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November 1, 2020 6:00 pm
Well we are last returning to the book of second Corinthians in the series that we interrupted on the eighth day of March, because of covert thinking that would be back to long before now. But here we are, but I think it's time to returns to the series because it fit so perfectly into the financial stewardship emphasis which makes up part of what we generally focus upon during missions month we are coming out. The last section of chapter 8 having completed through verse 15 of chapter 8 on March 8, but because it is been nearly 8 months. We need a little bit of review think you'll disagree with me about that but start by thinking about the church at Corinth. What was the church like where did they come from, what do we know about that church that is important. You will recall that on the second missionary journey, Paul taking Barnabas with him now.
Silas rather with him now instead of Barnabas first revisited the churches that were planted on the first missionary journey in this in the area of Galatia having satisfied himself that they were doing well. He began to look around for another field of service another place to evangelize another place to plant churches where there were no churches, and though he considered seriously. A number of places throughout Asia minor. God kept saying no, not there. No, not there. No, not there, until eventually arriving in the port city of Troy is on the north western shore of what is today modern Turkey in the vision of the night of a night. The call came to him from those over in Greece and Macedonia and said come over here and help us.
Paul recognized that as the voice of God and so he and his missionary company boarded the ship and traveled across the sea to Macedonia started in Philippi, a number of people were saved.
Church was established what is driven out there, moved on down to trying to think what was next with his Brea or Thessalonica. One of the two. He went on next to let's say Thessalonica and yes it was this like it's coming back to me now more clearly he went secondly to Thessalonica, preach the gospel people were saved.
But again antagonism was stirred up in the Jews persecuted their elasticity of Thessalonica and went to Brea.
That's the only place where we find that the Jews in general had a respectful reception for him. Not that all of them became Christians, but at least they listen to what he said and waited carefully. These were as our King James Bible says more noble than those of Thessalonica. We got the sequence Thessalonica was second. Brea was third. These were more noble than those in Thessalonica, for very heard the word of God thoughtfully. I forget the exact wording and search the Scriptures daily to see if these things were so souls were saved in Berea and the church was established in Berea, three churches space of a few months ministry and Macedonia, but when the Jews of Thessalonica heard what was going on Brea traveled to Brea and they fomented persecution and opposition. There is other Christian said you got a leap on godly fault, and this time he went all the way down to the southern part of Greece.
Quite a considerable distance left the northern territory of Macedonia came down to the southern territory of Acadia started in that great city that that historic city of Athens preach the gospel on Mars Hill. Handful of people believed apparently not sufficient to stay and to organize a church. Paul left Athens traveled westward not far but westward across the great Peninsula to the city of Corinth. Another great city in the Roman Empire and their God gave him great success. Not without opposition. In fact he got very discouraged fairly early on and I think he was minded to leave the city of Corinth and again the Lord spoke to him in the night and said Paul continue on for I still have many people in this city. They hadn't believed, yet they weren't saved yet but they were already identified as the people of God. I already have many people in this city so you stay there and preach the gospel and gather the man trophies of sovereign grace and Paul did just that and he stayed there and preach the gospel in Corinth administered a year and 1/2 and established a strong church.
Paul minister longer in Corinth than anyplace else in one stretch than the city of Ephesus, and Paul went on now some the passing of a few short years.
Sometime later Paul is now in the city of Ephesus writing the first Corinthian epistle to the church at Corinth and he is answering their questions, they have quite a few and he takes them up one by one. Now concerning this now concerning that the questions were view estimate have asked me, you can go through. We went through that book and identify the questions.
Paul also dealt with a very serious problem he dealt with a series of problems, but the most serious one was immorality in the church body dealt with Paul consider that extremely serious and he gave strong instructions mean the sparks were flying when he wrote chapter 5 of second Corinthians, and he told them since you haven't done what ought to be done conduit kick that man out. I've already decided that that unrepentant immoral man must be excommunicated from the church and you take care of it yesterday by then he went on and dealt with other matters, including some good sections of doctrine, but one of the things that was most concerning to him was the project offering for the Saints in Jerusalem.
He introduced that in the first epistle chapter 16 are all familiar. No F-16 after the great resurrection chapter, which is 15 and chapter 16.
The opening words are quite well known now concerning what the collection as I have given instructions to the churches of Galatia for churches establishing Galatia that he had revisited on his second missionary journey. As I gave instructions to the churches of Galatia, so also do you use the old King James on the first day of the week, but everyone of you lay by him stores.
