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Hidden In Him

April 27, 2020, 06:37:28 PM
And after checking, it wasn't done yet, LoL. Looks like it is now (hopefully).
 

Hidden In Him

April 08, 2020, 10:37:46 AM
This one's pretty good, LoL. Should be fun to put on video some day.  :)
http://www.spiritualwarbiblestudies.com/index.php?topic=181.msg207#msg207
 

Hidden In Him

March 10, 2020, 12:43:23 PM
 :) :) :)
 

MoreBloodWine

March 10, 2020, 07:02:44 AM
Everything happens for a reason, even if it's rewriting old works ;-)
 

Hidden In Him

March 07, 2020, 07:12:18 PM
My wife dislikes the idea that I'm rewriting studies rather than writing new ones, but the Lord is now opening up Colossians to me like never before, and some work needs to be redone. Very excited about the new insight!  :)
 

Hidden In Him

February 29, 2020, 02:19:44 PM
...get back to making sure studies were ready to put on camera when the time comes.  :)

So how's life with you?  
 

Hidden In Him

February 29, 2020, 02:18:44 PM
I noticed you were still lurking around, LoL. Glad to see I'm not the only one happy about it.  :) Hard at work converting the garage into a recording studio & music room. Gonna be nice! The soundproofing is going to be work and money, but a lot of it is already purchased. In the meantime, I had to
 

MoreBloodWine

February 29, 2020, 01:59:43 AM
 :) :) :)
 

Hidden In Him

February 28, 2020, 05:43:50 PM
I'm officially going back to writing! Glory to God Almighty!! Having fun again already, and going to be going to work improving and the adding to the set on Colossians.

Blessings in Christ to all who visit,
Hidden
 

MoreBloodWine

November 02, 2019, 02:37:56 AM
I rarely ever used Tapatalk to log in to the site. Not sure if anyone ever actually did as the issue of it not working was never reported.

But for our mobile uses, certain things like this chat box will not be available through the app as this chat box is an addon itself. But all boards within the forum are available and currently confirmed working.

Ty & my apologies !
 

Hidden In Him

August 05, 2019, 03:21:06 PM
An excellent passage I am now writing a study on in the Book of Colossians.

"And I am now rejoicing in [my] sufferings over you, and filling up in my flesh what is lacking of the afflictions of Christ for His body's sake, which is the church, of which I became a servant
 

Hidden In Him

August 05, 2019, 03:20:49 PM
... of which I became a servant according to the administration of God having been given unto me, for you to fulfill the word of God, the mystery which has been hidden from ages and from generations but which has now been made manifest to His saints, to whom God wished to make known what
 

Hidden In Him

August 05, 2019, 03:20:34 PM
... the abundance of the glory of this mystery is among the Gentiles, which is Christ in you, the hope of glory, whom we preach, admonishing every man and teaching every man in all wisdom that we may present every man perfected in Him.
 

Hidden In Him

August 05, 2019, 03:19:58 PM
An excellent passage I am now writing a study on in the Book of Colossians.

"And I am now rejoicing in [my] sufferings over you, and filling up in my flesh what is lacking of the afflictions of Christ for His body's sake, which is the church, of which I became a servant
 

Hidden In Him

August 05, 2019, 03:19:21 PM
... of which I became a servant according to the administration of God having been given unto me, for you to fulfill the word of God, the mystery which has been hidden from ages and from generations but which has now been made manifest to His saints, to whom God wished to make known what
 

Hidden In Him

August 05, 2019, 03:18:57 PM
... the abundance of the glory of this mystery is among the Gentiles, which is Christ in you, the hope of glory, whom we preach, admonishing every man and teaching every man in all wisdom that we may present every man perfected in Him.
 

Hidden In Him

August 05, 2019, 02:57:00 PM
An excellent passage I am now writing a study on in the Book of Colossians!  :)

"And I am now rejoicing in [my] sufferings over you, and filling up in my flesh what is lacking of the afflictions of Christ for His body's sake, which is the church, of which I became a servant
 

Hidden In Him

August 05, 2019, 02:56:30 PM
... of which I became a servant according to the administration of God having been given unto me, for you to fulfill the word of God, the mystery which has been hidden from ages and from generations but which has now been made manifest to His saints, to whom God wished to make known what
 

Hidden In Him

August 05, 2019, 02:55:42 PM
... the abundance of the glory of this mystery is among the Gentiles, which is Christ in you, the hope of glory, whom we preach, admonishing every man and teaching every man in all wisdom that we may present every man perfected in Him.
 

