Hello church Good morning, I am delighted to connect you, and I am thankful for this opportunity to share the word of God this morning.
As the world is go through horrible pandemic, I pray that this pandemic will not hinder us to grow spiritually in the Lord rather let us fully seek God and fully depend on His divine protection upon ourselves and our family.
Today we shall continue our book study series from 1 Thessalonians 5:14-15.
14 We urge you, brethren, admonish the unruly, encourage the fainthearted, help the weak, be patient with everyone.
15 See that no one repays another with evil for evil, but always pursue after that which is good for one another and for all people.
Pray: Lord we thank you for this beautiful opportunity to mediate your word, we invite your Holy Spirit to come and teach us.
Help us to understand the truth. In Jesus precious name. Amen.
Let us remember the condition of Thessalonian believers:
They were Idol worshipper – but as soon as they heard the gospel,
They repent and they turn away from idol to serve the true Living God.
# They have great faith in the Lord. # They are greatly laboring in love.
# They have steadfastness of Hope.
On the Top of these, they became a great example for all people.
Their practical faith has gone viral to many parts of the world.
All people heard about this amazing Thessalonian church.
But when we read chapter 5:14-15, we see the need of the Thessalonian church, the area where they need to grow.
Remember there is no perfect church in this world, we always need to repent our sins and keep sanctifying before God,
we need God’s grace daily to grow in the Lord.
Someone says like this,
“A Church is a hospital for sinners not a club for saints.”
Its true the church is a hospital for sinners,
Church I will like to remind all of us, that God Love us so much that He sent His only son Jesus Christ, He came into this world, He took the punishment in place of us and He purchased us with His blood, As we believed Him as saviour and Lord, He cleansed us from all sins and unrighteousness.
Now as a new creation in Christ, He wants us to serve Him and keep growing in the Lord.
I would like to entitle my sermon as “Growing together in the Lord”
Let us come to the first point.
1. Admonish the unruly. (14a)
“We urge you, brethren, admonish the unruly.” (14a)
The word Urge (is a verb) which means begging, beseeching, pleading, requesting. (this is not forcing something rather a humble request) he urged the brethren to admonish the unruly.
Brethren – fellow Christian, member of the same church community.
Admonish: (Nou-thet-ei-te) is a verb and when we see Greek grammar, It is in present imperative. That means to admonish is a command.
Admonish means to warn, counsel, exhort. to put in mind,
To warn or to give notice beforehand especially of danger or evil.
Recently, it was on May 8, 16 migrant worker were sleeping in a railway track, unfortunately, train ran over them and all of them died instantly. It is sad to hear that.
I know if you know well ahead that the train is coming toward them, you will warn them to get out of the railway track, to save those workers. Right.
Church We are to warn, counsel, exhort one another, to those friends who are going toward the wrong direction in life.
Unruly: At-ak-tos: when we see original meaning in Greek it means,
Out of order, who are out of line, the undisciplined, the disorderly people, Lazy, idle people.
Illustration: I know one brother, he is a married man, incredibly good in singing and he was highly active in a church. He has 6 children.
But he backslides from his faith, he became lazy, he ran away from his role and responsibility as a father, he was going from one place to another, did not return home for many years. His life was totally mess up and painful.
I remember everyone in a church started praying and admonishing him.
After many years he repent, he came back home and started attending church and started taking care of his children and wife.
There will be many people who are living a dangerous life, many will be living in a habitual sinful life, many will be living a lazy, squander life, many will be living undisciplined life, we need to gently and lovingly remind them the gospel.
As a church we are one family in Christ, and we are accountable to each other.
Brothers and sisters, if someone is caught in a sin, you who live by the Spirit should restore that person gently. But watch yourselves, or you also may be tempted.
Purpose of admonishing:
- To restore back fellow believers to fellowship with God.
2. To remind fellow believers of their role and responsibilities in church.
3. To help fellow believers to live fruitful and productive life.
4. To help fellow believers to grow spiritually in the Lord.
Remember Measuring standard for admonishment fellow believers should be the scripture, not our skill or experience but scripture should be the standard.
Remember the unruly (idle, lazy people) need to be warned to get back in among the believers and use their God-given gifts in service for the kingdom.
