Preaching message on 1 Corinthians 12:1 – 14:40 Message Three

1 Corinthians   Message Three   2021

This morning, in this third message, we begin to learn of the trouble in this church.  It is most important again to remember that this letter was written to a specific church that was having a great deal of trouble with spiritual understanding, with pride, and with personal relationships.  Be very careful to know the context of a verse or a group of verses before taking them as proof text for your actions.  In the first four chapters we learn of the –

II. Division among the members of the church.  1:10-4:21

Things had become so bad that some church members sought help from Paul.  We notice as we read the letter that there were those that asked the members who were going to visit Paul to present their questions to him also.  His reply began with an –

  A.  Admonition to unity. 1:10-3:23

Paul followed the pattern that he presented in the second letter to Timothy in chapter four, verse 2

Preach the word; be instant in season, out of season; reprove, rebuke, exhort with all longsuffering and doctrine.

Relied on God through His Word

Remained consistent

Reproved

Rebuked

Reminded them and reminded them again to obey the Lord always.

In his reply, he first commended them for the good things that they had done – the Word that they had obeyed – 

1 Corinthians 1:2-8  Unto the church of God which is at Corinth, to them that are sanctified in Christ Jesus, called to be saints, with all that in every place call upon the name of Jesus Christ our Lord, both theirs and ours: Grace be unto you, and peace, from God our Father, and from the Lord Jesus Christ. I thank my God always on your behalf, for the grace of God which is given you by Jesus Christ; That in every thing ye are enriched by him, in all utterance, and in all knowledge; Even as the testimony of Christ was confirmed in you: So that ye come behind in no gift; waiting for the coming of our Lord Jesus Christ: Who shall also confirm you unto the end, that ye may be blameless in the day of our Lord Jesus Christ.

He then began to correct them for the wrong that they were doing with an –

    1.  Exhortation to obey the Lord Jesus Christ –

1 Corinthians 1:10  Now I beseech you, brethren, by the name of our Lord Jesus Christ, that ye all speak the same thing, and that there be no divisions among you; but that ye be perfectly joined together in the same mind and in the same judgment.

That –

      a. They speak the same things

Truth should never be denied to accommodate anyone’s particular situation.  Satan was not satisfied with his position, so he denied the truth by changing it into a lie.  This patter has been followed by billions of people since that time –

Romans 1:17-25  For therein is the righteousness of God revealed from faith to faith: as it is written, The just shall live by faith. For the wrath of God is revealed from heaven against all ungodliness and unrighteousness of men, who hold the truth in unrighteousness; Because that which may be known of God is manifest in them; for God hath shewed it unto them. For the invisible things of him from the creation of the world are clearly seen, being understood by the things that are made, even his eternal power and Godhead; so that they are without excuse: Because that, when they knew God, they glorified him not as God, neither were thankful; but became vain in their imaginations, and their foolish heart was darkened. Professing themselves to be wise, they became fools, And changed the glory of the uncorruptible God into an image made like to corruptible man, and to birds, and fourfooted beasts, and creeping things. Wherefore God also gave them up to uncleanness through the lusts of their own hearts, to dishonour their own bodies between themselves: Who changed the truth of God into a lie, and worshipped and served the creature more than the Creator, who is blessed for ever.

We are to know

John 17:14,17  I have given them thy word; and the world hath hated them, because they are not of the world, even as I am not of the world……..Sanctify them through thy truth: thy word is truth.

… and obey the truth! 

John 14:15 ,21 If ye love me, keep my commandments………He that hath my commandments, and keepeth them, he it is that loveth me: and he that loveth me shall be loved of my Father, and I will love him, and will manifest myself to him.

When they speak the same things –


      b. They will be in agreement.

 “…perfectly joined together…” To mend a net, to put back into place (dislocated joint).

With every exhortation, there should be an –

    2.  Explanation. 1:11 – 3:20

Paul informed them of –

      a.  The report. 1:11 Reliable report of their contentions.

1 Corinthians 1:11  For it hath been declared unto me of you, my brethren, by them which are of the house of Chloe, that there are contentions among you.

The report brought forth –


      b.  The reproof. 1:12-3:20     They had no reason to be divided.

        1). They could not claim special privilege through –


          a). Salvation. 1:12,13a

1 Corinthians 1:12-13  Now this I say, that every one of you saith, I am of Paul; and I of Apollos; and I of Cephas; and I of Christ.

               One way of salvation. “I am the way, the truth…”

They could not claim special privilege through –


          b). Baptism. 1:13b-16 Ephesians 4:1-6   (a church ordinance)

1 Corinthians 1:13-16  Is Christ divided? was Paul crucified for you? or were ye baptized in the name of Paul? I thank God that I baptized none of you, but Crispus and Gaius; Lest any should say that I had baptized in mine own name. And I baptized also the household of Stephanas: besides, I know not whether I baptized any other.

They were united in the Lord and should have determined to be united with one another  –

Ephesians 4:1-6  I therefore, the prisoner of the Lord, beseech you that ye walk worthy of the vocation wherewith ye are called, With all lowliness and meekness, with longsuffering, forbearing one another in love; Endeavouring to keep the unity of the Spirit in the bond of peace. There is one body, and one Spirit, even as ye are called in one hope of your calling; One Lord, one faith, one baptism, One God and Father of all, who is above all, and through all, and in you all.

They could not claim a privileged position through –


          c). Intellectual superiority. 1:17-31 Colossians 2:8

1 Corinthians 1:17-31  For Christ sent me not to baptize, but to preach the gospel: not with wisdom of words, lest the cross of Christ should be made of none effect. For the preaching of the cross is to them that perish foolishness; but unto us which are saved it is the power of God. ……… For ye see your calling, brethren, how that not many wise men after the flesh, not many mighty, not many noble, are called: But God hath chosen the foolish things of the world to confound the wise; and God hath chosen the weak things of the world to confound the things which are mighty; And base things of the world, and things which are despised, hath God chosen, yea, and things which are not, to bring to nought things that are: That no flesh should glory in his presence. But of him are ye in Christ Jesus, who of God is made unto us wisdom, and righteousness, and sanctification, and redemption: That, according as it is written, He that glorieth, let him glory in the Lord.

Colossians 2:8  Beware lest any man spoil you through philosophy and vain deceit, after the tradition of men, after the rudiments of the world, and not after Christ.

They could not claim a privileged position through –

          d). Eloquence. 2:1-5

1 Corinthians 2:1-5  And I, brethren, when I came to you, came not with excellency of speech or of wisdom, declaring unto you the testimony of God. For I determined not to know any thing among you, save Jesus Christ, and him crucified. And I was with you in weakness, and in fear, and in much trembling. And my speech and my preaching was not with enticing words of man’s wisdom, but in demonstration of the Spirit and of power: That your faith should not stand in the wisdom of men, but in the power of God.

They could not claim special privilege by claiming they heard a better –


          e).  Message.  There is one message   2:6-16

                Refer to Acts 13:26-33

1 Corinthians 2:6-16  Howbeit we speak wisdom among them that are perfect: yet not the wisdom of this world, nor of the princes of this world, that come to nought: But we speak the wisdom of God in a mystery, even the hidden wisdom, which God ordained before the world unto our glory: Which none of the princes of this world knew: for had they known it, they would not have crucified the Lord of glory. But as it is written, Eye hath not seen, nor ear heard, neither have entered into the heart of man, the things which God hath prepared for them that love him. But God hath revealed them unto us by his Spirit: for the Spirit searcheth all things, yea, the deep things of God. For what man knoweth the things of a man, save the spirit of man which is in him? even so the things of God knoweth no man, but the Spirit of God. Now we have received, not the spirit of the world, but the spirit which is of God; that we might know the things that are freely given to us of God. Which things also we speak, not in the words which man’s wisdom teacheth, but which the Holy Ghost teacheth; comparing spiritual things with spiritual. But the natural man receiveth not the things of the Spirit of God: for they are foolishness unto him: neither can he know them, because they are spiritually discerned. But he that is spiritual judgeth all things, yet he himself is judged of no man. For who hath known the mind of the Lord, that he may instruct him? But we have the mind of Christ.

And when each of us has the mind of Christ, we are single minded understanding that salvation is not by our own merit, but totally by His grace.

Ephesians 2:8-9  For by grace are ye saved through faith; and that not of yourselves: it is the gift of God: Not of works, lest any man should boast.

One way of salvation –

Romans 10:9-13 That if thou shalt confess with thy mouth the Lord Jesus, and shalt believe in thine heart that God hath raised him from the dead, thou shalt be saved. For with the heart man believeth unto righteousness; and with the mouth confession is made unto salvation. For the scripture saith, Whosoever believeth on him shall not be ashamed. For there is no difference between the Jew and the Greek: for the same Lord over all is rich unto all that call upon him. For whosoever shall call upon the name of the Lord shall be saved.

Note: The Apostles and preachers were united (in Christ) in their ministry unto Him.

When we follow God’s will in

Matthew 22:37-39  Jesus said unto him, Thou shalt love the Lord thy God with all thy heart, and with all thy soul, and with all thy mind. This is the first and great commandment. And the second is like unto it, Thou shalt love thy neighbour as thyself.

We will be one with Him and with one another, not seeking to exalt ourselves, but seeking to exalt the Lord and edify others.

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Preaching message for 1 Corinthians 12:1 – 14:40 Message Two

1 Corinthians   Message 2   May 2, 2021

We are reminded this morning that through all of the trials, he saw, and we see, as always that –

  D.  Faithful is the Lord.  God’s grace is seen in –

    1.  The promise to be with him throughout his ministry

We see the –

      a.  Specific promises to the church.      Paul was included in this promise as we are!

Matthew 28:19-20  Go ye therefore, and teach all nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father, and of the Son, and of the Holy Ghost: Teaching them to observe all things whatsoever I have commanded you: and, lo, I am with you alway, even unto the end of the world. Amen.

We also are told of the grace of God in His –

      b.  Special promises to Paul –

In danger among those that hate the truth of the gospel –

Acts 23:11  And the night following the Lord stood by him, and said, Be of good cheer, Paul: for as thou hast testified of me in Jerusalem, so must thou bear witness also at Rome.

