Read John 2:1-11
Yeshua’s teaching of His talmidim (disciples) was not just in the words He used. Every place He chose to go and every action He did was just as much a part of His teachings as His words were. If we want to learn what the scope and sequence of Yeshua’s curriculum was, then we need to follow Him step by step as He travelled around Israel, and beyond, teaching His followers.
The days were starting to get brighter and warmer, the almond trees beginning to blossom and the late barley seeds were being sown when Yeshua and his talmidim were invited to a wedding back up in the Galilee region, in the town of Cana. News must have travelled from the Jordan to Galilee for the wedding hosts to know that Yeshua now had a group of talmidim. It was usual in Jesus’ day for talmidim to go everywhere with their rabbi in order to learn how to imitate his ways in every circumstance. Judaism was, and is, faith in action. It is a whole way of life, it is what one does, it is one’s culture, not just a set of beliefs. Yeshua affirmed such whole of lifestyle faith in His life and teaching. He also followed the first century Jewish rabbi-talmid model for transferring what He knew and how He lived to others who could then transfer it to still others.
What it Means to be a Talmid (Disciple)…
Jewish Rabbi-Talmid Relationship for Training Leaders
In this “religious leader training” model each talmid (disciple/learner) was a committed, lifelong student of his rabbi (teacher) who undertook, not just to gain knowledge from his rabbi, but to become like his rabbi through:
1. Dedicating his entire life to his rabbi. The first and most important responsibility of a talmid (disciple) was that of devotion to his rabbi, a willingness to forsake all for his rabbi. This relationship between the disciple and his rabbi was the foundation upon which everything else was built. The Jewish Talmud was later to record that Jewish law gave the rabbi precedence even over a parent “because the parent only brings the child to the life of this world, whereas the rabbi brings him into the life of the World to Come.”
Yeshua made a similar demand in Luke 14:26-27 HNV: “If anyone comes to me, and doesn’t disregard his own father, mother, wife, children, brothers, and sisters, yes, and his own life also, he can’t be my disciple. Whoever doesn’t bear his own cross, and come after me, can’t be my disciple.”
2. Memorizing, and transmitting, the teachings of his rabbi. In order to truly learn the teachings of one’s rabbi, a talmid (disciple) would first memorise his teachings, just as he had memorised the Torah during his early schooling, by reciting his rabbi’s words over and over and over again until he knew them by heart. Not only was a disciple to memorise the teachings of his rabbi, he was also to learn his rabbi’s scriptural interpretations and traditions. He needed to learn and transmit not only the words of his rabbi, but also his rabbi’s meaning in those words and how he lived them out.
3. Imitating the life of his rabbi. The mission of a rabbi was to be a living example of what it means to apply God’s Word to one’s life. A talmid (disciple) apprenticed himself to a rabbi because the rabbi had not just filled his mind, but had also saturated his life, with scripture and had become a true follower of God. The disciple sort to study the text, not only of scripture but of the rabbi’s life as well, for it was there that he would learn how to live out the Torah. Even more than acquiring his master’s knowledge, he wanted to acquire his master’s character, his internal grasp of God’s law. As they headed to Cana the disciples were beginning on a journey of learning how to live like Yeshua.
