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Epaphroditus, Unsung Hero of the Faith - 12

Beacon Baptist / Gregory N. Barkman
The Truth Network Radio
June 12, 2022 7:00 pm

Epaphroditus, Unsung Hero of the Faith - 12

Beacon Baptist / Gregory N. Barkman

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June 12, 2022 7:00 pm

In this message from Philippians 2, we learn of Epaphroditus, a striking example of Christian commitment. Pastor Greg Barkman continues his systematic exposition in Philippians.

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Well, as we have made our way almost of the of the Philippi instructor to week by week we have seen in this chapter. Several examples of committed service to others, beginning with the perfect example of Jesus Christ, as Paul tells us. Let this mind be in you which was also in Christ Jesus being in the form of God, thought it not robbery to be equal with God made himself of no reputation took upon him the form of a servant was made in the likeness of men. Then going on from that perfect example event.

Find three more examples and the chapter of man who, though not perfect and therefore could not be followed in every detail of their lives set before us an example of how fallen sinners, redeemed by the blood of Christ are enabled to serve the Lord Jesus Christ with joy and with effective fruitfulness and we would do well to emulate their example. So before us in chapter 2 is the example of Paul himself even now in Roman prison for the cause of Christ. There is example of Timothy, a faithful ministry partner to the apostle Paul and I'll finally number three in our section for today. The example of Aphrodite. This is not very well known Aphrodite's chronologically. The section were looking at today should actually precede the one that we looked at last Sunday because there are three individuals that are traveling from, or will travel from Rome to Philippi in the order of their traveling arrival are number one. The path for dieters who is being sent immediately in order to calm the concerns that the church at Philippi has for his welfare and then whenever the trial has reached its verdict and presumably a favorable verdict is given to the apostle Paul, Timothy will immediately be dispatched to Philippi in order to minister to their spiritual welfare and then after Paul has been able to wrap up a few other details. He plans to come to Philippi as well to be with them there.

So that's the chronological order, but in the way that is set before us in the passage Aphrodite this traveler number one is dealt with last year's example number three who is up Aphrodite as we don't know much about him.

Paul we know a great deal about Timothy. We know a great deal about Aphrodite us. We don't know much about because this is the only place in the Bible where his name and information about him is to be found. But what great truths are found here and we need to learn from them. So in order to do that I'm going to ask an attempt to answer four questions about up Aphrodite's number one who is up Aphrodite it's too why did he come to Rome. Three. Why did he return to Philippi. Number four.

Why did Paul commend him number one who was up Aphrodite's Paul says in verse 25.

Yet I considered it necessary to send to you. He peppered I just my brother, fellow worker and fellow soldier, but your messenger. The one who ministered to my need was up Aphrodite's the name up Aphrodite. This means charming or lovely. That name course was given to him by his parents. They had no way of knowing if he would turn out to be that way. It appears that he did by the grace of God, but many people have been named with with the optimistic names that didn't turn out to reflect their character very very accurately but his name means charming or lovely, and he turned out to be exactly the kind of person as God saved him and pressed him into Christian service. He is not to be confused with the a path for us similar name that is mentioned in the book of Colossians. Some have thought that a path for us is probably a shortened form of the name up Aphrodite. This, and though that's probably true is more than one up Aphrodite's in the Bible, or at least in the Roman world at this time and these are not the same.

They come from different cities. They come from different churches. They come from different continent so up Aphrodite.

This is not the same as the preference but we can understand who we ought is primarily number one by his relationship to Paula number two by his relationship to the church at Philippi. Paul gives a threefold description of the relationship of up Aphrodite us to himself. Paul tells us that he is a brother. My brother, he is number two. A fellow worker and he is number three, a fellow soldier. All of this in verse 25. PS Paul says my brother.

That means he is a Christian. He is a he is a believer in the Lord Jesus Christ. He is a brother in the community of Saints all who are saved are brothers and sisters in that relationship which we have in Christ Jesus.