In danger in travel and on the sea –

Acts 27:23-24  For there stood by me this night the angel of God, whose I am, and whom I serve, Saying, Fear not, Paul; thou must be brought before Caesar: and, lo, God hath given thee all them that sail with thee.

In danger when deserted by those who should have stood with him –

2 Timothy 4:16-18  At my first answer no man stood with me, but all men forsook me: I pray God that it may not be laid to their charge. Notwithstanding the Lord stood with me, and strengthened me; that by me the preaching might be fully known, and that all the Gentiles might hear: and I was delivered out of the mouth of the lion. And the Lord shall deliver me from every evil work, and will preserve me unto his heavenly kingdom: to whom be glory for ever and ever. Amen.

Help and encouragement from the brethren is wonderful, but help from the Lord is that which is necessary!

God’s faithfulness and power is seen in –

    2.  The preparation to face difficulty in his ministry.

Acts 9:15-16  But the Lord said unto him, Go thy way: for he is a chosen vessel unto me, to bear my name before the Gentiles, and kings, and the children of Israel: For I will shew him how great things he must suffer for my name’s sake.

The grace and power of God experienced in life is seen in –
   

    3.  The Proclamation of God’s faithfulness to the churches.

Paul learned as he took God’s Word to the world that God is faithful and he encouraged the churches and us as he testified of God’s constant faithfulness to him –

1 Corinthians 1:9  God is faithful, by whom ye were called unto the fellowship of his Son Jesus Christ our Lord.

1 Thessalonians 5:23-24  And the very God of peace sanctify you wholly; and I pray God your whole spirit and soul and body be preserved blameless unto the coming of our Lord Jesus Christ. Faithful is he that calleth you, who also will do it.


2 Thessalonians 3:1-3  Finally, brethren, pray for us, that the word of the Lord may have free course, and be glorified, even as it is with you: And that we may be delivered from unreasonable and wicked men: for all men have not faith. But the Lord is faithful, who shall stablish you, and keep you from evil.

We experience God’s blessings through –

    4.  The practice of faithful service unto the Faithful God.

We should understand the practical ministry of God in us and through us as Paul did –

2 Corinthians 1:4  Who comforteth us in all our tribulation, that we may be able to comfort them which are in any trouble, by the comfort wherewith we ourselves are comforted of God.

Paul had arrived in the city of Corinth and took up residence with Acquila and Priscilla. He worked with them in their tent making business. He was immersed in the Jewish community and shared the Gospel as he had opportunity.  The faithfulness and grace of God is seen again the power, comfort as he faced –

      a. The profanity of the Jews.

Acts 18:5-6  And when Silas and Timotheus were come from Macedonia, Paul was pressed in the spirit, and testified to the Jews that Jesus was Christ. And when they opposed themselves, and blasphemed, he shook his raiment, and said unto them, Your blood be upon your own heads; I am clean: from henceforth I will go unto the Gentiles.


      b. The Preaching to the Gentiles.

Acts 18:7-11  And he departed thence, and entered into a certain man’s house, named Justus, one that worshipped God, whose house joined hard to the synagogue. And Crispus, the chief ruler of the synagogue, believed on the Lord with all his house; and many of the Corinthians hearing believed, and were baptized. Then spake the Lord to Paul in the night by a vision, Be not afraid, but speak, and hold not thy peace: For I am with thee, and no man shall set on thee to hurt thee: for I have much people in this city. And he continued there a year and six months, teaching the word of God among them.


      c.  Protected by the Lord.

Acts 18:12-17  And when Gallio was the deputy of Achaia, the Jews made insurrection with one accord against Paul, and brought him to the judgment seat, Saying, This fellow persuadeth men to worship God contrary to the law. And when Paul was now about to open his mouth, Gallio said unto the Jews, If it were a matter of wrong or wicked lewdness, O ye Jews, reason would that I should bear with you: But if it be a question of words and names, and of your law, look ye to it; for I will be no judge of such matters. And he drave them from the judgment seat. Then all the Greeks took Sosthenes, the chief ruler of the synagogue, and beat him before the judgment seat. And Gallio cared for none of those things.

And finally the faithfulness and grace of God in –


      d.  Parting from the church.

Acts 18:18  And Paul after this tarried there yet a good while, and then took his leave of the brethren, and sailed thence into Syria, and with him Priscilla and Aquila; having shorn his head in Cenchrea: for he had a vow.

We learn today that we should not be discouraged by the difficulties facing us, but we are to learn from them and help others who face the same things!  God used Paul to instruct this struggling church, to help them see that they were completely out of order and needed to repent and set their hearts on the Lord and His will, not setting their hearts on their will for the Lord to build them up.

We have set forth last week and today that through the promises and the power of God, Paul was able to preach to the church with authority and demand that they repent and turn back to God according to His Word.

We should understand God’s love and patient work with His People.

We should understand Paul’s love and patient work with God’s people. 

We should understand that the desire was that those in the church who had sought their own preeminence instead of humble submission to the Lord and His Word should repent and turn back to the Lord in confession and contrition.

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Preaching message on 1 Corinthians 12:1 – 14:40 Message One

Preaching Outline   1 Corinthians 12:1 – 14:40 

Message 1

I have been considering the need for these messages and have been much in prayer for the Lord’s leadership as to when to begin this series.  Now is the time and I pray that we will pay close attention to God’s Word and receive the messages that He intends for us to apply to our lives. 

I will not be preaching through the entire letter, but will present background information and then will focus on chapters twelve through fourteen, beginning with background information on the ministry of the Gospel and the purpose of this first letter from Paul to the church in Corinth.  The background information is found in the book of Acts, beginning with chapter sixteen.

I.  Founding of the church in Corinth explained.

     Acts 16:6 – 18:4

  A. Following the Lord. Acts 16:6-11

Acts 16:6-11  Now when they had gone throughout Phrygia and the region of Galatia, and were forbidden of the Holy Ghost to preach the word in Asia, After they were come to Mysia, they assayed to go into Bithynia: but the Spirit suffered them not. And they passing by Mysia came down to Troas. And a vision appeared to Paul in the night; There stood a man of Macedonia, and prayed him, saying, Come over into Macedonia, and help us. And after he had seen the vision, immediately we endeavoured to go into Macedonia, assuredly gathering that the Lord had called us for to preach the gospel unto them. Therefore loosing from Troas, we came with a straight course to Samothracia, and the next day to Neapolis;

God will set up roadblocks in order to keep us going in the direction He will have us to go.  Paul did not get discouraged and turn back to where he had come from, but continued on seeking God’s leadership, going away from where he had been.  We see early in the ministry, Paul had a desire to accomplish that which he wrote to the Corinthians years later in his second letter –

2 Corinthians 10:16  To preach the gospel in the regions beyond you, and not to boast in another man’s line of things made ready to our hand.

God did not leave the missionaries to follow their own understanding, but gave them specific direction which would keep them on their course in times of great difficulty –


  B. Faced with opposition. Acts 16:12 – 17:34

    1. Imprisoned in Philippi. Acts 16:12-40

Acts 16:12-40  And from thence to Philippi, which is the chief city of that part of Macedonia, and a colony: and we were in that city abiding certain days. And on the sabbath we went out of the city by a river side, where prayer was wont to be made; and we sat down, and spake unto the women which resorted thither. And a certain woman named Lydia, a seller of purple, of the city of Thyatira, which worshipped God, heard us: whose heart the Lord opened, that she attended unto the things which were spoken of Paul. And when she was baptized, and her household, she besought us, saying, If ye have judged me to be faithful to the Lord, come into my house, and abide there. And she constrained us.

And it came to pass, as we went to prayer, a certain damsel possessed with a spirit of divination met us, which brought her masters much gain by soothsaying: The same followed Paul and us, and cried, saying, These men are the servants of the most high God, which shew unto us the way of salvation. And this did she many days. But Paul, being grieved, turned and said to the spirit, I command thee in the name of Jesus Christ to come out of her. And he came out the same hour. And when her masters saw that the hope of their gains was gone, they caught Paul and Silas, and drew them into the marketplace unto the rulers, And brought them to the magistrates, saying, These men, being Jews, do exceedingly trouble our city, And teach customs, which are not lawful for us to receive, neither to observe, being Romans. And the multitude rose up together against them: and the magistrates rent off their clothes, and commanded to beat them. And when they had laid many stripes upon them, they cast them into prison, charging the jailor to keep them safely: Who, having received such a charge, thrust them into the inner prison, and made their feet fast in the stocks….

The Lord interceded for them and they, being released from prison, encouraged the believers and continued their journey –


    2. Threatened in Thessalonica. Acts 17:1-9

Acts 17:1-9  Now when they had passed through Amphipolis and Apollonia, they came to Thessalonica, where was a synagogue of the Jews: And Paul, as his manner was, went in unto them, and three sabbath days reasoned with them out of the scriptures, Opening and alleging, that Christ must needs have suffered, and risen again from the dead; and that this Jesus, whom I preach unto you, is Christ. And some of them believed, and consorted with Paul and Silas; and of the devout Greeks a great multitude, and of the chief women not a few. But the Jews which believed not, moved with envy, took unto them certain lewd fellows of the baser sort, and gathered a company, and set all the city on an uproar…


    3. Pursued to Berea. Acts 17:10-14

Acts 17:10-14  And the brethren immediately sent away Paul and Silas by night unto Berea: who coming thither went into the synagogue of the Jews. These were more noble than those in Thessalonica, in that they received the word with all readiness of mind, and searched the scriptures daily, whether those things were so. Therefore many of them believed; also of honourable women which were Greeks, and of men, not a few. But when the Jews of Thessalonica had knowledge that the word of God was preached of Paul at Berea, they came thither also, and stirred up the people. And then immediately the brethren sent away Paul to go as it were to the sea: but Silas and Timotheus abode there still.


