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The Sovereign Leadership of the Holy Spirit In Missions.

Here we see the Sovereign leadership of the Holy Spirit for those who had already made a commitment to preach the Gospel and/or are already in the mission field.

Acts 16: 6-10  reads:

6. And they went through the region of Phrygia and Galatia, having been forbidden by the Holy Spirit to speak the word in Asia. 7. And when they had come up to Mysia, they attempted to go into Bithynia, but the Spirit of Jesus did not allow them. 8. So, passing by Mysia, they went down to Troas. 9. And a vision appeared to Paul in the night: a man of Macedonia was standing there, urging him and saying, “Come over to Macedonia and help us.” 10.  And when Paul had seen the vision, immediately we sought to go on into Macedonia, concluding that God had called us to preach the gospel to them.

See how the Lord’s plan unfolds:

Plan A and B was Phrygia and Galatia.  But God said No.

Plan C was Bithynia.  But God said No again.

Plan D was Troas.  But God said not yet.  And He gave them a vision.

Plan E was Macedonia, God’s original plan. God led them to preach the Gospel there.

1. We make “many plans” but they are not always His will.  But His will unfolds as we step out discerning and trusting Him. “…. it is the purpose of the Lord that will stand.”

“Many are the plans in the mind of a man, but it is the purpose of the LORD that will stand” (Proverbs 19: 21)

“To man belong the plans of the heart, but from the LORD comes the reply of the tongue (Proverbs 16:1).

2. Make plans but trust in God, not in your plans.  Your plans can fail but not God.  God does not fail.  He will guide your steps to His plan.

“In his heart a man plans his course, but the LORD determines his steps” (Proverbs 16:9).

“Trust in the Lord with all your heart and lean not on your own understanding; in all your ways acknowledge him, and he will make your paths straight” (Proverbs 3: 5, 6).

Be encouraged (taken from an earlier post).

  1. If God has called you to step out in faith, just go.  He’ll sovereignly direct your steps to where He wants you.  Don’t worry too much about rushing ahead of Him. Trust in the sovereign leadership of the Spirit for specific guidance (Acts 16: 6-10).
  2. Devise plans & be ready, but trust in God not in your plans. Your plans can fail but not God. “The horse is made ready for the day of battle, but the victory belongs to the LORD” (Proverbs 21:31).

Source of Hope: The real source of hope in world missions is neither statistics nor resources ultimately, but faith in the promise of God. “This gospel of the kingdom will be proclaimed throughout the whole world as a testimony to all nations, and then the end will come” (Matthew 24:14 ).  Our great hope in missions is that God’s Word has not failed & will not fail. Jesus will finish the mission of the Church. What a joy!


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