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1 Thessalonians 2:5-7 (Part B)

Cross Reference Radio / Pastor Rick Gaston
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August 3, 2021 6:00 am

1 Thessalonians 2:5-7 (Part B)

Cross Reference Radio / Pastor Rick Gaston

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August 3, 2021 6:00 am

Pastor Rick teaches from the Book of 1st Thessalonians 2:5-7

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Paul knew how important it was for these believers to learn how to be led by the Lord, not by pressure. See, when you're saying to somebody, if you don't give $50 more, we're not going to be able to have lollipops and whatever it is. You're pressuring the people. They're not led by God.

They're being pressured by leadership. It's your money. No, it's not. It's God's money. It's not my money. It's not the church's money. It's not your money.

It's God's money. This is Cross-Reference Radio with our pastor and teacher Rick Gaston. Rick is the pastor of Calvary Chapel Mechanicsville. Pastor Rick is currently teaching through the book of 1 Thessalonians.

Please stay with us after today's message to hear more information about Cross-Reference Radio, specifically how you can get a free copy of this teaching. And now here's Pastor Rick as he continues teaching verse by verse through 1 Thessalonians Chapter 2 on Cross-Reference Radio. It has to be dealt with now in this lifetime, one lifetime you get, not one day, one lifetime. There's someone protesting, well, what about, what about what? We already have established God is able to deal with everything.

A child born with a severe handicap, for example, mentally, physically, God's going to deal with that. I don't know how or what He's going to do. I don't know why He's allowed this or that in detail.

Overall, I do, but not in detail. But I'm good with it because I know Him. And I know He'll fix this flat tire, and it will be good. And when we get to heaven, I like that when a roll is called, calls out your name, Rick, here, sir.

When that moment comes, it won't be God does all things good. It will be awe, silence in heaven, nothing you could say. I can't believe I'm here.

I can't believe my wife's here. Kidding. I saw the shot.

I took it. But anyway, in Romans chapter 7, he says, what shall I say then? In Romans 7, he's talking about the weakness of the flesh. And in the Romans 8, he gives us the cure for it. He doesn't say, what shall save me? He says, who shall save me?

As well as Christ Jesus. But he says in Romans 7, what shall we say then? Is the law sin?

Certainly not. On the contrary, I would not have known sin except through the law. The law is that test. It's the microscope. It points it out. That's what the law of God is.

This is perfection. This is what I demand from you. And if you get it wrong, you've separated yourself from me.

We all get it wrong. God says, well, the only way to fix that is through a savior. Christ Jesus the Lord, by taking your punishment and then making opportunity to fill you with my spirit. So we say, quoting Alan Redpath, conversion of a soul. The conversion of a soul, when he taps out, that is a miracle of the moment. It's a miracle because most don't do it.

And it's a God-done thing. And then he goes on to say, Redpath does, the manufacturing of a saint is a task of a lifetime. It takes a whole lifetime to develop sainthood, discipleship. Now, sainthood is not defined by a religious group.

We'll vote on it, see if you get in. How arrogant. A saint in the scripture is defined as anyone who has separated themselves from the world system and have come under the system or the kingdom of heaven in Jesus Christ.

Separated is the definition of the word saint. You may not have learned that all your life. You've been walking, maybe you're, I don't know, 140 years old and you're walking around thinking this from the time you were two. And you come here and you hear me, and you hear me, and you hear me, and you hear me, and you come here and you hear me say it, and you don't like it. Well, that's irrelevant.

What is relevant is what are you going to do with it? Is it right or is it wrong? Is it true or is it not? Paul wrote his letter to the saints. They weren't dead people who were voted into some form of sainthood. They were living Christians, many of them slaves, people just like you and me.

That is who he wrote to, and this is why the word of God is relevant. And anyone that comes along and says it's barbaric, it's archaic, their strings are being pulled by someone underneath. We are here not to mock them, though it's very easy. Once you see the light, it's always easy to point out somebody else who is dirtier than you in the sense that they're not washed in the lamb, not in the sense of who we are inherently.

It's always easier to beat up the little guy, establish a pecking order real quickly. Well, that's not the goal of the Christian life. When we point these things out, we expose them that they can be dealt with because they can be dealt with in no other way. We all applaud medical, you know, pretty soon they're going to be doing brain surgeries through a drive-through.

Just pull up, hold your head, okay, next. I mean, they've made such advancement and we applaud it, but they're not God. I mean, you know, the car was something to the guy with the buggy whip, huh? All right, you had to kind of put yourself there with the buggy whip, but these advancements we applaud when they can look inside you, they put you in machines, they do all these things to find out what's going on, but God can't do it.

No, no, no, no. He can't look inside you and tell you what's wrong. He cannot give a diagnosis. He cannot be the great physician because I really want a genie in a bottle and not a God sovereign and gracious. Let me tell you, without grace, everything is done for us. Grace is the kingpin of man's relationship with God.