God is prospered that there be no gatherings when I come in. So for them to whomsoever you appoint to go with me I'll take the offering to Jerusalem, and so forth now.
Second Corinthians, this is about a year later Paul is now writing for Macedonia, northern Greece, probably in Philippi, he writes another epistle to the Corinthians number one to explain his delay in visiting them. He told them he was coming. He hadn't come yet some of them were wondering where he was. He gives the explanation. Furthermore, he deals with the lot of criticisms that had come from somewhere, either from within the church. Sure. Who knows. False teachers outside the church, but Paul was dealing with criticisms any addresses a lot of those in the second Corinthian epistle. He pours out his heart to them. So it's a very emotional epistle in many ways but then finally he comes back to this project offering and he addresses that once again in chapters 8 and 92 chapter to deal with this project offering for the Saints in Jerusalem.
That's where we are. Second Corinthians chapter 8 chapter 80 opens by reporting on the remarkable giving of the churches of Macedonia, how they gave generously out of their poverty. They gave beyond their ability. Yet they gave and God bless them for it. He prods Corinth to get busy and do what they had promised they wouldn't do a year ago.
They had made a commitment to this offering to this project that had not yet been fulfilled. So Paul says get wet, get going fact, he says I'm sending tightest to you to the words of verse six.
Complete complete this matter. Did you see that so we urged Titus that Nancy had begun so he would also complete this grace in you as well. Giving is a grace. It is a reflection of the grace of God is that it is a development of God's grace within us. It is a development of spiritual maturity is a development of the various areas of Christian living which God has showed us to follow, and impulses that remember he says now I'm looking for the exact versus the Argus and then after picked up on my notes verse seven. That's verse seven. Thank you whoever that was thank you. Verse seven. But as you abounded everything they were well developed and he read list some things in faith, in speech and knowledge in all diligence and in your love to us. Those are things that they were doing very well in what else see that you abounded. This grace also the grace of giving. They were developing well in every other area but they work on their pocketbooks. They were pension those pretty tight work. Pension thought that with this an old expression, you'll know in a something of my age.
They were pension that nickel in their pocket till the buffalo jumped off.
I mean they they just didn't want to turn loose deposit. Come on now, this is all part of your Christian growth and development.
This is part of your worship to God.
This is the part of the. The practical expression of your love. You express your love to the brethren here are brethren who are in need for giving you an opportunity to help and what are you doing here since your pocket book. Instead of helping, no, no. Come on now come on now that's what's going on.
Chapter 8 and so he urges them to follow through on their previous commitment I give you this advice. Verse 10 it is to your advantage. Sometimes we think that giving is only to the advantage of the recipient. And whatever you can preach or whatever you can.talk out of me. That'll benefit whatever it is that you're trying to raise money for. Remember, remember, this is important is as important for you as it is for the recipient. This is not just a matter of supplying a need, though it is that we don't dismiss that, but it's far more than that. This is supplying your giving us applying a need in your soul in your life in your heart in your development and your Christianity is to your advantage not only to be doing what you began and were desiring to do a year ago that commitment they made a year ago what you began and were desiring year ago and then you let it drop, but verse 11. You also must complete the doing of it that as there was a readiness to desire it, so there also might may be a completion of what you have now. That's where Paul is going. This is chapter 8 coming up now to our section for today. That's the background now inch versus 16 to 24 which is our text for this morning. Paul addresses for partnerships that all have to do with finances one way or another. He talks first of all, about a ministry partner certainly an accountability partner third. What I have called a behind the scenes partner and finally a financial partner which look at them one by one.
First, a ministry partner, verse 16, 17 and 23 this is reference to Titus first 16 but thanks be to God who puts the same earnest care for you into the heart of Titus for he not only accepted the exhortation, but being more diligent he went to you of his own accord. Verse 23 if anyone inquires about Titus.
He is my partner and fellow worker concerning you a ministry partner who is he, what is his role.
Why was he effective. Who is he he is tightest mentioned a number of times in the book of acts, and in some of the epistles factors one epistle that bears his name.