4. Raising up more disciples. Pirkei Avot (“Ethics of Our Fathers”), one of the best-known and most-cited of Jewish texts, begins with example and exhortation to “raise up many disciples”. (1) (2) (3) (4) (5) (6) (7) (8) (9) (10)
Yeshua developed a mentoring relationship with His talmidim (disciples), who dedicated their lives to him, learned His teachings by heart and followed His example as apprentices of life, while also learning to do this with others, teaching them how to follow Yeshua as they had learnt to follow Him. Before He ascended into heaven Yeshua likewise commissioned His talmidim to:
Therefore, go and make people from all nations into talmidim (disciples), immersing them into the reality of the Father, the Son and theRuach HaKodesh (Holy Spirit),and teaching them to obey everything that I have commanded you. And remember! I will be with you always, yes, even until the end of the age.. Matthew 28:19-20 CJB
Yeshua our Unique Rabbi…
Here was a fundamental difference between Yeshua and every other rabbi, and an essential characteristic of this original apostolic reformation. Every other Jewish rabbi eventually left his talmidim through death. So as talmid (disciple) became rabbi they would raise up disciples after themselves. Hillel and Shammai had both been talmidim of Shemayah and Abtalion, yet they each established their own school with their own teachings and lifestyles, and thus raised up disciples after their own likeness, not the likeness of Shemayah and Abtalion. Yeshua gave His commission after conquering death and included in it the exhortation to remember that He is with us always, through all generations. Therefore, those who follow Jesus are not to make disciples after ourselves but after Him, not in our likeness but in His, not to follow us but to follow Him. Thus, He would exhort His talmidim:
“But you are not to let yourselves be called ‘Rabbi’; because you have one Rabbi, and you are all each other’s brothers. And do not call anyone on earth ‘Father.’ because you have one Father, and He is in heaven. Nor are you to let yourselves be called ‘leaders,’ because you have one Leader, and He is the Messiah!” Matthew 23:8-10
Yeshua‘s first lesson – a wedding…
All this was to come, and the journey was just beginning as Yeshua’s first disciples travelled with Him to a wedding, that His mother was also attending, in Cana, Netan’el’s hometown (John 21:2). These first disciples were the brothers Andrew and Shim’on (Simon) Kefa (Peter), from Capernaum, Philip, from Bethsaida (where Andrew and Shim’on had also grown up), Nathaniel, from Cana, and several unnamed disciples (we know from Acts 1:21-23 that two of these were Joseph called Barsabbas and Matthias). This first lesson from their rabbi included an affirmation of the importance of family, community and celebration. Yeshua was just starting his ministry yet he ‘took time out’ to join with the rest of his family in this wedding celebration.
Miriam (Mary), being a Jewish mother, would have been eager to hear all that had happened since Yeshua had left their home in Nazareth to go down to the Jordan where Yochanan was baptising. Well she remembered that day when she first saw her relative Elisheva (Elizabeth) pregnant in her old age and heard her prophetic exclamation (Lk 1:41-45). How often she had wondered what would become of their two sons and what would take place if their paths crossed again. Now it had happened, and she knew it had been profound. There was something different about her Son, His ministry had begun. So, when the wine ran out her expectation rose that this was the moment her Son would be revealed as the Son of God. “They have no wine” she informed Him, and then to the servants “whatever He says to you, do it”.
Jesus’ disciples’ first lesson was profound on so many different levels. They had seen with Yochanan the dire spiritual state of their people, even respected religious leaders did not escape the sharp sword of his prophetic exposure of their hearts. The austere conditions, the need for all to publically humble themselves, confess their sins, repent and be washed, fully immersed, in the waters of Yochanan’s baptism, had made a lasting impression. All this was needed because the Kingdom of Heaven was at hand. What was this Kingdom like? What had Yochanan the Immerser’s ministry been preparing them for? Yeshua was the living reality of the Kingdom of Heaven on earth, and the first place He took them to so they could learn the nature of this Kingdom was a wedding. The Kingdom of Heaven is like a wedding, a jubilant celebration of covenant love, full of singing and dancing, good food and fine wine, fun, joy and laughter, family, community and belonging.
In such a place it was easy for these first disciples to forget the troubles of the nation and just enjoy this joyous celebration with their rabbi, as two families joined together as one. That was until anxious glances caught their eyes and they heard the whispers: “They have no wine”.
What sort of wedding was it that ran out of wine? Something in it sounded like Yochanan’s warnings, like Isaiah 24, like their nation that had run out of the wine of joy in relationship with God under the corruption in the governing class and priestly aristocracy, the blatant despising of Torah of the Hellenises and the suffocatingly strict Eighteen Articles imposed by Bet Shammai.
Six stone jars for purification water stood empty. Yeshua told the servants to fill them with water. Would they need to go through more ritual washings and purifications to demonstrate a greater level of repentance? The jars were filled to the brim.
“Now draw some out and take it to the master of the banquet” Yeshua instructed, and the servant obeyed (John 2:8).
Quietly, without fanfare or announcement, with only the lowly servants as participants in the miracle, Yeshua had turned water into an abundance of the finest wine.
