Jul 25, 2021. I Thessalonians 2:1-12

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PAUL’S PARENTAL CARE.  I Thessalonians 2:1-12.  7/25/2021.  #3.

1 Thessalonians 2:1-12 [New King James Version]

1 For you yourselves know, brethren, that our coming to you was not in vain. 2 But even after we had suffered before and were spitefully treated at Philippi, as you know, we were bold in our God to speak to you the gospel of God in much conflict. 3 For our exhortation did not come from error or uncleanness, nor was it in deceit. 4 But as we have been approved by God to be entrusted with the gospel, even so we speak, not as pleasing men, but God who tests our hearts. 5 For neither at any time did we use flattering words, as you know, nor a cloak for covetousness—God is witness. 6 Nor did we seek glory from men, either from you or from others, when we might have made demands as apostles of Christ. 7 But we were gentle among you, just as a nursing mother cherishes her own children. 8 So, affectionately longing for you, we were well pleased to impart to you not only the gospel of God, but also our own lives, because you had become dear to us. 9 For you remember, brethren, our labor and toil; for laboring night and day, that we might not be a burden to any of you, we preached to you the gospel of God. 10 You are witnesses, and God also, how devoutly and justly and blamelessly we behaved ourselves among you who believe; 11 as you know how we exhorted, and comforted, and charged every one of you, as a father does his own children, 12 that you would walk worthy of God who calls you into His own kingdom and glory.

1. Paul defends his ministry and message

                a. Paul was forced to leave Thessalonians before he could fully disciple them, defend his ministry and teaching, and bond with them

                                a1. The Jews tried to discredit Paul and the gospel

                                a2. Since Paul was no longer with them, he sent two letters back to them to defend his authority, teaching, genuine concern for them

                b. God had entrusted the gospel to Paul, who had not failed in his calling (he had passed the test of authenticity)

                c. When Paul was with them, he behaved devoutly, justly, blamelessly, and purely (Paul was acutely aware of his reputation and testimony)

                d. He supported himself and aides by working night and day, so that he would not be a burden to them

                                a1. Paul labored as a leather worker to make money

                                a2. Thessalonians was a poor church, so Paul did not impose

                                a3. Paul did not want to be accused of seeking gain

2. A pure gospel from a pure motivation

                a. Paul states that he had given them the authentic gospel

                                a1. There were plenty of false teachings (Jude)

                                a2. Paul had given ample proof of validity of his message

                b. Paul states 3 traits of those he preach a false gospel:

                                a1. ERROR – there are those who honestly believe in what they teach, even in error

                                                b1. They had embraced a false message

                                                b2. Cults and errant churches believe their messages without evidence of truth

                                                b3. Paul was not in error

                                a2. UNCLEANNESS (impurity) – a message that justified the sins of the messenger (idolaters)

                                                b1. The more people who follow the impure message the more justified the false teacher feels (Philippians 1:15-30)

                                                b2. Paul touted his proper morality

                                a3. DECEIT – the messenger knows that he his presenting a false message, but seeks to deceive his hearers for personal gain

                c. Paul denies being motivated by personal gain

                                a1. Not for GLORY – praise of men (Matthew 23)

                                a2. Not for GREED – to become wealthy (I Timothy 6)

3. Enduring spiritual parent

                a. Paul came to Thessalonians after being mistreated in Philippi

                                a1. The same Jews that opposed him in Philippians followed him to Thessalonica and continued their attack

                                a2. The uproar of Jews led to his expulsion from Thessalonica

                b. Paul’s response = he continued to boldly preach gospel

                                a1. He refused to allow conflict to silence him

                                a2. Galatians 6:9-10 refused to be weary in well doing

                c. Paul presented himself as a loving spiritual parent

                                a1. Gentle as a nursing mom = affectionate, bonding, giving my own life for you with his aides

                                                b1. People were not just prospects to Paul

                                                b2. Paul cared about those he taught

                                a2. As a father, he comforted, exhorted, and admonished them to bring them to maturity

                d. The ministry was not a job, but a calling of mercy and love

Key verse: Philippians 1:15-30

15 Some indeed preach Christ even from envy and strife, and some also from goodwill: 16 The former preach Christ from selfish ambition, not sincerely, supposing to add affliction to my chains; 17 but the latter out of love, knowing that I am appointed for the defense of the gospel. 18 What then? Only that in every way, whether in pretense or in truth, Christ is preached; and in this I rejoice, yes, and will rejoice. 19 For I know that this will turn out for my deliverance through your prayer and the supply of the Spirit of Jesus Christ, 20 according to my earnest expectation and hope that in nothing I shall be ashamed, but with all boldness, as always, so now also Christ will be magnified in my body, whether by life or by death. 21 For to me, to live is Christ, and to die is gain. 22 But if I live on in the flesh, this will mean fruit from my labor; yet what I shall choose I cannot tell. 23 For I am hard-pressed between the two, having a desire to depart and be with Christ, which is far better. 24 Nevertheless to remain in the flesh is more needful for you. 25 And being confident of this, I know that I shall remain and continue with you all for your progress and joy of faith, 26 that your rejoicing for me may be more abundant in Jesus Christ by my coming to you again. 27 Only let your conduct be worthy of the gospel of Christ, so that whether I come and see you or am absent, I may hear of your affairs, that you stand fast in one spirit, with one mind striving together for the faith of the gospel, 28 and not in any way terrified by your adversaries, which is to them a proof of perdition, but to you of salvation, and that from God. 29 For to you it has been granted on behalf of Christ, not only to believe in Him, but also to suffer for His sake, 30 having the same conflict which you saw in me and now hear is in me.