podcast

#511 – Gifts to the Church (Numbers 8:19)

Pray The Word
Numbers
8
19
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“God says and I have given the Levites as a gift to Aaron and his sons, for among the people of Israel, to do the service for the people of Israel at the tent of meeting and to make atonement for the people of Israel, that there may be no plague among the people of Israel when the people of Israel come near this sanctuary.”
(Numbers 8:19)

Get the picture. This is God saying that he has given the Levites, as a gift, to Aaron and his sons and ultimately, to the people of God, for the purpose of worship. God has taken this group of people, the Levites, and he has given them as a gift to his people to help minister before the Lord, to help make atonement for sins among God’s people.

All Christians have been given to the church as a gift from God for the good of the church and the glory of Christ.

Now you get that picture, God taking his people, certain group, the Levites, and giving them as a gift to the whole of his people, and then you read over in the New Testament. Think about Ephesians4. When the Bible talks about how Jesus has captured us by his grace and his mercy. He’s redeemed us and he’s saved us and he has given gifts to his church through us. Ephesians 4 goes onto talk about certain leaders in the church that are given as gifts to the church, but really the picture is applicable all across the board, when we think of every one of our lives. So Jesus, think about it, has captured every single one of us. He’s redeemed us, he has saved us, he has made us his own, we belong to him, and what Jesus does as he saves us, that’s not the end of the story. He then gifts us, like gives us as a gift, to the church for the building up of the church. He gives us, as we’ve talked about at different points, unique gifts, and he provides to his church through the unique gifts he gives to us.

That means you have in the church unimaginable, virtually indescribable dignity. You are a gift to the church. I am a gift to the church. All of us, every single one of us, not just those with certain gifts that get all the attention, but every follower of Jesus has been given by Jesus to his people for his purposes, and so we’re compelled to pray.

God, help us. Help me. I pray that you help every single person who’s listening to this right now. Help us to serve your church well, as gifts that you have given. God, use our lives for the building up of your people. Use our lives for the service of your people. Lord, use whatever gifts you’ve given to me for the service of your people. God, I pray that for every single person who’s listening, who is a follower of Jesus and has gifts given by you. God, they have been captured by your grace, they have been redeemed by your mercy and they now have gifts that you have given to them, not just for them but for the building up of your people. Help them to see their lives that way. Help us to see the church this way. Help us to see every single member of the church this way, as a gift from God to us.

God, help us to look at each other with this kind of dignity, with this kind of honor. Just to look around the church and see. Look at all the gifts he’s given to me, to us. Thank you, oh God, for your gracious gifts in the people around us, in the leaders of the church, the members of the church, all equipped with grace from you for our good, for the good of your church and ultimately for the glory of your name. Oh, God. Thank you. Thank you for the privilege of being a gift from you to the church and for being surrounded by gifts from you to the church. In Jesus’ name we pray. Amen.

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David Platt serves as pastor at McLean Bible Church in Washington, D.C. He is the founder and president of Radical. He is the author of several books, including Radical, Radical Together, Follow Me, and Counter Culture.
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