Everyone heard the master of the banquet loudly complement the groom on this superior quality wine and marvel that it had been left to last. As the joyful celebrations continued a sense of awe settled over the talmidim – the Kingdom of Heaven is like a wedding banquet where the best is left to last, where the eve of despair becomes the morn of jubilation, where the water for purification is transformed into the wine for celebration, where Yeshua is the heavenly bridegroom and He ensures that there is no lack of the wine of joy.
After the wedding celebrations Yeshua, his mother, brothers and followers walked east to Capernaum, on the northern shore of the Sea of Galilee. This was where the brothers Shim’on (Simon) called Kefa (Peter), and Andrew, were now living and conducting their fishing business. Kefa was married and his mother-in-law is mentioned later. Yeshua was introducing His family to theirs, in typical middle eastern style where an individual was not considered to be known unless you knew their family. (11) (12) (13) (14)
Shim’on and Andrew probably spent some time back in their fishing trade, providing for their family, even as they continued discussing and reflecting on what they had seen and heard thus far. As Jewish rabbis were forbidden to receive payment for their teaching, and many students did not come from wealthy families, both rabbi and talmidim often plied their trade between teaching sessions in order to provide for themselves and their families. The named disciples had each now been afforded an opportunity to introduce their families to this new rabbi, Yeshua, whom they had begun following and whose ways they were committed to learning.
1. Jacobs, Rabbi Jill. Pirkei Avot: Ethics of Our Fathers. My Jewish Learning. [Online] [Cited: 13th Oct. 2016.] http://www.myjewishlearning.com/article/pirkei-avot-ethics-of-our-fathers/.
2. MJL Staff. Pirkei Avot- Ethics of the Fathers Chapter 1. My Jewish Learning. [Online] [Cited: 13th Oct. 2016.] http://www.myjewishlearning.com/article/pirkei-avot-ethics-of-the-fathers-3/.
3. Huckey, Darren N. The Four Responsibilities of a Disciple. Arkansas : Emet HaTorah, 2013.
4. Laan, Ray Vander. Rabbi and Talmidim. That The World May Know. [Online] [Cited: 21st February 2019.] https://www.thattheworldmayknow.com/rabbi-and-talmidim.
5. Bivin, Roy B. Blizzard & David. Study Shows Jesus as Rabbi. Bible Scholars. [Online] [Cited: 21st February 2019.] https://www.biblescholars.org/2013/05/study-shows-jesus-as-rabbi.html.
6. Greenwold, Doug. Being a First-Century Disciple. Bible.org. [Online] 28th February 2007. [Cited: 21st February 2019.] https://bible.org/article/being-first-century-disciple.
7. Isidore Singer, Isaac Broydé, Joseph Jacobs, Judah David Eisenstein, Kaufmann Kohler, Max Landsberg. RABBI. Jewish Encyclopedia. [Online] 1906. [Cited: 21st February 2019.] http://www.jewishencyclopedia.com/articles/12494-rabbi.
8. Hyndman, Rob J. How old were the disciples of Jesus when they joined him? BibleQ. [Online] 5th November 2011. [Cited: 21st February 2019.] http://bibleq.net/answer/4801/.
9. Thiessen, Rick. How Old Were The Disciples? Ask Anything. [Online] 18th April 2017. [Cited: 21st February 2019.] http://ac3askanything.blogspot.com/2017/04/how-old-were-disciples.html.
10. Cary, Otis Cary and Frank.How Old Were Christ’s Disciples? 1, Chicago : The University of Chicago Press, July 1917, The Biblical World, Vol. 50, pp. 3-12.
11. Capernaum. Bible Walks. [Online] [Cited: 6th Oct. 2016.] http://www.biblewalks.com/Sites/capernaum.html.
12. Easton, Paul S. Taylor & Matthew G. Capernaum. Bible Encyclopedia. [Online] [Cited: 6th Oct. 2016.] http://www.christiananswers.net/dictionary/capernaum.html.
13. Murphy-O’Connor, Jerome. Peter’s House. Bible Odessey. [Online] [Cited: 11th Aug 2019.] https://www.bibleodyssey.org/en/places/related-articles/peters-house.
14. Schneider, Wolfgang. Where was Simo’s and Andrew’s home? Bible Centre. [Online] 2009. [Cited: 11th Aug 2019.] http://www.biblecenter.de/bibel/widerspruch/e-wds25.php.