Hidden In Him

August 05, 2019, 02:55:19 PM
... of which I became a servant according to the administration of God having been given unto me, for you to fulfill the word of God, the mystery which has been hidden from ages and from generations but which has now been made manifest to His saints, to whom God wished to make known what the abundan
 

Hidden In Him

August 05, 2019, 02:54:41 PM
An excellent passage I am now writing a study on in the Book of Colossians!  :)

"And I am now rejoicing in [my] sufferings over you, and filling up in my flesh what is lacking of the afflictions of Christ for His body's sake, which is the church, of which I became a servant according to the admin

Kamagiply

August 04, 2019, 11:55:58 AM
Hellow Paddy



I wanna wish you a happy 30. birthday.. I still hope you fell fine, where ever you are.. And enjoy it.. I hope you find what you´ve been searching for..

Thanks for alle your songs.. I just love them..

Do you ever read what we write to you??

Best Regards
Lowenti
 

Hidden In Him

August 03, 2019, 05:35:37 PM
This is just a site I use for writing. We gave no one here who goes by the name "Paddy."
 

Hidden In Him

August 03, 2019, 05:34:34 PM
Sure you have the right website there, Kamagiply?

Kamagiply

August 03, 2019, 12:46:31 PM
Hellow Paddy



I wanna wish you a happy 30. birthday.. I still hope you fell fine, where ever you are.. And enjoy it.. I hope you find what you´ve been searching for..

Thanks for alle your songs.. I just love them..

Do you ever read what we write to you??

Best Regards
Lowenti

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Author Topic: 1 Thessalonians 2:1-9  (Read 2737 times)

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Hidden In Him

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1 Thessalonians 2:1-9
« on: June 05, 2013, 03:44:49 PM »
The Return Of Trustworthy Leadership To The Church

     Though not all, sadly many Christian leaders today seek money, fame or position, which throws the trustworthiness of the gospel itself into question. The apostle Paul, on the other hand, now begins explaining how he went out of his way to make sure the Thessalonians knew he was motivated by none of these things. Along with demonstrations of the Holy Spirit and power, Paul provided gave them even more assurance that the message he was preaching was indeed truly the word of God from the life he lived:
 
     For our good news did not come to you in word only, but also in power and in the Holy Spirit, and in great assurance, even as you know what type of men we were among you for your sakes… For you yourselves know, brothers, that the entrance we made unto you was not in vain, but having been treated abusively and made to suffer at Philippi beforehand, we were [nevertheless] bold in our God to speak the gospel of God to you amid great contentiousness, as you know. For our exhortation did not arise from error, nor [demonic] uncleanness, nor deceitfulness, but rather as we have been approved by God to be entrusted with the gospel, so we speak, not as being acceptable unto men but God, the One proving our hearts.
     For at no time did we come [to you] with a word of flattery, as you know, nor with any pretext of covetousness, God is our witness, nor did we seek glory from men - not from you or from others - [despite] having the power to be heavy-handed as apostles of Christ. But we were gentle in your midst, as a nursemaid cherishing her own children. Thus, longing for you, we were pleased to have imparted to you not only the gospel of God but our own souls as well, because you became dearly beloved to us. For you remember, brothers, our labor and toil. We proclaimed the gospel of God to you while working night and day, so as not to be a [financial] burden to any of you. (1 Thessalonians 1:5, 2:1-9)


     Paul had one overriding priority where ministry was concerned: To make sure nothing hindered the gospel of Jesus Christ from being received, even if it meant forgoing the right to give and receive, risking physical affliction to preach the gospel, working day and night to pay his own way, becoming all things to all men, or even bearing his soul so as not to appear heavy-handed.
     This priority of Paul's was on full display in the early portion of this first letter to the Thessalonians. He was doing all he could to show what lengths he had gone to make sure they received every assurance that the message he preached was the truly from God.
 

Bodily Self-Sacrifice: A Proof Of Paul's Trustworthiness

     Paul's ministry was characterized by complete self-sacrifice, as the first few verses of Chapter 2 illustrate. No conn man or religious charlatan would endure the kind of physical sufferings they were having to endure for the sake of the gospel. Despite being flogged and disciplined in Philippi for preaching the truth, they immediately travelled to Thessalonica and began preaching it again with even greater boldness. What happened to them in Philippi was recorded in the Book of Acts:
       
