Tim and Jill Way

Adventures of the Way Family

Apostolic Passion

This article is re-posted from Floyd McClung.  In order to read more from him, go to http://floydandsally.com.

What is Apostolic Passion?

The term “passion” is used to describe everything from romance to hunger pangs. I don’t know what it means to you, but for me passion means whatever a person is willing to suffer for. In fact, that’s the root meaning of the word. It comes from the Latin paserre, to suffer. It is what you hunger for so intensely that you will sacrifice anything to have it. The word “apostle” means a sent one, a messenger. “Apostolic Passion,” therefore, is a deliberate, intentional choice to live for the worship of Jesus in the nations. It has to do with being committed to the point of death to spreading His glory. It’s the quality of those who are on fire for Jesus, who dream of the whole earth being covered with the Glory of the Lord.

I know when apostolic passion has died in my heart. It happens when I don’t spend my quiet time dreaming of the time when Jesus will be worshipped in languages that aren’t yet heard in heaven. I know it’s missing from my life when I sing about heaven, but live as if earth is my home. Apostolic passion is dead in my heart when I dream more about sports, toys, places to go and people to see, than I do about the nations worshiping Jesus.

I have lost it, too, when I make decisions based on the danger involved, not the glory God will get. Those who have apostolic passion are planning to go, but willing to stay. You know you have it when you are deeply disappointed that God has not called you to leave your home and get out among those who have never heard His name. If you will not suffer and sacrifice for something, you are not passionate about it. If you say you will do anything for Jesus, but you don’t suffer for Him then you aren’t really passionate about Him and His purposes on earth.

If you don’t have it, how do you go about getting this thing called apostolic passion? Is it like ordering pizza at the door in 30 minutes or less, guaranteed? Is there an 800 number to call? Or better yet, just send us your special gift of $15 or more, and we’ll rush you some passion, express delivery, overnight mail. If you’re like me, you need help figuring out how to grow this thing called passion. I am motivated by reading how the apostle Paul got it. He chose it.

Paul says in Romans 15 that it is his ambition, his passion, if you will, to make Christ known. It began for him with a revelation of Jesus that he nurtured all his adult life. Paul not only encountered Christ on the road to Damascus, he kept on meeting Jesus every day. This revelation of Jesus, and his study of God’s purposes, gave birth to Paul’s apostolic passion. Knowing Jesus and making Him known consumed the rest of Paul’s life. He “gloried in Christ Jesus in his service to God” (Rom 15:17). By comparison, everything else was dung, garbage, stinking refuse. Paul’s ambition was born from his understanding that God longed for His Son to be glorified in the nations. It was focused so that the “Gentiles might become an offering acceptable to God, sanctified by the Holy Spirit”(Rom 15:16).

Human enthusiasm cannot sustain apostolic passion. When God invests His own passion in you, the desire to see His name glorified among all people, you must build and develop what God has given you.

If I had 300 men who feared nothing but God, hated nothing but sin, and were determined to know nothing among men but Jesus Christ and him crucified. i would set the world on fire.

— John Wesley


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