In the comments section below share your thoughts on what you have read and answer some of the following questions…
* Why do you think the first place Jesus took His disciples was a wedding?
* How do you begin your teaching of new believers?
* What did the disciples learn from the wedding?
* Why do you think Jesus’ first miracle involved turning water into wine – huge amounts of wine?
* Discuss the importance of family in your culture and in Jesus’ Jewish culture.
* Why do you think rabbi’s were forbidden to receive payment for their teaching? What are the advantages and disadvantages of this? What are the advantages and disadvantages of apostles, prophets, evangelists, pastors and teachers continuing to work in a trade to support themselves like Paul did?
4 thoughts on “Yeshua Introduces God’s Kingdom as a Wedding”
Yeshua Introduces God’s Kingdom as a Wedding
The first place Jesus took his disciples was a Wedding because he wanted to teach them that he himself is the living reality of the Kingdom of Heaven on earth and the first place Jesus took his disciples was a Wedding so that they could learn the nature of this Kingdom as a Wedding, a jubilant celebration of covenant love, full of singing,dancing, good food and fine wine, fun joy and laughter, family,community and belonging.
I begin teaching new believers through invitation to follow Yeshua. Like Jesus took his disciples to follow him so do I try to teach them that Christ has the power to change worse situation into glorious one as he changed water into sweet fine wine.
They leaned that it was easy for them to forget the troubles of nation and just enjoy the celebration with their rabbi (teacher).
They also learned that Jesus has power to change worse situation into glorious one as he changed water into sweet fine wine.
Because the Kingdom of Heaven is being compared to a Wedding banquet where the best is left to last, where the eve of despair becomes the more of jubilation, where the water for purification is transformed into the wine for celebration, where Yeshua is the Heavenly bridegroom , where he ensures that, there is no lack of wine of joy.
Family is very important in my culture. Family in my culture involves the extended family system where we have all grandparents included. This means that what belongs to one person is not considered as his or hers but for the whole family.
In Africa, and for that matter Ghana,we cherish our families so much that people do not play with family issues at all.Care for the family in my culture is not only a man’s job but women also take part in caring for the family.
Jesus likewise also saw the importance of familiy in his day because we hear of his father, mother and other brothers and sisters of him. In Jesus’ Jewish culture, men had to work in order to take care of their families just as we have today.
Rabbis were forbidden to receive payment for their teaching because I think it was their tradition and also many of the students did not come from rich homes therefore it would be very difficult for the poor to pay their rabbis- no school fees.
The advantages are that, it make one self dependent. It also make one command a lot of respect to himself. It does make teachers, prophets, apostles and televangelists not lord over the disciples on the other hand, there are disadvantages. One of them is that there is lack of motivation to urge these people to give off their best to the work of God.
Again, much of their time would be used on the jobs that would support them and their families and the Lord’s work would be a part-time job.
Jesus took His disciples to a wedding in Cana that from that they would learn the following
Unity in families,which is a character of the Body of Christ
Joy which is the character of the Holy spirit among the Body of Christ.
Miracle of water turning into wine ,meaning a scarcity but God has a provision and always this provision is the best.
The first thing to teach new believers is to show them that Jesus has the best provision,for their lives in eternity,which was full of joy and peace .
Jesus disciples learnt many things at this wedding at Cana,among which are,God’s power to do miracles,unity in families,and joy in the Body of Christ.Jesus turned water into wine , symbolic of a better ending than the beginning, to show also the Disciples that He is creator of all and sovereign to all situations
Family is a God ordained institution right from the days of creation.God created a family of Adam and Eve and gave them power to multiply that family.Family structure either in our society or Jewish society promotes unity,love and Joy which are characters of God
Rabbis were people writing God’s word and God was to reward them not people.
The same way ,pastors apostles,evangelists,teachers,are to fix their eyes upon God who called them in ministry for their provisions
The danger to be paid by the people is that they will stop depending upon God and depend upon man
This God does not want .As He delivered the Israelites from Egypt ,He can provide for His workers because nothing is impossible with Him.