Go through the epistles would come down toward the end and we come to first Timothy second Titus, Philemon, which is the last in the order which they are laid out in the New Testament the epistle of Paul to Titus three chapters she's addressing Titus in that epistle is Titus is on an assignment in the island of Crete where there are Christians where there are churches Titus is there to help organize the churches to ordain elders in every city and so forth. You can find that in the epistle to Titus, who is Titus. He is evidently second only to Timothy as one of Paul's best and most trusted ministry partner Timothy's number one that's the ranking that's the sense of ranking we get from the Scriptures Titus is number two there other men who were faithful in Paul commends them as well. And then there were quite a few who proved not to be so faithful and Paul mentioned some of them also tightest was number two in his effectiveness and helpfulness to Paul's ministry. He was faithful he was trusted he was effective is Titus who is he that explains who he is, what is his role and I'll speak to that, generally, and then specifically asked what his role is in this epistle. In second Corinthians. What is his role a ministry associate in verse 23 Paul says he is my partner, is an associate with Paul.
He is as we would gather from that language. And as we learn elsewhere. A preacher, a church planting missionaries. That's his role. What else he guess what we would call an apostolic emissary. What is that mean well, it means that when Titus came to Corinth or to create or to whoever Paul sent him they were to understand the people that he came to understand to understand that he represents Paul what he says is virtually what Paul would say if he was here he is there as a representative as an emissary for the apostle Paul is an apostolic emissary, Mike fellow worker Paul calls him. In verse 23 my fellow worker concerning you, not my fellow worker to help me and what I'm doing though of course that's obvious, but my fellow worker concerning you.
He's telling you what I told them to tell you he is doing in Corinth. What I instructed him to do. He is doing what I would do if I could be there. He is an apostolic emissary.
In short, he is Paul's personal representative to the churches in this case to the church of Corinth question number three. Why was he effective in his labors of verses 16 and 17 tell us three things about him number one. He was Ernest number two.
He was submissive. Number three. He was eager.
He was Ernest he was serious diligent in his work. But thanks be to God who puts the same earnest care for you into the heart of Titus. He wasn't serious about the work of the gospel as Paul was.
That's what made them effective, but number two. He was submissive. What I mean by that.
Well, he obeyed instructions he submitted to the authority to the rightful authority of those who were over him. This particular case, he submitted to the leadership and authority of the apostle Paul for 17 for he not only accepted the exhortation that is to go to Corinth pulse. I want you to go to Corinth.
Titus said yes sir he willingly placed himself under the authority of the apostle Paul so that he could effectively serve the Lord as a partner with Paul and that's what made them effective.
He had this submissive spirit. We always have to battle the tendency to have a nobody's gonna tell me what to do kind of spirit even as Christians is not a good spirit. This is the spirit that makes us effective as menaced as servants of the Lord Jesus Christ were willing to be submissive in those areas where we ought to be submissive. The Bible lays those out for is pretty clearly Titus was submissive.
He accepted the exhortation, but thirdly, he was eager because verse 17 goes on to say he not only accepted the exhortation, but being more diligent he went to you of his own accord.
The picture is that of a man who just show up at the bit to go but he couldn't go. At least he wouldn't go until Paul said go someone said but God laid on my heart will go on my own. Titus was more godly than that Titus was more effective because of his godliness. He said I'd sure love to go but it's not my place to do that is the church.
The Paul's established this the church that Paul is still providing leadership to the church that Paul is still working with Paul could use my services. There then he'll tell me to go. If not, I'll be happy to stay here and do whatever I can find this useful. Until such time as the Lord tells me to go through the instructions of the apostle Paul, so he was eager but he was submissive and he was diligent, made them effective blood lessons there for us, but here's an interesting thought. What was tightest main concern and wanting to go to Corinth and be involved in the work of the gospel. He not only accepted the exhortation, but being more diligent he went to you of his own accord.
You say he was anxious to get there and preach the word of God will no doubt he was. But that's not what this is talking about what was tightest main concern was to help complete the project, offering in Corinth back to verse six so we urged Titus that as he had begun so he would also come fleet. This race and you as well. That's what Titus was concerned about. So being more diligent he went to you of his own accord. He had the same concern in his heart that Paul did. He was in. He was interested in seeing the Corinthian church develop in this area of the Christian lines. This area of weakness. He wanted to help them to develop in the area of giving and so he became a ministry partner with Paul in financial development in helping the Corinthian church develop in their giving to the Lord and why was this important wealth.
Number one, it was for the glory of Christ. That's always the main thing but number two is already pointed out earlier, this was for their benefit.
There lack of development here was holding them back spiritually. Titus was burned about that I want to see these people going on.
I want to see them grow and blow and this is what is holding them back.