    4. Opposed in Athens. Acts 17:15-34

Acts 17:15-34  And they that conducted Paul brought him unto Athens: and receiving a commandment unto Silas and Timotheus for to come to him with all speed, they departed. Now while Paul waited for them at Athens, his spirit was stirred in him, when he saw the city wholly given to idolatry. Therefore disputed he in the synagogue with the Jews, and with the devout persons, and in the market daily with them that met with him. Then certain philosophers of the Epicureans, and of the Stoicks, encountered him. And some said, What will this babbler say? other some, He seemeth to be a setter forth of strange gods: because he preached unto them Jesus, and the resurrection. And they took him, and brought him unto Areopagus, saying, May we know what this new doctrine, whereof thou speakest, is? For thou bringest certain strange things to our ears: we would know therefore what these things mean. (For all the Athenians and strangers which were there spent their time in nothing else, but either to tell, or to hear some new thing.) Then Paul stood in the midst of Mars’ hill, and said, Ye men of Athens, I perceive that in all things ye are too superstitious. For as I passed by, and beheld your devotions, I found an altar with this inscription, TO THE UNKNOWN GOD. Whom therefore ye ignorantly worship, him declare I unto you.

God that made the world and all things therein, seeing that he is Lord of heaven and earth, dwelleth not in temples made with hands; Neither is worshipped with men’s hands, as though he needed any thing, seeing he giveth to all life, and breath, and all things; And hath made of one blood all nations of men for to dwell on all the face of the earth, and hath determined the times before appointed, and the bounds of their habitation; That they should seek the Lord, if haply they might feel after him, and find him, though he be not far from every one of us: For in him we live, and move, and have our being; as certain also of your own poets have said, For we are also his offspring. Forasmuch then as we are the offspring of God, we ought not to think that the Godhead is like unto gold, or silver, or stone, graven by art and man’s device. And the times of this ignorance God winked at; but now commandeth all men every where to repent: Because he hath appointed a day, in the which he will judge the world in righteousness by that man whom he hath ordained; whereof he hath given assurance unto all men, in that he hath raised him from the dead. And when they heard of the resurrection of the dead, some mocked: and others said, We will hear thee again of this matter. So Paul departed from among them. Howbeit certain men clave unto him, and believed: among the which was Dionysius the Areopagite, and a woman named Damaris, and others with them.

It is no wonder that following all of this, we find him –

  C. Fearful in Corinth.

    1. The city of Corinth.

a. “40 miles Southwest of Athens, Corinth was the capital of the province of Achia and had a population of 500,000. Julius Caesar, recognizing the importance of the Isthmus as a military and mercantile position, sent thither a colony of Italians, who were chiefly freedmen. This new establishment rapidly increased by the mere force of its position. Within a few years, it grew from nothing to an enormous city”.                Coneybeare and Howson, pg 326, The Life and Epistles of St. Paul.

      b. Crossroads of travel and commerce for all points. It boasted of two seaports, one on each side of the isthmus.

        1). It was not a centre of intellectualism, like Athens, but was    a trading centre with a cosmopolitan population.
        2). The city was overseen by the goddess Aphrodite, the Greek goddess of love. The temples were full of prostitutes and the city had a thriving night life.
        3). The city had a stadium which hosted contest every two years and was second only to the Greek Olympics.

Imagine if you will, this city dedicated to the pursuit of prosperity and enjoying of worldly pleasures, teeming with activity and this missionary, now traveling alone, entering into this hive of activity, knowing no person, but led by God with the message of hope, the message of help, that these people did not know that they needed nor had any desire to hear –

2.   The record of his emotional condition at this time.

1 Corinthians 2:1-3  And I, brethren, when I came to you, came not with excellency of speech or of wisdom, declaring unto you the testimony of God. For I determined not to know any thing among you, save Jesus Christ, and him crucified. And I was with you in weakness, and in fear, and in much trembling.

Through all of this he saw, and we see, as always that –

  D. Faithful is the Lord.

    1. Note that God did not deceive Paul about his ministry.

Acts 9:15-16  But the Lord said unto him, Go thy way: for he is a chosen vessel unto me, to bear my name before the Gentiles, and kings, and the children of Israel: For I will shew him how great things he must suffer for my name’s sake.


    2.  God promised to be with him throughout his ministry.

Acts 18:9-10  Then spake the Lord to Paul in the night by a vision, Be not afraid, but speak, and hold not thy peace: For I am with thee, and no man shall set on thee to hurt thee: for I have much people in this city.

We often find ourselves in the same position as these men to some degree.  We have the desire to follow the Lord’s command and share His gospel with others, but we seem to lack direction.  Keep moving forward in unknown and even uncomfortable territory.

When we speak, we are blessed that some will listen and even turn to the Lord for salvation, but most will ignore the truth and even some will tell us to leave them alone, and leave others alone, chasing us away.

We must apply this same encouragement from the Lord to our lives today  “…be not afraid, but speak, and hold not thy peace…”

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Preaching Outline 1 Timothy 6:20,21 Are you committed to the truth?

1 Timothy 6:20-21a   Message 35  Final message on 1 Timothy

      e.  Be committed to the truth.   1 Timothy 6:20-21

1 Timothy 6:20-21  O Timothy, keep that which is committed to thy trust, avoiding profane and vain babblings, and oppositions of science falsely so called: Which some professing have erred concerning the faith. Grace be with thee. Amen.

        1).  The Treasure committed to Timothy.    “…keep that which is committed to thy trust…”

We will review that which Timothy was to minister to others, defending the truth from any that would change it from that which he had been given.

We learn of this letter in the –       

A.     Introduction of the Epistle                  1:1-2

This introduction reveals the truth that we all make choices in life and these  choices influence others.  We may never even know how we have helped others in living a life that honours God.  As we begin this letter, we note the identification of the writer and the recipient. –

  1.  Identification.

1 Timothy 1:1  Paul, an apostle of Jesus Christ by the commandment of God our Saviour, and Lord Jesus Christ, which is our hope

      a.  The writer – Paul identified himself as an Apostle by appointment by God.

      b.  The recipient is Timothy    1 Timothy 1:2a “Unto Timothy, my own son in the faith…”

        1).  The partner in ministry – “…my own son in the faith…”   Timothy was now –

        2).  The pastor at Ephesus

This is difficult work – the strength for which is only found in the Lord.  Paul encouraged Timothy in this truth by the next statement of that which is found only in God.  Paul explained that which he had declared of God’s –

    2.  Intercession: “…our hope…”  Our expected end – what to look forward to along the way:

1 Timothy 1:2b  “…Grace, mercy, and peace, from God our Father and Jesus Christ our Lord.”

      a.  Grace,  Living grace needed for each day

      b.  Mercy, protecting us from evil    – and –

      c.  Peace, that which only can come from God.  

We then began to see the –

  B.   Charges to Timothy           1 Timothy 1:3 – 6:21a

Now that he knew the presence of God providing him with grace, mercy, and peace from the Lord Jesus Christ, Timothy was to make a –

    1.  Commitment to right Doctrine  1 Timothy 1:3-20

It would be good to remember that Paul had given Timothy, as pastor of the church in Ephesus, the responsibility to correct the wrongdoing in the church and instruct them in knowing and doing God’s work God’s way.  Timothy had to commit himself to right doctrine in order to set in order the right –

    2.  Conduct of the church                1 Timothy 2:1 – 3:16

We, the members of the church, are a living body – more than just an organization.

We have been placed into this body, the church, by the Lord –

1 Corinthians 12:18  But now hath God set the members every one of them in the body, as it hath pleased him.

– and we are to help one another to accomplish God’s will, and to tell all those in the world that God has sent His Son, Jesus Christ, into the world that they may be saved.  We must have God’s help, which led us to –

      a.  Prayer    1 Timothy 2:1-7

Paul wrote of –

        1).  Supplication – seeking, realizing one’s insufficiency.  1 Timothy 2:1a

        2).  Prayers – conversation

        3).  Intercessions.

        4).  Thanksgiving     And that we are to pray for –

      b.         The People    Who are we to pray for?  1 Timothy 2:1b, 2a

The first thing is –  “…that we may lead a quiet and peaceable life…”

     c.  The Purpose  Why should we pray? – to carry out the commandments of God.        In –

        1).  Peace

        2).  Pleasing unto God  –  1 Timothy 2:3,4

        3).  Profitable to reason in atmosphere of peace –  1 Timothy 2:5,6

        4).  Proclaimed unto all the world –  1 Timothy 2:7

        5).  Practical actions of the believers    which takes daily prayer and determination to submit to God –

           a).  The Responsibility of the men in submission to the Lord –

            (1).  We are to be public, not ashamed of our relationship with the Lord  “…that men pray everywhere…”

            (2).  We are to be pure  “…lifting up holy hands…”

            (3).  We are to be peaceable  “…without wrath…”

            (4).  We are to be positive   “…without doubting.”

          b).  The Role of women in submission to the Lord –

            (1).  Their Dedication

            (2).   Their decency   (The dictionary definition of ‘decent’ is –   marked by moral integrity, kindness, and goodwill)

            (3).  Their determination

            (4).  Their desire

            (5).  Their deference

The conclusion drawn from the responsibilities and roles is –

 Do you see this morning that we are not saved by public prayer and praise, having children, or any other thing we do?  We are saved by faith, trusting in God through His Son Jesus Christ – the death, burial, and resurrection that all men might be saved.

That which Paul stated here is how believers, praying that we might lead quiet and peaceable lives in all godliness and honesty, live in submission and obedience, willingly and happily unto the Lord.

A man or woman who say that they will trust God for salvation, but nothing else, they will choose how they will live their lives, is not a saved person.

A man that says that he does not have to live a holy life, a public testimony for the Lord, does not need to pray, does not need to be kind to others, had better examine his salvation!

A woman that says she will be married, but will not submit to her husband’s leadership, does not have to help him accomplish God’s will for his life, will go to church but does not have to listen to the men because she knows more than they do, had better examine her salvation.

Anyone that states “I will accept your salvation, but I will do what I want when I want”, is not saved!

We also learned of the –

      e.   Positions or what are commonly called ‘offices’ in the church.  1 Timothy 3:1-13

Qualifications for the two offices in the church are set forth in this chapter, the first being that of the

        1).  Bishops                           1 Timothy 3:1-7

        2).  Deacons

The qualifications are set forth clearly and are to be followed exactly!