And so we learn first of all that he is a believer in Christ. Secondly, he is designated a fellow worker that doesn't describe as many people as brother does brothers any and all true born-again Christians, fellow worker, though a common designation is used by Paul to describe those who are actively involved in the work of the gospel in some obvious and significant way. Not necessarily a preacher, for he describes others by this same term but definitely those who are very involved in the advancement of the cause of Christ in this world and deep Aphrodite us was such a person but number three. He is described as a fellow soldier. That's a term that Paul uses a small handful of times he uses that much more sparingly than the term fellow worker.

It speaks of those who serve the Lord and places of danger. Those who are involved in both offensive labor and defensive labor that is defending the gospel of the Lord Jesus Christ against heresies and various attacks upon it. It involves those who in most cases.

As far as we can tell our fellow preachers in the gospel. They are the ones that are generally described as fellow soldiers with the apostle Paul and they are often those who become wounded in the fray. That is true in the case of up Aphrodite us who is going to be sent home as a soldier of Jesus Christ for a period of RNR need some rest and recreation or whatever that RNR stands for the military setting in order to be restored after a period of very dangerous and in the harmful labor for the Lord. But there's also two words to describe his relationship to the church at Philippi. He is first of all there messenger and secondly the minister your messenger were told in verse 25 and the one who minister to my need the word translated messenger in my Bible is literally in the Greek apostle apostle.

Lots your apostle, but the word apostle means a sent one a commissioned one. This is a good time to remind us that many were apostles but only 12 or 13 work apostles of Christ. Aphrodite us was none apostle of Christ in the sense the Paul was an apostle of Christ, having been called and commissioned into the work, the special work of an apostle of Christ alongside Peter and John. The others, but he was an apostle of the church at Philippi, he was sent by the church. He was commissioned by the church. He was designated as an authorized representative of the church at Philippi to go and carry out an assignment which they gave to him to fulfill in the city of Rome so this will help us when we read the word apostle sometimes in the Bible of names that are not among the 12 apostles and we scratch our heads and say well how many apostles of Christ were there 12 or 13 but not innumerable apostles of Christ. But yes, innumerable apostles churches. They had delegates that work commissioned and sent out an up Aphrodite's was one of those that tells us something about him that he was a mature Christian qualified for service proven and tested in the work of the Lord in the context of the local church at Philippi trusted by their church with a very serious assignment and in all likelihood, that we can't be certain, because the Bible doesn't say, but in all likelihood was one of the elders of the church at Philippi. Paul opens this epistle. He addresses it to the saints in Christ Jesus, who are in Philippi with the bishops and deacons bishops is not as common as the word elder but it means the same thing the pastors are designated by three different terms in the New Testament the term pastor or under shepherd the term elder. The term Bishop which means overseer and so there were clearly apparent plurality of elders in Philippi and it's very likely, though not certain, but very likely that up Aphrodite's was one of several elders in the city of Philippi. The church at Philippi who was asked to take this assignment to go to Rome to minister to Paul on behalf of the church. That's question number one who was up Aphrodite us. Question number two.

Why did he come to Rome and there are two overlapping answers to that question number one. He came to Rome because he was sent by the church of Philippi to Rome. Number two. He came to Rome because he had a personal desire to serve the apostle Paul number one. He was sent by the church at Philippi that is indicated by the term that we've Artie looked at verse 25 he is your messenger, your sample one your apostle, the one that you have sent a commissioned from your church to come to Rome, and the question is what exactly was he assigned to do what was this commission up. Aphrodite is to go to Rome and that answer is found partly in our text for today and then partly in chapter 4, and I'll read that section chapter 4 that explains beginning in verse 15. Now you Philippians know that in the beginning of the gospel.

When I Paul departed from Macedonia.

