The greatest privilege believers have this side of heaven is our calling to represent God to this world.
The following are some of the criteria the Bible lays out regarding this:
1. We are called to speak the oracles of God.
The apostle Paul said that he was called to manifest the Word of God through preaching that was entrusted to him (Titus 1:3). What an amazing calling. God's will and Word came through a broken vessel of clay like Paul.
But that is not all. Every believer is called to speak the very words of God according to 1 Peter 4:11. As broken as we are, God expects us to know His written Word and how to apply it to the world in a way that is effective. Hence, we are called to diligently study His Word so we can handle and impart it without deviation (2 Tim. 2:15).
This also involves being sensitive to His Spirit and speaking prophetically as the occasion arises. All anointed preaching, sharing and conversation is in a real sense prophetic and is necessary to represent God in this world.
2. Our teaching should be based on sound doctrine.
Many people shy away from doctrine because of all the denominations and divergent interpretations of the scriptures. However, this does not mean that doctrine is unimportant and not our responsibility. All true Bible-believing Christians who study the plain sense of the Word (without the traditions of men and culture that have seeped into the church) will generally agree on all the main essentials regarding the first principles (kerygma) of the gospel and its application. The apostles had a deposit of sound doctrine that they handed down to their protégés (1 Tim. 4:6 calls it "sound doctrine") with the expectation that they would teach it to others (1 Tim. 4:13).
Biblical doctrine is necessary to train believers for every good work (2 Tim. 3:16-17). The apostle Paul was not just known for church planting but by his doctrine (2 Tim. 3:10). The apostle John says (2 John 9) that if someone does not continue in the doctrine of Christ (didache: the teaching handed down by Jesus and the apostles) then they do not have God. John said that if a traveling preacher doesn't teach this doctrine then we should not put him up in our homes (2 John 10). Thus, the original apostles put much importance upon sound doctrine, which means contemporary believers are called to dig deep and move past the elementary principles of the faith into the meat of the Word (Heb. 5:12-6:3) so we can carry the deposit of sound biblical doctrine.
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