"Preach the Gospel Like Paul"

02/08/2015 13:07

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Date:  3 February 2013

Text:  I Thesallonians 2:1-6

Title:  A BOLD GOSPEL WITNESS.

 

Introduction:  13 ¶  For this cause also thank we God without ceasing, because, when ye received the word of God which ye heard of us, ye received it not as the word of men, but as it is in truth, the word of God, which effectually worketh also in you that believe.

note:  The Gospel has NO POWER to change the unbeliever. The unbeliever who BELIEVES will be changed.

 

question:  Paul gave the Gospel in a way that powerfully impacted those who received it. Is it Biblical for us to follow the methodology of the Apostle Paul?  Is His example one that we should BIBLICALLY follow?

1 Corinthians 4:16  Wherefore I beseech you, be ye followers of me.

1 Corinthians 11:1  Be ye followers of me, even as I also am of Christ.

These believers in Thessalonians were commended by the Apostle for following His example in this regard.  1:6-8 "And ye became followers of us and of the Lord....So that ye became ensamples to all that believe in Macedonia and Achaia. For from you sounded out the word of the Lord not only in Macedonia and Achaia, but also in every place your faith to Godward is spread abroad;"

 

And so this morning, our message is entitled "How to preach the Gospel like the Apostle Paul." 

ill.  Being kidded this week about, "Now you're preaching."  Amen, we ought to preach.

1 Corinthians 1:21  For after that in the wisdom of God the world by wisdom knew not God, it pleased God by the foolishness of preaching to save them that believe.

 

We need to preach the Gospel like Paul.  How do you preach the Gospel. (If you aren't verbally preaching the Gospel you aren't an obedient Christian.) Mark 16:15  And he said unto them, Go ye into all the world, and preach the gospel to every creature.

 

I. Preach a purposeful Gospel.

1 ¶  For yourselves, brethren, know our entrance in unto you, that it was not in vain:

def. vain: metaph. of endeavours, labours, acts, which result in nothing, vain, fruitless, without effect

exp.  If Paul was there to build houses, care for orphans, educate, teach proper hygene, to the neglect of the Gospel, that would be vain.  But Paul was on a mission from the Lord.

Acts 13: 2  As they (the early church in Antioch) ministered to the Lord, and fasted, the Holy Ghost said, Separate me Barnabas and Saul for the work whereunto I have called them.

3  And when they had fasted and prayed, and laid their hands on them, they sent them away.

exp.  Paul wasn't on holiday in Thessalonica.  He was on the first missionary journey.

app.  Any ministry without the Gospel as it's focus is vain and purposeless.  We need to preach a pursposeful GOSPEL. 

 

II.  Preach a powerful Gospel.

2  But even after that we had suffered before, and were shamefully entreated, as ye know, at Philippi, we were bold in our God to speak unto you the gospel of God with much contention.

exp.  Men could argue that we can't witness like the Apostle Paul because times have changed and it's not acceptable.  (It is much more acceptable now than in Paul's day.)

ill.  Acts 16: 22-25

22  And the multitude rose up together against them: and the magistrates rent off their clothes, and commanded to beat them.

23  And when they had laid many stripes upon them, they cast them into prison, charging the jailor to keep them safely:

24  Who, having received such a charge, thrust them into the inner prison, and made their feet fast in the stocks.

25 ¶  And at midnight Paul and Silas prayed, and sang praises unto God: and the prisoners heard them.

exp.  Do you remember this story?  The Philippian Jailer get's saved.  Paul and Silas are brought out of that prison and sent on their way. They go to Thesalonica.  Do you remember what happens in Thesalonica. Acts 17:5  But the Jews which believed not, moved with envy, took unto them certain lewd fellows of the baser sort, and gathered a company, and set all the city on an uproar, and assaulted the house of Jason, and sought to bring them out to the people. (They go to Berea and the angry Jews hear about it and come and stir up the people there and Paul has to leave again.)

app.  Are you bold in the Lord even after a "bad experience" witnessing?

ill.  As I've shared the Gospel I have often found that a bad experience often proceeds a great opportunity. Why? Because Satan wants to stop you from giving the Gospel to someone who will receive it.

app.  Give a powerful Gospel. Don't quit because of spiritual warfare.