No church shared with me concerning giving and receiving what you only for even Tessa my like you sent a that is financial aid once and again for my necessities. Not that I seek the gift but I seek the fruit that abounds to your account. Indeed, I have all and abound in them full, having received from up Aphrodite us the things sent from you a sweet smelling aroma and acceptable sacrifice will pleasing to God. So why did the church send up Aphrodite strongly sent him to carry to communicate to transport a financial gift, we presume a rather sizable financial gift in order to help Paul and he is a time of confinement in his time of need in the city of Rome where he was under house arrest in these days. As in most of history prisoners were not failed at the expense of the state that imprisoned them. If they weren't fed by their friends. They starve to death in confinement. Paul needed help he needed the needed food to be able to to buy groceries and do other things because he did continue to carry out a ministry from his confinement in Rome.

And so the church at Philippi said we want to help with that. And they set up Aphrodite's to carry that financial gift which wasn't course, they had no checks they had no go credit cards. They had no wire transfers things money had to be carried by hand and because it was in the form of gold and silver coins.

It was a pretty pretty substantial loaded so therefore put up Aphrodite's undoubtedly had traveling companions with him one. It was too dangerous for one person to carry the size of the gift by himself he would never make it to Rome without being robbed. He needed some people to to help the Guardian but number two. He needed some people to help just with the physical aspects of caring this gold and silver whatever was soaked. He was commissioned by the church to carry that financial gift but number two is it makes clear in our passage before us, but especially versus 25 and 30, he was commissioned to provide assistance to Paul in Rome to help him anyway. He could. He apparently went for an extended assignment to be an assistant to the apostle Paul to help him carry out ministry gospel ministry from he is confinement in Rome through assistance who could travel freely and could carry out his directions so pampered I just was sent by the church for these purposes, but he was. Not only sent by the church of Philippi, but he had a personal desire to assist Paul that comes through loud and clear in the passage he considered the privilege to serve an apostle of Jesus Christ, and he wanted to do that he considered it a great honor to be able to in some way assist the founder of the church at Philippi. The one humanly speaking, without which there would be no church in Philippi which he was a member and probably an elder. He wanted to return something by way of gratitude to the one who had been responsible for his own conversion. Whether it Aphrodite us came to Christ under the preaching of Paul, which is likely or under the ministry of the church at Philippi. When Paul was absent. Either way traces back to Paul, there would have been no gospel preaching in Philippi if it had not been for Paul in here is up Aphrodite's, who is a result of that, and he recognizes the great privilege which he has received any sees an opportunity to return something by way of gratitude in this assignment. He had a desire to assist Paul one who himself.

Paul had sacrificed so much for the cause of Christ that he was now in a position of special need in his confinement in Rome and furthermore was in a location where he could be helped clear that they were times when the church at Philippi sent finances to Paul and his journeys as he was traveling around his is a missionary apostle and there are other times when they couldn't send them anything because I couldn't find it. Know where he was. He was moving around but nothing to worry was, and he would still be there when up Aphrodite's arrived the journey from Philippi to Rome, which would've been by foot and by ship would've taken several weeks altogether, but they could be pretty confident that he wasn't going to what was meant to disappear or go to another location.

So he was in a location where he could be helped or help could be could be offered by one, namely up Aphrodite's who evidently was able and willing to offer the assistance that was needed. I'm stricken this description by the fact that the church's desire to send up Aphrodite us and up Aphrodite. This is desire to be of assistance to Paul.

Those two desires merge beautifully.

That's really the way it should be. We should recognize and then up general principle when it comes to serving Christ were not to be Lone Ranger is just launching out on our own. According to her own desires and the Lord told me to do this, the Lord led me to do that well and good, and if indeed he did. That will be confirmed by the church. Recognizing that and encouraging and and sanctioning and helping you with that desire, but the church doesn't recognize what you think is God's leading in your life, then you should put it on hold until the church does but everybody understands that not everybody is willing to do that is very important we see that principle throughout the New Testament we see it here with up Aphrodite's in the church at Philippi. Now we come to question three question one who is up Aphrodite as we have answer question two. Why did he come to Rome.