Dear church we should admonish one another, counsel one another, warning one another with gentleness and grow together in the Lord.
We should continually remind the gospel to one another and grow stronger and deeper in relationship with our Heavenly Father.
2. Encourage the fainthearted. (14b)
Encourage: (para-mu-theo-mai) it is verb and present imperative, so to encourage is a command.
Meaning: it means to comfort, console, exhort.
Fainthearted: small courage, little-spirited, feeble-minded, those who lack spiritual courage.
We need to stand shoulder to shoulder with fainthearted believers in solidarity and support them. The fainthearted, or “timid”, are fearful people who lack confidence perhaps in themselves or even in their faith
They may be discouraged or worried by the challenges of living a Christian life. These people need loving instruction from their fellow believers to calm their fears and to build their confidence in the Lord.
Illustration: It was 3 years ago, I got a call at 6:00 am morning, from a young woman, she said, I want to meet you right now, I said what happened, she said, I will explain when I met you. So we meet up in the park.
She said, I do not want to live anymore, because my boyfriend leaves me, when I listen to her story, she has attempted suicide once before but fortunately people around her save her and take her to hospital. She was depressed, going through excruciate pain.
We spent around two hours, I counsel her with the word of God, and we prayed together. I keep encouraging her daily. She became strong, started coming to church.
After many months she got a good job and she starts taking great responsibility in her family.
One thing we do as a church was, we keep holding on to that sister and we keep encouraging her and keep praying for her.
At last she overcome and received God’s Grace.
Church there are so many people within the church and outside the church who are really in need of our encouragement and our love and our care.
Let us make use of every opportunity and serve one another.
Let the beauty of Christ be seen in our daily life.
We should not wait for someone to come and tell us the problem but instead let have a shepherd heart, who knows the need of the sheep.
Hebrews 3:13 But encourage one another daily, as long as it is called “Today,” so that none of you may be hardened by sin’s deceitfulness.
1 Thessalonians 5:11 “Therefore encourage one another and build each other up, just as in fact you are doing.
3. Help the weak. (14c).
Help: Antexomai, Verb: present imperative, that means helping is a command.
It means Hold firmly to, cleave to, withstand.
Weak: literally it means – not strong, infirm, sick. Strengthless.
Illustration: Helping hand in the village river.
It was 2014, after we complete our bachelor degree, we form a team and went for preaching tour in our home town, after the tour was over we went to Village river for fishing, we were catching lots of fish and we were having much fun in the river. Suddenly, two girls were about to drown in the deep water, I was not far away from them, I was trying to be the hero that day, I tried to save them but even I was about to drown because I was not able to swim, but I manage to come out of the water, I don’t know-how. So, this helpless hero (me) shout for help, help, help. They came running and we join our hand together and pull them out.
Life lesson from this incident.
Firstly: Learn how to swim if you want to be a real-life hero.
Secondly, we are stronger and better together, together we can do greater things.
Thirdly and most importantly, together the church should stretch out hands to the people who are perishing, who are weak, who are falling from faith and save them. We should Hold them tight, we can’t lose them. Let us be a soul winner, be a life saver.
Proverb 11:31 says He who win soul is wise.
Acts 20:35 In everything I did, I showed you that by this kind of hard work we must help the weak, remembering the words the LORD Jesus himself said: ‘It is more blessed to give than to receive.”
Helping can be financial help or material help too.
Galatians 6:2 Bear one another’s burdens, and so fulfil the law of Christ.
Application: Are we helping people who are desperately in need of our help.
At this crucial time, you and can be a blessing for many people out there.
I have a beautiful hymn here. I will sing for all of you.
The title of a hymn is call “Be a channel of blessing”
Out in the highways and byways of life,
many are weary and sad;
Carry the sunshine where darkness is rife,
Making the sorrowing glad.
# Make me a blessing, make me a blessing, Out of my life, May Jesus shine;
Make me a blessing, O saviour, I pray, Make me a blessing to someone today.
To be a blessing for someone everyday should be our daily goal.
4. Be Patient with everyone. (14d)
Patient: Mak-ro-thy-mei-te – Verb, present imperative. That means be patience is a command.
