Monthly Archives: July 2018

Who are YOU Serving

Category : General

Dan.3: 16 (KJV)

16 Shadrach, Meshach, and Abednego, answered and said to the king, O Nebuchadnezzar, we are not careful to answer thee in this matter.

 

It has been said that, “True religion is the determined purpose to do right, and not to do wrong, whatever may be the consequences in either case.”

 

The word rendered “careful” means, “to be needed” or “necessary;” then, “to have need.” The Vulgate renders it, – it does not behove us; it is not needful for us. And the Greek, we have no need. The meaning therefore is, that it was not “necessary” that they should reply to the king on that point; they would not give themselves trouble or solicitude to do it. On essence they were saying, “We have no need to put thee to any farther trouble; we have made up our minds on this subject and have our answer ready: Be it known unto thee, We Will Not Serve Thy Gods. This was as honest as it was decisive.”

 

We see that they appear to have answered promptly, and without hesitation, showing that they had carefully considered the subject, and that with them it was a matter of settled and intelligent principle. But they did it in a respectful manner, though they were firm. They had made up their minds, and, whatever was the result, they could not worship the image which he had set up, or the gods whom he adored. They felt that there was no necessity for stating the reasons why they could not do this. Perhaps they thought that argument in their case was improper. It became them to do their duty, and to leave the event with God. They had no need to go into an extended vindication of their conduct, for it might be presumed that their principles of conduct were well known. They neither reviled the monarch nor his gods. They used no reproachful words respecting the image which he had set up, or any of the idols which he worshipped. Nor did they complain of his injustice or severity. They calmly looked at their own duty, and resolved to do it, leaving the consequences with the God whom they worshipped.

 

In this history it; is necessary to observe with what unbroken spirit these three holy men persisted in the fear of God, though they knew they were in danger of instant death. When, therefore, this kind of death was placed straight before their eyes, they did not turn aside from the straightforward course, but treated God’s glory of greater value than their own life. We do not care, we do not enter into the consideration of what is expedient or useful, no such thing! for we ought to settle it with ourselves never to be induced by any reason to withdraw from the sincere worship of God. They served the God of heaven, and only the God of heaven, and if the only alternative to worshiping other gods was to be thrown into a burning fiery furnace, then so be it. And they would trust their God to do what was right. There was no attitude of rebellion. It was a religious question, and therefore they had no alternative. In their words comes out that incisiveness of thought and statement that had so impressed Nebuchadnezzar when he had first met them (Daniel 1:20). In the face of the most dreadful danger, history has nothing that surpasses this defiant reply. In effect, they said, “Yes, our God is able to deliver us, but even if he does not deliver us, we will not disobey our God. We will not serve your gods nor worship your golden image.” Do you have that incisiveness and resolved? Do you unwaveringly serve the God of heaven?

 

Have a great and godly day!

 

Pastor C

 


God Requirement, Brokenness

Category : General

Ps.51: 17 (KJV)

17 The sacrifices of God are a broken spirit: a broken and a contrite heart, O God, thou wilt not despise.

 

What is a broken heart? We use the expression to set forth the effects of heavy affliction and sorrow. And so here, the broken heart tells of deep sorrow on account of our Sin. Before, it had hope for itself; now it has none, and, thus broken, it is offered with shame and grief. Before, it could listen to the truths of the Gospel unmoved, but now it quivers with emotion. How beautifully does the text describe a simple and grateful reliance upon the freeness of Divine mercy! How forcibly does this language express that exalted estimate of the worth of pardon, which will ever be cherished by those who sincerely repent!  How strikingly it exhibits the penitent’s humble sense of utter helplessness and incapacity for any service or offering of his own to procure the invaluable blessing.

 

What is the sacrifices which God desires and approves; the sacrifices without which no other offering would be acceptable? David felt that that which he here specified was what was demanded in his case. As my crimes are such as admit of no legal atonement, so thou hast reserved them to be punished by exemplary acts of justice, or to be pardoned by a sovereign act of mercy: but in order to find this mercy, thou requirest that the heart and soul should deeply feel the transgression and turn to thee with the fullest compunction and remorse. He had grievously sinned; and the blood of animals offered in sacrifice could not put away his sin, nor could anything remove it unless the heart were itself penitent and contrite. The same thing is true now.