Yes we can suffer but for a little time for He promised never leave nor forsake us
* Yeshua may have chosen the wedding feast in Cana of Galilee as the first place to take His disciples so He could demonstrate the importance of family, community and celebration. By attending the wedding, Jesus placed His stamp of approval on the marriage covenant, and with His miracle He showed that the blessings in a marriage come from God. Jesus wanted to demonstrate that the love and joy present in a wedding ceremony are also characteristic of the ministry of Christ, who came into this world because of love (John 3:16) and brought joy to all who believe (Luke 2:10). Also, Jesus may have chosen this family situation to perform this miracle because it is something everyone in every culture can relate to. He chose an ordinary situation to become the place where He could showcase His supernatural power.
* My teaching for the new believers normally begins with prayer. I Pray openly in the hearing of new believers in order to encourage their faith, open their understanding of the word of God, support their spiritual growth to full maturity in Christ, and so that they can also learn to pray for themselves, and each other.
I welcome the new converts into the family of God, and then explain to them the experience they just received in Christ through salvation. I also explain to them that salvation comes in stages i.e. justification, then sanctification, and then glorification. Every person is taught what each of these means and how they are related to, but different from one other. It is vital that new believers understand that justification is by faith in Christ alone, apart from works (Romans 3:28). They are also taught that sanctification (progressive growth into Christ-likeness) is essential to salvation and that if it doesn’t occur, then justification has not yet taken place. Sanctification involves the believer working hard in concert with the Holy Spirit (Philemon 2:12-13). New believers should also understand that in glorification we will be made perfectly righteous in body and soul by the direct action of God.
I teach new converts to hate sin and love holiness. I show them that all sin is spiritual poison, and that God loves us too much. He does not allow us to continue to live in sin. The most beautiful state a human soul can ever experience is that of holiness in the pattern of Christ.
Then I offer a clear road-map to spiritual maturity: explaining that full maturity means Christ-likeness in every area of life. I divide it into four key areas: knowledge (factual and experiential), faith, character, and action. Biblical knowledge feeds faith, transforms character, and results in good works. These works, in turn, feed knowledge and cause a cycle of growth toward Christ-like maturity.
* Firstly, the disciples of Jesus learned from the wedding the importance of family, community and celebration. Jesus had just starting his earthly ministry, yet he decided to dedicate time off to join the rest of his family in this wedding celebration.
Secondly, they learned that they (the church) were the bride of Yeshua the heavenly bridegroom, and that he was the living reality of the Kingdom of Heaven on earth. He took them to the wedding so they could learn the nature of this Kingdom which Yeshua later in his teachings compared directly to the wedding banquet.
Thirdly, by using the same pots and water that were used in ceremonial cleansing under the Jewish law, Yeshua was showing the disciples very symbolically that water is no longer necessary to wash away ones’ filth, and that water is now being replaced by wine (the blood of Yeshua) as the final cleansing sacrifice.
And finally, they learned that the Kingdom of Heaven is like a wedding banquet where the best wine is served at the end, and where the disgrace of running out of wine is miraculously turned into a celebration. Yeshua the bridegroom ensures that there is no lack of wine of joy.
* In my culture, the family is so highly regarded. It has a huge influence in defining the values and behavior of an individual. Family determines the way both boys and girls are brought up from childhood to maturity. Because of the importance of family, marriages were arranged by the parents. Nowadays, the young men can find themselves girls to marry, but there is a still the influence of parents. The father of the groom, assisted by his close relatives is obliged to get a wife for his son by paying the required bride-wealth or dowry. The dowry paid is dependent on the economic status of the groom’s family. Once the bride-price has been paid, preparations for the give-away ceremony will kick off at the bride’s home. Two remarkable feasts are arranged; one at the bride’s home (give-away), and another ceremony (wedding) at the groom’s home. The two feasts are attended by family members, relatives, and friends of both families. Both marriage ceremonies are characterized by lots of eating, drinking and giving of gifts to the new couple; and often officiated by a religious clergy. In the past years it was mandatory for the bride’s auntie to confirm that the girl defended her virginity before the marriage was consummated. However, married woman who had no children had no status in the family according to Ankole traditions. Of course it was a dream of every woman to marry and raise many children. But if a woman is unable to bear children, her husband is likely to consider taking a second wife. Monogamy was the standard practice, though also polygamy was not prohibited. For many generations, both the King of Ankole and his wealthy subjects practiced polygamy. However, today monogamy remains the predominant form of marriage, influenced by westernization, Christianity, education, and the traditional Ankole model.