Galatians 6:9  And let us not be weary in well doing: for in due season we shall reap, if we faint not.

 

III. Preach a pure Gospel.

3  For our exhortation was not of deceit, nor of uncleanness, nor in guile:

exp.  You  may think that this is obvious and than nobody would give a "deceitful, unclean, tricky" Gospel.

ill.  Joel Osteen " Pressed again by O’Brien, Osteen repeated: “First of all, in my services, I don’t cover all those issues that we talk about here.” Later, he responded to another question by stating: “And I don’t understand all those issues and so, you know, I try to stick to the issues that I do understand. I know this: I am for everybody. I’m not for pushing people down.”

 

Viewers of CNN saw a display of confusion, evasion, and equivocation coming from one presented as a Christian pastor. What they were really seeing is the total theological bankruptcy of the word of faith movement and the gospel of positive thinking. Osteen cannot, or at least will not, speak even the simplest word of biblical conviction. He states his intention to stay in his “lane” of glib affirmation.

 

Affirmation is important, and humans crave it. But affirmation as a sinner is the worst possible form of pastoral malpractice. Christianity is based on the truth that sinners need a Savior, not merely a coach or a therapist.

 

Joel Osteen’s appearance on CNN Thursday revealed little that is new. It was Osteen as always — evasive and confused, but constantly smiling. This is now his calculated and well-practiced approach. He offered no word of the gospel, and no reference to Jesus Christ, but he was introduced as “one of the most recognizable faces of Christianity in America today.”

exp.   We see deceit in churches all the time and uncleaness as they say sin is ok. They are trying to trick people into Jesus.  Paul didn't.

app.  Christian there is no back door for the Gospel. We aren't going to reach the hearts of men by any method other than good old fashioned straight forward Gospel preach. Preach a pure Gospel.

 

IV.  Preach a God pleasing Gospel.

4  But as we were allowed of God to be put in trust with the gospel, even so we speak; not as pleasing men, but God, which trieth our hearts.

5  For neither at any time used we flattering words, as ye know, nor a cloke of covetousness; God is witness:

6  Nor of men sought we glory, neither of you, nor yet of others, when we might have been burdensome, as the apostles of Christ.

exp.  Paul called God has his witness to attest to the fact that he was not a men pleaser but a God pleaser.

quote: “You can please some of the people some of the time all of the people some of the time some of the people all of the time but you can never please all of the people all of the time.”  ― Abraham Lincoln

question:  Why do people get upset at politicians? Because many of them will say things just to be elected. They know what people want to hear and they say it to please them. 

ill.  One of the signs of the end times is "men pleasing" preaching.

2 Timothy 4:3  For the time will come when they will not endure sound doctrine; but after their own lusts shall they heap to themselves teachers, having itching ears.

exp.  Like a dog they want some good ear scratching not a good smack for eating garbage.

app.  You ought to feel uncomfortable at times in a Bible preaching church because it isn't for your pleasure it is for your benefit.  Are you pleasing men or God.  PREACH A GOD PLEASING GOSPEL.  (You may think that is harsh. Paul doesn't stop there.)

 

V.  Preach a personal Gospel.

7 ¶  But we were gentle among you, even as a nurse cherisheth her children:

8  So being affectionately desirous of you, we were willing to have imparted unto you, not the gospel of God only, but also our own souls, because ye were dear unto us.

exp.  Picture: A gentle loving mother caring for her child at the risk of her life.

ill.  Pastor Love - Are you a people person? Can you give the Gospel in a personable way?

1 Corinthians 13:1  Though I speak with the tongues of men and of angels, and have not charity, I am become as sounding brass, or a tinkling cymbal.

ill.  Listening to a pastor in Wisconsin share how he prayed about sharing the news with his son that his mom had breast cancer that was life threatening.  He didn't just blurt out - "Your mom has cancer."  He took him out for breakfast and lovingly broke the news to him.

app.  Are you personal in your witnessing? Love tells the truth but it also tells it in a compassionate way.

 

VI. Preach a passionate Gospel.

9  For ye remember, brethren, our labour and travail: for labouring night and day, because we would not be chargeable unto any of you, we preached unto you the gospel of God.

exp.  You get the feeling that Paul isn't just witnessing because he has to....but that he wants to.  After Paul left Berea he went to Mars Hill in Athens and the Bible tells us in Acts 17:16  Now while Paul waited for them at Athens, his spirit was stirred in him, when he saw the city wholly given to idolatry.

exp.  Paul loved people, and Paul didn't want anyone to point at him at the judgment and say, "You neglected to give me the Gospel."  Paul was tireless in his Gospel ministry.