 

The spirit broken all to pieces, and the heart broken all to pieces, stamped and beaten out, are the sacrifices which, in such cases, thou requirest; and these “thou wilt not despise.” We may now suppose that God had shone upon his soul, healed his broken spirit, and renewed and removed his broken and distracted heart; and that he had now received the answer to the preceding prayers. And here the Psalm properly ends; as, in the two following verses, there is nothing similar to what we find in the rest of this very nervous and most important composition.

 

A broken heart is a heart that God will never despise. We have His word for it. Christ will never despise it, and that for a very good reason. He has suffered from it Himself. He will not despise it. Because it would be despising His own handiwork were He to reject a contrite spirit. Let us deeply regret that we have sinned against a God Who is so good. Let us mourn to think that we have offended against so excellent and admirable a law. Let us grieve that we have sinned against a Savior’s love. Let us set our sin in the light of God’s countenance.

 

Have a great and godly day!

 

Pastor C

 


Having True Happiness

Category : General

Ps.16: 11 (KJV)

11 Thou wilt shew me the path of life: in thy presence is fulness of joy; at thy right hand there are pleasures for evermore.

 

 

Life is universally desired. Else why the frantic struggles to maintain it, even in its most wretched conditions.

 

There is a Divine presence, distinct from any word, or act, or exercise of Divine power; the charm is found in this, that God is there; it is what He is, not what He does or says, which His presence emphasizes. The use of worship is partly this, that it makes His invisible presence a reality. The more forms and ceremonies corrupt the simplicity, of worship, the more is attention diverted from God as a spirit. Closet prayer is especially helpful, if not hurried and superficial. To wait until a proper conception of God’s presence impresses the soul makes prayer of vastly more service to the suppliant.

 

Beyond the fact that this Psalm was written by David, we know nothing of the circumstances of its authorship. It is evidently called forth by some signal display of the Divine goodness. The Psalmist felt round about him the strengthening sense of that protecting power and presence of God which filled his heart with confidence and made his cup to overflow with the wine of joy.

 

Here we see he is speaking literally, “with thy face.” Before thy face; or, as the sense is correctly expressed in our version, “in thy presence.” The reference is to God‘s presence in heaven, or where he is supposed to dwell. This is shown by the additional statement that the joy mentioned was to be found at his “right hand” – an expression which properly refers to heaven. It is not merely a return to earth which is anticipated; it is an exaltation to heaven. Not partial joy; not imperfect joy; not joy intermingled with pain and sorrow; not joy which, though in itself real, does not satisfy the desires of the soul, as is the case with much of the happiness which we experience in this life – but joy, full, satisfying, unalloyed, unclouded, unmingled with anything that would diminish its fulness or its brightness; joy that will not be diminished, as all earthly joys must be, by the feeling that it must soon come to an end.

 

May I remind you that true happiness is not to be expected here. This is implied in the text. The world is not our home. This life is but a small part of our existence.

 

Have a great and godly day!

 

Pastor C

 


God is in Control

Category : General

Pr.16: 9 (KJV)

9 A man’s heart deviseth his way: but the Lord directeth his steps.

 

Man may think as he pleases and ask as he lists; but God will give, or not give, as he thinks proper. We cherish hopes, we make plans; but there is a higher power that directs our steps. The ideas of fate and chance have been entertained by men in all ages of the world to account for these experiences. Scripture knows nothing of fate or chance. It is the Lord who is directing our steps.

