Wednesday, January 29, 2021
Originally Published April 14, 2021
1 Thessalonians 2:3-6
Through the end of the year, we’ll be rerunning some of the best Life Lifters from 2021. We hope you’ll join us each Monday, Wednesday, and Friday morning!
I've heard people say, "I don't care what people think about me, I don't care." Here's the truth, we all care about what people think. Some people care way too much. Others, I haven't met too many, but some people care way too little. The truth is, we all care about what people think. To deny it is to lie to yourself. But at some point, we have to decide who matters more, God or people. I've heard people say this, "Vince, I want to get baptized, but I don't think I'm going to do it because I'm worried about what my family would think." And I will tell them, "Okay, are you worried about what God thinks?" They say, "You know, I would do that, but I don't know what people would think. They'd think I'm a Christian freak." And I would say, "Well, what does God think?" And here's the thing, if you're living for God, no matter what happens they're going to think you're a freak. So you might as well confirm it.
I get that because it's 1 Thessalonians 2:3-6. Paul was explaining his ministry to the Thessalonians. The Thessalonians had been influenced by his ministry, and many of them became Christians. He wanted to come back, but he wasn't able to. He writes First Thessalonians because they were panicked, they thought the rapture had occurred and that the Lord had already taken the church out, and they were left behind because they weren't true believers. They were young, insecure, and unsure in their faith, and Paul explains why he couldn't be there. He then defended his ministry against others who said. People were saying, "Well, Paul's not a real apostle, he's fake. He's this and that." Paul was constantly attacked, and if you're in ministry long enough, there will always be people that will attack you. I'm not saying they're not sometimes right about me, or anybody else. I'm just saying that it's constant and sometimes very unfair. The apostle Paul used that opportunity to say look, I love you. But I love God even more. Look at what he says in 1 Thessalonians 2:3-6, "For the appeal we make does not spring from error or impure motives, nor are we trying to trick you. On the contrary, we speak as men approved by God to be entrusted with the gospel.We are not trying to please men, but God, who tests our hearts. You know we never used flattery, nor did we put on a mask to cover up greed - God is our witness. We are not looking for praise from men, not from you, or anyone else."