Next we were encouraged with Timothy in the –

      f. Performance of our duties                    1 Timothy 3:14-16

Paul took a brief intermission in the letter to exhort and encourage Timothy to consider the things he had read and to exalt the Lord, reminding us that He is Worthy of all of our love, all of our attention, and all of our obedience. 

We must stand for the truth of God’s Word as we, as well as was Timothy – are warned along with him of the –

    3.  Calamity in the church                   1 Timothy 4:1-5

      a.  The message of warning.  “…Now the Spirit speaketh expressly…”

Timothy, and every pastor since his time, was told of what to look for in their churches –

      b. The movement away from truth    “…that in the latter times some shall depart from the faith…”

These are all basic truths, easy to understand which should be trusted and obeyed.  But there is a continuing lie being proclaimed by the world –

      c.  The method of deception  “…giving heed to seducing spirits, and doctrines of devils…”

These take the truth, question it, twist it, add lies to it and present it as the answer to your needs in life, the things that you deserve which leads to –

      d.  The magnification of the cult of self

    4.  Correction of the church.                  1 Timothy 4:6-16

Correction is necessary to remain on the course that is set before us by God through His Word.  We should examine our position daily to insure we are remaining true to God’s will and close to Him in our walk.

Paul also provided Timothy with a practical guide to the pastor’s relationship with the church in giving –

    5.  Counsel to the Church       1 Timothy 5:1 – 6:2                                     

      a.  Pastoral Ministry   To Regard them as family

        1).  Ministry to the members

             2).  Ministry to widows.                1 Timothy 5:3-16

               3).  Ministry to pastors.               1 Timothy 5:17-22

                 a).  The pastor’s remuneration. (Simply put, the pastor’s salary)

          b).  The pastor’s reputation.

        4). Ministry to slaves and to masters.    1 Timothy 6:1-2

          1).  Freedom in Christ should not promote rebellion

          2).  Equality in Christ should not promote disrespect 

       b.  Personal lives.  1 Timothy 6:3-21

        1).  Be careful in fellowship.

        2).  Be content in material pursuits.

        3).  Be contending for the faith.  “fight the good fight of faith…”

        4).  Be constantly exhorting the brethren.

Which concludes this morning with –

        2).  The Trust required.  1 Timothy 6:20b-21

… avoiding profane and vain babblings, and oppositions of science falsely so called: Which some professing have erred concerning the faith. Grace be with thee. Amen.

Conclusion 

1 Timothy 6:20-21  O Timothy, keep that which is committed to thy trust, avoiding profane and vain babblings, and oppositions of science falsely so called: Which some professing have erred concerning the faith. Grace be with thee.

We have an example of treasure entrusted to others in the account known as ‘the feeding of the five thousand’.

John 6:9-13  There is a lad here, which hath five barley loaves, and two small fishes: but what are they among so many? And Jesus said, Make the men sit down. Now there was much grass in the place. So the men sat down, in number about five thousand. And Jesus took the loaves; and when he had given thanks, he distributed to the disciples, and the disciples to them that were set down; and likewise of the fishes as much as they would. When they were filled, he said unto his disciples, Gather up the fragments that remain, that nothing be lost. Therefore they gathered them together, and filled twelve baskets with the fragments of the five barley loaves, which remained over and above unto them that had eaten.

We should notice that which Jesus took and gave thanks for were barley loaves.  Jesus gave of the barley loaves to His disciples to give unto the people.  The disciples took of the barley loaves from the hands of Jesus and they went throughout the crowd of people distributing to all.  The people received barley loaves from the disciples who had received them from the Lord.  Following the meal, the disciples were instructed by Jesus to collect all that remained of the barley loaves and twelve baskets were filled.

It is important to notice that the bread that was blessed and given by Jesus was the same that was distributed, eaten, and then the excess collected and stored in baskets.  The disciples nor the people changed the bread that was given.  That which was given was more than sufficient to meet their needs.

The disciples were ministers (waiters on of tables) not taking orders from the people, but providing food from the Master. 

Timothy was a minister and was not to take orders from the people, changing that which he had been given to suit the taste of the people, but was to simply distribute the Word of God to the people as it was given.  We are held accountable to this same command – “…keep that which is committed to thy trust, avoiding profane and vain babblings, and oppositions of science falsely so called…

Human nature has not changed from the first time man disobeyed God.  People are always seeking the easy way.  Jesus dealt with this in His ministry on earth –

John 6:60-64  Many therefore of his disciples, when they had heard this, said, This is an hard saying; who can hear it? When Jesus knew in himself that his disciples murmured at it, he said unto them, Doth this offend you? What and if ye shall see the Son of man ascend up where he was before? It is the spirit that quickeneth; the flesh profiteth nothing: the words that I speak unto you, they are spirit, and they are life. But there are some of you that believe not….

Does what you hear from God’s Word seem too hard for you?  Are you committed to the truth?  I sincerely recommend to you that you trust God, taking one step at a time in accordance with His direction in His Word. God will not make it easy, but He will make you able to do the things that seem hard to you.

Do not change His Word or His will to suit your weakness.  Trust His Word and do His will to increase your strength.

Trust the Lord for your salvation today.

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Preaching Outline 1 Timothy 6:17-19 Message 34 Joy is found in the Lord

1 Timothy 6:17-19      Message 34  Joy found in the Lord

We have noted that our Lord Jesus that “…before Pontius Pilate witnessed a good confession…”  and we should also witness a good confession before those in the world, knowing and trusting in the truth –

 Hebrews 13:20-21  Now the God of peace, that brought again from the dead our Lord Jesus, that great shepherd of the sheep, through the blood of the everlasting covenant, Make you perfect in every good work to do his will, working in you that which is wellpleasing in his sight, through Jesus Christ; to whom be glory for ever and ever. Amen.  

In order to accomplish God’s purpose for our lives in bringing glory to Him, we must act upon that which we have learned.  The pastor is to preach, to practice, and to encourage every believer to –

      a.  Be careful in fellowship. That they will withdraw themselves from evil and give themselves to listen and obey ‘wholesome words’.  1 Timothy 6:3-5

      b.  Be content in material pursuits.  1 Timothy 6:6-11

      c.  Be contending for the faith.  1 Timothy 6:12-16

This morning we look to the command to be –

      d.  Be constantly exhorting the brethren about –

Their present desire,

Their precarious position,

Their positive action.                         We begin with –

        1).  Their present desire    Read 1 Timothy 6:17-19

1 Timothy 6:17-19  Charge them that are rich in this world….

They have accumulated much in this present world,  and are not to put off  being a blessing to others, but to be a help to them now!

We all need to understand this truth – Refuse to hold tight to things!

Romans 14:17  For the kingdom of God is not meat and drink; but righteousness, and peace, and joy in the Holy Ghost.

This command from Paul hearkens back to the Kingdom truths taught by the Lord in what is commonly called the Beatitudes.  

Matthew 5:3-12  Blessed are the poor in spirit: for theirs is the kingdom of heaven. Blessed are they that mourn: for they shall be comforted. Blessed are the meek: for they shall inherit the earth. Blessed are they which do hunger and thirst after righteousness: for they shall be filled. Blessed are the merciful: for they shall obtain mercy. Blessed are the pure in heart: for they shall see God. Blessed are the peacemakers: for they shall be called the children of God. Blessed are they which are persecuted for righteousness’ sake: for theirs is the kingdom of heaven. Blessed are ye, when men shall revile you, and persecute you, and shall say all manner of evil against you falsely, for my sake. Rejoice, and be exceeding glad: for great is your reward in heaven: for so persecuted they the prophets which were before you.

How many of us are raising up our hands high right now and saying “Please Lord, let this be me”!

These are lessons for the Kingdom, but if a believer wants to have a bit of Heaven on earth, so to speak, these attitudes and actions, which are completely contrary to the present world system, should be applied to our day to day lives.  The testimony of this life will be apparent to the unbeliever as a contradiction to the desires of the flesh.  Notice carefully the description given by the Lord and see what is not listed –

Humble (5:3),   Compassionate  (5:4)),    Obedient (5:5)                                      Honest  (5:6),  Helpers  (5:7)  Holy  (5:8), Ambassadors  (5:9)  Unashamed (5:10)

Is this how the Lord would describe us?

We find no mention of the wealthy, the powerful, the celebrity,  – those people that the world lifts up to praise and honour.  We must remember what is important in the eyes of God.

So we are instructed again in this letter to Timothy of the importance of a changed life in this present corrupt world.

Following their present desire, we look to –

        2).  Their precarious position.  They are warned of –

          a).  Their vanity –

“…that they be not highminded,…”

See the use of this word used by Paul –

Romans 11:19-21  Thou wilt say then, The branches were broken off, that I might be graffed in. Well; because of unbelief they were broken off, and thou standest by faith. Be not highminded, but fear: For if God spared not the natural branches, take heed lest he also spare not thee.

Do not believe that we, as many of them did, are in a protected position and cannot be touched by the chastisement of God or the circumstances that trouble others.

And they are warned of –

          b).  Their vulnerability –

“…nor trust in uncertain riches…”  They believe their wealth is a wall of protection and insulates them from the common tragedies of this life.

Proverbs 23:5  Wilt thou set thine eyes upon that which is not? for riches certainly make themselves wings; they fly away as an eagle toward heaven.

Ecclesiastes 5:13  There is a sore evil which I have seen under the sun, namely, riches kept for the owners thereof to their hurt.

Following this warning, we see the blessings offered through –

        3).  Their positive actions –  They are to trust –

   “…in the living God, who giveth us richly all things to enjoy;…”

How do we truly enjoy the wealth God gives?  We are given the answer here –

  “That they do good, that they be rich in good works,  ready to distribute, willing to communicate; “

Giving of things and sharing those things, being in common with themIt is easy to give something and take your hand back, but here we are to give something and share it with them.  We see that this has to do with giving our hearts. Give those things that will meet the spiritual an physical needs of the person.

