The Excellency Of Our Mantle

by Mar 20, 2024Devotional0 comments

Ephesians 4:11 And He Himself gave some to be apostles, some prophets, some evangelists, and some pastors and teachers, 12 for the equipping of the saints for the work of ministry, for the edifying of the body of Christ.

 

      The Lord has given to the body of Christ the ministry offices of apostles, prophets, evangelists, pastors and teachers for the perfecting and equipping of those who have accepted Jesus as Lord. These mantles of God’s calling are to be entered into with joyfulness and gravity of heart, with the understanding that we are responsible for the illumination God gives us through these God-given callings. There is a ministry that we have all been given, and that is the Ministry of Reconciliation. 2Cor. 5:18 And all of this is a gift from God, who brought us back to himself through Christ. And God has given us this task of reconciling people to him. We do not need a special invitation to be reconciled. God expects us to minister this grace to one another. Every Christian carries this mantle.

      We often hear pastors and ministers expounding on the fact that we are to have a spirit of excellence toward God and how we are to carry the mantle God has placed on our shoulders for the building of His Kingdom. The scripture often referenced to bring out this idea is taken from the book of Daniel. Dan. 6:3 Then this Daniel distinguished himself above the governors and satraps, because an excellent spirit was in him; and the king gave thought to setting him over the whole realm. Also, the story of Samuel the prophet is mentioned because the words of prophecy that came from his mouth never fell to the ground and could be counted on to be true. What Samuel said happened. He was known to be honest because God confirmed Samuel’s prophetic words, and he carried his mantle with excellent forthrightness. 1Sam. 3:19 And Samuel grew, and the LORD was with him, and He let none of Samuel’s words fall to the ground. Everything Samuel proclaimed proved to be reliable as he walked in a spirit of excellence.

      Being wrapped in God’s authority and graced with the presence of the Holy Spirit to help us represent our Lord is not to be taken lightly. You may not be called to bring a prophetic message to the nation, but you are called to bring peace and reconciliation within the walls of your home. The spirit of excellence starts at home. It begins within our character through God’s direction, which can only be found in the presence of the Lord. Maybe this is why the Lord says “Few are chosen,” because we do not step up or respect the magnitude and measure that the joy of our salvation brings to our hearts. Matt. 22:14 For many are called, but few are chosen. The gift of God’s salvation brings a responsibility of thankfulness for all the Lord has done for us and given to us through Christ.

      I am impressed with Elisha, and his desire to have Elijah’s mantle of blessings upon his life. Elisha made sure he stayed close to Elijah before God took him. 2Kings 2:12 As Elisha watched, he cried out, “My father, my father, the chariots and horsemen of Israel!” And he saw Elijah no more. So taking hold of his own clothes, he tore them in two. 13 Elisha also picked up the cloak that had fallen from Elijah, and he went back and stood on the bank of the Jordan. I don’t think there was any power per se in Elijah’s cloak. I think the power of faith was in Elisha’s heart. He wanted to carry the mantle of God so he could best walk in God’s presence. Elisha was looking for that spirit of excellence prominent in Elijah’s life. A double portion of anointing was coveted by Elisha, and God honoured the request of his heart because Elisha saw the mantle of God’s calling as the most precious of holy gifts.

      We can become complacent in our attitude toward church attendance, regular Sunday services, Ho-hum homilies, and getting the parishioners out on time for Sunday brunch. In all our religious activity it is easy to lose sight of what the Lord wants to manifest within our souls, families, and communities. Isa. 29:13 Therefore the Lord said: “These people draw near to Me with their mouths and honor Me with their lips, but their hearts are far from Me. Their worship of Me is but rules taught by men. How do we reach the heart of the nation if our hearts are not given over to the salvation and instructions of the Lord? How do I preach righteousness to city hall if I am not disciplined in the righteousness of the new birth in Christ? How can you become a voice and participant in the mission field, when you can’t even clean up your room, get to work on time, or take time out to talk with your saviour and Lord? A spirit of excellence is developed through discipline in the Word of God.

      If there is no excellence of spirit at home there will be very little excellence of heart in the endeavour you take part in within the Kingdom of God. I’m not saying that you will not be loved or encouraged by God to keep going forth in the work within His kingdom. I’m saying, that if anyone applies an honest effort to walk in the righteousness Christ gave them through faith, the Spirit of God will affirm within their heart a desire for the next step of maturity. As we grow in Christ’s excellence, and receive the full gift of salvation that has been lavished upon us, we will cherish the grace that was given to us. Eph 4: 7 But grace was given to each one of us according to the measure of Christ’s gift. The ministerial offices of the apostles, prophets, evangelists, pastors and teachers have been given to the church so that we are equipped with the full measure of what the Lord expects out of His body of believers.

      The mantle of salvation will help us walk in the excellence of His Spirit. Let us thank the Lord for the mantle He has placed on our lives. As we righteously walk with it, may we have the faith to declare the wonders of God’s love. Thank you, Lord, for the excellency of the Spirit of Christ who lives within us.

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