We have now answered question number three. Why did he return to Philippi became to Rome wisely going back to Philippi and I have six statements to answer that question. Let's take them up quickly, one by one. Why did he return to Philippi number one because he was sent back by Paul as we read in verse 25 that I considered it necessary to send you up Aphrodite's. He returned to Philippi because Paul sent him back to Philippi.

Number two because he had a desire to return sort of seems like a repeat of what we just said in the last point, but here it is again. Verse 26 since he was longing for you all up. Aphrodite us desire to return had a strong desire to return to Philippi and Paul, who was now his spiritual overseer sanctioned that desire, he recognized it as a profitable and God honoring desire and he said yes. I will endorse that I will send you back to Philippi, which is your desire to do.

Why did he return to Philippi.

Number three because he was distressed by the Philippian church's distress. The last part of verse 26 since he was longing for you all and was distressed because you had heard that he was sick. Now there are things said there that are sufficient for us to get a glimpse of what's going on. Though a few more details would be helpful.

But the Holy Spirit can supply the wall but he was distressed because he heard that they were distressed.

Why were they distressed will get to that of the moment, but he was distressed. The word that means deeply troubled. That's the very same word that is used for the distress of the Lord Jesus Christ and the garden of Gethsemane, as he was agonizing in his soul over his upcoming crucifixion, his separation from the father and so forth and sweat great drops of blood. This a very strong word. Aphrodite us was extremely distressed because he he was concerned about their distress.

They were distressed about him. And so that made him distressed about them so that brings us number four. Why did he return to Philippi because he had been severely ill. This is why the church at Philippi was distressed. They heard he was sick was 27 will verse 26 he was distressed because you Philippian Christians had heard that he was sick. Verse 27 for indeed he was sick almost unto death. But God had mercy upon him, and not only on him but on me.

Also, lest I should have sorrow upon sorrow. He had been severely ill several commentators are of the opinion that he first fell sick on his way to Rome on that journey before he even arrived yet. Probably was advised by his traveling companions to go on back home now and he refused, no I haven't completed my assignment on the go on until my job is done. I can't stop now.

I've got to go to Rome ago to communicate this offering to the church of God to minister to the apostle Paul up Aphrodite as we can do that for you. Nope, I was commissioned to do that and I won't stop until I have is the idea that the lurks around the edges of the text.

It's not explicit in the text so his illness may have begun on his German journey to Rome, but probably did not become acutely critical until sometime after his arrival he got sick wasn't feeling well but not sick enough to stop him and so he kept traveling continued to serve, but sometime after his arrival in Rome, and after some time for him to deliver the gift and to spend some time ministering to Paul because Paul says the one that you sent, who has minister to my needs. He doesn't say the one who had every intention to minister to my needs was cut short and not able to do so. But he says this one who came to minister to my needs now sending back and so he where my my list here. He he became sick, his illness probably began on the journey to Rome became critical sometime after his arrival his traveling companions who traveled with him all the way to Rome and make sure that he was there safely and everything was okay with them.

Have no doubt returned to Philippi and they probably communicated the message Aphrodite this is sick, and he seems to be getting worse. He's not getting better.

That distressed church in Philippi. But, as Paul tells us God mercifully healed him. He was sick he was sick enough to die. He was sick with an illness that looked like he was going to die. Some predicted that he's only last a few more days. All of us have heard that at times and the people went on and on and on. Sometimes a long time and then died and sometimes miraculously recovered. In this case, Aphrodite's miraculously recovered. He wasn't expected to live.

And lo and behold, by God's mercy. He did, God healed him, God had mercy upon him. Paul says in verse 27 but note there is no mention of Paul exercising his apostolic gift of healing up Aphrodite's does that mean he didn't. Is it impossible that he did know it possible but not likely. Paul didn't say, but I threw the gifts of an apostle that were given to me and exercising the gift of healing that I've been able to exercise on many other occasions Paul had healed many people.