Kingpin is that pin that holds the trailer to the tractor. So, if there is no grace, there is no salvation. There are no rights. We have no rights with God. We have the right for Him to hold it against us that we're sinners, that's it.

It's all grace. It's all His goodness. And so, coming back to this, He says God is witness.

God is always witness. He is not only. So, one of the attributes that declares Him as God is that He's omniscient. He knows all that's going on. He's ubiquitous. He's everywhere at the same time. He's omnipotent. Nobody's more powerful than Him. There's no higher witness, but this witness is also the prosecutor, the defense, the judge, and the jury, and you will get a fair trial.

He tells about this, and that's what's scary, right? My pastor used to say, I don't want God's justice on me. I want His mercy. Amen. I want His mercy.

That's what I want. But to the wicked, it will be justice. Well, verse six, we got there. Verse six. Nor did we seek glory of men, either from you or from others, when we might have made demands as apostles of Christ.

Now remember, these are friendlies that He's writing to. These are saints that love Him, that believe. He has used similar language to other churches where they weren't His friends anymore, many people in there.

They were not His friends. So the tone of this, when He says, nor did we seek glory from men, it's a very comfortable tone, whereas He uses it in other places. And Corinthians says, we didn't seek anything from you.

So you have to keep that in mind, because the individual has to say, which side am I on here? Who would I be in that congregation? Would I be the one that would be bothered by what Paul was saying, resenting him for saying it? Or would I be the one blessed by it?

Or would I be the one converting, being moved into action because of what is being said? You live long enough, you know, things can be, you become jaded or susceptible to, where you're not moved anymore. Listen, you're never too old to be moved by the truth of God.

You're never, you can be, maybe you're not moved by the truth of a baseball game or something like that, but when it comes to God, you are never too old to not be moved. You cannot say, oh, I've seen it all, I've been there. You haven't seen it all.

What's the backside of Mars look like? Quick, quick. You don't know. You haven't seen it all.

So now I'm sure that's an absurdity, but it's true. To be alive is to invite the Spirit of God into our hearts to see things as He sees them. And to do this, you are going to need to be exposed to others who have pulled it off. You need to have in your life those men and women who set the example in Christ. Otherwise, there's no hope for you.

You've not seen it. Well, yeah, God can overcome that, but that's not how He works. He works through others. Each one teach one because of what He is doing in all of those who belong to Him. And so He says, we didn't seek the glory of men. And it is because He had a message to give, not something to get. Now, we do this, we Christians, we are to do this, we are to preach the truth without hostility, but equally without compromise.

It's firmness. We don't compromise, we Christians. That's why the world hates us so much. Where is it written we have to compromise with the truth? If we compromise with the truth, it's no longer the truth. It's just it takes a pinch of a lie to leaven the truth and muddy the waters. And so we need to be firm and resolute.

We need to know what we believe, why we believe it, and it needs to be ours individually so that if everybody else says, you know what, I'm tired of being a Christian, you haven't moved. I mean, if my mom and dad decide, you know what, we're not good with this anymore. Well, I love you, see you.

My children, if they're exposed to the gospel, they're raised in Christ, say, well, you know, I don't think I like it anymore. I like the world. Go have it.

Drink all you want. I'm not going with you. That is being firm. But maybe not in that tone.

I mean, the tone certainly would be, okay. But he says, we might have made demands. The Greek word here for demands, and remember, our New Testament is originally written in the Koine, the common Greek. That Greek word for demands is weight.

We might have put a weight on you. The weight of leadership in this case. As leaders, people tend to respond to the leaders. That's why they are the leaders in Christianity. Leaders are leaders by consent of the people who are never forcing anyone to do anything.

We shepherd the flock of God among us because we're one of you. But, you know, if you've come across people who are always making demands on you, it is a drag. Why are they doing this? Do they need, is it some need to feel self-important? Is this insecure? Well, I know I can't.

I'm not trying to sort these things out. But I sure like it when people allow me to be free. We'd love for you to come, but if you don't come, we love you no less. That's freedom. But, you better be at my birthday party, I'll kill you. That's not freedom.

Show up with Kevlar. But, and other things. Okay, all right. So, he says we could have put a weight on you as leaders, but that would have ruined everything. That's not the gospel. The gospel is an invitation. It carries its own weight in its message. It is a do or die. It is take it or leave it.

It is this one way, no other way. Well, what about, again, God is capable of dealing with all those what abouts, and in the end, he will do it right. We are exposed to this with Abraham when he's sort of being an advocate for Sodom and Gomorrah. Abraham, I know you understand what God is about to do to this place and how severe it's going to be, but these people need to be dealt with. And so, Abraham, of course, he says, God, you're God of the universe.