For Jews, family is very important because marriage and the home are thought to be great blessings. A marriage in the Jewish culture of Jesus was a celebration. The groom and his friends could go to the bride’s home, and then escort the bride in a festive procession to the groom’s home, where a grand celebration would take place. The groom would give his bride gifts. After the marriage feast, the bride and groom entered the matrimonial chamber and the marriage would be consummated. The festivities could go on, however, sometimes for a week or more, if the groom’s family could afford it. Friends and family used to come from afar, so weddings were occasions where family connections were renewed over food and drink. And the theory of the Church as the Bride of Christ is hinted at in the Gospels and fulfilled at the Marriage Supper of the Lamb in Revelation 19:6-9. Family life was regarded as a training ground for the Jewish way of life. Children received their earliest education in the home, as parents showed them how to live as Jews who are kind, responsible and honorable. The Jewish parents were expected to make the home a place where Judaism is alive. In Jewish families, parents and children are responsible for each other as a way of honoring God. Children should learn to respect their parents as well as caring for them when they are old. Likewise, parents have a duty to care for and educate their children.
*In ancient times those who performed rabbinic functions, such as judging a case or teaching Torah to students, did not receive payment for their services. This was because being a rabbi was not a full-time profession and those who served had other occupations to support themselves and their families, such as wood-choppers, sandal-makers, carpenters, water-carriers, farmers and tanners. Also Jewish rabbis were forbidden to receive payment for their teaching because many of their students did not come from wealthy families. As a result, both rabbi and student often plied their trade between teaching sessions in order to provide for themselves and their families.
*The advantage of the above practice was that Rabbis became honorable members of the community and they were allowed a series of privileges and exemptions that to a big extent alleviated their financial burdens. These included such things as tax exemption from communal levies, marketplace priority (first in, first out regarding their trade) and receiving personal services from their students.
The disadvantage was that rabbis did not have priestly status. Because of that, the several tasks they would normally perform were assumed by others who were qualified to conduct the religious ceremonies with devotion and faithfulness, although they were not ordained.
*Bi-vocational ministry is a clear and definitive trend in church life today. It is the involvement of a gospel minister into ministry or church service, at the same time having a job or a trade outside church. Some of the reasons for its growth are not healthy. But many are. In scriptures we learn that Apostle Paul built tents at times, but he was not a tent-maker. He was an apostle, even though his income sometimes came from tent making. Ecclesiastes 9:10 tells us to do whatever our hand finds to do. And so the advantages of apostles, prophets, evangelists, pastors and teachers continuing to work in a trade to support themselves like Paul include the following below;
– As a minister, bi-vocational trade takes financial pressure off your family. Being unable to pay your bills adds unnecessary pressure to all of your relationships and is not a good witness. Scripture shows that, “If anyone does not provide for his own, and especially for those of his household, he has denied the faith and is worse than an unbeliever” (1 Timothy 5:8).
– Bi-vocational trade takes financial pressure off the ministry or church. This means that instead of paying salary, the funds of the church can then be used for church growth, outreach, and community projects.
– Engaging in trade allows you to serve a ministry or congregation that is otherwise unable to pay a pastor or other ministry staff.
– Engaging in trade offers opportunities to form relationships outside the church setting and expands your circle of influence out into the community and beyond.
– A secular or marketplace job or business will put you in the middle of culture on a regular basis. Opportunities to minister to people who can never set their foot in a church will be greater.
– The trade outside church gives you a realistic view of the everyday world you live in. Full-time pastors can become very isolated from today’s issues and what congregation members go through on a daily basis.
– Another advantage of having a secular trade or job is being an example to those you lead. It helps people see how to balance ministry, family, and working life. If they see you having a strong commitment to church while still holding down a secular job, it shows them that it can be done.
* Some of the disadvantages of apostles, prophets, evangelists, pastors and teachers continuing to work in a trade to support themselves are;
– The main disadvantage is that the growth of bi-vocational ministry degrades ministry as a profession. Becoming a pastor requires a certification process and involves a formal period of discernment, years of education, and training. Without full-time ministry paying jobs, ministry as a profession will become increasingly unattractive to those called by God, the passionate and dedicated ministers and leaders. The young prospective ministers we groom in church will choose to become lawyers, doctors, engineers, etc.; instead of embracing the call of God to serve in ministry. The church can benefit from their gifts and support in other ways but the profession of ministry and congregations will undeniably suffer.
