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[thoughts] Serving the Lord Acceptably (June 7-13, 2010)

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  • Mark Roth
    To read my comments on the passage for the International Bible Study, click here: http://www.anabaptists.org/clp/youth/2-310ibs.html Pleasing to God 1
    Message 1 of 1 , Jun 10, 2010
      To read my comments on the passage for
      the International Bible Study, click here:
      Pleasing to God
      1 Thessalonians 2:1-12


      (1 Timothy 2)


      Am I in line with the "first of all" in verse 1?

      What kind of limits do I practice in my praying?

      Quiet, peaceable, godly, honest -- does that describe the life I've
      chosen for myself?

      For what purposes do I want such a life?

      "Who will have all men to be saved..." (4) -- have I ever met the exception?

      What does a woman (or man) adorned "with good works" (10) look like?

      Have I ever met the exception to verse 11?

      If I as a man and husband and father accept 1 Timothy 2:11-14, what
      responsibilities am I acknowledging?


      (originally written in November 2005)

      "In like manner also...adorn themselves...with good works" (1 Timothy 2:8,9).

      When I think of adornment, I think of a something intended to
      enhance eye appeal. So I think of decals on a vehicle or on a
      notebook. I might also think of suits, ties, sidewalk lights, jewelry,
      sunglasses, and belts.

      (Disclaimer: I don't believe all these things are automatically wrong
      or always for adornment.)

      So the idea that good works should be an adornment for Christians
      is interesting to me. Good works enhance the believer's appeal to the
      onlooker. Which raises two related questions:
      - How well adorned am I?
      - What is my "eye appeal" to those who know me?

      However, thinking of good works merely as an adornment makes
      them sound optional and even unnecessary. Like decals. Or white
      letters on a tire.

      Out of curiosity, I checked my Spanish Bible to see how it presents
      this concept. Instead of adorn it uses clothe. Hmm. When it comes
      to good works, Christianity is not a "clothing optional" spirituality!

      Which raises a third question:
      - How well-dressed am I?

      (originally written in January 2006)

      NOBODY SHOULD BE BEYOND OUR PRAYERS. I struggle with this:
      "I exhort therefore, that, first of all, supplications, prayers,
      intercessions...be made for all men" (1 Timothy 2:1). With more
      than six billion people on the planet, how do I respond to this
      exhortation?! Even if I cut the numbers back to my church family
      alone (and I don't think God wants me to limit my praying that
      way), I don't see how I can pray for everyone.

      That's why I say, "Nobody should be beyond our prayers." When I
      become aware of my need to pray for a particular individual, I
      should pray. No matter who he is. No matter what she's said about
      me. No matter the state of our relationship. I must pray for that
      person. Period.

      NOBODY SHOULD BE BEYOND OUR THANKSGIVING. Here is the missing piece
      from the above verse: "and giving of thanks." Oh my! Give thanks
      for everyone and anyone?! That strikes me as even more impossible
      than praying for everyone! But that is what the Bible says, so
      what's in this clause for me?

      No matter who, no matter what -- purposefully find something for
      which to give thanks. Is this a call to feel thankful? No, it seems to
      be more of a call to give thanks, without regard to my feelings. I do
      believe, though, that giving thanks can eventually lead to feeling

      Regarding some people, this takes more than a little bit of thought
      and effort. But I believe it can be done. I must decide today whether
      to practice that or not. I was at a bruising meeting last night and
      came home feeling brittle and betrayed. And I'm supposed to give
      thanks for that person? Somehow, yes.

      GOD'S HEART SHOULD MOTIVATE US TO PRAY. God wants "all men to be saved,
      and to come unto the knowledge of the truth" (1 Timothy 2:4). That is
      God's vision. That is His mission. That is the yearning of His heart.

      So He calls on us to supplicate, pray, intercede, and give thanks for
      all men and for all in authority. Knowing God's vision, mission, and
      yearning should motivate us to action. If we don't know His heart,
      well, therein lies a clear way in which we ought to be praying for

      men pray every where, lifting up holy hands, without wrath and doubting"
      (1 Timothy 2:8). My Spanish Bible adds a different dimension to this by
      using *contention* where the King James Version uses *doubting*.

      How clean are the hands I offer God? Do I dare come before Him,
      raising hands dripping with remains of the mud and manure I have
      flung at someone? Dare I lift up to Him hands drenched with the
      blood and gore of angry words and contentious attitudes?

      This concludes my comments based on the alternate lesson
      developed by Christian Light Publications. To read my comments on
      the passage for the International Bible Study:
      Pleasing to God
      1 Thessalonians 2:1-12


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      Mark Roth
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