Look at the example of giving and the rejoicing that comes to the person giving in the following verses –

1 Chronicles 29:1-17  Furthermore David the king said unto all the congregation, Solomon my son, whom alone God hath chosen, is yet young and tender, and the work is great: for the palace is not for man, but for the LORD God. Now I have prepared with all my might for the house of my God the gold for things to be made of gold, and the silver for things of silver, and the brass for things of brass, the iron for things of iron, and wood for things of wood; onyx stones, and stones to be set, glistering stones, and of divers colours, and all manner of precious stones, and marble stones in abundance. Moreover, because I have set my affection to the house of my God, I have of mine own proper good, of gold and silver, which I have given to the house of my God, over and above all that I have prepared for the holy house, Even three thousand talents of gold, of the gold of Ophir, and seven thousand talents of refined silver, to overlay the walls of the houses withal: The gold for things of gold, and the silver for things of silver, and for all manner of work to be made by the hands of artificers. And who then is willing to consecrate his service this day unto the LORD? Then the chief of the fathers and princes of the tribes of Israel, and the captains of thousands and of hundreds, with the rulers of the king’s work, offered willingly, And gave for the service of the house of God of gold five thousand talents and ten thousand drams, and of silver ten thousand talents, and of brass eighteen thousand talents, and one hundred thousand talents of iron. And they with whom precious stones were found gave them to the treasure of the house of the LORD, by the hand of Jehiel the Gershonite. Then the people rejoiced, for that they offered willingly, because with perfect heart they offered willingly to the LORD: and David the king also rejoiced with great joy. Wherefore David blessed the LORD before all the congregation: and David said, Blessed be thou, LORD God of Israel our father, for ever and ever. Thine, O LORD, is the greatness, and the power, and the glory, and the victory, and the majesty: for all that is in the heaven and in the earth is thine; thine is the kingdom, O LORD, and thou art exalted as head above all. Both riches and honour come of thee, and thou reignest over all; and in thine hand is power and might; and in thine hand it is to make great, and to give strength unto all. Now therefore, our God, we thank thee, and praise thy glorious name. But who am I, and what is my people, that we should be able to offer so willingly after this sort? for all things come of thee, and of thine own have we given thee. For we are strangers before thee, and sojourners, as were all our fathers: our days on the earth are as a shadow, and there is none abiding. O LORD our God, all this store that we have prepared to build thee an house for thine holy name cometh of thine hand, and is all thine own. I know also, my God, that thou triest the heart, and hast pleasure in uprightness. As for me, in the uprightness of mine heart I have willingly offered all these things: and now have I seen with joy thy people, which are present here, to offer willingly unto thee.

We see that the joy did not come through the material things, but through using these things for the glory of God and the good of the people.

“Laying up in store for themselves a good foundation against the time to come…”

Using God’s creation for Him and being a blessing to others.  Trust the Lord to care for you and care for others through you –

Matthew 6:33  But seek ye first the kingdom of God, and his righteousness; and all these things shall be added unto you.

Conclusion:

“…that they may lay hold on eternal life.”

Do we understand what eternal life means at this present time?

It means that everything we go through here is just for a moment.

It means the experiences that we have in this present time should be an encouragement to us as we discover where our eternal which we lay hold onto now life is leading us.

Consider these things, that even in a life filled with trouble, just one thing after another, we have experienced some moments of joy –

A friend found

A life long love established

A hurt healed

A sorrow comforted

The prosperity preachers have it all backwards!  We do not give to get.  We get to give! And we do it over and over and over!

How much can you give before you cross the line of this life and enter into the presence of the Lord.

Enjoyment is short lived in the things that we accumulate as we pass through, but the joy we share with others through the Lord Jesus Christ, exalting God every day builds a good foundation in the coming days and on into eternity. 

“Well done, thou good and faithful servant…”

What blessed words to hear from the Lord.

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Preaching Outline 1 Timothy 6:13-16 The Example of the Saviour Message 33

1 Timothy 6:13-16  The Example of the Saviour  Message 33

We have learned that the pastor is to practice and to preach that believer’s will –

      a.  Be careful in fellowship. “…any man…” including Religious teachers, withdraw themselves from evil and give themselves to listen and obey ‘wholesome words’.

      b.  Be content in material pursuits.  1 Timothy 6:6-11

      c.  Be contending for the faith.  1 Timothy 6:12-16

We have been warned of the dangers of accumulating money as a method of setting ourselves above others through the possession of material goods, power, prestige, submitting to our pride and the love of money. Many fight for these things, not contending for the faith, but contending for foolish things that will all be left behind at death.

We are to fight for that good thing, faith.  We saw in verse 12 three things that will help us to walk in the way of the Lord.

The exhortation to contend for the faith.

The encouragement to lay hold on eternal life.

The example of the Saviour.

We began with –

        1).  The Exhortation to contend for the faith

          a).  Contending                 Paul’s exhortation –

                ‘Fight the good fight’. 

          b).  Courage to fight  We must know God’s Word and have the –

          c).  Conviction of what to fight for.

We were reminded that life is full of fights –

            (1).  good ones, the fight for THE FAITH, holding forth the truth of God.

            (2).  Meaningless fights: to fight for the things of this world which are so soon to be worthless to anyone.  And there are –

            (3).  Foolish fights:  to fight against God or to fight against His people which are to be rejected –

We have the exhortation to fight the good fight of faith.  We also have

Then we learned what it means to “…lay hold onto eternal life…”

        2).  The Embracing of your eternal life.

It is yours, posses it, occupy it, own it, God has given it to you!  Declare that it is yours and begin now, not waiting until you die!

Today, being Easter, we will look at the –

        3).  The Example of the Saviour 1 Timothy 6:13-16

1 Timothy 6:13-16  I give thee charge in the sight of God, who quickeneth all things, and before Christ Jesus, who before Pontius Pilate witnessed a good confession; That thou keep this commandment without spot, unrebukeable, until the appearing of our Lord Jesus Christ: Which in his times he shall shew, who is the blessed and only Potentate, the King of kings, and Lord of lords; Who only hath immortality, dwelling in the light which no man can approach unto; whom no man hath seen, nor can see: to whom be honour and power everlasting. Amen.

This is especially a blessed day to look to the Saviour as Paul exalts Him in this letter to Timothy.  I did not plan out the preaching schedule of this book for these verses to be preached on this day, but how appropriate they are and how blessed we are to fight the good fight of faith. 

          a).  The witnesses of our faith. 

1 Timothy 6:13  I give thee charge in the sight of God, who quickeneth all things, and before Christ Jesus, who before Pontius Pilate witnessed a good confession;

             (1).  The reason for fighting the good fight   “…God…and before Christ Jesus…”

We fight the good fight because God loves us –

John 15:9-12  As the Father hath loved me, so have I loved you: continue ye in my love. If ye keep my commandments, ye shall abide in my love; even as I have kept my Father’s commandments, and abide in his love. These things have I spoken unto you, that my joy might remain in you, and that your joy might be full. This is my commandment, That ye love one another, as I have loved you.

            (2).  The results of fighting the good fight 

1 Timothy 6:14  That thou keep this commandment without spot, unrebukeable, until the appearing of our Lord Jesus Christ:

We fight the good fight because the world needs to see the light of God in us and hear the Word of God from us –

2 Corinthians 4:1-10  Therefore seeing we have this ministry, as we have received mercy, we faint not; But have renounced the hidden things of dishonesty, not walking in craftiness, nor handling the word of God deceitfully; but by manifestation of the truth commending ourselves to every man’s conscience in the sight of God. But if our gospel be hid, it is hid to them that are lost: In whom the god of this world hath blinded the minds of them which believe not, lest the light of the glorious gospel of Christ, who is the image of God, should shine unto them. For we preach not ourselves, but Christ Jesus the Lord; and ourselves your servants for Jesus’ sake. For God, who commanded the light to shine out of darkness, hath shined in our hearts, to give the light of the knowledge of the glory of God in the face of Jesus Christ. But we have this treasure in earthen vessels, that the excellency of the power may be of God, and not of us. We are troubled on every side, yet not distressed; we are perplexed, but not in despair; Persecuted, but not forsaken; cast down, but not destroyed; Always bearing about in the body the dying of the Lord Jesus, that the life also of Jesus might be made manifest in our body.

          b).  The witnesses of the Lord’s faith.  “…who before Pontius Pilate…”

1 Timothy 6:13-14a  I give thee charge in the sight of God, who quickeneth all things, and before Christ Jesus, who before Pontius Pilate witnessed a good confession; That thou keep this commandment without spot, unrebukeable,

We must take a moment and be reminded of –

            (1).  His plan

Luke 18:31-33  Then he took unto him the twelve, and said unto them, Behold, we go up to Jerusalem, and all things that are written by the prophets concerning the Son of man shall be accomplished. For he shall be delivered unto the Gentiles, and shall be mocked, and spitefully entreated, and spitted on: And they shall scourge him, and put him to death: and the third day he shall rise again.

Mark 14:61-62  But he held his peace, and answered nothing. Again the high priest asked him, and said unto him, Art thou the Christ, the Son of the Blessed? And Jesus said, I am: and ye shall see the Son of man sitting on the right hand of power, and coming in the clouds of heaven.

            (2).  His position.

Matthew 27:11  And Jesus stood before the governor: and the governor asked him, saying, Art thou the King of the Jews? And Jesus said unto him, Thou sayest.

John 18:37  Pilate therefore said unto him, Art thou a king then? Jesus answered, Thou sayest that I am a king. To this end was I born, and for this cause came I into the world, that I should bear witness unto the truth. Every one that is of the truth heareth my voice.

Mark 15:12-14  And Pilate answered and said again unto them, What will ye then that I shall do unto him whom ye call the King of the Jews? And they cried out again, Crucify him. Then Pilate said unto them, Why, what evil hath he done? And they cried out the more exceedingly, Crucify him.

John 19:19  And Pilate wrote a title, and put it on the cross. And the writing was, JESUS OF NAZARETH THE KING OF THE JEWS.