I'd love to get down there to Corinth and help them with this. If that's God's will. And Paul said Titus. I want you to go and he said I thought you never asked me was God. That's number one. Ministry partner number to an accountability partner that we come to verses 18 to 20. We learned about a second mailed and we have sent with him. That is what Titus the brother whose praises in the gospel throughout all the churches and not only that, but he was also chosen by the churches to travel with us with this gift, which is administered by us to the glory of the Lord himself and to show your ready mind avoiding this that anyone should blame us in this lavish gift which is administered by us. What is this all about.
Now were talking about an accountability partner first.
We talked about a ministry partner. Now were talking about accountability partner who is he he is an acclaimed brother.
According to verse 18, but he's not named, we don't know who he is, we don't know his name but clearly he was already known to the church at Corinth. He was no stranger to them. He was an effective evangelist.
He was a preacher.
We read in verse 18, whose praise is throughout all the churches that speaks about his effectiveness. He was being he was being applauded. He was being commended throughout all the churches for his work and what was it, whose praise and the gospel is throughout all the churches he is work that brought praise related directly to the gospel. In other words, he was a gospel preacher in the proclamation of the gospel in the defense of the gospel. This man was very effective.
He had the praise of many churches in regard to his his work.
He was a preacher.
He was an evangelist.
He was a missionary. So in this regard. He is very much like Titus, we don't know his name and he is a qualified participant.
Verse 19 tells us he was chosen by the churches that word chosen literally means chosen by the raising of hand was at me church vote. Now I would be tempted to digress at this point to talk about the different styles of church government and and why I'd I've come to the conclusion that what we call Congregational church government is the one that is most conspicuous in the pages of Scripture is not crystal clear in every case and Congregational church government is not exactly what some people think it is. It's not a free-for-all in every church business meeting as it is because in some churches it is Congregational involvement. In fact, ultimately, Congregational government, Congregational rule, but under the strong guidance of spiritual leaders.
That's what keeps it from becoming a free-for-all. Elders have a strong responsibility and show churches and some people find that in Scripture and they say well our style church government is the elders again take care of everything we might from time to time, report to the churches, but real to the congregation but really it's they're not, they will have a lot to do with gullibility taken care of by the elders or in some cases even by the bishops on beyond the local church.
Let's not what I find I find a balance, but important decisions are to be made by the congregation and it's clear that the congregations were called upon here to select qualified man mature man godly men. Men of integrity to act as traveling companions with Paul when he delivered this church in Jerusalem as a matter number one of safety because it wasn't safe to travel a lot of money in those days. I don't know that is much safer to travel alone with a lot of money in our days. I guess it depends on where you're going. That's why I don't usually carry a lot of cash, some people do they love to have that big why pull out the money clip that can often peel off the bills. All right, that suits you and sometimes I'd have a hard time putting together enough money to buy a hamburger at times. I have a little bit more than my wallet happened have more now because I just got home from a from a trip and I usually carry more when I'm traveling because you never know when you can some cash unexpectedly, but it wasn't safe to carry that they couldn't actually fold up their money and that the stick in their pocket they had gold silver they had to carry bags they needed protection they needed safety to travel, but Paul doesn't even mention that aspect.
He assumes that all understand that part. But he says these man this man of another.
When the scene a moment were chosen by the churches for financial accountability so that I Paul am not the only one who's handling carrying and delivering this money. Paul, are you do you feel tempted to to help yourself to some of it but I don't think so didn't seem to indicate this. The temptation that he needs help with but it's just an important principle of biblical church finances that there be clear accountability we can see that all the way back to the section and this unnamed brother was chosen for that purpose. He is an accountability partner a trusted representative of the churches chosen by them by vote. How many of you vote for brother someone so travel with Paul. With this money everybody in favor raise your hand, are all closed same side. Good brother so-and-so is approved. Thank you. Congregational vote is that I did know that was in the Bible. Is Congregational vote. He was chosen by upraised hands by the churches as a matter financial integrity to represent the churches is another interesting thing here in verse 23. All of these who are representing the churches in this are called apostles doesn't say that in the English but if anyone inquires about Titus. He is my partner and fellow worker concerning you, or if our brethren this one and another one I'm going to mention our inquired about they are in this word in my Bible is messengers of the churches, the glory of Christ. That's why would Southern Baptist churches send their representatives to the national convention. They are called what messengers they take the word right out of the English Bible but the actual underlying word is apostles. That's the Greek apostle like Paul know apostle like Deacon like other words, elder. For example, these are all words that have more than one meaning. Sometimes they have a general meeting, and sometimes they have more specific meaning, and there is a specific meaning. You might see a technical meaning for the for the word apostle when that means that apostle of the Lord Jesus Christ like Paul and Peter.
