1Timothy 3:14-16, “And without controversy great is the mystery of godliness: God was manifested in the flesh, Justified in the Spirit, Seen by angels, Preached among the Gentiles, Believed on in the world, Received up in glory.”
Having discussed the pillar and ground of the truth in Part 1, Paul further presses upon Timothy to be constant in regard to the greatest diligence, faithfulness, and zeal in handling God’s word. Teaching among other things 6 pillars of the truth that must remain pure and be preached. 1.God was manifested in the flesh, 2. Justified in the Spirit, 3.Seen by angels, 4. Preached among the Gentiles, 5.Believed on in the world, 6. Received up in glory. Read the rest of this entry »
1Timothy 3:14-16, “14 These things I write to you, though I hope to come to you shortly; 15 but if I am delayed, I write so that you may know how you ought to conduct yourself in the house of God, which is the church of the living God, the pillar and ground of the truth”
As I think of qualifications of a minister and the model by which the church is to run, I count on Paul’s epistle to Timothy because of its depth and clear instructions. This epistle appears to have been written to Timothy while he was at Ephesus facing numerous challenges as a young pastor. Paul wrote to instruct him in the choice of proper offices in the church by keeping to mind the right qualifications he outlined, as well as in the exercise of a regular ministry.
Numbers 25:1-18, vs. “10 Then the Lord spoke to Moses, saying: 11 “Phinehas the son of Eleazar, the son of Aaron the priest, has turned back My wrath from the children of Israel, because he was zealous with My zeal among them, so that I did not consume the children of Israel in My zeal. 12 Therefore say, ‘Behold, I give to him My covenant of peace; 13 and it shall be to him and his descendants after him a covenant of an everlasting priesthood, because he was zealous for his God, and made atonement for the children of Israel.’”
Phinehas act in killing Zimri turned God’s wrath from the Israelites from more people dying. At this point about 24,000 had died. Who knows if Moses confronted him on his action and God had to come on Phinehas’ rescue. Vs. 10 says “10 Then the LORD spoke to Moses, saying: 11 “Phinehas the son of Eleazar, the son of Aaron the priest, has turned back My wrath from the children of Israel, because he was zealous with My zeal among them, so that I did not consume the children of Israel in My zeal”. Phinehas had God’s zeal and in that he acted.
Numbers 25:1-18, vs. “10 Then the Lord spoke to Moses, saying: 11 “Phinehas the son of Eleazar, the son of Aaron the priest, has turned back My wrath from the children of Israel, because he was zealous with My zeal among them, so that I did not consume the children of Israel in My zeal. 12 Therefore say, ‘Behold, I give to him My covenant of peace; 13 and it shall be to him and his descendants after him a covenant of an everlasting priesthood,because he was zealous for his God, and made atonement for the children of Israel.’”
Recently I penned a number of messages from the book of Numbers 21 dealing with the bronze serpent (Title: Killing Serpents, Delivering Savior), and Numbers 22-24 dealing with Balaam (Title: Who is standing on your way?) As I continued to read through Numbers 25, something struck me from this passage in line with a recent conference I will mention in the message.
Philippians 1:9-10, “9 And this I pray, that your love may abound still more and more in knowledge and all discernment, 10 that you may approve the things that are excellent, that you may be sincere and without offense till the day of Christ”
Biblical discernment is one of the most neglected areas of teaching in our churches, yet it is one of the most important areas to address especially if you want your flock to know, learn, approve, love and also protect themselves from wolves in sheep skins. In our time, some believers say, “we don’t want doctrine, doctrine divides and what divides does not cultivate love. We just want to love and worship Jesus” While this may sound very spiritual, it is not correct, to love and worship God does not devoid truth. Your mind (intellect) is not to be disengaged at all in worshipping God, Matthew 22:37, “Jesus said to him, “‘You shall love the Lord your God with all your heart, with all your soul, and with all your MIND”.
2Corinthians 12:9, “… My grace is sufficient for you……”
“Amazing grace, how sweet that sounds that saved a wretch like me, I once was lost but now I am found. Was blind but now I see”. What so amazing about grace that John Newton the hymn writer had to write about it?. “What’s so amazing about grace?”
The good news of the New Testament is God’s acceptance of us by grace ALONE through faith. The word “GRACE” in Hebrew are hesed and hen which means undeserved LOVE and FAVOR . God is love, and grace is the out flowing of His love toward undeserving sinners. Grace is love in action. “For God so loved the world that He gave (action word)…” John 3:16. Our salvation is secured because of the favor of God. Ephesians 2:8-9, “ 8 For by grace you have been saved through faith, and that not of yourselves; it is the gift of God, 9 not of works, lest anyone should boast”.
John 6:1-70, “26 Jesus answered them and said, “Most assuredly, I say to you, you seek Me, not because you saw the signs, but because you ate of the loaves and were filled”
Sparing people’s feelings drives many people not to speak truth in love. Men in general do not take rejection kindly. We try so hard protect our images at times at the expense of not speaking truth. It is easy to speak truth in someone’s life when good things are happening, but how about the bad? leaders are careful of speaking the truth because they do not want to lose their congregation. To speak the truth has caused some to dilute the word, coat it or ignore it completely. Speaking the truth has broken some friendships. Despite of it all, we still need to speak the truth in love. “Speak what I want to hear and I will draw close” sums up most of our messages today. I am so craving for the truth that if there is something I have been clinging on as the truth and is not, I am ready to abandon it and follow truth. God anoints truth and the truth shall set us free if we are willing to listen to it. Read the rest of this entry »