I laid hands upon him, and by the mercy of God. God healed him, is nothing like that God healed him. Apparently, without any apostolic input, apostolic operation, apostolic healing work and there are a number of people in the lives of Paul life of Paul who follows that same category. They were sick and Paul did not exercise his gift of healing to healed that's important. We'll get to that eventually but in the meantime, he had he was sick getting sicker. That message reached Philippi.

Now he's well and the church at Philippi hasn't got that message. Yet they can't pick up their cell phone. They Send out email is no quick way to let them know somebody's going to have to travel to Philippi and let them know that that Aphrodite us has his gun wealth is over.

His illness is not going to die is going to live and their distress therefore will be alleviated when they hear this news, but so far they haven't heard it pulses I'm sending him back to you because he's distressed because of your distress. Why did he return to Philippi number five because the church needed to see him personally. Verse 28.

Therefore, I sent him the more eagerly that when you see him again. You may rejoice and I may be less sorrowful. They needed to see them personally to certify the healing that took place they need to see him personally in order to be filled with joy and praise and thanksgiving to God, which is honoring to God and greatly worships him they needed to see him again. Personally, in order that the apostle Paul might also be filled with joy and one of his sorrows might now be taken from him. It's interesting that Paul mentions his sorrows doesn't tell us what all of them are but one of them was the situation with up Aphrodite us.

Not only weighed upon up Aphrodite us at the church at Philippi was distressed because they heard about his illness but it also weighed upon Paul that up Aphrodite's was distressed that and that the church at Philippi was also distressed. Paul was burdened down by all of this is so the return of Aphrodite.

This to Philippi will relieve Paul of additional sorrow that came about because of the healing up Aphrodite us and the Philippians joy at the healing of up Aphrodite's would lessen Paul's sorrow.

What a reason other sorrows it doesn't say it will take away my sorrow.

It says I'll be less sorrowful, still sorrowful but less sorrowful well what other sorrows, are you dealing with Paul. Well I am in prison. That's one. I'd rather be free. Paul is imprisoned and is himself somewhat fearful and anxious about the outcome.

Trial hasn't been conducted expects the verdict to date. Not guilty, but he doesn't know that with certainty. So there's a burden that weighs upon him sorrow. What else. Well, he's already made mention to ministry workers who work ministering with impure motives and that wait upon him. We dealt with that and elsewhere Paul tells of tells us that all of the time he carried with him what he calls the care of all the churches, the burden for the welfare of all the churches that he establish which by now are quite a few carried the weight of their welfare on his shoulders, that all time.

Yes, he's got his sorrows, but if the church at Philippi can rejoice in the healing up. Aphrodite settled take one sorrow of the shoulders of the apostle Paul. One final reason why he had to return to Philippi. This is pretty much in the arena of speculation, but he may have had to return because someone was you attempting to usurp his position and that's assuming that were correct that he was an elder and that might more than anything. Explain why he needed to return personally if the message of his sickness had brought on this distress to the Philippian church. Why wouldn't a messenger communicating his healing take care of the need can they be just as joyful at the news of his recovery as they had been distressed at the news of his sickness. Why did it actually require his physical presence with commentator John Edie who suggests this body. It's possible that someone was attempting to usurp his position was using the. The report of his illness and the likelihood of his death is an opportunity to maneuver into the position which he held in the church which from the distress of the church in his illness he must've been highly esteemed highly honored highly loved in the church they would've been felt themselves very robbed of blessing if God took away their being one of their beloved pastor, this one in particular, but there are always those who are looking for the opportunity to move in to a position of authority and honor when a vacancy is created, for whatever reason, sometimes they themselves try to create the vacancy and sometimes they pounce upon what looks like a good opportunity that in this case is created by his illness. You say well that's the case why is not mentioned that I can answer that because this is all speculation, but would Paul be likely to write that in the epistle that is going to be set back by up.

