Thursday, January 03, 2008

The Ministry Needed for a Good Report

I will be speaking at our monthly men's breakfast next Saturday, the 12th. God has laid on my heart to use the text from 1 Thessalonians 2:3-13. Yes, I know this is a large chunk of scripture to go through. If I was preparing to preach before the congregation, I would split this up into at least 3 sermons. But the idea that God gave me was to read the 1:2-10, which is Paul giving his thanks to God for the fruit of his ministry that the church in Thessalonica was exhibiting. This section of the letter is a Good Report, a commendation of sorts. But what was behind that good report? How did Paul and company minister to these people? That's where 2:3-13 come into play. I was working on the outline this morning ( I have been praying and thinking about this for about a month) and this is what I have so far:

  1. 1:2-10 - The Commendation or Good Report
  2. 2:3-4 - We are entrusted with the Gospel
    1. We have been approved by God
    2. We have been entrusted with the Gospel
    3. We answer only to God (examined by God)
  3. 2:5-8 - A Mother is Our Greatest Influence
    1. We do not:
      1. Use flattering speech
      2. seek to gain profit (greedy)
      3. seek glory
    2. But we are gentle as a nursing mother:
      1. Having fond affection
      2. Sharing the gospel
      3. Sharing our lives
    3. Because:
      1. You became dear to us
  4. 2:9-12 - A Father is the Greatest source of Encouragement
    1. Live a godly, spirit-filled life to be an example by:
      1. Working hard
      2. Proclaiming the Gospel
      3. Being devout, upright and blameless
    2. But also:
      1. Exhorting
      2. Encouraging
      3. Imploring
    3. So that:
      1. You would walk in a manner worthy of the God that calls you
  5. The End Result
    1. For this reason:
      1. We thank God for your salvation
      2. You accepted it as the word of God not man
      3. 1:2-10

As I said, it is a lot to fit into 20 minutes, but God will get the message across. Any thoughts?

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