 

It has been noted no natural causes can explain the wonderful events that occurred from the call of Abraham to the time of the Redeemer. In every scene, not only the miraculous, but the ordinary, the hand of the Deity is visible. We can often see clearly the traces of that hand when its work is done. The efforts of our activity, how great whatsoever they may be, are subject to the control of a superior, invisible power. “A man’s heart,” that is, his mind, his inward powers of reflection, anticipation, skill, prudence, “deviseth his way” a term implying the application of all possible consideration, invention, and precaution–but the “Lord directeth his steps.” The words express and expose the folly and presumption, on man’s part, of self-confidence. We must recognize that Higher Counsels than ours are concerned in the issues of human conduct. The line is let out to allow us to run a certain length, but by that line we are all the while invisibly held and are recalled and checked at the pleasure of Heaven. Among all who admit the existence of a Deity it has been a general belief that He exercises some government over human affairs. The question maybe asked, “in what manner providence interposes in human affairs, by what means it influences the thoughts and counsels of men, and, notwithstanding the influence which it exerts, leaves to them the freedom of will and choice, are subjects of a dark and mysterious nature?” The secret power with which God controls sun, moon, and stars is equally inexplicable. Throughout the sacred writings God is represented as, on every occasion, by various dispensations of His providence, rewarding the righteous or chastening them according as His wisdom requires, and punishing the wicked. The experience of every one bears testimony to a particular providence. Accident and chance and fortune are words without meaning. In God’s universe nothing comes to pass causelessly or in vain. Every event has its own determined direction. But this doctrine of a particular providence has no tendency to supersede counsel, design, or a proper exertion of the active powers of man. Man, “devising his own way,” and carrying on his own plans, has a place in the order of means which providence employs.

 

Let us remember God has the ordering of the event, and sometimes directs their steps to that which they least intended. The design of this is to teach us to say, If the Lord will, we shall live and do this or that (James 4:14-15), and to have our eye to God, not only in the great turns of our lives, but in every step we take. Lord, direct my way, 1 Thess.3:11.

 

Have a great and godly day!

 

Pastor C

 


Having a Holy Disposition

Category : General

1 Peter 3: 15 (KJV)

15 But sanctify the Lord God in your hearts: and be ready always to give an answer to every man that asketh you a reason of the hope that is in you with meekness and fear.

 

What is meant by our sanctifying the Lord God? It cannot mean to make Him holy, for He is perfectly holy, whatever may be our estimate of Him; and our views of Him evidently can make no change in His character. The meaning therefore must be, that we should regard Him as holy in our estimate of Him, or in the feelings which we have toward Him. But to esteem or regard Him as a holy Being, in contradistinction from all those feelings which rise up in the heart against Him, the feelings of complaining and murmuring under His dispensations, as if He were severe and harsh; the feelings of dissatisfaction with His government, as if it were partial and unequal; the feelings of rebellion, as if His claims were unfounded or unjust. It is to desire that He may be regarded by others as holy, in accordance with the petition in the Lord‘s prayer, Matt.6:9, “hallowed be thy name;” that is, “let thy name be esteemed to be holy everywhere;” a feeling in opposition to that which is regardless of the honor which He may receive in the world. When we esteem a friend, we desire that all due respect should be shown him by others; we wish that all who know him should have the same views that we have; we are sensitive to his honor, just in proportion as we love him.

 

The sense in the passage before us is, “In your hearts, or in the affections of the soul, regard the Lord God as holy, and act toward him with that confidence which a proper respect for one so great and so holy demands. In the midst of dangers, be not intimidated; dread not what man can do, but evince proper reliance on a holy God, and flee to him with the confidence which is due to one so glorious.” This contains, however, a more general direction, applicable to Christians at all times. It is, that in our hearts we are to esteem God as a holy being, and in all our deportment to act toward him as such. The object of Peter in quoting the passage from Isa.8: 13, was to lull the fears of those whom he addressed, and preserve them from any alarms in view of the persecutions to which they might be exposed; the trials which would be brought upon them by people.