            (3).  His power

John 19:2-12  And the soldiers platted a crown of thorns, and put it on his head, and they put on him a purple robe, And said, Hail, King of the Jews! and they smote him with their hands. Pilate therefore went forth again, and saith unto them, Behold, I bring him forth to you, that ye may know that I find no fault in him. Then came Jesus forth, wearing the crown of thorns, and the purple robe. And Pilate saith unto them, Behold the man! When the chief priests therefore and officers saw him, they cried out, saying, Crucify him, crucify him. Pilate saith unto them, Take ye him, and crucify him: for I find no fault in him. The Jews answered him, We have a law, and by our law he ought to die, because he made himself the Son of God. When Pilate therefore heard that saying, he was the more afraid; And went again into the judgment hall, and saith unto Jesus, Whence art thou? But Jesus gave him no answer. Then saith Pilate unto him, Speakest thou not unto me? knowest thou not that I have power to crucify thee, and have power to release thee? Jesus answered, Thou couldest have no power at all against me, except it were given thee from above: therefore he that delivered me unto thee hath the greater sin. And from thenceforth Pilate sought to release him: but the Jews cried out, saying, If thou let this man go, thou art not Caesar’s friend: whosoever maketh himself a king speaketh against Caesar.

          c).  The witnesses in faith, looking for the Lord’s return.

Paul wrote these words –

1 Timothy 6:14b-16   “…until the appearing of our Lord Jesus Christ: Which in his times he shall shew, who is the blessed and only Potentate, the King of kings, and Lord of lords; Who only hath immortality, dwelling in the light which no man can approach unto; whom no man hath seen, nor can see: to whom be honour and power everlasting. Amen.”

In the light of the glorious gospel of Jesus Christ –

1 Corinthians 15:3-6  For I delivered unto you first of all that which I also received, how that Christ died for our sins according to the scriptures; And that he was buried, and that he rose again the third day according to the scriptures: And that he was seen of Cephas, then of the twelve: After that, he was seen of above five hundred brethren at once; of whom the greater part remain unto this present, but some are fallen asleep.

And in accord with the testimony of the angels at the Lord’s ascension –

Acts 1:8-11  But ye shall receive power, after that the Holy Ghost is come upon you: and ye shall be witnesses unto me both in Jerusalem, and in all Judaea, and in Samaria, and unto the uttermost part of the earth. And when he had spoken these things, while they beheld, he was taken up; and a cloud received him out of their sight. And while they looked stedfastly toward heaven as he went up, behold, two men stood by them in white apparel; Which also said, Ye men of Galilee, why stand ye gazing up into heaven? this same Jesus, which is taken up from you into heaven, shall so come in like manner as ye have seen him go into heaven.

We should fight the good fight of faith because we are in the eternal court of God, living in His presence for His glory.

We should fight the good fight of faith because we are in combat for the souls of men, that they might hear the gospel, turn to God in faith through His Son Jesus, and be everlastingly saved.

We should fight the good fight of faith because Jesus, as He went into Heaven, is coming again and we need to be prepared for His coming –

“…who is the blessed and only Potentate, the King of kings, and Lord of lords;
Who only hath immortality, dwelling in the light which no man can approach unto; whom no man hath seen, nor can see: to whom be honour and power everlasting.”

Are you ready to meet Him?  Are you excited to see Him?

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Preaching Outline 1 Timothy 6:12 Fight the good fight…

1 Timothy 6  Message 32

      c.  Be contending for the faith.  1 Timothy 6:12-16

We have been warned of the dangers of accumulating money as a method of setting ourselves above others through the possession of material goods, power, prestige, submitting to our pride and the love of money. Many fight for these things, not contending for the faith, but contending for foolish things that will all be left behind at death.

We are to fight for that good thing, faith.  We see in these verses three things that will help us to walk in the way of the Lord.

The exhortation to contend for the faith.

The encouragement to lay hold on eternal life.

The example of the Saviour.

We begin with –

        1).  The Exhortation to contend for the faith

          a).  Contending                 Paul’s exhortation –

                ‘Fight the good fight’. 

Paul also gave us understanding of the word through his use of it in –

1 Corinthians 9:25 And every man that striveth for the mastery (Fight) is temperate in all things. Now they do it to obtain a corruptible crown; but we an incorruptible.

Paul’s terminology uses a comparison of the wrestling contest in the official games.  We picture the contestants facing one another, the unbeliever is looking for a weak spot in the believer’s life to seize and defeat him.  We are to fight, we are to be contenders, and we are to trust the Lord, standing in His strength.

          b).  Courage to fight

Jude’s exhortation –

Jude 3-4  Beloved, when I gave all diligence to write unto you of the common salvation, it was needful for me to write unto you, and exhort you that ye should earnestly contend for the faith which was once delivered unto the saints. For there are certain men crept in unawares, who were before of old ordained to this condemnation, ungodly men, turning the grace of our God into lasciviousness, and denying the only Lord God, and our Lord Jesus Christ.

“It was needful…”  To may believers are accepting false teachings.  It is not ‘alright’!  We should never lower God’s standards to satisfy man’s desires.

Ephesians 6:10  Finally, my brethren, be strong in the Lord, and in the power of his might.

We must know God’s Word and have the –

          c).  Conviction of what to fight for.

Life is full of fights –

              (1).  good ones, the fight for THE FAITH, holding forth the truth of God.

The Lord chose His fights – At times He stayed.  At times He walked away –

Luke 13:31-33  The same day there came certain of the Pharisees, saying unto him, Get thee out, and depart hence: for Herod will kill thee. And he said unto them, Go ye, and tell that fox, Behold, I cast out devils, and I do cures to day and to morrow, and the third day I shall be perfected. Nevertheless I must walk to day, and to morrow, and the day following: for it cannot be that a prophet perish out of Jerusalem.

The fight had to be a good fight, to the glory of God – “Fight the good fight of the faith, unashamed –

John 18:36  Jesus answered, My kingdom is not of this world: if my kingdom were of this world, then would my servants fight, that I should not be delivered to the Jews: but now is my kingdom not from hence.

To stand in the name of the Lord for His Word.

To stand in the power of the Lord wielding the Sword of the Spirit which is His Word.

There are good fight and there are –

              (2).  Meaningless fights: to fight for the things of this world which are so soon to be worthless to anyone

And there are –

              (3).  Foolish fights:  to fight against God or to fight against His people which are to be rejected –

Fights that should never enter the mind or the heart – to fight                           against God.  Even the Jewish rabbi, Gamaliel knew this –

Acts 5:34-39  Then stood there up one in the council, a Pharisee, named Gamaliel, a doctor of the law, had in reputation among all the people, and commanded to put the apostles forth a little space; And said unto them, Ye men of Israel, take heed to yourselves what ye intend to do as touching these men. For before these days rose up Theudas, boasting himself to be somebody; to whom a number of men, about four hundred, joined themselves: who was slain; and all, as many as obeyed him, were scattered, and brought to nought. After this man rose up Judas of Galilee in the days of the taxing, and drew away much people after him: he also perished; and all, even as many as obeyed him, were dispersed. And now I say unto you, Refrain from these men, and let them alone: for if this counsel or this work be of men, it will come to nought: But if it be of God, ye cannot overthrow it; lest haply ye be found even to fight against God.

We have the exhortation to fight the good fight of faith.  We also have –

        2).  The Embracing of your eternal life.

“…lay hold onto eternal life….”   It is yours, posses it, occupy it, own it, God has given it to you!  Declare that it is yours. 

2 Corinthians 5:17-20  Therefore if any man be in Christ, he is a new creature: old things are passed away; behold, all things are become new. And all things are of God, who hath reconciled us to himself by Jesus Christ, and hath given to us the ministry of reconciliation; To wit, that God was in Christ, reconciling the world unto himself, not imputing their trespasses unto them; and hath committed unto us the word of reconciliation. Now then we are ambassadors for Christ, as though God did beseech you by us: we pray you in Christ’s stead, be ye reconciled to God.

Philippians 3:16  Nevertheless, whereto we have already attained, let us walk by the same rule, let us mind the same thing.

Ephesians 2:8-10  For by grace are ye saved through faith; and that not of yourselves: it is the gift of God: Not of works, lest any man should boast. For we are his workmanship, created in Christ Jesus unto good works, which God hath before ordained that we should walk in them.

Remember your calling to salvation and remember your courage through salvation

We see the exhortation to fight.

We see the encouragement to lay hold on eternal life, and now we see –

        3).  The Example of the Saviour.

Never be ashamed.  The Lord was never ashamed! 

John 8:58  Jesus said unto them, Verily, verily, I say unto you, Before Abraham was, I am.

John 10:30  I and my Father are one.

John 14:19  Yet a little while, and the world seeth me no more; but ye see me: because I live, ye shall live also.

How then do we fight the good fight of faith –

Ephesians 6:10-13  Finally, my brethren, be strong in the Lord, and in the power of his might. Put on the whole armour of God, that ye may be able to stand against the wiles of the devil. For we wrestle not against flesh and blood, but against principalities, against powers, against the rulers of the darkness of this world, against spiritual wickedness in high places. Wherefore take unto you the whole armour of God, that ye may be able to withstand in the evil day, and having done all, to stand.

How then do we posses our eternal life –

2 Timothy 2:15  Study to shew thyself approved unto God, a workman that needeth not to be ashamed, rightly dividing the word of truth.

1 Thessalonians 5:17  Pray without ceasing.

2 Timothy 2:2  And the things that thou hast heard of me among many witnesses, the same commit thou to faithful men, who shall be able to teach others also.

2 Corinthians 10:16  To preach the gospel in the regions beyond you, and not to boast in another man’s line of things made ready to our hand.

How then do we follow the example of our Saviour –

Hebrews 12:1-4  Wherefore seeing we also are compassed about with so great a cloud of witnesses, let us lay aside every weight, and the sin which doth so easily beset us, and let us run with patience the race that is set before us, Looking unto Jesus the author and finisher of our faith; who for the joy that was set before him endured the cross, despising the shame, and is set down at the right hand of the throne of God. For consider him that endured such contradiction of sinners against himself, lest ye be wearied and faint in your minds. Ye have not yet resisted unto blood, striving against sin.

1 Peter 2:21  For even hereunto were ye called: because Christ also suffered for us, leaving us an example, that ye should follow his steps:

Will you fight the good fight?

Will you lay hold on eternal life?

Will you follow His steps?

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Preaching Outline 1 Timothy 6:6-11 Message 31 What is your plan?

