Does God Call Us To Minister To The Rich and Powerful?

God’s Surprising Mission Strategy

When giving a devotional at a nursing home, you have to expect the unexpected. People who are up in years often find themselves shouting at each other in order to be heard. One day I was giving a sermonette to a large room crammed with nursing home residents in wheelchairs. In my talk, I compared senior citizens to fine furniture that grows more valuable with age. At that point, one white haired lady in the back row turned to the person next to her and blurted out loudly, “Is he trying to say we’re a bunch of antiques?”


This is a companion discussion topic for the original entry at http://spectrummagazine.org/node/11330
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Excellent read and thought! Thanks!

According to my calculations, The Babylonian Empire was destroyed less than 40 years after King Nebuchadnezzar’s Conversion to some sort of belief in what Chrisitians consider their pre-christian god.

Further, historians acknowledge that Constantine’s conversion to Christianity and the subsequent acceptance of its beliefs throughout the region, were contributing factors to the fall of The Roman Empire.

In 1939, when Nazism was at its peak, Wikipedia says that 95% of Germans still considered themselves Christian.

I’m not saying SAD-ism and EGW-ology are necessarily bad things.

But I’d encourage any Adventist who harbors aspirations of converting the rich and famous–or anyone else, for that matter–to be careful what they wish for! :rofl:

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. I was once privileged to hear the President of our Conference as well as the Secretary, suggest that they were very interested in reaching, upper level, rich, professional people and wishing them to be converted to our church. I queried their emphasis at the time, but later, I understood that they were concerned in part about the people, but also about the amount of tithes and offerings they, by virtue of their status and professions wouod generate within the church.
Let me say that the gospel is for everyone and all who hear the gospel under the power of the Holy Spirit can find salvation in Jesus Christ. I ve read all that was said in this article, the EGW comments, and other comments made by other writers who were referecned and the author of the article’s experiences, but perhaps we can learn from the apostle Paul’s methods. One example springs to mind- Paul’s direct appeal to King Agrippa…

If we are fortunate to interact with powerful, influential people, it is our lifestyle- our consistent , unconscious lifestyle that may attract them to us and more so to Jesus Christ. I think this approach is consistently repeated in Scripture. We see it with Joseph and Potiphar, we see it also with Esther and King Ahasuerus, with Daniel and Nebuchadnezzar, Shadrach, Meshach and Abednego again with Nebuchadnezzar, once more with Daniel and Darius, Nehemiah and Artaxerxes, finally with Paul and Agrippa as well as Festus. .I think this is perhaps the best a approach to witnessing to such people.

I am on the view that sometimes, we tend to think that we must devise new and interesting ways to reach various kinds of people. In my view this most certainly has merit and value. However, I am more inclined to accept the powerful influence of the Holy Spirit working through my life, consistent to Christian principle- to reach all classes of individuals. Rich and powerful people are not immune to the influence of the Holy Spirit and I think\ they can be reached by the way we live, inclusive of our words and actions ,on given occasions, but more so by the unconscious influence of our lives, May God help us to be these kinds of
faithful witnesses, as demonstrated in the Bible…

Thanks.

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I was impressed to share this post: One of the most important features we need to consider as we contemplate our ministry to the rich and powerful, is the favour of God accompanying our efforts. In many instances, especially in the stories of Joseph, Esther and Mordecai, Daniel, Shadrach Meshach and Abednego, Nehemiah, as well as Paul we can see an underlying parallel- the grace or favour of God was with each of them. The circumstances and the context in which they all lived were not the same, but their integrity in each case, coupled with the favour of God actually had a positive impact on many of the rich and powerful who interacted with them,
Joseph’s circumstances are illustrative: Scripture teaches that the Lord was with Joseph and caused all that he did to prosper in Egypt. This was also manifested to Potiphar as well as to Pharaoh. Note Pharaoh’s amazing description of Joseph as recorded in Gen 41: 38:
Can we find such a one as this, a man in whom the Spirit of God is?
From the stories of Joseph and the other Biblical characters already mentioned, I have discovered a number of important factors:

  1. Their personal integrity before being introduced to people having authority, power or wealth…
    2.The bestowal of wisdom from God in some form- whether it be advice in the case of Joseph to Potiphar, or to Pharaoh ;acts of bravery and goodwill, as in the case of Mordecai.
  2. Humility- each of these characters recognized their dependence on God. This was very aptly portrayed in God’s granting of Joseph the ability to understand and interpret dreams.
    4.Exemplary courage in the face in imminent disaster- Esther’s decision to go to the King to inform him of what was threatened against the Jews illustrates this.
  3. Concern for the welfare of the nation: This was illustrated in the case of Joseph who advised Pharaoh in the face of imminent danger( a famine). It was also shown by Daniel, Shadrach, Meshach and Abednego- when Nebuchadnezzar conferred on them various professional roles within the kingdom.
  4. A recognition of God’s power and sovereignty- especially illustrated in the stories of Joseph, Daniel, Shadrach, Meshach, Abednego and Nehemiah.

Rich and powerful individuals today can also be impressed and forcefully influenced by acts of bravery, kindness, principles that illustrate wisdom, careful planning and execution of ideas, integrity etc. They may not always be converted in the time or in the circumstances that we desire, but a wonderful impression can be made on them by the Holy Spirit working through us . The gospel has power and this can be effective when it is lived out correctly by Christians who emulate these Bible characters.

Thanks