Bold In Our God!

Posted by Pastor Steve Siegrist on Wednesday, July 31, 2013 Under: Sermon
Don't Be Confused Series: wk. 2

Text: 1 Thessalonians 2:1-6 (NKJV)

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.

“Therefore encourage one another and build each other up, just as in fact you are doing.” 1 Thessalonians 5:11 (NIV)

Intro: Last week the message was about the elements of a complete testimony, this was the first of a series of messages I am preaching from 1 Thessalonians. The title of this series is: “Don’t be confused” God doesn’t want the church nor the believer to be confused about how to live the Christian life or to worry about the things to come in the near future.

Could you or would you continue to serve the Lord with Boldness if you were seriously persecuted for your faith? I wonder what the percentage of new convert is; that leave the church and its fellowship shortly after joining the membership because of the persecution they endure? There should be no confusion in the idea that a Christian will be persecuted. The Christian in the local church in Thessalonica was bold in God, and was willing and able to suffer for pleasing God and not man.

Application: God’s Boldness Removes Confusion.

First way to be bold in our God:

1. Paul’s Confidence in God’s Power: vs. 1-2

“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.

The spiritual leaders in the church today will be and are being attacked, leadership is not easy. When a sports team does not win, the owner fires the head coach. When a corporation loses its competitive edge or fails in a major way to live up to expectations, the board of directors often fires the president. When a church does not grow according to people’s expectations, the pastor is often forced out. "My grace is sufficient for you, for My strength is made perfect in weakness." Therefore most gladly I will rather boast in my infirmities, that the power of Christ may rest upon me. 10 Therefore I take pleasure in infirmities, in reproaches, in needs, in persecutions, in distresses, for Christ's sake. For when I am weak, then I am strong.” 2 Corinthians 12:9-10

Paul boldly accepted his trials for the Glory of God, he was not going to allow the false teachings and the compromising’s of the world to dictate his obedience to his Lord.

Paul’s opening reminder to the Thessalonians in this chapter was that of confidence, nothing you do for the Lord will come up void. Nothing will be in vain; if you do it for Christ sake it will have value and will have purpose.

When was the last time you were locked up and decided to carry a tune at midnight! To praise the Lord for your current position, if you were a basket case would you be bold enough to carry on? If you were beaten would you quit, give up? While in Philippi, Paul and Silas with confidence and the power of God witness to a slave-girl having a spirit of divination. These men of God paid dearly for this transformation in this girl’s life. Paul declared that even after they had experienced such bad treatment in Philippi they continued to preach the gospel in Thessalonica, where they were falsely accused of treason and unfairly assaulted by a mob.

For me one of the most interesting facts about this experience Paul and Silas had, was the hostile reaction they experience to the sharing of the gospel, this gave them more boldness and confidence because they knew others were hearing the truth! Biblical truth isn’t always the most popular preaching to share, but it is what God commands! Preach the word in season and out, Preach the word! “Finally, my brethren, be strong in the Lord and in the power of His might.” Ephesians 6:10

Popularity is not the purpose, watering down the message will only work for a season. The struggle will come, conflict will continue – but to God be the Glory when the minister stays true to the course. Our human weakness is the best tool for God’s power, when we can get to the stage in our walk where we understand that God is our source we will have confidence!

Second way to be bold in our God:

2. Paul’s Commitment to God’s truth: vs. 3-4a

“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”

This commitment involves much more than an occasional Christian mood to go to a worship service or bible study. This is a commitment to God’s truth and a lifestyle. This commitment will be tried, you will be persecuted, your leadership will be challenged. It is becoming more of a reality if you commit to the truth of God’s word and stand on His principles even the government will be upon your shoulder: “For unto us a Child is born, Unto us a Son is given; And the government will be upon His shoulder.”

Paul’s critics must have accused him not only of error but of outright heresy. The book of Timothy reminds us to guard ourselves from babblings: “O Timothy! Guard what was committed to your trust, avoiding the profane and idle babblings and contradictions of what is falsely called knowledge.” 1Timothy 6:20

Guard through the Holy Spirit who dwells in us, the treasure which has been entrusted to you. Paul was the opposite of a false teacher: his message was the truth; his life was pure; and his ministry was honest, without hypocrisy or deception, and that takes a commitment.

I can’t leave out this important element of Paul’s ministry; this essential element was the approval of God and His commissioning. “We have been approved by God to be entrusted with the gospel.” Entrusted with the gospel, Wow! Paul was a man under God’s call, command, and authority, to whom God had given massive responsibility for preaching the gospel, establishing the church, and writing Scripture. For such noble services, Paul was approved by God, and he labored under that calling as one who had divinely delegated authority and was promised supernatural blessing. Our commitment to God’s truth will give us a supernatural blessing too.

Third way to be bold in our God:

3. Paul’s Motivation by god’s knowledge: vs. 4b-5

“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.” While he rejoiced in the privilege of his high calling, a strong sense of accountability to God balanced Paul’s authority to preach the Word. That accountability came from the constant realization that the omniscient Lord knew and examined everything in his heart and life. This was motivation.

“For our boasting is this: the testimony of our conscience that we conducted ourselves in the world in simplicity and godly sincerity, not with fleshly wisdom but by the grace of God, and more abundantly toward you.” 2 Corinthians 1:12

We must also have God as our witness, not to boast in and of our self, not with flattery or fleshly words. Our motivation should be strictly the knowledge of God’s word and His supernatural gift to us to be bold in our God!

Fourth way to be bold in our God:

4. Paul’s Dedication to god’s glory: vs. 6

“Nor did we seek glory from men, either from you or from others, when we might have made demands as apostles of Christ.”

Unlike typical spiritual deceivers, Paul did not seek glory - esteem, honor, or praise - from men. The only glory Paul ever sought was eternal. “Now to Him who is able to do exceedingly abundantly above all that we ask or think, according to the power that works in us, 21 to Him be glory in the church by Christ Jesus to all generations, forever and ever. Amen.” Ephesians 3:20-21 THAT’S HOW TO BE BOLD IN GOD: Give Him the Glory!”

God is the one who gives us the gift and the calling and to Him be the Glory. “For of Him and through Him and to Him are all things, to whom be glory forever. Amen.” Romans 11:36

This passage sets forth five key qualities of fail-proof spiritual leadership: persistence, because the leader trusts totally in the power of God; integrity, because the leader is fully committed to the truth of God; authority, because the leader is commissioned by the will of God; accountability, because the leader knows the omniscient God examines the heart; and humility, because the leader is consumed with the glory of God. If you have these qualities, you will be well on your way to exercising fail-proof spiritual leadership.

With this you Will be Bold in God!

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