     Once when we were going to the place of prayer, we were met by a female slave who had a spirit by which she predicted the future. She earned a great deal of money for her owners by fortune-telling. She followed Paul and the rest of us, shouting, “These men are servants of the Most High God, who are telling you the way to be saved.” She kept this up for many days. Finally Paul became so annoyed that he turned around and said to the spirit, “In the name of Jesus Christ I command you to come out of her!” At that moment the spirit left her.
     When her owners realized that their hope of making money was gone, they seized Paul and Silas and dragged them into the marketplace to face the authorities. They brought them before the magistrates and said, “These men are Jews, and are throwing our city into an uproar by advocating customs unlawful for us Romans to accept or practice.”
     The crowd joined in the attack against Paul and Silas, and the magistrates ordered them to be stripped and beaten with rods. After they had been severely flogged, they were thrown into prison, and the jailer was commanded to guard them carefully. (Acts 16:16-23 NIV)


     The Devil, of course, was behind these beatings, and his purpose was to silence the apostles from preaching the truth. Yet despite all they suffered in Philippi, Paul, Silas and Timothy went straight to Thessalonica and began preaching the gospel all over again, declaring that despite being publicly disciplined and beaten, their message had not arisen "from religious error, nor spiritual uncleanness, nor deceitfulness," but from God, who was compelling them to preach it whether this pleased men or not.
     This is why persecution is actually a good thing in some ways. Enduring affliction while proclaiming the message provides assurances that our motives are pure. Conversely, the cessation of persecution in the West has eliminated this assurance. And in many ways it is has transformed the image of Christianity in the West from a religion of self-sacrifice into one of self-promotion and advancement. The return of increasing persecution in the end-times will therefore again separate the self-serving from the self-sacrificing, and verify to the world the true trustworthiness of the gospel.


Paul's Financial Self-Sacrifice: Even More Assurance

     At no time did we come [to you] with a word of flattery, as you know, nor with any pretext of covetousness, God is our witness... For you remember, brothers, our labor and toil. We proclaimed the gospel of God to you while working night and day, so as not to be a [financial] burden to any of you. (1 Thessalonians 1:5, 2:1-9)

     Financial self-sacrifice was yet another means Paul employed to provide further assurance that his message could be trusted.  He had rights as an apostle to receive material sustenance in return for preaching the gospel, yet he relinquished these rights to manifest even greater self-sacrifice, and prove he was no self-serving religious charlatan.
     As he wrote to the Corinthians:
 
     If we have sown spiritual seed among you, is it too much if we reap a material harvest from you?... But we did not use this right. On the contrary, we put up with anything rather than hinder the gospel of Christ... For when I preach the gospel, I cannot boast, since I am compelled to preach. Woe to me if I do not preach the gospel! If I preach it voluntarily, I have a reward; if not voluntarily, I am simply discharging the trust committed unto me. What then is my reward? Just this: that in preaching the gospel I may offer it free of charge, so as not to make full use of my rights as a preacher of the gospel. (1 Corinthians 9:11-12, 16-18 NIV)

     While God had ordained that those who ministered the gospel should live off the gospel, the apostle Paul did not make use of this right except with one church only. The church at Philippi:
 
     Moreover, as you Philippians know, in the early days of your acquaintance with the gospel, when I set out from Macedonia, not one church shared with me in the matter of giving and receiving, except you only; for even when I was in Thessalonica, you sent me aid more than once when I was in need. (Philippians 4:15-16 NIV)

     Aside from the aid he received from the Philippians, Paul's ministry was characterized by a lifetime of providing for himself, as he would testify to the Ephesians:

     From Miletus, Paul sent to Ephesus for the elders of the church. When they arrived, he said to them: “You know how I lived the whole time I was with you, from the first day I came into the province of Asia ...  I have not coveted anyone’s silver or gold or clothing. You yourselves know that these hands of mine have supplied my own needs and the needs of my companions. (Acts 20:17-18, 33-34 NIV)
 
     Why was Paul refusing financial support? Because preaching the gospel free of charge gave believers further assurance that both he and his message were trustworthy, more trustworthy by far than the false apostles trying to oppose his ministry. This was clearly implicit in what he said to the Corinthians in his second letter to them:

     I robbed other churches by receiving support from them so as to serve you. And when I was with you and needed something, I was not a burden to anyone, for the brothers who came from Macedonia supplied what I needed. I have kept myself from being a burden to you in any way, and will continue to do so... Why? Because I do not love you? God knows I do! But I will keep on doing what I am doing to cut the ground from under those who want an opportunity to be considered equal with us in the things they boast about. For such men are false apostles, deceitful workmen, masquerading as apostles of Christ. (2 Corinthians 11:8-9, 11-13 NIV)

     Paul wanted to distinguish himself from the false apostles by demonstrating a life of greater self-sacrifice. This, then, was the same point he was making to the Thessalonians. He was sacrificing his financial rights in order to give them even more assurance that the gospel was true and his motivations were pure. Unfortunately, such self-sacrifice is rare to find in most Christian leaders today.   