 

If we sanctify the Lord God in our hearts, there will be a belief that He will do all things well, and our minds will be calm. However dark the times may be, we shall be assured that everything is ordered aright and there will be the assurance that all is safe. “Though I walk,” says David, “through the valley of the shadow of death, I will fear no evil, for thou art with me,” Ps.23:4. “The Lord is my light and my salvation; whom shall I fear? The Lord is the strength of my life; of whom shall I be afraid? Ps.27:1. “God is our refuge and strength, a very present help in trouble: therefore, will not we fear, though the earth be removed, and though the mountains be carried into the midst of the sea; though the waters thereof roar and be troubled, though the mountains shake with the swelling thereof,” Ps.46:1-3.

 

Friends, let us ever then regard the Lord as holy, just, and good. Let us flee to Him in all the trials of the present life, and in the hour of death repose on His arm.

 

Have a great and godly day!

 

Pastor C

 


The Corruption of Evil Men

Category : General

Proverbs 24: 24 (KJV)

24 He that saith unto the wicked, Thou are righteous; him shall the people curse, nations shall abhor him.

 

It is very easy for us to look at others and say, “Oh I wish I could do that.” or “I wish I were like that.” Be very careful of the character of those who you would set as an example. Don’t envy those who are not on the right path.

 

The idea is not in a private way, or as giving his opinion or character of a man that is wicked, whom either through ignorance or flattery another may call righteous; which may be done and not resented by people and nations; but in an open court of judicature pronounced by the judge, justifying the wicked for reward, and condemning the just, which is an abomination unto the Lord. We also see that ministers of the Gospel should not flatter the wicked, and call them righteous and good men, and strengthen their hands in their wickedness, promising them life though they continue in their evil ways; for though God justifies the ungodly, man should not; nor does he justify them in, but from, their ungodliness; the people of the land shall curse him as an unjust judge, (Not individuals, nor families only, but the whole community, wherever such an iniquitous ruler is found, shall execrate and hate him. The voice of the people is universally against him; no one is so blind and degraded as openly to applaud his nets.)

 

We need to consider how many testimonies the wise king, in his Proverbs, gives against it. Pr.1:10-19. “My son, if sinners entice thee, consent thou not. If they say, Come with us, let us lay wait for blood, let us lurk privily for the innocent without cause. Let us swallow them up alive as the grave, and whole as those that go down into the pit. We shall find all precious substance, we shall fill our houses with spoil. Cast in thy lot among us, let us all have one purse. My son, walk not thou in the way with them; refrain thy foot from their path. For their feet run to evil, and make haste to shed blood,”. Here are the practices and designs of wicked men expressed in their own nature. But certainly they would color them over with fair pretenses. Their purpose is to undo men, especially godly men that classed and purged them. Yea, it is the profession of many, and they scarce lie privily, or have so much wisdom as to conceal their designs till their fit opportunity, but before the power be confirmed in their hand, they breathe out cruelty against all the innocent in the land, and promise themselves great gain by it, and are already dividing their estates among them, saying we “shall find all precious substance,” ver.13. But, my son, if thou fear God, though they entice thee with specious arguments of nature, and necessity, and country privileges, yet consent not. Venture not thy stock in one vessel with them. Cast not in thy lot among them. “Walk not in the way with them: refrain thy foot from their path:” for they are not come to the height of iniquity, they are running on to it. And if thou join, thou wilt cast thyself in a miserable snare; for either thou must go on with them to their designed and professed evils, or be exposed to their cruelty.

 

When the Lord is punishing such a people against whom he hath a controversy, and a notable controversy, every one that is found shall be thrust through: and every one joined with them shall fall, Isa.13:15. They partake in their judgment, not only because in a common calamity all shares, (Ezek.21: 3.) but chiefly because joined with and partakers with these whom God is pursuing; even as the strangers that join to the house of Jacob partake of her blessings, Gen.14:1. To this purpose is Isa.31: 2, 3, and Ezek.30: 5, 6, 8. The mingled people and those that are in league with Egypt partake in her plagues, and those that uphold that throne that God so visibly controverts with, their power shall come down, and all its helpers shall be destroyed, as it is Jer.21:12, 20, 24. And this is the great reason of these many warnings to go out of Babylon, Jer.l.8. and 51:6. Remember that passage, 2 Kings 1: 9, 10, 11, 12.

