Tuesday, August 30, 2011

Church Elder Must Be Blameless



Titus 1:6a (NKJV)

After the introduction, Paul began to instruct Titus.

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Paul first directive to Titus was to appoint elders.

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Titus was to approach the matter prayerfully.

He was to examine these men's lives carefully.

There are attributes that are essential for a Church elder to possess.

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The first attribute : Church elder must be blameless (1:6a)

Every Church elder must be above reproach in his behavior and his life.

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Every Church elder must constantly examine himself to make sure that he is above reproach and blameless.

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This doesn't mean that Church elder will never do wrong or that he will never be accused.

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There are some keys for a Church elder to live above reproach and be blameless:

Church elder must live uprightly.

He must be straightforward and honest.

He must be clear and sincere.

Church elder must fear God.

The fear of the Lord is the beginning of wisdom.

Church elder must turn away from evil.

When a Church elder turn away from evil, he turns towards a much happier life.

It is so much more peaceful.

He does not have to worry about who will find out about his sin.

He does not have to worry about what will be exposed.

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A Church elder must be blameless.

Wednesday, August 24, 2011

The Word Of God



2 Timothy 3:16-17 (NIV)

All Scripture is God-breathed.

Every word of the Bible is by the inspiration of God.

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The Word of God speaks directly to us, to our hearts, to our situations, to our lives, and right where we are at.

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The Scripture is so valuable.

We must pay close attention to it.

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The Word of God is Good For Teaching

We must know the value of teaching the Scripture.

We must know the profit that it produces in our lives.

When we are taught the Word of God:

... We learn more about how much God loves us.

... We understand more about God's plans for us.

... We gain knowledge to answer different questions from people.

... We are protected from cults and false teachers.

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The Word of God Is Good For Rebuking And Correcting

The Word of God is necessary to set us straight and direct us back onto the right path.

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The Word Of God is Good For Training In Righteousness

When we read the Word of God, we understand what God wants in our lives.

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When we are taught, rebuked, corrected, and trained in righteousness by the Word of God, we are thoroughly equipped for every good work.

In other words, we are completely equipped as Christians.

And we don't need anything else.

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The Word of God is the means that God uses to teach us, to speak to us, to educate us, and to set standards for us.

We will find the true knowledge of Him through the Bible.

And that true knowledge of Him gives us everything we need for life and godliness.

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When we are complete with the Word of God, we're fully equipped for every good work.

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The purpose of the church is to equip Christians for the work by educating them with the Word of God.

Friday, August 19, 2011

Guard The Gospel



2 Timothy 1:13-18 (NIV)

1:13 Keep As The Pattern Of Sound Teaching

Paul told Timothy, "What you heard from me, keep as the pattern of sound teaching."

Sound teaching is the teaching of the Lord Jesus Christ, and the doctrine of godliness.

Paul was saying that the teaching that Timothy received should be presented in the same way it was originally given.

It should be the same gospel, the same message that was originally presented in the Scripture.

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We are not to come up with new truths, but simply to explain the old ones, to make them understandable to the people.

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The greatest teachers are not the ones who come up with a new revelation, a new message, or a new teaching.

They are the ones that direct us along the ancient paths, showing and reminding us what the good way is, and encouraging us to walk in it.

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The teachers of sound teaching must keep themselves in the faith and love of the Lord Jesus Christ.

They must believe what they are saying.

They must speak with love and care.

They must be convinced of the truths of the Word of God.

They must love the people, desiring them to be saved and grow in the knowledge of God.

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1:14 The Holy Spirit Lives In Us

The Holy Spirit living in us is God's promise of eternal life.

If we have been born again into a new life in Jesus Christ, the Holy Spirit lives in us.

The Holy Spirit helps us, teaches us, and brings to our remembrance what the Lord Jesus Christ said.

He empowers us to be witnesses of the Lord Jesus Christ.

He comforts us.

He speaks to us and through us.

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We are to guard the good deposit that was entrusted to us.

What is that good deposit?

It is the gospel of Jesus Christ.

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1:16-18 Onesiphorus

Onesiphorus was a real Christian who loved with action.

He guard the gospel of the Lord Jesus Christ and acted accordingly.

He lived with faith and love in Christ Jesus.

