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Marketplace Ministry

Early Christians made the marketplace the focal point of their ministry because their occupations regularly took them there. As they conducted business, it was natural for them to present the gospel to the people they encountered.

Marketplace people played a vital role in the emergence, establishment and expansion of the early church. In fact, most of Jesus’ followers remained in full time business while simultaneously conducting full time ministry.

This was possible because they saw the marketplace as their parish and their business as a pulpit. To them, witnessing was not an occasional activity but a lifestyle.

The book of Acts unfolds the story of believers who did more than tell people about Jesus in the marketplace. They also witnessed a steady stream of signs and wonders.

In fact, only one of the 40 extraordinary manifestations of God’s power recorded in Acts happened in a religious venue (Acts 3:1-11).

Most of these spiritual wonders were facilitated by people such as Paul, Priscilla and Aquila, who as ministry and business partners are classic examples of marketplace Christians. (Acts 18:1-13).

Anointed for Business

Generals, Not Privates

Today millions of men and women are similarly called to full time ministry in business, education, and government – the marketplace.

These men and women work as stockbrokers, lawyers, entrepreneurs, farmers, chief operating officers, news reporters, teachers, police officers, plumbers, factory foremen, receptionist, cooks and much more.

Some of them have great influence on mainstream society, others are unsung heroes with low profiles, but each of them has been divinely called to bring the Kingdom of God to the heart of the city.

Unfortunately, many of these marketplace Christians feel like second class citizens when compared to people who serve full time in a church or missionary context.

confused professional

This should not be the case.

No matter the occupation, Christians who work at secular jobs need to know that they’re not perpetual privates in God’s army just because they have not gone to seminary.

They need to discover that they have the potential to become full-fledged generals whose ministry is in the heart of the city, instead in of a religious building.

It is imperative that they realise that not only is it OK to do ministry in the marketplace, but that God has explicitly called them and anointed them for it.

By “anointed”, I mean that they have been chosen and empowered by the Holy Spirit for a divinely sanctioned assignment.

By “ministry”, I mean that they can do more than just witness; they can bring transformation to their jobs, and then to their cities, as it happened in the 1st century.

Most marketplace Christians already know that their ministry and their occupation are some how connected, but they do not comprehend exactly how. Even though they sense that they have a calling to ministry they hesitate about exchanging their secular setting for a religious one.

Man holding a bible

Welcome to the Club!

Unfortunately, many of these marketplace ministers fail to fulfil their divine destiny because they are often derided as untrained or an educated.

This is not a new accusation. Peter and John would say, “welcome to the club!”. In the account we find in Acts, this is exactly what businessmen-turned-ministers were called by the religious clique.

This should never happen because the requirement to be a minister is not religious education, rather, it is the spiritual conditioning that comes from “having been with Jesus” (Acts 4:13).


An excerpt from the book, Anointed For Business – How to Use Your Influence in the Marketplace to Change the World by Ed Silvoso.

This Post Has 2 Comments

  1. Thanks for the great article Carl,

    It’s encouraging to be reminded of the value of our cleaning business in God’s Kingdom. We constantly pray and fill our clients homes with His presence and at every opportunity speak with them about what we do. We also have opportunities to pray with our clients and it is a real privilege to honor our Father in Heaven as we work.

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