You do the right thing always, don't you? You got that right, AB, whatever he used to call him. Called him Abraham is what he called him. And, in the end, Abraham was good with it.

He was fine. But, that whole dialogue exchange is preserved for us. It comes from God through Moses to us so that we get a look at the character of God.

I'm amazed that he tolerated the conversation of Abraham. And, you know, like 50, 40, they go all the way down, it's like, couldn't they just cut to the point? If you read the Bible a lot, you sometimes you just say, you know what, I could have probably cut a lot of this, edited it out, and gotten to the point.

But, why not? Why are numbers in Leviticus so lengthy with repetitive, this tribe, or just leave one tribe out and look at the problem Moses would have had? Well, because it was an official document.

I know it kind of went off the beaten trail here, but it's fun. When you read the book of Numbers and you hear the the tribe after tribe, and it says the same thing for each tribe that it said for the last tribe, it's an official document. More, it's the scripture to us, but at the time it was written, it was also an official government doctrine.

I know you say government, your hair stands up, but it wasn't that kind of government. Well, anyway, Paul knew how important it was for these believers to learn how to be led by the Lord, not by pressure. You see, when you're saying to somebody, if you don't give 50 dollars more, we're not going to be able to have lollipops in the, whatever it is. You're pressuring the people.

They're not led by God, they're being pressured by leadership. It's your money. No, it's not. It's God's money. It's not my money. It's not the church's money. It's not your money.

It's God's money. If you do not have a relationship with him, well, that's what we work on, and that's the extent of it. You have to learn how to be led by God. You have to come to a place in your life where you can make a distinction between the restrictions of God and the readiness of God versus the meddling and misleading of Satan. You have to learn these things.

You will not learn them without taking some hits, getting hurt. God is going to let you go ahead. You thought that was me speaking to you, did you?

Well, now you know it wasn't. Next time, you'll be a little bit more reverent, won't you? Next time, you won't be running out there as though, I prayed for it.

What is that? I prayed for it. Now, God, you're obligated to do it.

When I hear, especially a young Christian, immature Christian, whoa, but I prayed for it. So? He said no. Now you're dealing with no. He wanted to show something else about you or me or something like that, how good I look. I don't know. Whatever it is, I don't mean that.

That's why it's comical. Anyway, for visitors' sake. So, God has to teach the people how to be led, and he does that through other Christians, and he's doing it through Paul. And Paul is saying, we're not trying to force you to do things by putting weight on you. We want you to be led by the Holy Spirit, and we do this by exposing you to choices based on God's word. And you get to make the choice, and you sink or swim on those.

What if I make the wrong choice? God is loving. He's ahead of you. He will protect you, even when it goes wrong. So, you better pack this in your knapsack. The will of the Lord.

That's what you better have. I mean, don't use it carelessly. It's God's will. God's will. I mean, Islam does that. I mean, it shoots God's will, and it's not right. Sometimes we find out it's God's will, and it's our fault. We have to learn these things.

Be submitted. Be patient. Have faith. Paul said he would rather starve to death than anybody think that he was begging them or forcing them. 1 Corinthians. Now, when he wrote 1 Corinthians, these were problematic people. This was a troublesome church. This is a church you did not want to go to. Hey, you tell me a good church?

Yeah. You got to go to Philadelphia. I don't mean Pennsylvania. I mean, you had a licous valley. Go to Thessalonica, but do not go to Corinth.

Now, it wasn't that bad, but it was bad. There were some good folks in there struggling through this church, and Paul writes to them. He says, do you not know that those who minister the holy things eat of the things of the temple, and those who serve at the altar partake of the offerings of the altar? In other words, the shepherds live off the flock, the wool, the mutton.

It's okay. That's what he's getting at, and then he continues. Even so, the Lord has commanded that those who preach the gospel should live from the gospel, but I have used none of these things, nor have I written these things that it should be done so to me, for it would be better for me to die than that anyone should make my boasting void. I'd rather die than you say you bought me or that I was here enriching myself off of you. I would rather die than make the gospel message die. The truth, make it void, and so when King David said in 1 Chronicles 24, David said to Ornan, no, and Ornan said, I'll give this to you for free, David. You buying this for God, I'll give it to you. David said, no, but I will surely buy it for the full price, for I will not take what is yours for the Lord, nor offer burnt offerings with that which cost me nothing.

When we were privileged enough to purchase the land we have, we did not haggle. We did not want the world to think that, oh, here comes another. We're a church. We're weak and needy. You should give to us.

We have a 501c with the tax. Gosh, that's not God. He's not poor. It's a privilege for you to sell it to us.

It's the flesh. So, you know, we as Christians, we're not trying to present God as pathetic and needy and in need of help again. It's an honor for God to say, you know, I'm going to use you. I've had unbelievers come to my rescue in times in my life. And, of course, as a Christian, and, you know, you say, Lord, may you bless them.