 

As was commented on, “Men given to change, false deceitful men, meddle not with such, if thou either fear God or respect man. For such will be sure to no interest but their own. Then calamity shall come suddenly. Therefore, have nothing to do with them. For “who knoweth the ruin of them both,” of them and all other wicked men, or of both them and the king, if wicked?” Also, to the wise and godly this is the charge, “It is not good to have respect of persons in judgment,” whether he be king or nobleman. A righteous state respects not the person of the prince and mighty, saith Job.

 

King Solomon loved God and was very wise. But he surrounded himself with people who did not love God. Because of this, when he was old, his heart was turned to false gods (We must be careful when choosing our friends. With what kind of people do you surround yourself? Do they speak of the Lord and His goodness, or do they speak of the world and its pleasures? Evil communication speaks not only of cursing, but also of things that place doubt upon the word and work of God. Do you surround yourself with people who believe the word of God?

 

Have a great and godly day!

 

Pastor C

 


Representing Christ WELL

Category : General

1 Thess.2: 10 (KJV)

10 Ye are witnesses, and God also, how holily and justly and unblameably we behaved ourselves among you that believe.

  

It has been noted, ‘The life of the Christian is taken as a kind of representation of the doctrine of Christians; the life of the Christian is taken very commonly by the world as a kind of incarnation of the faith of the Christian.’

 

 This verse is designed to represent in a summary manner the conduct of the apostle among the Thessalonians, which was hitherto only represented by special features; but as thereby not merely what was patent to external observation, that is, the visible action on which man can pronounce a judgment, but likewise the internal disposition, which is the source of that action, was to be emphasized. Here he practiced his own precepts, Titus 2:12. Paul naturally appeals for the truth of his assertion not only to his readers, but to God. The apostle, however, proceeds without a particle of transition, on account of the warmth of emotion with which he speaks. He did not imply by this that his conduct toward unbelievers was any different, but that the focus of his godly living was to set a righteous example in the presence of believers. He calls God and them to witness, with the view of affirming his integrity, and cites, on the one hand, God as a witness of his conscience, and them, on the other hand, as witnesses of what they had known by experience. How holily, says he, and justly, that is, with how sincere a fear of God, and with what fidelity and blamelessness towards men; and thirdly, unreproachably, by which he means that he had given no occasion of complaint or obloquy. This seems to refer to his duties both to God and man. In reference to all those duties no one could bring a charge against him. Every duty was faithfully performed. This is not a claim to absolute perfection, but it is a claim to consistency of character, and to faithfulness in duty, which every Christian should be enabled to make.

 

 And herein lies the difference between divinity and other sciences, that it is not enough to prescribe it, but you must practice it, as lessons of music, and as a copy must not be read only, but acted also. Every one professing religion or Christianity should so live as to be able to appeal to all who have had an opportunity of knowing him, as witnesses that he was consistent and faithful, and that there was nothing which could be laid to his charge. The servants of Christ cannot avoid calumnies, and unfavorable reports; for being hated by the world, they must of necessity be evil-spoken of among the wicked. Hence, he restricts this to believers, who judge uprightly and sincerely, and do not revile malignantly and groundlessly.

 

 Moreover, every Christian has a work in this respect in the world, and there are some whom he needs to instruct, to exhort, to admonish, to warn, or to rebuke. To do this effectually it is necessary that there should be some wisdom in the choice of time, and in the choice of circumstances, and in the choice of subject, and in the manner of speaking; and it is more than all necessary, to speak effectually to others, that there should be a life more or less in harmony with what is spoken. This is the reason why many professing Christians speak so little to others on the subject of Christian faith and on the subject of Christian practice; this is the reason—a want of harmony between their own life and that which they would have to speak.