Meaning: Long-suffering, forbearing, perseverance.
Everyone: all, the whole, every kind of.
1 Tim. 1:16
Yet for this reason I found mercy, so that in me as the foremost, Jesus Christ might demonstrate His perfect patience as an example for those who would believe in Him for eternal life.
2 Peter 3:9 says,
“The Lord is not willing that any should perish but that all should come to repentance.”
You know, God patiently waits for all of us to come to repentance, so we need to have patience with one another.
Illustration: O.T there a story of King Saul, the Israelite were about to fight a battle but they have to do sacrifice first, that sacrifice has to be done by prophet Samuel, but King Saul was impatient to wait Samuel, so King Saul did the sacrifice. As a result, the Lord was not pleased with King Saul, God rejects king Saul and did not use him anymore.
If we are impatient it can destroy all our plan and destroy our relationships and it affects people around us.
Sometimes we are impatient in a crowded city like Mumbai, when we stuck in traffic when we stand in queue to buy a train ticket, to buy food, or even in a shopping mall to pay bills, sometimes we are impatient when the sermon is too long.
Sometimes we are impatient with our spouse, with children or friends.
As a prisoner for the Lord, then, I urge you to live a life worthy of the calling you have received. 2 Be completely humble and gentle; be patient, bearing with one another in love.
Being patience will help us to avoid many life problems, being patience is a sign of spiritual maturity. Being patience will help us to understand each other and will help us to serve each other better and being patient will help us grow daily in the Lord.
Application: Beloved church we should have patience, everyone is not the same in church, some are slow learner, some fast learner, some take time to grow.
We have different gift and different personality, we must be patient like our Lord,
Even though we fall in sin and ran away from Him, and live all kind of sinful, wicked life.
He has so much patience on us.
Psalm 103:8 says,
The LORD is compassionate and gracious, Slow to anger and abounding in lovingkindness.
Church we must have patience toward one another and grow together in the Lord.
- Always pursue good for each other. (15) (Not Retaliate)
“See that no one repays another with evil for evil, but always pursue after that which is good for one another and for all people.”
Always: at all times, ever.
Pursue: verb, present imperative, so it is a command.
Literally means- by implication, to persecute, follow after, press forward.
Good: intrinsically good, good in nature.
Romans 12: 9-21
9 Love must be sincere. Hate what is evil; cling to what is good. 10 Be devoted to one another in love. Honour one another above yourselves. 11 Never be lacking in zeal, but keep your spiritual fervour, serving the Lord. 12 Be joyful in hope, patient in affliction, faithful in prayer. 13 Share with the Lord’s people who are in need. Practice hospitality.
14 Bless those who persecute you; bless and do not curse. 15 Rejoice with those who rejoice; mourn with those who mourn. 16 Live in harmony with one another. Do not be proud but be willing to associate with people of low position. Do not be conceited.
17 Do not repay anyone evil for evil. Be careful to do what is right in the eyes of everyone. 18 If it is possible, as far as it depends on you, live at peace with everyone. 19 Do not take revenge, my dear friends, but leave room for God’s wrath, for it is written: “It is mine to avenge; I will repay,” says the Lord. 20
On the contrary:
“If your enemy is hungry, feed him;
if he is thirsty, give him something to drink.
In doing this, you will heap burning coals on his head.”[e]
21 Do not be overcome by evil, but overcome evil with good.
Church we have seen 5 points under the topic “Growing together in the Lord”
(1) Admonish the unruly
(2) Encourage the fainthearted
(3) Helping the weak
(4) Patiently caring to everyone
(5) Always pursue good for each other.
Why we must do all these? it is because Christ has loved us and sacrifice His life for us, and we have received the forgiveness of sins and now we have eternal life in Him.
Church He has done so much for us, Now it is our time to love Him, and serve Him and obey His command.
Therefore we must Lovingly admonish one another, Let us Carefully encourage the fainthearted, let us graciously help the weak, let us patiently care for all people and let us always pursue good for each other and grow together in the Lord. As a church and as an ambassador of Christ we should join our hand together and build up the body of Christ, we should strive to become a stronger and healthier follower of Christ.
God bless all of you amen.