Priesthood of all believers

Get in the Game, 15 May 2022

Get in the Game!
Series—Alliance Core Values
Matthew 28:18-20; Acts 1:8; Ephesians 4:11-12
Series Big Idea: After a 2021 reveal of our First Alliance Core Values, this series is a presentation of the Christian & Missionary Alliance Core Values.


Big Idea: Completing the Great Commission will require the mobilization of every fully-devoted disciple.
How many of you like sports…any sports? There are two types of sports fans…those who watch and those who play. Which do you prefer?
Someone once said football is 22 people on the field who need rest and 22,000 people in the stands who need exercise!”
Tragically, many churches are a single pastor who needs rest and a congregation of people who need to
get in the game! Not only is ministry a team sport, it was designed to involve everyone who claims to be a Christian. It’s not exclusively for professionals. In fact, as we’ve noted previously, it’s the task of the professionals to equip the saints.
Now these are the gifts Christ gave to the church: the apostles, the prophets, the evangelists, and the pastors and teachers. Their responsibility is to equip God’s people to do his work and build up the church, the body of Christ. (Ephesians 4:11-12, NLT)
Today we’re continuing our series on the Alliance Core Values, those foundational principles that our Christian & Missionary Alliance family values which we also believe describe Jesus’ values.
We began by saying,
Lost people matter to God. He wants them found.
Last week Pastor Mike reminded us that
Everything we have belongs to God; we are His stewards.
It’s not that ten percent belongs to God. Everything we have belongs to God, including all of our time, talents and treasures. Today’s core value states,
Completing the Great Commission will require the mobilization of every fully-devoted disciple.
There are some churchy words there, so I want to be crystal clear about what this means. Working backward, a
disciple is a student, a follower, a protégé. Therefore, a fully-devoted disciple is someone devoted to following Jesus…what you might call a “real” Christian, not a CINO: Christian in name only.
Are you a disciple of Jesus? If not, I urge you to consider making Jesus the leader of your life. He is wiser, stronger, and loves you more than any celebrity, social media personality, or philosopher. I’m not a perfect disciple, but I’m seeking to build my life around the teachings and leadership of Jesus.
The Great Commission was read earlier in our scripture reading. It’s one of the most famous passages in the Bible. Jesus commissions his followers—his disciples—before ascending into heaven.
Jesus came and told his disciples, “I have been given all authority in heaven and on earth. 19 Therefore, go and make disciples of all the nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father and the Son and the Holy Spirit. 20 Teach these new disciples to obey all the commands I have given you. And be sure of this: I am with you always, even to the end of the age.” (Matthew 28:18, NLT)
The Great Commission will be completed when there are disciples or followers of Jesus of all the nations. Jesus has all authority and he promises us his presence, which is fantastic. The key verbs are
go and make. Make disciples. Reproduce the life of Jesus in others. Jesus passed the baton, to use a sports metaphor, to his disciples who have been passing it for generations to us. We don’t want to be the generation that drops the baton!
The Great Commission is the work involved in sharing good news and seeing men, women, and children of all the nations obey Jesus, follow Jesus…and that includes helping others obey and follow Jesus. This is not a command just for pastors. That would mean only about one percent would be engaged. The enemy would love that! No,
Completing the Great Commission will require the mobilization of every fully-devoted disciple.
If you are a disciple—a follower of Jesus—discipleship is your mission, your commission. It’s what life is all about…knowing God and making Him known. My primary role is to disciple our staff and leaders to disciple the rest of you to disciple others until every person on the planet has been invited to the party, has heard the good news, has been given a chance to follow or reject Jesus, his love, his death and resurrection.
We need you to
get in the game! For too long, too many so-called Christians have been content to watch. Following Jesus is not a spectator sport! We need every fully-devoted disciple making disciples. I hope that means you!
We often talk about a
triangle: Up, In, and Out. A disciple of Jesus has a relationship with God…up. They also have a relationship with others in the Church…in. There’s also an outward relationship with those Jesus called the lost…the unchurched, those who are not yet followers of Jesus. We have the privilege of sharing good news and introducing them to Jesus. Discipleship is helping people develop Up, In, and Out relationships.
The Great Commission is about making disciples…restoring God’s masterpieces. Every person you encounter this week is a broken masterpiece in need of restoration. That’s God’s work, yet we get to be a part of the process.
Jesus said,
But you will receive power when the Holy Spirit comes upon you. And you will be my witnesses, telling people about me everywhere—in Jerusalem, throughout Judea, in Samaria, and to the ends of the earth.” (Acts 1:8)
Let’s work backwards: the
ends of the earth. This is what most people think of when they hear “missions” or “missionaries.” There are many ways to get in the game with global missions. We’ll look at seven today. The most obvious is to
-       Germany video
-       Heather: Germany
       Explore next steps with the Alliance (
       Participate in an overseas trip with Envision (
We’re praying for God to call men and women and children from First Alliance to go. We want to be a sending church. There’s so much more you can do to get in the game with global missions. You can
-       LIFE Conference
       Alliance International Workers
       The Lost
-       Take the course
       Join the Missions Committee
       Subscribe to Alliance Life magazine
       Participate in our Global Missions events
-       Give to the Great Commission Fund
       Give to FAC Missions which includes Faith Missions (our Samaria)
       Support special short-term trips
You can also reach people from around the world without a passport. You can…
-       Befriend an international in Toledo
       Volunteer at Water for Ishmael
       Engage with the Afghan Resettlement Team (ART)
-       Home Missions partners (our Judea)
       We’re excited about sending the Pollocks this fall to launch Visible Church in Toledo.
Jerusalem is here…First Alliance. You can serve in many ways here at First Alliance.
-       Leadership at First Alliance (Elders, Deacons, Deaconesses, Trustees)
       Volunteer with Kids Club United, or Alliance Youth
       Sports & Arts Camp
       Life Groups
       Dinner Church
       Celebrate Recovery
       Worship teams
-       Masterpiece Mentors (NEW!)
- is a free tool to help you discover how you might best best able to serve. Please take it and share the results with us.
I have one final way you can get in the game, participating in the Great Commission.
The Great Commission is all about
relationships. Ministry is all about relationships. God’s mission to seek and save the lost is all about relationships. Although we have a variety of activities at First Alliance, we never want to overload the calendar to prevent you from inviting a neighbor over for a BBQ, meeting a co-worker for coffee, or engaging with others in hobbies. We need to be present with others.
When was the last time you sat across the table with a non-Christian? I didn’t even say share your faith…just had a conversation! Months ago I talked about how Bowling Green Alliance is challenging their congregation to have meals with people…inside or outside of the church…
in or out. It requires intentionality and I know some are more naturally suited to invite people to coffee or lunch, but eating and drinking are wonderful activities for conversation (and survival!). I want to challenge you—and myself—to have one conversation this week with someone over a drink or meal. Invite someone into your home, to Rustbelt or Black Kite Coffee, to grab breakfast at your favorite greasy spoon or even a trip to DQ or Mr. Freeze.
Completing the Great Commission will require the mobilization of every fully-devoted disciple.
It all begins with relationships. Conversations. Words…and deeds.
Be present.
I love First Alliance Church. I love our global family, the Christian & Missionary Alliance. Missionary is our middle name! What is your next step in obeying Jesus, in fulfilling the Great Commission, in making disciples…here and around the world?
Don’t let the professionals have all of the fun! Get out of the stands and get in the game!

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