Paul: Humble In His Apostleship, Not Heavy-Handed

     Nor did we seek glory from men - not from you or from others - [despite] having the power to be heavy-handed as apostles of Christ. But we were gentle in your midst, as a nursemaid cherishing her own children. Thus, longing for you, we were pleased to have imparted to you not only the gospel of God but our own souls as well, because you became dearly beloved unto us. (1 Thessalonians 2:7-8)

     It is disturbing indeed when preachers demand dictatorial and unreasonable submission from their congregations. The cry of "submit to the man of God" has led to tremendous spiritual abuses, and to many becoming utterly dependent upon their controlling leaders rather than on Christ Himself. This is usually justified by the assertion that the church must come under "headship," but unfortunately Christ is not the "head" such churches are ultimately submitting themselves to.
     As Joyner argued in The Harvest:

     … some of the most arrogant and rebellious individuals were released and promoted in the church because they complied with, or at least could verbally articulate, the doctrine of submission… Nowhere does the scripture warn us to beware of those who are not submitted to the body; the warning is to beware of those not submitted to the Head. According to many popular doctrines of submission, one can be "properly" joined to the body without even being joined to the Head, and many are. (The Harvest, P.116)

     Thankfully, this abusive overemphasis upon submission is about to come to an end. According to prophecy, when the Lord again begins fully entering His temple again, all who take excessive glory and authority unto themselves are going to be exposed:

     The delusions of self-centeredness and self-worship that now permeate the church and much of our teaching will be broken. The Lord Himself is about to enter His temple, and all crowns will be cast at His feet… everyone who has exalted himself will be humbled. Those who have humbled themselves will be anointed and commissioned. This army now being formed will be greater than anything ever seen or dreamed of, but it will not be magnifying itself; it will magnify the King who leads it. (The Harvest, P.112)

     The apostle Paul had every opportunity to take glory unto himself during his ministry. The inhabitants of Lystra even wanted to make him a god because of the miracles he had performed, yet Paul would have none of it:

     When the crowd saw what Paul had done, they shouted in the Lycaonian language, “The gods have come down to us in human form!” Barnabas they called Zeus, and Paul they called Hermes because he was the chief speaker. The priest of Zeus, whose temple was just outside the city, brought bulls and wreaths to the city gates because he and the crowd wanted to offer sacrifices to them. But when the apostles Barnabas and Paul heard of this, they tore their clothes and rushed out into the crowd, shouting: “Friends, why are you doing this? We too are only human, like you. We are bringing you good news, telling you to turn from these worthless things to the Living God, who made the Heavens and the earth and the sea and everything in them. (Acts 14:11-15)

     So, too, will the end-time servants of God follow the example set by Paul throughout his lifetime and ministry. They will perform great works of power, yet have no interest whatsoever in taking glory unto themselves, but refuse it whenever it is offered:

     Those who perform the greatest works will be taking little notice of their own accomplishments. They will not esteem themselves highly, not because of insecurity, but because of their recognition of the One who works through them and what He has accomplished… Those who have truly seen the Lord will, like Him, flee to the mountains when men try to make them kings or exalt them in any way. Their authority will not come through man; it will come from above. (The Harvest, P.112)


The Cost Of Ignoring Paul's Example

     The world we live in today views most Christian ministers with a quiet distrust, and this is not by accident. The Devil knows human nature, and highlights exorbitant incomes and failures in ministry to portray preachers as self-serving and only in it for themselves. Ministers could be combating this mindset and restoring credibility to the church by returning to Paul's example of financial self-sufficiency, but unfortunately most of the church is still going in the opposite direction. Each year ministerial salaries keep going higher. With the emergence of the modern megachurch movement, many Christian leaders now make six figure salaries on the backs of poorer congregation members, and enjoy a standard of living far beyond that of the average layperson. Even in the smaller churches, everyone from musicians to youth pastors are usually on salary, and this has been the accepted practice for many decades now.
     Do churches need to raise funds? Certainly, and not only for the poor but because expenses involved in paying the bills to keep a church running can be daunting. But where personal salaries are concerned, what happened to following Paul's example of self-sacrifice? What happened to his example of providing for himself so as to provide assurances, both to newcomers and the world, that the ministry is trustworthy?
     And the truth is, most are indeed in it for a paycheck or they would not serve. It was prophesied over 30 years ago that God is going to allow great trials to come upon the church so that Christian ministry again becomes a matter of self-sacrifice, and only those truly dedicated to Him will have the determination to continue preaching the truth.
     As was prophesied by Rick Joyner in The Harvest:

     In the first century it was a noble thing to desire a position of leadership in the Church. Those who did so were putting their lives and their families in jeopardy. This is still true throughout much of the world. But in the West a church leader now has more in common with a corporate executive than its Biblical counterpart... To these church leadership is merely another profession rather than a calling. These will not be able to stand the humiliation that is coming; they will flee, demonstrating that they were in fact hirelings, not serving in devotion to the Lord but for their own personal interests. (The Harvest, P.140-141)


Modern Justifications That Perpetuate Irresponsibility

     As the topic of tithes and offerings continues to generate resentment and strife, many of today's preachers are only making matters worse by justifying what many sense are self-serving motives. Most notable of these is the argument that whereas physicians are paid hundreds of thousands of dollars to heal the physical body, Christian ministers are charged with healing the spiritual body which is eternal, and should therefore be awarded even more financially in compensation.
     This argument was put forth by the following writer in defending the right of modern pastors to receive higher salaries:

     Compared to your pastor, earthly professions are making billions from a clientele less than half the size of the Body of Christ. The last time I took my mother-in-law to the doctor, I paid $179. She was in the doctor's office for about 17 minutes and came out with a Tylenol-3 prescription! There are even less fortunate people currently lying in graveyards that ended up there as a result of the mistakes of some of these doctors. Yet none of the doctor's time or expenses go unpaid for in spite of these mistakes! ... Yet even if you don't pay his bills, your tax money pays for his efforts one way or another. That is why 13 percent of the U.S. Gross National Product is said to be spent on health alone! Yet your pastor, a worker "together with God," is far more than a doctor. Doesn't he deserve more? (Ministering To Your Pastor, P.88-89)     
     This argument sadly dismisses the apostle Paul's teachings by relegating them to insignificance, yet many still espouse it. I once watched a television show where a panel of five local ministers sat at a table discussing how the churches need to be supporting their pastors more financially, and one of them eventually brought this argument up. How unseemly that they should compare their "profession" to one of the most lucrative professions in Western society, and then try to make the laity feel guilty about not paying them a commensurate salary.
     Paul used the analogy of a nursemaid caring for her children. Why are they not using this analogy? It may be because being a nursemaid is not as lucrative a profession, and suggests a need for far greater closeness and intimacy on the part of the caretaker. The analogy of the nursemaid implies a more personal relationship, and since less money is involved it doesn't serve the purposes of those looking to demand a higher income. But the Holy Spirit Himself is now warning those who use positions of leadership in the church to financially exploit the faithful that their sins are not going unnoticed. They will eventually be removed from their ministries if they do not repent.
     As is stated in A Divine Revelation Of Hell:

     "Listen, you ministers of My Holy Word... Do you think that I am blind that I cannot see and deaf that I cannot hear? You who hold the truth in unrighteousness and line your pockets with silver and gold at the expense of the poor - repent, I say, before it is too late.  On the day of judgment you will stand alone before Me to give an account of what you did with My Holy Word.  If you call upon Me in repentance, I will remove the curse from your lands and bless you with a mighty blessing.  If you will repent and be ashamed of your sins, I will have mercy and compassion on you, and I will not remember your sins anymore.  Pray that you may be an overcomer.
     "Awake to life and live.  Repent to the people you have led astray and taught false doctrine.  Tell them you have sinned and that you have scattered My sheep.  Repent to them." (A Divine Revelation Of Hell, P.139)   

     Is it asking too much for ministers to demonstrate a life of self-sacrifice by being financially self-sufficient? Paul succeeded at doing so, and it must not be forgotten he did so deliberately to set an example for the faithful. Church leaders should again provide assurance that the gospel is true by leading lives of self-sacrifice in all matters. Granted, receiving an income for ministry is not a sin any more than marrying is, but just as Paul taught that remaining single was better, so too did he teach that foregoing this right to provide greater assurance was setting an even better example. And showing the world that Christ's ministers are indeed trustworthy is even more important now than it was in New Testament times, given that Satan has now indoctrinating the masses with an incredible distrust of God's ministers.
     Time will tell how many choose to return to following the example set by the apostle Paul, but God's warning is that those who continue carrying on a life of exploitation will do so not just to the gospel's detriment but also to their own.



Links:
http://www.ehow.com/info_12073836_average-salary-pastor-large-church.html


« Last Edit: October 13, 2018, 10:54:17 AM by Hidden In Him »