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..A Little Help From My Friends

"19 But I hope in the Lord Jesus to send Timothy to you shortly, so that I also may be encouraged when I learn of your condition. 20 For I have no one else of kindred spirit who will genuinely be concerned for your welfare. 21 For they all seek after their own interests, not those of Christ Jesus. 22 But you know of his proven worth, that he served with me in the furtherance of the gospel like a child serving his father. 23 Therefore I hope to send him immediately, as soon as I see how things go with me; 24 and I trust in the Lord that I myself also will be coming shortly."

Good Morning Beloved,

Welcome! We would like to welcome our brothers and sisters in Christ from Nigeria, India, Hong Kong, Uganda and Libya.
We are keeping you all in our prayers.

Beloved, we are living in a society where the word 'acceptance' and 'tolerance' have become synonymous with one another. Quite frankly, I believe that both are being over used and abused. We are constantly being 'asked,' to lower our standards and expectations. To essentially just accept any old kind of behavior and any old body. You know the old saying, "If you sling enough @%$# at the wall, and some of it's bound to stick!" I'm pretty sure that you can fill in the blank.
I don't know about you, but I'm becoming rather weary of being hit in the face! I am a firm believer that it's high we stop accepting what being is being 'slung' at us, and carefully hand pick some things. Think about it, we've done a better job at picking a mechanic to work on our vehicle than we have done those who govern our laws! Throughout the country, political leaders are no longer shoving Christians back into the church to talk about Jesus, now they're trying to take away the church too!
I believe this is the attitude that the Apostle Paul has in our text. You see, Paul needed somebody to get the job done but not any ole' body. He needed the right one for the job. And isn't it a blessing when you can find that someone who is just right?
Let us bow our heads in prayer.
Heavenly Father,
O' gracious and loving Father, we give our thanks to You for this great portion of your Word.
Thank You for giving us, through Your Word, the principals and examples to the life You have called us to live. Help us to press forward toward You, that we might not stumble and fall back into the life we knew before Christ rescued us. 

Father, we pray for those who are in leadership positions, both in government and in the church, that You would call them to a standard of exemplary behavior, burden their hearts of any wrong doing, convict them of the error and bring them to repentance. We pray for in our law enforcement and military, that Your touch their hearts and minds, and would lead their actions to serve and protect all Your children. Lord, and we pray for Your children, that they would love You with all the heart and all their strength, and love their neighbor as themselves. And we pray for the church, that You would draw close to You in the unity of Christ. That others would see Him in us.
We ask and pray this in Jesus' name

Today's Message: ..A Little Help From My Friends

As we come to the last message at the end of 2020, we can give thanks and praise to the Lord, for protecting us from the mess occurring in our world today. In this unprecedented year, we've seen government lock-downs, joblessness, homeless like never before in our country. We've seen our political leaders allow liquor stores and abortion clinics to remain, while closing down the church. We've seen pastors arrested and fined, for holding church services, whether inside or outside of the church, citing too many people or violating noise restrictions. Christians around the world have faced persecution for decades, and now, it's come to our own backyard. The circumstances we find ourselves in, though are less than desirable, and even down right difficult, that doesn't mean we cannot find joy! While the world struggles to find joy in the events taking place around us, we have the unsurpassable joy of the Lord Jesus Christ!
Can we just give Him some praise before we move forward?
As I was studying our text, preparing for the message I would bring to you. I began to reflect back at all the changes we've have endured this year. Changes as a world, as a country. Changes both within the church and in our own lives. The devastating loss of lives, and of jobs. Riots and looting, violence and murder. 

Then, I had a warm and loving feeling come over me as I started to meditate on how God has used this same year, to move the church in new directions and using us in exciting ways, to reach not only the church, but also the lost. And I began to better understand what the apostle Paul must have experienced with he wrote to the believers in Philippi. Joy in the midst of the storm.
You know, I remember years ago, when my family was without a church home, I began to pray, asking God to lead us to a new church home, someone who will preach the Word of God, the truth, rather than worry about whether or not I was offended. I'll get over that. But I didn't want my family misguided right straight to Hell. Several years went by, and nothing. Then one day, the Lord put me flat on my back and revealed to me something that I will never forget, that is "I am going to do better than that. I am going to answer your prayer by calling you to teach My Word. Churches are many, but faithful shepherds are few"
I remember literally laughing out loud, saying, "Lord, I can't do that, I don't know how." Then the voice of the Holy Spirit said, "I will help guide you, I will teach you, I will encourage you, I will pray for you, and I will equip you, so that you can do the things that I'm calling you to do." Since that day, my life has never been the same, I am forever grateful that I listened and obeyed. I wonder, if when I was born, God was talking to Jesus and the Holy Spirit, having a good laugh and said something like, "You see that child right there, he does not realize it yet, but I'm going to let him mess things up real good, then, I am going to call him to serve and fill one of my teaching positions." The only regret I have is, that I didn't listen sooner! And as a footnote, contrary to what some of you might think, that call wasn't made before there was a telephone.

Open with me your Bibles, as we return to the book of Philippians. We arrive at verses 19 through 24 in our study. I am always fascinated how God takes a portion of Scripture, and no matter how many times I have read it, studied and preached on it, He always reveals something new. A new way of seeing things, a fresh perspective. And, it is my honor and great privilege to share what has been revealed to me, with all of you.

I would like to encourage you to follow along with me as I read to get our text set in our minds. Philippians 2:19-24.