John 9:4  I must work the works of him that sent me, while it is day: the night cometh, when no man can work.

ill.  “Two little lines I heard one day,

 Traveling along life’s busy way;

 Bringing conviction to my heart,

 And from my mind would not depart;

 Only one life, ’twill soon be past,

 Only what’s done for Christ will last.

 

 Only one life, yes only one,

 Soon will its fleeting hours be done;

 Then, in ‘that day’ my Lord to meet,

 And stand before His Judgement seat;

 Only one life,’twill soon be past,

 Only what’s done for Christ will last.

 

 Only one life, the still small voice,

 Gently pleads for a better choice

 Bidding me selfish aims to leave,

 And to God’s holy will to cleave;

 Only one life, ’twill soon be past,

 Only what’s done for Christ will last.

 

 Only one life, a few brief years,

 Each with its burdens, hopes, and fears;

 Each with its clays I must fulfill,

 living for self or in His will;

 Only one life, ’twill soon be past,

 Only what’s done for Christ will last.

 

 When this bright world would tempt me sore,

 When Satan would a victory score;

 When self would seek to have its way,

 Then help me Lord with joy to say;

 Only one life, ’twill soon be past,

 Only what’s done for Christ will last.

 

 Give me Father, a purpose deep,

 In joy or sorrow Thy word to keep;

 Faithful and true what e’er the strife,

 Pleasing Thee in my daily life;

 Only one life, ’twill soon be past,

 Only what’s done for Christ will last.

 

 Oh let my love with fervor burn,

 And from the world now let me turn;

 Living for Thee, and Thee alone,

 Bringing Thee pleasure on Thy throne;

 Only one life, “twill soon be past,

 Only what’s done for Christ will last.

 

 Only one life, yes only one,

 Now let me say,”Thy will be done”;

 And when at last I’ll hear the call,

 I know I’ll say “twas worth it all”;

 Only one life,’twill soon be past,

 Only what’s done for Christ will last. ”

 

 — extra stanza —

 

 Only one life, ’twill soon be past,

 Only what’s done for Christ will last.

 And when I am dying, how happy I’ll be,

 If the lamp of my life has been burned out for Thee.”

 

C.T Studd

app. What can you say of your efforts to give the Gospel? Is there a passsion to tell others of Christ? We must preach a passionate Gospel.

 

VII.  Preach a unimpeachable Gospel. (Beyond reproach; blameless)

10  Ye are witnesses, and God also, how holily and justly and unblameably we behaved ourselves among you that believe:

exp.  How sad the missionary journey would be if it ended with Paul's embezzling the funds that he was given or committing adultery with a woman in the church. What if Paul drank on the weekends or abused his position as a minister of Jesus Christ. His testimony was blameless.

ill.  The requirements for a minister - I Timothy 3 "blameless" Why? Because it doesn't matter what you say if what you do contradicts it.

app.  Are you living the Gospel or just telling it? If your not living it you might as well not tell it.  Preach an unimpeachable Gospel.

 

VIII. Preach a pointed Gospel.

11  As ye know how we exhorted and comforted and charged every one of you, as a father doth his children,

12  That ye would walk worthy of God, who hath called you unto his kingdom and glory.

exp.  Paul's message was not come as you are and leave as you were.  It was come as you are and change into God's image.

ill.  There are church all over Scotland who are seeking to preach an DULL Gospel that has no power to change a life. 2 Timothy 3:5  Having a form of godliness, but denying the power thereof: from such turn away.  The true Gospel transforms those who receive it. 

ill.  Why would you save an infant's life and then let him lay out in the cold and rain? You need to get that baby where he can thrive. 

exp.  Christians CAN NOT thrive in the world.

app.  God has the power to change your life. WALK WORTHY OF THE CALL OF GOD. We must preach apointed Gospel.

 

conclusion:  God's Word was received NOT PAUL'S WORD. v.13 Preach a purposeful, powerful, pure, God pleasing, personal, passionate, unimpeachable, pointed Gospel.