Summary: Paul must face some accusations.
I THESSALONIANS CHAPTER 2
THE MODEL SERVANT
The model church requires a model pastor. Paul filled the role very well. However, as is often, even the best of men cannot please all men. Paul must defend his position against accusations and maintain the character of a servant of God. Beneath the surface of this passage run the slanders which Paul's opponents at Thessalonica attached to him.
II. THE FAITHFUL STEWARD 2:1-6
A. It was not a message that Paul had made up or that he had
received from men.
Gal. 1:11-12 And not only so, but we also joy in God through our Lord Jesus Christ, by whom we have now received the atonement. 12Wherefore, as by one man sin entered into the world, and death by sin; and so death passed upon all men, for that all have sinned:
B. A steward owns nothing, but possesses and uses everything that belongs to his master.
C. Every steward must some day give an account. Luke 16:1-2
D. The merchandise over which we are given responsibility is
I Cor 4:1 Let a man so account of us, as of the ministers of Christ, and stewards of the mysteries of God.
1. We must not bury it.
2. We must share it.
III. THE MANNER OF PAUL'S MINISTRY AS A STEWARD
A. The manner of his ministry. (v. 1-2)
1. Not in Vain.
Paul, called to be an apostle of Jesus Christ through the will of God, and Sosthenes our brother, 2 Unto the church of God which is at Corinth, to them that are sanctified in Christ Jesus, called to be saints, with all that in every place call upon the name of Jesus Christ our Lord, both theirs and ours:
2. Shamefully entreated at Philippi Acts 16:16-40
3. Bold in our God
4. Battling -- Contention = A contest for victory or mastery such as was used in the Greek games of running, boxing, wrestling, etc.
B. The message of his ministry (v. 3a)
1. An exhortation that Christ had lived, died, and was resurrected on our behalf.
2. Not a deceitful message, but a true message.
C. The motive of his ministry (v. 3b)
1. Not Uncleanness -- Paul's motives were pure. The word used for impurity often has to do with sexual impurity. There was one Christian custom which the
heathen often and deliberately misinterpreted; that was the kiss of peace (holy kiss). When the Christians spoke of the Love Feast and the kiss of peace, it was not difficult for an evil mind to read into these phrases what was never there. The trouble often is that a mind itself nasty will see nastiness everywhere. W.B.
2. Not in Guile -- Not baiting the hook to catch prey.
3. I am not mad. A really original man will always run the risk of being called mad. The Christian standards can be so different from the standards of the world
that he who follows them with a single mind and a burning enthusiasm can
appear to other men to be off his head. W.B.
D. The method of his ministry (v. 4-6)
1. Not pleasing men. God will try our hearts.
prove, examine, tempt, trial
2. Not using flattering words.
Proverbs 26:28 A lying tongue hateth those that are afflicted by it; and a flattering mouth worketh ruin.
A flatterer is a person who manipulates rather than communicates. A flatterer
can use truth or lies to achieve his unholy purpose, which is to control your decisions for his own profit.
Isa 56:11 Yea, they are greedy dogs which can never have enough, and they are shepherds that cannot understand: they all look to their own way, every one for his gain, from his quarter.
3. Not a cloak (in pretense)of covetousness (greedy desire to have more). Some used religion in Paul's day to make money. Paul often gave up his privilege of receiving support to reduce accusations.
I Cor. 9:1-18 Paul is the ox treading out the corn.
He muzzled his own self at times.
4. Not seeking glory.
Proverbs 25:27 A lying tongue hateth those that are afflicted by it; and a flattering mouth worketh ruin.
It is not good to eat much honey
(This will make you sick): so for men to search their own glory is not glory (This will make others sick).
IV. PAUL AS A LOVING MOTHER (2:7-8)
1. Giving of oneself to ensure the full potential of the children.
2. Having patience as the children grow.
1. The nursing mother eats the food and transforms it into milk for the baby.
2. The mother imparts to the child that which she has partaken of. The mature Christian feeds on the Word of God and then shares its nourishment with the younger believers so they can grow. The Christian who is feeding others must be careful not to feed on the wrong things himself.