 

 ‘The only way of getting to heaven, the only way of being participators in Christ hereafter, in His glory and felicity, is by being associated in life with Him here. He said Himself it should be so; that they who served with Him should reign with Him; that they who confessed Him here should be acknowledged by Him there; that they who lived with Him here should live with Him there. He said so: He cannot deny Himself! He cannot recall His word! He cannot violate His promise! He would not do it if He could; He could not do it if He would! He cannot and would not because of His own nature! “Heaven and earth may pass away, but His Word cannot pass away.”’

 

Have a great and godly day!

 

Pastor C


Growing in Christ

Category : General

Ephesian 4: 14 (KJV)

14That we henceforth be no more children, tossed to and fro, and carried about with every wind of doctrine, by the sleight of men, and cunning craftiness, whereby they lie in wait to deceive.

As when men stand and look into the heavens with the naked eye they see some three thousand stars; as with a glass of a certain power they may see some ten or twenty thousand, and as with a larger glass they may see still more, penetrating to the infinite depths of space, so the human mind has been such that at first it could see a little of the nature of God, then a little more, then a little more, and so on, with a power of vision that has increased clear down to the present time. (H. W. Beecher.)

The apostle warns us that we are in danger from the sleight of men, and the cunning craftiness whereby they lie in wait to deceive. Children, here, are opposed to the perfect man in the preceding verse; and the state of both is well explained by the apostle’s allusions. The man is grown up strong and healthy, and has attained such a measure or height as qualifies him for the most respectable place in the ranks of his country. The child is ignorant, weak, and unsteady, tossed about in the nurse’s arms, or whirled round in the giddy sports or mazes of youth; this seems to be the apostle’s allusion. Being tossed to and fro, and carried about with every wind of doctrine, refers to some kind of ancient play, but what I cannot absolutely determine; probably to something similar to a top, or to our paper kite

In many respects, Christians “are” to be like children. They are to be docile, gentle, mild, and free from ambition, pride, and haughtiness-Matt.18:2-3. But children have other characteristics besides simplicity and docility. They are often changeable Matt.11:17; they are credulous, and are influenced easily by others, and led astray. It is in these respects, Paul exhorts the Ephesians to be no longer children but urges them to put on the characteristics of manhood; and especially, to put on the firmness in religious opinion which became maturity of life.

However, the fact that we are no longer children demands a manly steadfastness of will. The inconsistency, the fickleness, the shiftiness, natural in a child, because a sign of immaturity, is out of place in those who are no longer children. The greatest mistake that any Christian can make is to assume that teachers of error are sincere. While true enough that some of them are, it is equally true that many are not. From the whole learn, that seducers and false teachers are crafts-masters of sleight and subtlety, and stratagems of deceit; they have artifices, ways and methods, to take men unawares, and to make merchandise of the people: they wrest and rack the scriptures to make them speak what they please, not what the Holy Ghost intended. Therefore, we must “speak the truth in love”; or “be sincere in love.” As we must adhere to the truth, so we must grow up in all things into Christ, who is the Head.

Have a great and godly day!

Pastor C

 


Do Not Quit

Category : General

1 Samuel 27: 1 (KJV)

1  And David said in his heart, I shall now perish one day by the hand of Saul: there is nothing better for me than that I should speedily escape into the land of the Philistines; and Saul shall despair of me, to seek me any more in any coast of Israel: so shall I escape out of his hand..

The devil, according to legend, once advertised his tools for sale at public auction. On the night of the sale they were all attractively displayed: Malice, Hatred, Envy, Jealousy, Sensuality, Deceit and all the other implements of evil were spread out each marked with its price.

There is not one circumstance in this transaction that is not blamable. David joins the enemies of his God and of his country, acts a most inhuman part against the Geshurites and Amalekites, without even the pretense of a Divine authority; tells a most deliberate falsehood to Achish, his protector, relative to the people against whom he had perpetrated this cruel act; giving him to understand that he had been destroying the Israelites, his enemies. I undertake no defense of this conduct of David; it is all bad, all defenseless; God vindicates him not. The inspired penman tells what he did, but passes no eulogium upon his conduct; and it is false to say that, because these things are recorded, therefore they are approved. In all these transactions David was in no sense a man after God’s own heart. He was discourage and we know that it drove him to do desperate things and one was to turn from God and to his enemies.

