Ambassadors for Christ
Introduction: An illustration from P. R. Van Gorder:
“Late one night a salesman drove into a strange city and tried to get a room in a hotel. The clerk informed him that there was no vacancy. Disappointed, he started to leave the lobby when a dignified gentleman offered to share his room with him. Gratefully the traveler accepted his kindness.
Just before retiring, the man who had shown such hospitality, knelt and prayed aloud. In his petition he referred to the stranger by name and asked the Lord to bless him. Upon awakening the next morning, he told his guest it was his habit to read the Bible and commune with God at the beginning of each day, and he asked if he would like to join him. The Holy Spirit had been speaking to the heart of this salesman, and when his host tactfully confronted him with the claims of Christ, he gladly received the Savior.
As the two were ready to part, they exchanged business cards. The new believer was amazed to read, “William Jennings Bryan, Secretary of State.”
You see William Jennings Bryan was not only the Secretary of State under Woodrow Wilson, but more importantly he was an ambassador for Christ.
Once you are saved you are transformed into a “new creature” and are given a new mission. You become Christ’s “ambassador.”
J. Dwight Pentecost states in his book, Designed to Be Like Him, “There can be no higher goal. There can be no higher ambition. There can be no higher purpose than that which the Word of God puts before us as the chief end of the child of God, to glorify God. The greatest goal in the believer’s life is not his own enjoyment of his salvation. His highest goal is not learning the truths of Scripture, nor even teaching and preaching the Word. His greatest goal is to live Jesus Christ so that men may know the Father.”
Just like the prince or son of a King would act like royalty and so must the children of God act. We are ambassadors for God here on earth and we should act like children of God. As believers, being an ambassador for Christ is our true vocation. Page Patterson said in TTU chapel that we are not students, teachers, lawyers, nor doctors in “vocation,” instead, we are ambassadors for Christ!
(Transition: Now that we have seen that we are commissioned to be ambassadors for Christ, let us take a look at four tasks that an ambassador does. The first task is that an ambassador represents the one who sends him. Therefore, Christians must represent Christ.)
I. An ambassador Represents the one who sends him. (Acts 11:26)
II. An ambassador speaks the Message of the one who sends him. (1 Corinthians 15:1-4)
A. The Messiah was born. (Luke 2:6-11)
B. The Messiah died for us. (1 Corinthians 15:3)
C. The Messiah rose from the dead. (1 Corinthians 15:4)
III. An ambassador speaks with the Authority of the one who sends him.
A. Authority is given to us from the Son of God. (Matthew 28:18-20)
B. Authority is given to us from being sons of God. (John 1:12)
IV. An ambassador needs to be in constant Communication with the one who sends him.
A. The Communication from God to man is through the Bible. (Word Hand)
1. Hear the Word of God (Romans 10:17)
17 So then faith cometh by hearing, and hearing by the word of God.
2. Read the Word of God (Revelation 1:3)
3 Blessed is he that readeth, and they that hear the words of this prophecy, and keep those things which are written therein: for the time is at hand.
3. Study the Word of God (Acts 17:11)
11 These were more noble than those in Thessalonica, in that they received the word with all readiness of mind, and searched the scriptures daily, whether those things were so.
4. Memorize the Word of God (Psalm 119:9,11)
9 Wherewithal shall a young man cleanse his way? by taking heed thereto according to thy word.
11 Thy word have I hid in mine heart, that I might not sin against thee.
5. Meditate on the Word of God (Psalm 1:2,3)
2 But his delight is in the law of the LORD; and in his law doth he meditate day and night.
3 And he shall be like a tree planted by the rivers of water, that bringeth forth his fruit in his season; his leaf also shall not wither; and whatsoever he doeth shall prosper.
B. The Communication from man to God is through Prayer. (Prayer Hand)
1. Praise: Voicing my wonder about who God is. (Psalm 146:1,2)
1Praise ye the LORD. Praise the LORD, O my soul. 2 While I live will I praise the LORD: I will sing praises unto my God while I have any being.
2. Thanksgiving: Thanking God for what He has done for me. (Eph. 5:20)
20 Giving thanks always for all things unto God and the Father in the name of our Lord Jesus Christ;
3. Intercession: Praying for others. (Ephesians 6:18,19)
18 Praying always with all prayer and supplication in the Spirit, and watching thereunto with all perseverance and supplication for all saints;
19 And for me, that utterance may be given unto me, that I may open my mouth boldly, to make known the mystery of the gospel,
4. Petition: Asking God for my needs. (1 Samuel 1:27)
27 For this child I prayed; and the LORD hath given me my petition which I asked of him:
5. Confession: Agreeing with God about my sin. (1 John 1:9)
9 If we confess our sins, he is faithful and just to forgive us our sins, and to cleanse us from all unrighteousness.
Illustration: “Brother, The Grass Is Growing”
“The earliest African converts to Christianity were earnest and regular in their private devotions. Each one reportedly had separate spots in the thicket where he poured out his heart to God. The several paths to these little Bethels became distinctly marked; and when any one began to decline in devotions, it was soon apparent to others. They would then kindly remind him, saying, “Brother, the grass grows on your path yonder.”
Conclusion: We are saved by grace through faith. Jesus Christ then gives us the authority to become the sons of God. Once we are new creations in Christ, we become ambassadors for Christ. As ambassadors we should live like we mean it. We might be the only Bible some people may read; our testimony has a big impact on the people around us.