1 Timothy 6:6-11    Message 31

Having completed the instructions to Timothy on the pastor’s ministry to the church, Paul exhorted Timothy on the testimony of the believer’s –

      b.  Personal life.  1 Timothy 6:3-21

Last week we learned that the pastor is to practice and to preach that believer’s will –

        1).  Be careful in fellowship. “…any man…” including Religious teachers, withdraw themselves from evil and give themselves to listen and obey ‘wholesome words’.

Today we will be instructed that we are to –

        2).  Be content in material pursuits.  1 Timothy 6:6-11

1 Timothy 6:6,7  But godliness with contentment is great gain. For we brought nothing into this world, and it is certain we can carry nothing out.

We should begin with the second statement which will help us to formulate a plan for our lives, seeking wisdom and direction from the Lord.

“For we brought nothing into this world, and it is certain we can carry nothing out.”

Adam was created from the dust of the earth, and from that time, life transferred generation to generation, with each generation returning to dust, bringing nothing into the world and taking nothing out.  It is important to know that life began as the work of God in the Garden of Eden and ends with each person’s body of flesh returning to the dust of the earth. 

Consider two facts –

One, contrary to popular opinion, life does not begin at conception.  There is no time that life does not exist, it is transferred from the man and the woman to the child.

Two, because we begin with nothing and end with nothing, we should plan carefully what we will do between these two points, birth and death, to bring glory to God.

Now think about the first statement –

“And having food and raiment let us be therewith content.”

Paul learned this truth from the Holy Spirit and shared with us this lesson for our benefit –

Philippians 4:10-13   But I rejoiced in the Lord greatly, that now at the last your care of me hath flourished again; wherein ye were also careful, but ye lacked opportunity. Not that I speak in respect of want: for I have learned, in whatsoever state I am, therewith to be content. I know both how to be abased, and I know how to abound: every where and in all things I am instructed both to be full and to be hungry, both to abound and to suffer need. I can do all things through Christ which strengtheneth me.

He was instructed by the Lord by word and by the deeds of those that loved the Lord.  Do you think that Paul may have seen this Godly character in action through the life of Barnabas?

Notice also Paul’s use of this word ‘contentment’ in 2 Corinthians 9:8, the only other place that it is used by Paul and it is translated ‘sufficiency’

We should look carefully at the context –

2 Corinthians 9:7-11  Every man according as he purposeth in his heart, so let him give; not grudgingly, or of necessity: for God loveth a cheerful giver.

 And God is able to make all grace abound toward you; that ye, always having all sufficiency in all things, may abound to every good work:

(As it is written, He hath dispersed abroad; he hath given to the poor: his righteousness remaineth for ever.

Now he that ministereth seed to the sower both minister bread for your food, and multiply your seed sown, and increase the fruits of your righteousness;)

Being enriched in every thing to all bountifulness, which causeth through us thanksgiving to God.

We note we are to have a plan to use that which we receive.  Paul also speaks to the attitude of the believer in the use of that which is in his control –

Ephesians 4:28  Let him that stole steal no more: but rather let him labour, working with his hands the thing which is good, that he may have to give to him that needeth.

Do you believe the thought would be-

Be content with the things that you have because this is probably all that you will ever get!

Or do you believe the thought would be –

Be content with the things that you have because you will bless others with the abundance that you have to give away?

“Being enriched in every thing to all bountifulness, which causeth through us thanksgiving to God.”

You see contentment is not an emotion, it is a plan!  Your contentment is the foundation of the plan based on the Word of God to provide for the ministry of the Word of God in whatever form the Lord leads.

Now we turn to the outline of the message today –

          a).  The Reward   1 Timothy 6:6

1 Timothy 6:6  But godliness with contentment is great gain.

          b).  The Realization of facts  1 Timothy 6:7-8

1 Timothy 6:7-8  For we brought nothing into this world, and it is certain we can carry nothing out. And having food and raiment let us be therewith content.

          c).  The Rejection of greed and envy.  1 Timothy 6:9-11a

1 Timothy 6:9-11  But they that will be rich fall into temptation and a snare, and into many foolish and hurtful lusts, which drown men in destruction and perdition. For the love of money is the root of all evil: which while some coveted after, they have erred from the faith, and pierced themselves through with many sorrows. But thou, O man of God, flee these things…

God has prepared the animals with natural instincts to be warned of dangers in their paths –

Proverbs 1:17  Surely in vain the net is spread in the sight of any bird.

God has also prepared men with natural instincts and above these, words of warning!

We know from our own natural instincts to beware of danger.  The Lord speaks of ‘falling’ in these verses – to be drawn over the edge by our own instability.  Think about this –

Stand in the middle of a walkway, no problem.

Stand in the middle of your drive, no problem.

Stand in your front hall, not problem, Yet –

Stand on the edge of a cliff and we become unstable!

Stand on the edge of a tall building and we become unstable!

This is why warning signs are posted – to add to our natural warning system. 

He has declared that the love of money, the greed that provokes men to the desire to be rich will “Drown men in destruction”.  Imagine if you will the struggles of one who is drowning in water – the fear, which quickly turns into panic, the struggle to reach the surface, the burning in the lungs, need to gulp in air instead of water, the flailing and kicking about.

Now imagine all of these things in a person’s life who is drowning in the need, not for air, but for power, for riches, for prestige, for control over others.  When they cannot get what they believe they need, they begin to fear, panic, flail about, get angry, disappointed, discouraged if they do not get what they want.  They “pierce themselves through with many sorrows.”  They do this to themselves, destroying their lives and those around them. 

The Lord instructs us for our good and it is an amazing thing that men reject the counsel of God to their own destruction!

When we hear and obey the warnings from God, we will be able to enjoy –

          d).  The Rejoicing from God’s blessings.  1 Timothy 6:11b

“… and follow after righteousness, godliness, faith, love, patience, meekness.”

The result of God’s Working in and through our lives – the Fruit of the Spirit.

Will you listen to Him now as a believer?

Will you make a plan for your life to use that which you have as God directs.  Remember that we bring nothing in and we take nothing out.  Set up a plan to insure that the gains during your life are used to the glory of God.

Will you listen to Him now as an unbeliever?

None of this has to do with you at this moment, but that can all change if you will turn to the Lord in repentance and faith, calling on Him for salvation.

On either hand, do not live your life like a drowning man!

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Preaching Outline 1 Timothy 6:3-5 Message 30 ‘Wholesome Words’

1 Timothy chapter 6:3-21  Message 30

Having completed the instructions to Timothy on the pastor’s ministry to the church, Paul exhorted Timothy on the testimony of the believer’s –

      b.  Personal life.  1 Timothy 6:3-21

The pastor is to practice and to preach that believer’s will –

        1).  Be careful in fellowship. “…any man…” including Religious teachers

          a).  The command to the believers?

1 Timothy 6:3-5  If any man teach otherwise, and consent not to wholesome words, even the words of our Lord Jesus Christ, and to the doctrine which is according to godliness……from such withdraw thyself.

We must note Paul’s inclusiveness in the declaration “If any man…”.  The truth is exclusive to is God Himself.  What God said is true.  His infinite perfect demands truth in all thins.  Man is true when he repeats the Words of God and is directed in life thereby.  If any man, including Paul himself, turns God’s truth into a lie, he is to be rejected –

Galatians 1:8-9  But though we, or an angel from heaven, preach any other gospel unto you than that which we have preached unto you, let him be accursed. As we said before, so say I now again, If any man preach any other gospel unto you than that ye have received, let him be accursed.

The believer is to accept the burden of knowing the truth and then never turning from it.

Be careful of those who say that this mandate applies only to the saving message of God, the death, burial, and resurrection of Jesus Christ.  Man cannot interpret God’s Word as he pleases to accommodate his own circumstances.  We are to o bey the whole counsel of God –

2 Timothy 3:16-17  All scripture is given by inspiration of God, and is profitable for doctrine, for reproof, for correction, for instruction in righteousness: That the man of God may be perfect, throughly furnished unto all good works.

Proverbs 30:5-6  Every word of God is pure: he is a shield unto them that put their trust in him. Add thou not unto his words, lest he reprove thee, and thou be found a liar.

Matthew 4:4  But he answered and said, It is written, Man shall not live by bread alone, but by every word that proceedeth out of the mouth of God.

Though every religious teacher, every Christian scholar, even the whole world reject the Word of God as revealed in His Word, they are wrong and He is right –

Romans 3:4  God forbid: yea, let God be true, but every man a liar…

Though the whole world declare that God’s Word is wrong their word is right and should be accepted, remember that the judgment of the world is relative to their own beliefs and is temporary, constantly changing.  God’s judgment is true and everlasting.  Be careful in the choice of your judge and remember that final judgment is coming and it will be based on God’s Word, not man’s opinion!

 Hebrews 9:27  And as it is appointed unto men once to die, but after this the judgment:

Now, understanding and accepting this, it is important to understand that the idea behind the word ‘wholesome’ is dealing with good

Notice the Lord’s use of the word in –

Luke 5:31  And Jesus answering said unto them, They that are whole need not a physician; but they that are sick.

And John’s use in –

3 John 2  Beloved, I wish above all things that thou mayest prosper and be in health, even as thy soul prospereth.

Hold on to wholesome words as opposed to sick or diseased words which are brought out of a sin sick heart revealing evil thoughts, ideas, and actions, which harm people.  These take away their health, spiritual sickness which also often leads to physical sickness.

The words of our Lord Jesus Christ are healthy words which keep us strong spiritually.  The words are full of grace and mercy which strengthen us.  They words are full of warning which protect us.

The words of our Lord Jesus Christ –

Matthew 22:37-40  Jesus said unto him, Thou shalt love the Lord thy God with all thy heart, and with all thy soul, and with all thy mind. This is the first and great commandment. And the second is like unto it, Thou shalt love thy neighbour as thyself. On these two commandments hang all the law and the prophets.

John 13:34-35  A new commandment I give unto you, That ye love one another; as I have loved you, that ye also love one another. By this shall all men know that ye are my disciples, if ye have love one to another.

          b).  The challenge to the believers.  

God set forth a very clear statement in His Word on what is healthy and unhealthy, what is holy and unholy, what is truth and what is a lie.

