Thursday, December 22, 2016

1 Thessalonians 2: Notes on Leadership

1 Thessalonians 2
Notes on Leadership

VERSES 1-16
LEADERSHIP - 1). Paul mentioned that there were no bad motives in their request. (v.3) These are three wrong ways to do ministry. Some do it out of error by preaching the wrong things. Some have impure motives like pride or selfishness from arrogance in their hearts. And others try to trick people be manipulating them to accomplish their own self-serving desires. The only real way to minister is completely surrendered to God so He can be in control of the process and the results. 2). God approves His leaders. (v.4) He inspects their hearts because he entrusts them with His Gospel. If we will serve Him, He will know us through and through as well. The best leaders are those who’s lives are true in every sense of the word. God’s inspection precedes God’s anointing. 3). God’s leaders have authority. (v.6) God doesn’t want us to around abusing that power, but there are specific times when we must exert that authority with those that we lead. We must wait on God and follow His lead in those moments, otherwise we lose the power that we claim. 4). There is a sensitive, compassionate side to ministry leadership. (v.7,8) Paul said they cared for the Thessalonians like a mother would nurse her child. The parenting role of a pastor cannot be overlooked here. If we are too strong in our leadership, we will become a burden to others until we find a compassionate sensitive approach as well. 5). Ministers should be people that are generous and share all they have. (v.8) Paul gave his life away to others when he ministered and so should we. Nothing that we have is really our own, it’s only what God has given to us. We should be generous in giving with all that we have to love those around us, with our money and our time. Paul loved people, lived with people, let people see who he really was. He didn’t value his privacy, but we inspected by God and let himself be examined by people around him. 6). God may call us to minister ‘for free’. (v.9) Paul worked very hard so that he wouldn’t burden them with his needs while he was with them. We shouldn’t be afraid to do God’s Work even when we have to work extra hard because they can’t pay us enough. If God calls us to do it, that should be pay enough indeed. It may even mean more to us personally because it cost us more as well. 7). Paul speaks of his ministry in a ‘fathering’ light. (v.11) It shows the balance of his ministry, that he could claim both a sensitive motherly role and a disciplining fatherly role with his followers. Discipleship is spiritually parenting young Christians in the faith.

VERSES 17-20
LEADERSHIP - A leaders award is a full disciple of Christ. (v.19,20) Paul’s hope, joy, and crown was the mature Thessalonian church. He reveled in their spiritual maturity and their friendship with him. As leaders, we may achieve great possessions of status on this earth, but our greatest honor should be the legacy we leave with the people we led. The programs we lead don’t matter as much as the people within them.

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