Well, what does that mean? May they be converted. May the day come where they put it together. And so we move on. Verse 7, he says, but we were gentle among you, just as a nursing mother cherishes her own children.

Now, you know, you know what that picture is. Before I comment, on the verse, just a reminder, or how this section is outlined, verses 1 through 6, Paul itemizes the things he did not do with them. I think there's a great lesson in that for we Christians in the workplace, in the neighborhood, in the church, we're in the family.

What are the things we don't do that we should not do? And so Paul was saying, I didn't beg from you. I didn't do this. I didn't do that. And he's making the record claims that you were witnesses to these things, all in a good spirit.

But here in verses 7 through 12, now he's going to start talking about the things he did do, the proactive things with the gospel. One of them is, I was like a mom to you. Not a mother, a mom.

I can kind of play with our English words like that. Any, almost anyone can, a woman can have a child. Not anyone can be a mom. We say that about dads too.

Any, a man can sire a child. Doesn't mean that he can be a father to the, that takes work. And so Paul is saying, I was like a mother to you who cherishes her child. Is there a stronger and sweeter word at the same time for love than cherish? I mean, it's like with me, it's like the awesome should be reserved for things that truly are awesome, not trivial things.

But if others that do it and many of you who I love and care and cringe when you say it, but you know, that's no big deal. But cherish. I know, I don't cherish. Well, fill me on, I do kind of cherish.

But aside from that, forget I said that. This is a special word. It's even hard to say sometimes, especially for men. Now some of you men, you've got it. You've got the romantic streak and you're sickening with it and you just make it harder for the rest of us who don't have it.

It's like, I got my wife a baseball bat. Here you are with flowers and I got it wrong again. But cherish is a very beautiful word and that's why we use it in the marriage vows. To have and to cherish. Don't you mess it up.

Back to this. But we were gentle among you. And that's what a cherish, a loving mom is. Gentle. Now there are those that think, they behave as though to be gentle is to be dishonest. Because if you tell them the truth, you're being brutal. So if you lie to them, you're being a liar. You can't win. So don't try. That's on them.

They're trying to wiggle out. So in verse 7, he'll say gentle as a mother. In verse 11, he'll say with direction like a father and then in verse 14, he will say encouraging like a brother. That is what a brother and a sister should be, is it not? An encouragement to the siblings.

But it ain't easy. Sometimes you give them encouragement, they take it for criticism. Sometimes the encouragement is in the form of a criticism. I encourage you to be smarter. It's like, you know, there you go again.

You got the sphisti-cuffs. So truly be encouraging. And when sometimes relationships are so strained, they've got so much baggage in their history that it's just best to keep quiet and hope God brings you somebody else that you can make up through, make it up vicariously. So he says, just as a nursing mother cherishes her own children. This in contrast to greed. So could you imagine a nursing mother hitting up the baby for a seed offering?

If you just like give me a hundred dollars, God will bless you and I can get those shoes I want so much. But this is how ministries conduct themselves. And the pastors drive around with, you know, Cadillacs or whatever the supercar is out there and the people are pushing their cars to the church lot under the understanding that God's going to bless them if they give their last nickel.

And that is not God. And they don't figure it out. They don't say, you know, I've been here 20 years and I'm still in debt. I better go somewhere else. They don't.

They stay there and they stay in debt and they keep giving it. That is a weird thing. And it hurts the gospel. The unbelievers see it.

They mock it and rightfully so. And so the test of the prophet is the prophet's life. The test of the apostle was that of how he treated the flock. And you know Paul, when he had to stand firm, like with the Thessalonians, he says, who has bewitched you? Having begun in the spirit, you're now being made perfect in the flesh.

Have you done all this for nothing? And so don't misunderstand. Don't take his kindness for weakness as so many people do. You young children who are still in the home, don't think when mom and dad is being nice to you that they're just dumb and that's your opportunity to try to rip them off of something. Do not live that way. Do not think that someone is kind.

They are therefore weak. That comes from Satan. Thanks for tuning in to Cross-Reference Radio for this study in the book of 1 Thessalonians. Cross-Reference Radio is the teaching ministry of Pastor Rick Gaston of Calvary Chapel Mechanicsville in Virginia. To learn more information about this ministry, visit our website, crossreferenceradio.com. Once you're there, you'll find additional teachings from Pastor Rick. We encourage you to subscribe to our podcast. When you subscribe, you'll be notified of each new edition of Cross-Reference Radio. You can search for Cross-Reference Radio in your favorite podcast app as well. That's all we have time for today, but we hope you'll join us next time as Pastor Rick continues to teach through the book of 1 Thessalonians right here on Cross-Reference Radio.
Whisper: medium.en / 2023-09-18 03:30:36 / 2023-09-18 03:41:02 / 10

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