Aphrodite is the courier of the epistle and read publicly to the church would he likely have mentioned that that's what is going on probably not so they can prove it one way or another, but it's worthy of consideration. The only thing that would meet the need was for up Aphrodite is to show personally and say here I am. I'm well and I'm still perfectly capable of carrying out the responsibilities of an elder in this church. Thank you. Maybe. But I can't help but notice how throughout this passage both joy and sorrow are mingled together. Nearly everybody knows that Philippians is the book of joy. Paul mentions joy and rejoicing. I forget how many times I told you earlier but I've only forgotten 17 or 19 times something like that everybody likes that way we want to rejoice in what the joy that's true it's it's not that it's not there but have you overlooked all the references to sorrow that justice part just as much a part of what was going on with Paul is the joy I just as much a part of the normal Christian life is joy. It is a terrible distortion of the Scripture to communicate the idea to people that if you're living for the Lord. Your life should be all one of joy and not one of any burden or sorrow.

Well, tell that to the apostle Paul tell to Peter tell a job to do many faithful Christians who were burden them sorrows that is not with the Bible. The Bible teaches that we are given joy unspeakable and full of glory.

We are given joy that is impossible to fully explain or describe, but on the other hand that comes alongside and intermingled with sorrow. It all goes together and call on the one hand, was rejoicing in the healing of up Aphrodite us and on the other hand down with many sorrows and dear friends hunkered down. That's the Christian life until we get to heaven. Don't expect anything different or you're going to be sadly disappointed and disillusioned. That's the way it is. That's the way it's supposed to be. That's the way it was for Paul and for most of God's people. Finally, question number four.

Why did Paul commend him. He commended him because, as he tells us in verses 29, 30, was worthy of honor receiving. Therefore the Lord with all gladness and hold such minute esteem because for the work of Christ. He came close to death not regarding his life to supply what was lacking in your service toward me.

Why did Paul commend him number one because he was worthy of honor receive him in the Lord. That is, in a manner that is honoring to Christ, receive him with gladness that is not with suspicion. You say, why would anybody receive him with suspicion well because the people in that day by nature were no different from the people of our day, the Christians in that day were by nature, no different from the Christians today and anytime something like this happens when a missionary returns prematurely from the mission field. Somebody says did they really have to come home was a writ with a really that sick was this really necessary. Did they not fulfill their assignment. It is this another case of John Mark who bailed out prematurely on the possible, which of course none of those things are true, but there are always some wagging tongues who are talking this way and so Paul says receive him with honor receiving with the steam receive him as one who was due great honor.

He's worthy of honor, no gossip, no innuendo, no murky questions that are raised.

He's an honorable man who serve the Lord faithfully at a great sacrifice and you should hold men like that not only him but any others like that in great esteem. Those who are faithful those who are circled sacrificial because here's a second reason Paul commended him because he risked his life for Christ, because verse 30 for the work of Christ became close to death not regarding his life for the work of Christ, not because of carelessness, not because of homesickness. The work of Christ. He did not regard his life.

He completed his mission a great car should almost killing him to do it.

Most people would've bailed out earlier and felt that it was more important to protect their health and to go on with this assignment but not up Aphrodite's. He literally gambled with his life with you.

Take the original Greek. He took a calculated risk, he was willing if necessary to die to fulfill his commissioned assignment God in his mercy raised him up so that he didn't die, but honor people like that you don't raise suspicions about them. We think about people like Trevor Johnson who, knowing the risk went to Papua New Guinea to one of the most remote areas in the world and labored for the cause of Christ and broke his health left behind thriving church growing church church is work that's going on, or Paul Snyder. Likewise, in the same location or David Edens, who did that in the Sahara desert lived there for years in a climate that he knew was detrimental to his health and it didn't broke his health and his wife Don, his health, but he leaves behind an amazing racing gospel work that is going on and on and on and on and on. The gambled they gambled their lives. They took a calculated risk honor. Such people, so Paul commended him everyone because he is worthy of honor number two because he risked his life to Christ.

