|Tuesday:||Called, Approved, and Sent|
|Bible Lesson:||Commanding Officer: We should obey Christ. (Centurion's Servant)|
|Memory Verse:||1st John 5:3-4|
Missionaries must be called by God to do missions.
Missionaries must be approved and sent by a church (or group of churches).
|Missions Examples:||Barnabas and Saul|
|Bible Passages:||Acts 9:26-30, 11:23-26, 13:1-3|
Introduction: Barnabas and Saul
How do people know that they are supposed to be missionaries? In the Bible there were two men named Barnabas and Saul and they were sent as missionaries from the church in Antioch [show map]. While they were worshiping the Holy Spirit said to them, "Set apart for me Barnabas and Saul for the work to which I have called them." They fasted and prayed and then placed their hands on them and sent them off. Barnabas and Saul went on their missionary journey to Cyprus and what is now the country of Turkey [show map]. How did Barnabas and Saul know that God wanted them to be missionaries? (The Holy Spirit called them and told the whole church that they had been called.)
Background: The Church at Antioch
Now Barnabas and Saul weren't sent as missionaries the first day that the brethren in Antioch met them. Barnabas had arrived there first and was encouraged at the work the church there was doing. So, he went and got Saul and brought him to the church there. For a whole year Saul and Barnabas met with the elders in the church and worshiped with the church body. The people there knew them and they even taught the people in the church. The people had confidence that what Saul and Barnabas were teaching was correct. They were good teachers teaching the truth. They would not teach things that weren't true. Even when they were called, the church prayed about sending them before they would allow them to leave. They wanted to be sure that they were doing what God wanted.
The Point: Missionaries are Called and Sent
Missionaries do not wake up one morning and go start a church on their own. God chooses the people he wants to send and he gives them the help of a church body. Being a missionary is a big decision. Not every Christian is intended to be a full-time missionary. Some Christians need to remain in their local church to teach and do the work. What would happen to our church if everyone left to be a missionary? (It wouldn't be here anymore to lead the people of Galion to the Lord.) So, the church only sends a few people as missionaries. They want to send people they trust and that God has chosen to do that work. It is always nice to have others who agree that you are doing what God wants you to do.
Invite any children who want to consider being ready to hear God's call to missions, to stay after the lesson and discuss it further.
Scripture taken from the HOLY BIBLE, NEW INTERNATIONAL VERSION®. Copyright © 1973, 1978, 1984 International Bible Society. Used by permission of Zondervan. All rights reserved.