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The Call Of Jeremiah 1
Jeremiah 1:1-10
I want to thank your pastor for the opportunity to speak at such a sacred and esteemed occasion.
Tonight is the anniversary of the horrific tragedy of 9~/11~/2001.
Some of you may be wondering how we can do this on the date of one of the greatest tradgedies upon American soil, and the reason is how could we address the situation any better than by releasing ministers into the endtime harvest to harvest as many people as we can from these trying times and circumstances.
But, I cannot launch into a sermon without touching on the Biblical precedent for such a service.
Please be aware of the fact that in the OT, Moses appointed Joshua to be his successor by the laying on of hands (Num.
27:18; Deut.
So, we see there a type of consecration or ordination ritual or ceremony.
The ritual of divine impartation through the laying on of hands, seems to have come down from sacrificial ceremonies in the Tabernacle, where the priests heavily laid their hands on the heads of the sacrifices.
·        Moses laid his hands upon Joshua to identify with him.
·        Moses laid his hands upon Joshua to authorize his for service or ministry.
And, don’t miss the fact that
·        Moses laid his hands upon Joshua to impart to him the anointing and the power of his anointing into their Joshua’s life and leadership.
In the NT, “Christ called, appointed, and commissioned the twelve as a personal act, unattended, so far as the record shows, with any symbolic act or ceremony.”[1]
The first “ordination” ritual, ceremony, or service is believed to be that of deacons and is found in Acts 6: 1-6.
As we continue to survey the NT, we see that “Paul, although he had been called and set apart by Christ, submitted to the laying on of hands (Acts 13:1-3).”[2]
“The simplest interpretation is that the Church as a whole held a special service for this solemn purpose.
Further, there is no sign in 13:2-3 that this ‘consecration’ by the Church was more efficacious than the original divine call; the ceremony merely blessed Barnabas and Saul for a special work which was completed in the next three years.”[3]
And finally, we see instruction for ordaining elders in every city are found in Titus 1:5-9.
The terms shepherd, elder, presbyter, etc. designating different functions of the office of pastor.
/(Hence, we have a Biblical warrant for a service of ordination, but what is “ordination”?)/
“In the limited and technical sense, ordination is the ceremony by which a person is set apart to an order or office; but in a broader, and in fact its only important sense, ordination signifies the appointment or designation of a person to a ministerial office, with or without attendant ceremonies.”[4]
“Ordination is generally *not* regarded as giving a person special status to do what laypersons must *not* do.
Rather, in ordination a person is ‘set apart to do what laypersons may indeed do if need be; be s~/he is set apart to give full time and energy to the work of God, having received God’s own call to do so, and in confident hope that his~/her ministration will be the more effective because of that person’s calling, gifts and training.’”[5]
/(As we approach this sacred service of ordination, we need to understand something about the calling, commissioning, credentialing, and cautiousness of those who are ordained to the Gospel ministry.
This brings to mind one of my favorite accounts of God’s call upon a person’s life, which deals with the life of the OT “Man of God” or prophet, Jeremiah./
/Turn with me please to Jeremiah 1:1-10.
Let me read this for you out of the NASB?/
/Here we see:)/
Jeremiah’s Call (vv.
As we look at various elements of the call of Jeremiah, let’s keep in mind that these are common elements in the calling of all of God’s chosen servants.
Moses, Samuel, Amos, Isaiah, Ezekiel and other special servants of God experienced precise moments in their lives when they recognized the call of God.
In these words, Jeremiah states the basis of his call in the phrase, “to whom the Word of the Lord came.”
Every person who is licensed or ordained to the Gospel ministry must *know* that s~/he is called by God.
Each of us must rely upon the Word of the Lord to substantiate our /subjective/ feelings.
\\        I knew that God was calling me through a recurring dream, but God substantiated that calling through His Word in Ezekiel 3 and Ezekiel 33.
In Ezekiel 3, God commissions Ezekiel to be a watchman and to cry out whether anyone was listening or not.