– The bi-vocational ministry kills the faith of a minister who confesses the trust in a God who makes all things possible. When we indifferently accept the status quo that one needs to do a trade outside church in order to survive, we clearly demonstrate a lack of faith that tomorrow might be different than today. God should not be mocked in this way. Our faith should be much more steadfast.
– Another disadvantage of engaging in the trade outside ministry is that it can easily corrupt the relationship between the minister and his God. One of my former close comrades fell prey to this kind of deception after getting “a fatty and tempting job.” He sunk deep in the world and has never returned back to the Lord since. Many ministers loose the passion for prayer and spiritual focus. And you can’t make it if you don’t maintain a progressive prayer life.
– Another disadvantage is the failure to balance between ministry and the trade or job. Some ministers who engage in the trade that is so demanding can cause ministries or churches to suffer because their bi-vocational responsibilities demand much attention.
– With majority of ministers in Africa having no formal education, it becomes difficult to find a job or trade within their communities that can be favorable and applicable alongside the ministry vision. In most cases the nature of the trade determines the location of trade, which may not be possible for many ministers.
In conclusion there, it is important to note that without any shadow of doubt, many ministries and churches in Africa will always need full-time vocational ministers and church staff. This is because the ministers will need to dedicate more time to do a lot of ground breaking work especially for new ministries, new church plants or mission groups. Due to the fact that most ministers work alone during the early stages of ministry or church plant; a minister in this kind of situation can easily cause the work of God to collapse if he engages in outside trade. My prayer is that the Holy Spirit will guide whoever finds himself in a similar dilemma. And if you are truly called by God, He will surely make a way for you.
* The first place Jesus took his disciples was a wedding as it was recorded as the first lesson from their Rabbi included an affirmation of the importance of family, community, and celebration. According to the reading, Yeshua was just starting His ministry yet he took time out’ to join the rest of His family in this wedding celebration.
Also in the Gospel of John 2: 1-8 the writer explained about a wedding in Cana of Galilee, and how Jesus was invited along with His disciples, His mother Mary,was also there .Finally, we got to know that it probably the first miracle that the Messiah performed.
* Teaching new believers is like building a house with good and solid materials that will make the building to stand firm whenever storms and waves come, and without good foundation the building cannot stand therefore it very vital to begin teaching new believers
a). The assurance of salvation, that they should believe that once they are Christians, they are children of God.
b). The should be taught to have daily devotion and reading of the Word of God.
c). Make them understand that they should not depend on their feeling about God, but rather they should depend on the Word of God.
e). To faithful in attending services
f). To contribute to the work of God with their finances
g). To be involved in evangelism, and to tell others about their faith in Christ Jesus.
* The disciples learned from the wedding:
a) about the humidity of Jesus Christ as He did not rush to perform miracle.
b). The learned that the Rabbi was a provider
c). The also learned how the Master could used common water to turn into pure wine
d). The also learned that He wasn’t an ordinary human being
e). The again learned how Jesus brought total relief to these couple by providing additional wine which is far better than the first. This brought assurance to the disciples that all their needs could be met at anytime as they journey with Him.
* Jesus’ first miracle involved Turing water into wine is to show the public, the community, the disciples and his family members about the beginning of His ministry.
* The importance of family in my culture is very vital as in my cultural way of life nothing can’t be done with the concern of the family, however, if one talks about family is not like the Western type of family, however it covers grandfather, father, aunt, uncles, nephews, sisters brothers and mothers. In case of death all the members of the family contribute to the burial, and if it comes to marriage, it is the family that looks for a wife for the groom or their son. Notwithstanding, no family member makes decision when it comes to what one believes.
* The rabbis were forbidden to receive payment for their teaching because God has set them apart from the rest if the Israelites, and the have given their lives to God, however the advantage of this is that they will be only looked up to God, and the disadvantage is that as human sometimes they will somehow complained. With regards to apostle, prophets, pastors evangelist and teachers if these people are not being paid, it will not make the worker to be effective, the days of the founding fathers are quite different from our days hence without these people not been taking care off as it should be the work of God will not move the way it should be.