It is important that we are reminded again that health and is the same word as ‘sound’ doctrine reveals the sin and sickness in the world.  Read again of the purpose of ‘sound words’. 1 Timothy 1:10 –

 1 Timothy 1:9-10 Knowing this, that the law is not made for a righteous man, but for the lawless and disobedient, for the ungodly and for sinners, for unholy and profane, for murderers of fathers and murderers of mothers, for manslayers,  For whoremongers, for them that defile themselves with mankind, for menstealers, for liars, for perjured persons, and if there be any other thing that is contrary to sound doctrine;

Take note of those that use ‘unhealthy’ words – “the lawless and disobedient, for the ungodly and for sinners, for unholy and profane, for murderers of fathers and murderers of mothers, for manslayers, for whoremongers, for them that defile themselves with mankind, menstealers, for liars, for perjured persons…”

The Lord is declaring that the –

Ungodly,

Sinners,

Unholy and profane,

Murderers of fathers and murderers of mothers,

Manslayers,

Whoremongers – for those that promote fornication or adultery.

Homosexuals,

kidnappers (slave traders)

liars,

those that lie under oath – bear false witness

These are being excused by the world instead of being confronted and warned of being under condemnation and coming judgment.  The world does not care that these will die in their sins and spend eternity separated from God, tormented in Hell forever.  The world claims that any warning is hateful and hurtful, condemning the messengers, though they love and care for the souls of mankind as the Lord commands.

We must be very clear in this, even religious teachers present unsound words and encourage people to reject the Word of God, to reject the truth of God, to reject the love of God, and cause many to remain in a condemned state with no hope of escaping eternal separation from God, in hell forever.

They speak unhealthy words which do not agree with God’s truth!

          c).  The believer’s conduct?      “From such withdraw themselves…”

Christians should readily admit the difference between a holy life and an unholy life is the work of God in their lives which was brought about through their repentance and trust in God though His Son, the Lord Jesus Christ.

1 Corinthians 6:9-11  Know ye not that the unrighteous shall not inherit the kingdom of God? Be not deceived: neither fornicators, nor idolaters, nor adulterers, nor effeminate, nor abusers of themselves with mankind, Nor thieves, nor covetous, nor drunkards, nor revilers, nor extortioners, shall inherit the kingdom of God.  And such were some of you: but ye are washed, but ye are sanctified, but ye are justified in the name of the Lord Jesus, and by the Spirit of our God.

We are not to withdraw ourselves from them because we are better than them, but so as we will not be influenced to sin, but might influence them to turn to the Lord in faith.

We have spoken with multitudes of people over the years that refuse to turn to God, even to visit church with us, because of someone they knew that claimed to be a Christian and acted in some ungodly manner.  I spoke with our neighbor from across our street yesterday that gave this excuse. 

I find this strange that people claim to be their own person, making their own decisions, standing for what they think is right no matter what, and yet they let what someone has done influence the most important decision in eternity.

What can we do to help them?

            (1).  Do not let them influence us to do wrong.

            (2).  Live in such a way as to influence them to trust God.

Peter put it well –

James 1:27  Pure religion and undefiled before God and the Father is this, To visit the fatherless and widows in their affliction, and to keep himself unspotted from the world.

Why would we do this?  Because we have a new commandment –

“…That ye love one another; as I have loved you, that ye also love one another. By this shall all men know that ye are my disciples, if ye have love one to another.”

At this point you might be saying to yourselves “What in the world was that all about”?  The good thing about using this medium to present the message is that you can go back and listen again.  I pray that you will and see that Paul instructed Timothy to live out salvation to the glory of God, being reminded of the simple truth brought out in –

2 Corinthians 4:4-5  In whom the god of this world hath blinded the minds of them which believe not, lest the light of the glorious gospel of Christ, who is the image of God, should shine unto them. For we preach not ourselves, but Christ Jesus the Lord; and ourselves your servants for Jesus’ sake.

The world needs to see God’s message in our lives.  Do they see Him in you?

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Preaching Outline 1 Timothy chapter 6:1,2 Message 29

1 Timothy 6      Message 29

Paul has been instructing the pastor on the –

        1).  Ministry to members

        2).  Ministry to widows

        3).  Ministry to pastors

And we conclude this section with the pastor’s –

        4). Ministry to slaves and to masters.    1 Timothy 6:1-2

John 8:36  If the Son therefore shall make you free, ye shall be free indeed.

Paul is helping Timothy, pastors, and churches throughout the ages to deal with a very difficult situation arising from human relationships and responsibilities.  We know that the Lord has set us free from the bondage of sin and from religious tradition.  God is no respecter of persons and we are all equal in His sight.  The problem arises when we confuse relationship with responsibility.

God the Father, God the Son, and God the Spirit are absolutely equal in their relationship, yet they carry out responsibilities which cause them to submit and serve one another which in no way affects their equality.

John 8:28-30  Then said Jesus unto them, When ye have lifted up the Son of man, then shall ye know that I am he, and that I do nothing of myself; but as my Father hath taught me, I speak these things. And he that sent me is with me: the Father hath not left me alone; for I do always those things that please him. As he spake these words, many believed on him.

John 10:30  I and my Father are one.

Men and women are equal in their value to God, yet their have responsibilities which demand submission and servitude in their relationships.  The responsibilities are clearly set forth in the Bible, God’s Word.

Masters, servants, and slaves are equal in their value to God, yet they also have responsibilities which demand submission and servitude in their relationships.    Again, these responsibilities are clearly set forth in God’s Word.

The relationship between God, the Father, The Son, and The Spirit is always perfect and pure, without conflict and their responsibilities are fulfilled without contradiction.

This, sadly, cannot be said about men and women or about masters, servants, and slaves.  The human nature, the sin nature, continues to strive for mastery even in the Christian.

The unbeliever may claim, sometimes loudly and angrily, “I am no man’s slave”!

When I was 18 years old, I was hired by an engineering company to work in the print shop and to be a messenger.  I had not been at the company long when I was asked to go to a local Italian restaurant and pick up lunches for the partners and clients as they had an afternoon meeting.  Upon my arriving at the restaurant, I found that a communication problem had occurred and the manger had to contact my supervisor.  He called and said “Your boy is here to collect the order”.  I interrupted him and told him in no uncertain terms that I was not their boy and I did not appreciate his words.

Now, the fact is that I agreed with the company to sell them my time and so as long as I was on their clock, I was their boy.  My ego, my pride had gotten in the way of truth.  I was serving the company.  I had something those spoken of by Paul did not have, I could quit and work for someone else or I could start my own business – but that does not change the fact that I am going to serve someone, even if it is myself. 

I, as kindly as I can, declare unto you may very well be the slave of the person who looks back at you from a mirror with all of his or her faults, failures, pride, ego, lust and whatever has not been put off with the old man and replaced with the things of the new man.  We are in a struggle to be free from ourselves and the only way we can do this is to follow the instructions of God through the Apostle Paul in –

Romans 12:1-2  I beseech you therefore, brethren, by the mercies of God, that ye present your bodies a living sacrifice, holy, acceptable unto God, which is your reasonable service. And be not conformed to this world: but be ye transformed by the renewing of your mind, that ye may prove what is that good, and acceptable, and perfect, will of God.

We see the need Paul addressed in these verses because of believer’s failure to give themselves wholly unto the Lord in all things.

Their mindset could be that since the servant is equal in the church, they would be tempted to consider themselves equal in all situations.

Paul dealt with this situation in his letter to the church in Corinth, instructing them to be faithful to the Lord and to their position –

1 Corinthians 7:20-24  Let every man abide in the same calling wherein he was called. Art thou called being a servant? care not for it: but if thou mayest be made free, use it rather. For he that is called in the Lord, being a servant, is the Lord’s freeman: likewise also he that is called, being free, is Christ’s servant. Ye are bought with a price; be not ye the servants of men. Brethren, let every man, wherein he is called, therein abide with God.

Considering the plight of slaves, they may rebel against their position of bondage and desire to be free. 

Consider also the difficulty in serving a harsh master , especially after having the opportunity to fellowship in the church with those kind and caring brethren.  It also could be that the servant will see his master as being friendly and caring to others in church, while being harsh and difficult in the home.  The servant might feel he is being treated unfairly and rebel against his master.

We learn here that –

         a).  Freedom in Christ should not promote rebellion

1 Timothy 6:1  Let as many servants as are under the yoke count their own masters worthy of all honour, that the name of God and his doctrine be not blasphemed.

         b).   Equality in Christ should not promote disrespect 

1 Timothy 6:2  And they that have believing masters, let them not despise them, because they are brethren; but rather do them service, because they are faithful and beloved, partakers of the benefit. These things teach and exhort.

The servant is to not expect special consideration from the master just because they are on equal standing as brethren in the service of the Lord.

         c).   Refer to 1 Peter 2:17-18

1 Peter 2:17-18  Honour all men. Love the brotherhood. Fear God. Honour the king. Servants, be subject to your masters with all fear; not only to the good and gentle, but also to the froward.

The word translated ‘Servants’ is not the general word used for a servant, but this word ‘Οἰκέτης’, includes members of a household. Peter is restricting the use here to servants, but as believers, refers to them as to belonging in a more familiar sense than just a paid employee or a slave. 

He is speaking here to both the relationship as believers and the responsiblities as servants.  The Lord, in giving this command through the Apostle Peter, will give the grace to carry it out for His honour and glory.

Ephesians 6:5-8  Servants, be obedient to them that are your masters according to the flesh, with fear and trembling, in singleness of your heart, as unto Christ; Not with eyeservice, as menpleasers; but as the servants of Christ, doing the will of God from the heart; With good will doing service, as to the Lord, and not to men: Knowing that whatsoever good thing any man doeth, the same shall he receive of the Lord, whether he be bond or free.

Titus 2:9-10  Exhort servants to be obedient unto their own masters, and to please them well in all things; not answering again; Not purloining, but shewing all good fidelity; that they may adorn the doctrine of God our Saviour in all things.

The master’s attitude as required by the Lord is seen in the simple wording by Paul –

Colossians 4:1  Masters, give unto your servants that which is just and equal; knowing that ye also have a Master in heaven.

Servants and masters, both answerable to God for their behaviour.  Do we have the testimony that God will have us to have for  His honour and glory?

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