"But I hope in the Lord Jesus to send Timothy to you shortly, so that I also may be encouraged when I learn of your condition. For I have no one else of kindred spirit who will genuinely be concerned for your welfare. For they all seek after their own interests, not those of Christ Jesus. But you know of his proven worth, that he served with me in the furtherance of the gospel like a child serving his father. Therefore I hope to send him immediately, as soon as I see how things go with me; and I trust in the Lord that I myself also will be coming shortly."
Paul needed someone that he could send back to check on the church in Philippi. He needed some one to carry back the message of what was going on with him while he was in prison. Why was this so important? Because the believers in the Philippian Church were very special to the Apostle Paul. When nobody stood by Paul, they stood there. When nobody else tried to help, they sent help. When nobody else was there to show him love, they sent a love offering. And Paul, dearly loved them as well.
So in essence, Paul is saying, this particular church that I planted, that is near and dear to my heart, and I can’t just send any ole body ... I am looking for somebody ... and that somebody must be just right for the job!

I believe that the single greatest tool of leadership, is the power of an exemplary life. And this is certainly true of spiritual leadership! Why? Because examples show us what principles can't.
Let's meet Timothy, the single-minded sympathizer. Verse 19, Paul writes "But I hope in the Lord Jesus to send Timothy to you shortly, so that I also may be encouraged when I learn of your condition."

As a footnote, I need you to understand that Paul did not just haphazardly select someone. In verse 20, 
"For I have no one else of kindred spirit who will genuinely be concerned for your welfare."
Now, Paul would loved to have gone to Philippi himself. There's no question about that, he dearly loved them, and they him. So, for those of you familiar with the story know that there was certainly hundreds of Christians in Rome. In fact, Paul greets twenty-six of them by name in Romans 16; yet not a single one of them was available to make the trip! Have you ever experienced a situation like that? Man, I sure have.

So what Paul is saying, I have searched and I cannot find anybody that has a heart for you like me, nobody else really cares that deeply for you. Except for this one young man by the name of Timothy.

So Paul says in his letter to the church at Philippi get ready because I am sending him to you, because he is the right one for the job. What is it that makes Timothy so different from the rest? Timothy was Christ centered. Timothy was Christ centered and it's right here in verse 21. "For they all seek after their own interests, not those of Christ Jesus." These other people were proclaiming Christ out of selfish ambition rather than pure motives. 

You know, that is a rich reminder, that even though we may spend a life time in ministry and when you come right down to the end, and you're blessed to find, that you have been indeed produced one who is like you. One who loves Christ with the same intensity in the heart. One who loves others, who cares for their well-being. One who lives to serve Christ. 

And for Paul, that one was Timothy. In other words, his agenda was not position, his aim was not prosperity, his ambition was not popularity. 1st Corinthians, is a corrective letter, probably the most detailed corrective letter in the whole New Testament. The church was a mess, engaging in every kind of deviation from godly living. In chapter 4:16, he says "Therefore I urge you, be imitators of me." Now look at the next verse, verse 17, "For this reason I have sent to you Timothy, who is my beloved and faithful child in the Lord, and he will remind you of my ways which are in Christ, just as I teach everywhere in every church."

Paul is saying "Since I am unable to come myself, so I'm going to send Timothy to you, my beloved son in the faith, he will remind you of my ways."

Then verse 22, "But you know of his proven worth, that he served with me in the furtherance of the gospel like a child serving his father." You know of his proven worth, you see, Timothy's integrity was already well established. The Greek word used is "dokimēn," meaning the process or result of, trial, proving, having an approval. Timothy had indeed been tested and approved, not by schooling but by service. Service in previous ministry not by test but by testings, as a spiritual servant of Christ.

In Acts 16, we know that he was there when the church began. And we see that again in Acts 19 and 20.
Furthermore, Timothy was submissive. He was submissive, we see that at the end of verse 22, "that he served with me in the furtherance of the gospel like a child serving his father."
I'd like to draw your attention the what Paul says here, he didn't say he served me, he doesn't say he served under me. Paul says he serve with me, he slaved with me. He's a fellow slave. The word used here is "edouleusen," meaning to serve or be a slave. As a footnote, this wasn't as a master and slave, he slaved with the mentality of a son serving willingly, affectionately, beside his own father, whom he loved, in the furtherance of the gospel. The sacrificial character of Paul, so influenced him, that he too, gave his life up for the gospel.
In verse 23, "Therefore I hope to send him immediately, as soon as I see how things go with me;"
If Paul sends him, he goes. Paul asks him to stay, he stays. Paul says come with me, he comes. Essentially, beck and call of Paul. That was Timothy's life, always useful, and always available, for the furtherance of the gospel. Was there ever a time that we can say we read in the pages of the New Testament, that Timothy had his own agenda? The best part is, it didn't matter to him, it only mattered that he served in the area of which he was called. What a man!

Paul writes in verse 24, "and I trust in the Lord that I myself also will be coming shortly." 
In studying Acts 28:30, we know he eventually was released from prison, he stayed two years in his own rented quarters and was welcoming all who came to him, preaching the Kingdom of God and teaching concerning Jesus Christ, with all openness, unhindered. We know that he was again imprisoned it wasn't terribly long after which he writes back to Timothy. This was to the beloved apostle Paul's last letter, II Timothy, in which he wrote some of the most remarkable things. 

Paul knowing the time of his death was near, he writes in chapter 4, verses 6 through 8, "For I am already being poured out as a drink offering, and the time of my departure has come. I have fought the good fight, I have finished the course, I have kept the faith; in the future there is reserved for me the crown of righteousness, which the Lord, the righteous Judge, will award to me on that day; and not only to me, but also to all who have loved His appearing."
What profound words..
Prior to his final imprisonment and death, Paul may well have visited his beloved church at Philippi, those whom he so dearly loved.
I hope he did..

May it be so..
And now may the Lord bless you and keep you;

the Lord make His face shine upon you,
And be gracious to you;

The Lord lift up His countenance upon you,
And give you peace.

Now and forever, in Jesus' name

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The Brian Monzon Ministries



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