about selling Coca-Colas, God’s Work Will Be Done!