Number three because he honor the apostle Paul for the work of Christ. He came close to death not regarding his life to supply the last part of verse 30 was lacking in your service, toward new email address that in a moment that's a rather misleading phrase in my translation, but he came to serve Paul. He was committed to Christ by his commitment to the apostle Paul and isn't that the way that it is really how do we serve Christ by serving others. Alice, you do it, do by serving others. In this case by serving one whom Christ had appointed and empowered. He counted a real honor to be an assistant. He didn't think himself too big for that lima pastor, I will lower myself to becoming an assistant. The apostle Paul.

He thought that was one of the greatest honors in all the world to be able to serve one who had been commissioned by Christ and empowered for such fruitful service.

I did this is Paul I'll take up this last phrase to supply what was lacking in your service toward me. What does that mean.

Sounds like a polite rebuke you failed in some way, but that's not what Paul is saying, what is he saying let me give you the translation in the NIV risking his life to make up for the help. You could not give me, why not because of the miles that separate us. You're in Philippi I Monroe.

That's why it's the only reason why Gordon fee expands the stock to say so that he might make up for your absence and thus minister to my needs as you have not had opportunity to do recently and William Hendrickson another commentator expands it even a little bit further when he says your favor shown to me are deeply appreciated. If there's anything lacking in your kindness toward me your certainly made up for it by sending me up Aphrodite's. That's more in the spirit of what Paul is communicating here to lessons in closing, number one, regarding divine healing.

God heals illnesses today. In answer to prayer. God heals illnesses today.

In answer to prayer. God is certainly able to heal with or without medical treatment generally does use medical treatment, but it's not always God's will to heal. What about divine healings today. I don't see any need for them. Frankly, Aphrodite is the need one. The eight was ministering alongside an apostle who exercise that gift on scores if not hundreds of occasions but that's not how God healed. In this case from all the evidence we have. So don't go looking for someone who claims to have the gift of healing. I think that was an apostolic gifted did disappeared with the apostolic era that disappeared with the disappearance of the original apostles of Christ. But the power of God is the same he can exercise it in different ways. Just learn how he does exercise it, and he often exercises it in answer to the fervent believing prayers of his people and it's wonderful when he does, and when he doesn't. He's got a higher and greater more gracious purpose in that as well. Lesson number two what do we learn here about some of the characteristics of effective Christian service and I pick up 33 characteristics from all of the examples in this chapter, and what are they, they are number one humility number two obedience number three sacrifice to be an effective fruitful servant of the Lord Jesus Christ. We must be humbled. We must learn humility. We must recognize our need for humility. We must recognize pride is our greatest enemy. We must ask God to suppress our pride at every turn. We must like Christ become humble. Let this mind be in you which was also in Christ Jesus humility number two obedience. We talk about being servants of Christ, sometimes even bond servants, which means a slave. What's the number one characteristic of a servant is one who obeys their master. That's what makes him a good servant. Obedience makes them a good servant, and failure to obey makes them an unfaithful servant is as simple as that. What what makes one a good servant of Jesus Christ. Obedience to Christ obedience to his word that doesn't come easily.

Don't come naturally, we pray, not my will but thine be done and then we go out and say not that I will but might be done. No, if were going to be a good servant of the Lord Jesus Christ got to learn obedience number three sacrifice willingness to sacrifice our instinct or human instinct is to protect ourselves, preserve ourselves preserve our life preserve the things that God has given us preserve preserve that's arc, human instinct, but do we recognize that as an Adamic instinct instinct that comes with the new birth with the new birth. We learned to give to gift again to get sacrifice and therefore we should pray every day Lord free me from self-centered and make me a humble and effective servant of the Lord Jesus Christ, shall we pray father teach us the highways and show us thy pants man


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