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The Importance Of Sound Doctrine


"As I urged you upon my departure for Macedonia, remain on at Ephesus so that you may instruct certain men not to teach strange doctrines, nor to pay attention to myths and endless genealogies, which give rise to mere speculation rather than furthering the administration of God which is by faith. But the goal of our instruction is love from a pure heart and a good conscience and a sincere faith."
Good Morning my beloved,
We welcome to all of our beloved brothers and sisters, from all around the world, who have been lead to join us today. We are glad to have you here!
And, if you are joining us today for the first time, I do not believe in coincidence. I believe that Almighty God, Who has guided you here.
There are times, when some Christians act like a bullhorn is the symbol of our faith, we often speak rather, how shall we say, loudly, in order to drown out the other guy.  There are many who have come to believe that it’s not how well you say it, as much as how loudly you say it.

I suppose we could say, that some, including many Christians, like to argue. We like to prove that we’re right. Ironically, considering the point of this passage, it is especially the talkers like these who think they’re the real Christians because the have the "insight," to defend the truth. Some believe that they have what makes them God’s favorites.

I will confess, in my younger years, having had some tendencies in this direction. Not so much the yelling part of it, but I definitely liked the debate part of it. My grandfather always used to say, "He's going to be a damn good lawyer one day!" As far back as I can remember, I enjoyed debating issues, whether with non-Christians or fellow believers. I was always respectful, at least I think I was, never insulting, so I have been told and was certainly not one to yell louder than the other guy to get my  views across, I waited patiently, calmly, until they were finished, then did my best to prove them wrong. I always enjoyed winning a good debate.

Over the years, I have come to see the relative futility of engaging in such conversations. Though, occasionally, they are necessary, rarely are they effective, and most usually, serve little constructive value for Christ.

So, how do we, as Christians, promote such controversies? Simply put, we find hot-button issues. We often argue, or debate about what I like to call, the "wedge issues," because it places a wedge between the Body of Christ. Like worship styles, music, and Bible translations. While, I agree, translation is important, in understanding the Scriptures. While I believe that we have our "preferences," we should also read and study various translations, in order to gain the best interpretation of a verse or passage. 

Next, we often over emphasize denomination, in other words, "mine is right and yours, well, yours just doesn't make any sense, that's because it's all wrong!" What I have found, is that most generally, with the exception of a few, which I have mentioned on numerous occasions, it's not the teaching of Bible we disagree on, its the religious rituals and  traditions imposed by a particular denomination.

Is our focus on "How right I am?" or "How righteous am I?" By righteous, I obviously do not mean self-righteous, I mean genuinely like Christ. The goal here is not for you to be more educated, but to be more transformed. And, for the record, not more than the other guy. The point is, are you a completely different person than you were? Of course, most Christians, will quickly respond with "YES!" The question is, do others, who have known you prior to your conversion agree?

Now, before we move on, I want to be clear on something, there is absolutely wrong having a religious education or that having more knowledge about the Bible is a bad thing. That's not what I'm speaking about. That’s not the point. The point I am making here, is for you to become more like Jesus!

You see, it’s not about proving that you’re right; it’s about showing that you’re saved!


Let us bow our heads in prayer.


Heavenly Father, 

Father, thank You for this much needed Word for us today. Lord, we ask that You would prepare our hearts, for the message that You have for us. Do a mighty work in the hearts and minds of the hearers, that we would hear and respond to the call You have placed upon each of us.

Lord, there are so many things that stand in the way of our becoming more like You, we ask that You would  search our hearts, remove the obstacles that are keeping us being the person You have created us to be. We know that we have been saved by Your grace, now, we ask that You would transform our lives. Help us and raise up Your true genuine children in the faith, that we would become holy, just as You are holy. Father, we pray that You would continue to bless this ministry, that we would continue to reach the lost in even more nations. Thank You Lord, for the amazing progress You have accomplished in and through this ministry.  May it be for Your glory.
In Christ's name

 Today's Message: The Importance Of Sound Doctrine


Paul's traditional thanksgiving is missing in the letter, as was his custom, as well as most other ancient writers in their letters. Paul's concern replaces his thanksgiving in this instance, as young Timothy has a daunting and weighty, kingdom-minded task. Today, we are going to see the main thrust of Paul’s charge to Timothy and the church.

Modern Christianity has witnessed, what I believe is a disastrous failure of the pulpits of today's churches. Pastors have received this solemn charge: "I solemnly charge you in the presence of God and of Christ Jesus, who is to judge the living and the dead, and by His appearing and His kingdom: preach the word; be ready in season and out of season; reprove, rebuke, exhort, with great patience and instruction."

This charge is given specifically because "For the time will come when they will not endure sound doctrine; but wanting to have their ears tickled, they will accumulate for themselves teachers in accordance to their own desires, and will turn away their ears from the truth and will turn aside to myths." 

I would submit to you, that time of which the Apostle Paul warned us about, has now arrived.  

