The Burden of the LordBro. David Chancellor
8/9/2009 6:00 PM
And when this people, or the prophet, or a priest, shall ask thee, saying, What is the burden of the Lord? thou shalt then say unto them, What burden? I will even forsake you, saith the Lord. And as for the prophet, and the priest, and the people, that shall say, The burden of the Lord, I will even punish that man and his house. Thus shall ye say every one to his neighbour, and every one to his brother, What hath the Lord answered? And, What hath the Lord spoken? And the burden of the Lord shall ye mention no more: for every man’s word shall be his burden; for ye have perverted the words of the living God, of the Lord of hosts our God.
This talks about a burden, specifically the burden of the Lord. It’s not a burden like the load of sin. This is a message given to a prophet for God’s people.
This people had rejected God’s word and substituted their own. God’s judgment had come on them. He did send his word to them later; a message that pointed them to God.
We’ve been given a burden (a message from God) for souls around us. We have a message for the unsaved: there’s hope and help for the soul in Jesus. God wants people to get to know him. We’ve been sent to compel people to go to the feast God has prepared for them. We’re sent to carry the invitation. Our burden for souls is the message of the gospel.
God would have his church be an evangelical church. This means we take what he’s given us to share, and we share it. All Christians have a burden from the Lord for souls around us. We’re introduced to the message when we’re saved. What God spoke to you, he wants you to speak to others.
Afterward he appeared unto the eleven as they sat at meat, and upbraided them with their unbelief and hardness of heard, because they believed not them which had seen him after he was risen. And he said unto them, Go ye into all the world, and preach the gospel to every creature. He that believeth and is baptized shall be saved: but he that believeth not shall be damned.
Jesus upbraided these for not believing what they were told. Every person needs to hear the message and every saved person is sent to share it. You may hold someone’s eternal destiny in your hand. Some may not get the gospel if you don’t have the message. Some may reject the message, but that doesn’t mean we should quit.
Part of sharing the gospel is inspiring people to want it. We need to inspire their desire. It’s something that everyone needs. We need to help them to see that it is the answer for their need. God didn’t say we should wait for them to come to us, but he told us to go to them. Pray that God would help you to deliver the message effectively. We want people to want what we’ve found in Jesus.
1 Timothy 2:3-4
For this is good and acceptable in the sight of God our Saviour; Who will have all men to be saved, and to come unto the knowledge of the truth.
Pray for conditions conducive to carrying the gospel to other people. "…who will have all men to be saved, and to come unto the knowledge of the truth…" This is God’s burden (message) for lost souls. We can tell people with confidence that God wants them to be saved. It’s a message that is appropriate for everyone.
When you take this message to some people, they’ll try to see if you really are what you say you are. Be an example of the message you carry. Rely on the grace of God to get you through whatever might come.
Our motivation should come from the love of God and for our fellowman. This is why we carry the message.
Ye have heard that it hath been said, Thou shalt love thy neighbour and hate thine enemy. But I say unto you, Love your enemies, bless them that curse you, do good to them that hate you, and pray for them which despitefully use you, and persecute you. That ye may be the children of your Father which is in heaven; for he maketh his sun to rise on the evil and on the good, and sendeth rain on the just and on the unjust. For if ye love them which love you, what reward have ye? Do not even the publicans the same? And if ye salute your brethren only, what do ye more than others? do not even the publicans so? Be ye therefore perfect, even as your Father which is in heaven is perfect.
"Love your enemies…" Love is the basis of our interaction with our fellowman. Without the love of God in your heart, you won’t have the motivation to carry the message. The strength of your burden is measured by the love of God within. Ask God to fill you up with love. It will help you to reach out to those that you’re not on friendly terms with. Even the worst sinner needs to hear the invitation from God. The strength of the evangelical church is the love of God in hearts. Keep praying both before and after the message that God would help them and you.
But I trust in the Lord Jesus to send Timotheus shortly unto you, that I also may be of good comfort, when I know your state. For I have no man likeminded, who will naturally care for your state. For all seek their own, not the things which are Jesus Christ’s.
Paul didn’t know anyone who would care about them like Timothy did. We need to be that way. We need to naturally care about the state of other people. All sinners need God. The worst sinners need God before their lives are destroyed. Without the love of God, we’re not likely to care about people around us. The strength of our motivation for others is God’s love in our hearts. We want people to get an invitation to the marriage feast. God has a place prepared for everyone.
2 Corinthians 7:12
Wherefore, though I wrote unto you, I did it not for his cause that had done the wrong, nor for his cause that suffered wrong, but that our care for you in the sight of God might appear unto you.
Paul didn’t write to take sides, but so that they would know he cared and wanted things to be better. We want people to know we care about them and that it isn’t just about church. Those that may enjoy heaven the most are those who can look around and see all the other ones that they invited to come. God’s love won’t leave us happy if we’re unconcerned with the state of other people. We want people to know that we care about them. When we care, it will seem in order and natural and appropriate to share the burden of the Lord. Ask God to give you that love for souls.