Discerning the Season


1.  Introduction:

Matthew 16:15-19 “I will build my church . . . the gates of hell shall not prevail against it”

·   Revelation of who Jesus is – The Saviour – The Anointed One sent into the world.

·   There is a crisis in this world – sin.  God’s answer = send his Son to seek and to save.

·   Jesus lived for a cause, a mission – He expressed what God is like.

·   He entered the crisis in this world to express what God is like.

·   ‘I will build my Church” =>  The Church belongs to Jesus

                                             => He is building it to fulfil his purpose.

                                             => His purpose of the church is     - express what God is like

                                                                                                         - advance God’s Kingdom

       I.e. Christ sends his people into crisis in the world to express what God is like.

·   The nature/DNA of Christ is Mission – living to advance the cause of Christ.


2.  God Works in Seasons:

Ecclesiastes 3:1 “To everything there is a season, a time for every purpose”

·   There are Natural Seasons – Spring – Summer- Autumn – Winter

·   There are Spiritual Seasons – Times when God is working in different ways.

·   If the Church is unaware of the season it can be in can be in conflict of what God is doing.

·   It can try to preserve the past rather than respond to god and purpose for the future.

·   E.g.

(i)            The Hippie Movement in the 60’s

·         Some responded and reached out – some put up signs “no hippies”.

·         New Zealand – famous in Church history – church “voted” out what God was doing.

(ii)          Absalom’s Followers

·         2 Samuel 15:10-11  - follow in their sympathy.

·         Didn’t recognise what God was doing – followed the wrong leader.

(iii)         Saul’s Followers

·         2 Samuel 3:1  There was a war between the house of Saul and the house of David.

·         People didn’t recognise the season and fought against it.

(iv)       Jerusalem

·         Luke 19:41 “he beheld the city and wept over it – knew not the time of your visitation”.

·         People didn’t realise history being fulfilled – Rejected Jesus.

(v)         New Testament Church

·         Acts 8:1  At time there was a great persecution against the Church.

·         The Church was in an old mindset failed to fulfil   Acts 1:8

·         The Church enjoyed the blessing of what God was doing – ignored mission.

·         Acts 9:31    -  Acts 19:10

(vi)       David

·         Acts 13:22-36  David – a man after God’s heart – saved his generation.

·         David discerned the season and responded to God.

(vii)      Men of Issacher

·         1 Chronicles 12:32  - Lord understanding of the times.

·         The man of Issachar discerned the season and recognised what God was doing.

·         They positioned themselves to work with God – partner in His Mission.


3.  Your Attitude Determines your Response:

(1)         Don’t be rebellious                 -  resist what God is doing

(2)         Open mouth, eat        - Hunger to receive and respond

(3)         Go – speak                  - required to act, mission 

·         Season call us to live by faith – enable us to please God.

·         Seasons build on top of one another – embrace one, this one will then form the foundation for the next.

·         Kinds of seasons:    *Global     * Church     *Local Community    *Personal


4.  Discerning The Seasons:

1)      Genesis 11:7-8  Tower of Babel – people scattered

2)      Matthew 28:19-20  New Testament Church

-          Common language – Greek

-          Technology – Roman words/waterways

3)      21st Century – Globalisation

-          Internet – Global Markets – Air Travel – Media

-          Radio took 37 years to get into 50 million homes

-          Internet took 4 years to get into 50 million homes

-  Growth – Opposition and persecution – openness – 3rd World Church Growth.

-  Change in Missions from old paradigm – “men sent to another country”

Now – partnership/short term missions/ all believers involved.

(1)    Position self to hear and receive from God.

(2)    Yield: be willing to let go old things (Pruning – dead/old and growing)

(3)    Recognise what God is doing – discover His heart.

(4)    Initiate change – risk taking – be original not imitation.

-  We are called to initiate change not react/follow it.


Numbers 14:2