But there are also times when it's used in a general sense, and apostle was always an authorized representative. So Paul is an apostle of Jesus Christ is an authorized representative of the Lord Jesus Christ unit very special way, and apostle of Christ. These brethren are all authorized representatives of the churches because the churches all voted to make them their official authorized representatives. They are messengers or apostles of the churches in all of this is is important to bring proper honor and glory to Christ is verse 23 tells so the second person that were dealing with here is an accountability partner number one ministry partner number two an accountability partner accountability partner in financial integrity, even an apostle needs this. Those who are truly trustworthy will welcome this kind of accountability and in financial matters in those who resist are resented that once you but I really watch out for what I don't think that's necessary.
What's matter don't you trust me, what did Reagan say this was in the Bible, but he had exactly right when they say trust and verify that's what this is teaching when it comes to to church finances trust and verify is not that I don't trust you, but I'm going to help you remain trustworthy. I trust you and I hold you accountable. That's an awful lot of trouble itself a burdensome it really is and it is harder these days of covert endeavor has been before and I will going to that makes it difficult even to follow out the procedures that we have had over the years for accountability and trustworthiness, but we still insist on maintaining that here in this church and ought to be maintained everywhere, for the Lord's work is involved. This is the way it ought to be done, so that's number two, number three we have another partner that I've called a behind-the-scenes partner who is he, verse 22 and we have sent with them with Titus and with this unnamed account of financial accountability partner who is according to verse 21, providing honorable things, not only in the sight of the Lord, but also on the side of men and we have sent with him our brother whom we have proved whom we have proved, says Paul diligent in many things, but now much more diligent because of the great confidence that we have in you goes on to say, this man also was chosen by the churches. He is an authorized messenger who is he another unnamed brother. This one apparently unknown in Corinth, the first unnamed brother.
Unknown to us, but known to them. So, the context indicates this unnamed brother. Unknown to us.
Unknown to them, but Paul says he's known to me. I have found them to be diligent he's proved himself diligent in many areas. He has been also selected by the churches. Presumably the churches in Macedonia as an authorized messenger to provide transportation accountability for this gift and he's coming. But what about this behind the scenes partner is he a preacher, no the evidences he's not what Izzy he is a gifted man in many areas whom we have often proved verse 22 diligent in many things.
You know who kept coming to my mind what I was thinking about this. There there a lot of you came to my mind, but you know who just Coming to my mind over and over and over again is Greg Phillips.
He is so gifted in so many areas and so willing to help, eager to help in anything that he's capable of doing which it seems like nearly everything except he's not a preacher but we can teach his talk some adult Sunday school class from time to time.
He does a very commendable and faithful job. But that's not his gift that's not his colic. That's not his burden. That's not his desire but he sure is gifted in a lot of things. He is really good in a lot of areas are we thankful that God has people like that in the churches and I could go around and start point now some of you is I'm looking at you legacy many many many who fit the same description. Thank God for people like that some who have many many many gifts in the use of wide assortment of them for the glory of Christ, son who maybe just have one or two but they're just as diligent just as faithful to those gifts that God has given them and where weren't the churches of the Lord Jesus Christ be with the people like that. Like Paul said in another section. Everybody can't be, and I everybody can be anywhere but again, the amount everybody You knows everybody can be ahead can be afoot… Has designed the body was gone all these different parts in every one of them is needed, and only a few our mouths preachers but where would the mouth be without an eye without an ear without a nose without a heart to be without feed to walk to where they're going to menu note on not a ghost. And this is one of those people was proved himself to be very diligent, though he is unknown to the church is only known to Paul, but he is a faithful man. He's a partner in the ministry and a behind-the-scenes sort of way, but he's also part of this financial accountability that brings us now to number four. Financial partner whose that that's the church. The church at Corinth verse 24 therefore said Paul to the church now show to them. Titus unnamed preacher brother unnamed behind-the-scenes diligent brother show to them and before we churches of Macedonia and Galatia shot to them the proof of your love and are boasting on your behalf. What's he talking about give a decent offering for this project. Why don't like to hear preachers talking about money, you have to start cutting some portions of the Bible. I don't like to hear preachers always talking about money because that's out of proportion to the Bible.