He cautions Ezekiel to *not* be afraid or dismayed, for He had made his face and forehead as hard as the rebellious Jews that he would be speaking to.
In Ezekiel 33, Ezekiel is reminded of his commissioning as a watchmen to cry out and warn the people of approaching judgment.
I think often of these words in 33:33,
“...then they will know that a prophet has been in their midst.”
What has been accomplished is often not fully recognized until the prophet is gone!
What God does through His servant often goes largely unrecognized, until after that servant is dead.
/(Be that as it may, let’s get back to the text.)/
The word of God came to Jeremiah more than once.
*/God’s call is a one time happening or event, yet it is a constant tugging upon our hearts and our spirits./*
*/It is a crisis, and yet also a process!!!/*  God’s call initially comes in a unique way, but God renews that call periodically, so that we may make our calling an election sure and remain true to that special calling.
Throughout this prophecy, written by Jeremiah under the inspiration of the Holy Spirit, he constantly repeats the fact that the Word of the Lord had come to him.
*/He lives, moves and has his being within the sphere of the divine call of God.
In Israel priests were priests by birth, but prophets were only prophets by calling./*
Those of us who are called to the Gospel ministry are not what we are by education or degrees, or by the wills of our mothers or the will of people, or by desire.
*/Those things have their place, but we are what we are by the divine call of God./*
Ephesians 4:11, “And */He gave some/* as apostles, and some as prophets, and some as evangelists, and some as pastors and teachers.”
/(Now that we have looked briefly at his calling, let’s take a look at Jeremiah’s commissioning.)/
Jeremiah’s Commissioning (vv.
*/A commission is an instruction or a charge to perform certain acts or duties./*
In this case the acts and duties of a prophet.
\\        Jeremiah’s commissioning by the Lord is found, firstly, in the same words as his call.
His commission or charge begins with the words, “The Word of the Lord came to me.”
His authority to carry out the will of God is found in the words, “The Word of the Lord came to me.”
/(In the next verse God gives to Jeremiah some further authority or credentials to carry out His commission.)/
Jeremiah’s credentials (v.
*/Jeremiah’s credentials entails more than formal education in one of schools of the prophets!/*
In our day of education worship, it seems that everyone has a string of letters behind his name.
There is nothing wrong with education.
Those of us who are called into the Gospel ministry must prepare ourselves by increasing our knowledge of the Word of God.
The Word says that we should be diligent to show ourselves approved unto God as a workperson that does not need to be ashamed, handling accurately the word of truth.
*/But formal education cannot and should not become a minister’s number one priority or authority./*
Education */with/* God is great!
But education */without/* God is nothing.
·        It’s better to have your B.A., i.e. your born again.
·        It’s better to have you Masters, i.e. you have studied at the feet of the Master.
·        It’s better to have your PH.
D., i.e. you can pray heaven down.
Our ultimate credentialing is that we have been called and commissioned by God Almighty!!!
/(How did God set Jeremiah apart to his prophetic ministry?
What was the authority of Jeremiah’s commission?
God set Jeremiah apart through His own divinely providential actions.
Those actions included:)/
Precognition (v 5).
“Before I formed you in the womb I knew you.”
*/We see here the sovereign grace of God./*  God calls whom He will and chooses whom He will, and God is *not* dependent upon time.
He knew Jeremiah before he was born.
Not only did God know him before he was born, but evidently He formed Jeremiah in the womb based upon that knowledge.
With God there are *no* surprises.
With God there are *no* emergencies.
God does *not* move from crisis to crisis.
God plans.
God had a plan for Jeremiah’s life.
God has a plan for my life.
God has a plan for lives of those who are being ordained tonight.
       God has a plan for your life!  */(Even those of us who are called, but not being ordained tonight.)/*
/(But we see something else in this verse.)/
Preconsecration /(coining a new word)/ (v 5).
*/Based upon His foreknowledge, God formed Jeremiah in the womb of His mother, but before He did that He consecrated Jeremiah./*
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