Discouragement is a dangerous state of mind, because it leaves one open to the assault of the enemies of the soul. It hardly need be added that the devil’s price for discouragement was so high that it was never sold. He is still using it.

The reality is this, no matter who are or strong you seem to be in the faith, we all have to agree that life is hard. Life is a constant battle, and no matter who paint pictures of what you should be doing or do, it does not get easy. Paul says we struggle in life, not just against the world and the flesh, but against invisible powers that struggle against us to keep us from becoming all that God wants us to become. It is very important that we face the hardness of life straightforwardly. We can be assured, that in whatever we face, Jesus understands our weakness and suffering, our greatest times of temptation and despair, because He too traveled that road, yet without sin. Too often we trust people more than we just God and He wanted us to know while people fail and let us down, God never.

Have a great and godly day!

Pastor C


Expressing Genuine Gentle Love

Category : General

1 Thessa.2: 8 (KJV)

8 So being affectionately desirous of you, we were willing to have imparted unto you, not the gospel of God only, but also our own souls, because ye were dear unto us.

A common expression is “The ends justify the means.” But this is only true as long as something good happens at the end – that is, whatever we want to happen – then it doesn’t matter how we get to that point. However, the question then is “would this be a fair representation of our Christian lives as we seek to tell other people the good news? Is that the way Paul viewed his evangelism and preaching? It doesn’t matter how you do it, so long as you get a result, so long as someone professes faith (whether or not they’re genuinely converted)?

Here we find Paul saying they had such intense love for the people that he was not only willing and forward to preach the unsearchable riches of Christ to them, but also to give his own live for their sake, because they were dear, because they were beloved by him. The words used here by the apostle are expressive of the strongest affection and attachment. The word here rendered “being affectionately desirous” occurs nowhere else in the New Testament. It means to “long after, to have a strong affection for.” The sense here is, that Paul was so strongly attached to them that he would have been willing to lay down his life for them. He was so desirous of their salvation, that he was willing not only to labor, but if need be to die to promote it. So genuine and cordial was the love of Paul and his companions for the Thessalonians, that they did not merely deliver their message as officials seeking to discharge a responsibility laid upon them, but they were willing to sacrifice their lives for them, if need were. To be willing to communicate the knowledge of the gospel was in itself a strong proof of love, even if it were attended with no self-denial or hazard in doing it. Carefully note that Paul really enjoyed sharing the gospel with others. To him it was not drudgery or a mere duty, or something simply to check off the list. “But also our own souls”: (Matt.20:28; 2 Cor.12:15). “Far from using them to minister to himself, he gave himself to minister to them. This willingness manifested itself in the self-denying and excessive toil of which Paul proceeds to speak.

It is sad that some Christian and Christians leaders become both self-centered and autocratic. We all need to cultivate more, the gentleness, love and self-sacrifice”. Here we learn why Paul and his companions were so successful in teaching. They took a genuine interest in those they spoke to and converted. In our manner of preaching and in our interaction with individuals, we should be kind, gentle, courteous, upright, and sincere-not merely or principally for the purpose of pleasing men, but of doing them good. We show strong interest for one who is in danger, when we tell him of a way of escape, or for one who is sick, when we tell him of a medicine that will restore him; but we manifest a much higher love when we tell a lost and ruined sinner of the way in which he may be saved. There is no method in which we can show so strong an interest in our fellow-men, and so much true benevolence for them, as to go to them and tell them of the way by which they may be rescued from everlasting ruin. If we are going to be successful at reaching people with the gospel, then we must love the people that we preach to, more than loving to preach to people. Evangelism starts with unselfish service and placing the needs of others ahead of our own.

Have a great and God filled day!

 

Pastor C


Vacation Bible School

-1Days -6Hours -40Minutes -58Seconds

Vacation Bible School Starts in:

-1Days -6Hours -40Minutes -58Seconds

Online Registration now open (click here)