I have actually knows I know one preacher who told me that he never preaches a sermon ever.
Without mentioning tithing got to get that in to subsidence somewhere in every service matter what the text matter what the subject. He slips in tithing is a well he must have a really generously giving church know he struggles financially like you, we don't hear about tithing, about money by giving every time you come to church at beacon that somebody emailed me recently in response to one of the information snippets that I sent out about offerings recently about the low one a week ago Sunday and then the good strong winds last Sunday.
Thank you for bouncing back one of our members said, who has been in several churches, said, I've never been in a church where I've heard less about moment money and people give more generous. I've never been the church where I hear less said about money and where people give more generously will that last part is a tribute to the grace of God working in you when God's word and God's Spirit is at work in hearts developing people to full maturity.
One of the areas that will manifest. That is there giving.
That's what Paul is showing here he's he's trying to prod them for their benefit. I just tried to get some money for the church in Jerusalem that to but that's way down the list of what's important here is important is what this does for you or your failure to respond.
What that does for you that shrivels that shrinks that impairs that impedes or when you respond that enlivens that grows that expands that blesses Paul said now I talked about my ministry partner Titus talked about was number two talked about the accountability partner that unnamed preacher talked about the behind-the-scenes partner that guy. He was good at doing a dozen different things now want to talk about you. Our financial partner with the other churches in this gift to Jerusalem, and Paul saying complete the project. Be generous and he states the number of incentives for that number one as you give generously your perfect will.
Whether you give generously or poorly, your performance is going to be known to these three men that I just named Titus unnamed evangelist unnamed behind-the-scenes guy your performance to be known to them number to your performance will be known to the other churches. Although this is in verse 24.
All the other churches are going to know whether you gave generously or whether you were stingy. Was the Bible say when it comes to giving your right hand should note you left hand is doing. I don't think it's it's up biblical to report these things when it comes to individual callers and fingering an individual the church is not saying you are being stingy or you are being generous individually.
It still remains a matter between them and God. But the overall response of the church is going to be known and discussed a lot about the individuals in the church because churches can't give unless the people churches don't have any money except what the members give your performance will be known to the other churches, number three, he says, your performance will be evidence of your love, known one of those people who is just always, always saying I love you everybody when they when when they use that word so these were promiscuously when the use that word so promiscuously. Pretty soon. Kind a loses the fact is, they just love everybody.
I love your love everybody. Love you love everybody. Love you love everybody will good. Here's a need. Will you help will sorry.
I love to talk about love, but I don't love to do anything about it.
Your performance will be evidence of your love number four. Your performance will vindicate Paul's confidence in you. He's made it clear that he believes the grid things are gonna come through and he's already stated that publicly played others. This a good church yet they gotten behind in their commitment, but that gonna come through the gonna make it up the gonna give out. Paul says, don't make me a liar do it. You got, you can do it do it all to zip through the lessons we see a lesson in the importance of financial accountability. I think that's clear enough to see number two and a lesson in the importance of local church involvement to see how that everything Paul does here is in some way connected with and through the local churches is really clear in this passage. Paul's concept of gospel ministry was always out from and back to churches say are you saying you don't believe in parachurch organizations. No, actually I do.
But I remind parachurch organizations that you have legitimacy only as you are truly a servant to the churches.
If you're not that then you really ought to go out of existence fact that it was 23 if anyone inquires about Titus. He is my partner and fellow worker concerning you, or if our brother and are inquired about. They are messengers of the churches and then that last phrase the glory of Christ, the glory of Christ wasn't attached to the churches.
They are messengers of the churches who are the glory of Christ settle I thought, here we go again.
The tension between the church, one church universal bride of Christ and local churches. I thought the charge was the glory of Christ in us. Paul says the church is by the glory of Christ, they are to you don't really want to separate these two want to bring them together, biblical way so the importance of local church involvement number three importance of individual financial stewardship and I wish I had more time to develop that. But as I've already said churches only give what the members give. Finally, just to say in passing that I'll have to say more about this later that I've been struck again and again and how closely the way we have structured our faith promise program at beacon parallels what Paul is doing here. So many things that are either identical or very, very closely parallel.
It's a good program to accomplish exactly what Paul is endeavoring to accomplish the church at Corinth. The other churches, may God help us to benefit from it. Shall we pray father, thank you for this portion of your word which is instructive and helpful. May we receive it. May we believe it may respond to it, to the glory of Christ, whose name we pray