How about us?

Will we guard the good deposit that was entrusted to us?


Friday, August 12, 2011

Falling Away From Faith



1 Timothy 4:1-5 (NIV)

Christians should conduct themselves in a godly manner.

The church should be the pillar and foundation of the truth.

But there are people who are falling away from the faith into unbelief.

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There are people whose hearts are hardened into unbelief because of sin.

Continual, habitual, unrepentant sin will harden our heart to the point of unbelief.

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If we live in sin for so long that we find it is easier to stop believing in God rather than to live under conviction, we are not saved.

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It is true that some people leave the faith.

They fall away.

They leave the faith and are paying attention to deceitful spirits.

They pay attention to the doctrines of the demons.

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There are demonic forces to cause us to believe a lie.

They will cook up all sorts of deceptions to lead us away from the truth of God.

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The doctrines of demons have infiltrated the church, in the form of false teachings.

They come from all sides, in every area of Christianity.

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The only way to have a true, Biblical Christianity is to stick to the true Christianity taught in the Bible!

Let us pay more attention to the Word of God, which teaches us the only true gospel.

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The doctrines of demons are propagated by hypocritical liars whose own consciences have been seared.

Their inner voice that tells them right from wrong has been burned up by their hypocrisy.

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Hypocritical liars in the church always have some new teaching that we must believe and some new practice that we must observe.

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Paul uses two examples of this: forbidding marriage and abstaining from foods.

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It is widely believed that a truly righteous person is unmarried.

To remain unmarried can be advantageous for those who want to be devoted to the Lord.

But not everyone is cut out for that.

In other words, if we can manage in our singleness, praise God.

But if we know we need to get married, then get married.

There's no law of God saying that we must be single.

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Abstaining from certain foods is viewed by many to be the more holy thing to do.

The key to food is to receive it with gratitude.

No one can condemn us for violating religious rules regarding food, if we give thanks to God, if we give Him the glory.

Whatever we eat, no one can condemn us if we do it all to the glory of God!

Sunday, August 7, 2011

Fight A Good Fight


1 Timothy 1:18-20

Paul had exhorted Timothy to instruct the false teachers in Ephesus to stop teaching their strange doctrines.

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He then took a few verses to point out that his calling as an apostle was against his nature.

He had been a blasphemer, a persecutor, and a violent aggressor.

But through the mercy, grace, and strength of God, he was re-created to be something else.

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Paul was assuring Timothy that God could re-create him to be something else as well.

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Timothy was supposed to fight a good fight in accordance with the prophecies made concerning him.

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Earlier in Timothy's life, the elders had laid hands on him and words of prophecy were spoken over him.

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Timothy had received the spiritual gift of teaching.

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Paul was telling Timothy to trust in God, to remember that the Lord had spoken great things about how He would use Timothy, so that by recalling them Timothy might fight the battle well.

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Timothy was supposed to fight the good fight of faith.

It was a fight to keep the faith pure.

It was a fight against false doctrines with the truth of the Scriptures.

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Now, in order to fight a good fight, Timothy needed to keep faith and a good conscience.

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Our faith will grow as we spend time in the Word.

That is how we keep faith.

And we won't lose trust in God when things get difficult.

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The second necessity for fighting the good fight of faith is keeping a good conscience.

Having a good conscience means that we are living our life above reproach before God and fellow men.

We are to resist temptation and to avoid sin.

In this way, we will walk with a good conscience before God and men.

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Some people had been shipwrecked in regard to their faith.

They got stuck at a certain point, crashed and burned, fell away from God and the church.

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For some, it was because they never got rooted and grounded in the Word.

They never laid in themselves the foundation of the Bible to build their faith on.

They lost faith when things seemed to fall apart.

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Others failed to resist temptation and avoid sin.

They turned the grace of God into licentiousness.

They continued in sin.

They hardened their hearts into unbelief.

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Paul gave two examples of people whose faith was shipwrecked: Hymenaeus and Alexander.

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Hymenaeus was teaching falsely that the resurrection had already taken place (2 Tim. 2:16-18).

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Alexander was always vigorously opposing true teaching (2Tim 4:14-15).

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Paul says that he has delivered these guys to Satan.

It means to disfellowship them.

And kicks them out of the church.