Though I speak primarily to those whose roles among the saints, would not qualify as the "work of a pastor," why then should I take time to speak of pastoral responsibilities? After all, most of you are able to articulate what you expect from your pastor. You expect him to preach, to visit the sick and to care for the needy, to evangelize, to have a presence in the community, to develop innovative new programs, to sit in multiple committee meetings for the church. After all,what else is there for you to do?

I believe this is precisely because most professing Christians are more than a little unclear about the work God has assigned the members of the Body of Christ, that which we need to define as work. 

Furthermore, I believe this is impart, because most churches in this day are organized on a modern business model, that superficially resorts to a democracy that seldom functions as taught in the Word. Most churches are run by a committee or a board, controlled by individuals who are unqualified for the task they presume to fill. Consequently, they are dysfunctional and severely marked by disorder.

Open with me your Bibles to the Book of First Timothy chapter 1. In our study, we will be looking more closely on verses 3 through 5. I anticipate that we will get a little further into it today and then at some point, we'll bring it to a conclusion.  

I would like to encourage you to follow along with me as I read to set the text in our mind and prepare our hearts for what the Holy Spirit has for us in this message. I have every reason, to believe that all us will be richly blessed by it. I Timothy 1:3-5.

"As I urged you upon my departure for Macedonia, remain on at Ephesus so that you may instruct certain men not to teach strange doctrines, nor to pay attention to myths and endless genealogies, which give rise to mere speculation rather than furthering the administration of God which is by faith. But the goal of our instruction is love from a pure heart and a good conscience and a sincere faith."

Before we begin, I would like to address verse 5, "the goal of our instruction is love from a pure heart."
One of the best ways that we can get more love in our hearts is to have less sin. God is love, so to have more of Him in our hearts is to have more love. The apostle Paul here, points to both a "pure heart" and a "good conscience." Beloved, both of those can only happen by taking our sin seriously and actively pursuing holiness. 
In spite of what my critics think, I am not perfect! Obviously, there a lot of things are required to move in that direction, but the initial one is to know what sin we have in our lives and what’s of God. Like, everyone else, I have sin in my life I want God to address it, I want it all gone. My hearts desire is to become more like Christ each and every day. And, I pray that you do as well..
Verse 3-4, Paul writes, "As I urged you upon my departure for Macedonia, remain on at Ephesus so that you may instruct certain men not to teach strange doctrines  nor to pay attention to myths and endless genealogies, which give rise to mere speculation rather than furthering the administration of God which is by faith.

The Pastoral Letters complete the definition of pastoral responsibilities begun earlier during the Apostle’s service before the Lord. Contemporary Christians today, however, often imagine that they know precisely what is entailed in church leadership and elder-ship; without consulting what was written by the Apostle Paul, and especially what he wrote to Timothy and Titus, believers will adopt a faulty view, of a dysfunctional model for building the congregation, rather than biblical. This becomes apparent when one considers the many churches who have substituted a business model, for the spiritual model as outlined in Scripture.

Consequently, one observes that in many instances elders of the church are to be elected rather than being appointed. A primary qualification for elder-ship, is prominence in the community, rather than character and calling, as outlined in the Word of God. Therefore, a rather large, and distressing number of elders are unable to teach, in fact, they never teach; they are convinced that their primary role is to exercise authority over the congregation rather than shepherd the flock. I believe this a critical area, where teaching needs to be provided in this day and age.

There is a multifaceted responsibility that comes with being a church elder. Throughout our studies in the Pastoral Letters, we will discover the larger spectrum of those responsibilities imposed on the man of God. I find it rather fascinating, that the Apostle Paul begins with responsibilities that accrue to the elder in the opening words of his first letter to Timothy. And those responsibilities, perhaps the most easily neglected of all responsibilities for a pastor, are the focus of our study this day.
At the end of verse 3, Paul tells Timothy to "remain on at Ephesus so that you may instruct certain men not to teach strange doctrines," What is Paul saying here? Confront doctrinal error! We see in the first part of verse 3, that the Apostle Paul was going to Macedonia. I do not believe, that we can definitively say when this was, as there is no corroborative account recorded in the Book of Acts; however, the context of this passage, would have us to believe that Paul and Timothy had been in Ephesus together. Now, Paul needed to go into Macedonia. However, there were problems in Ephesus necessitating someone from the apostolic band to remain behind to address those problems. What is being described here, is not a general dispatch of Timothy as an apostolic emissary, such as when he was sent to the Thessalonians, in I Thessalonians 3:2. Here, in our text, Timothy has been appointed to the necessary task precisely because critically unhealthy teaching was being disseminated by some wishing to be elders. Consequently, the Church in Ephesus was in extreme danger because of the false teaching given out by these immoral people.
I would like to take this opportunity, to state that no church can be healthier than the teaching that is presented from the pulpit and therefore, tolerated by the members of the congregation. If the teaching is unhealthy, immoral, condoning what Scripture clearly calls sin, if it is at all unbiblical and errant, then its people will soon exhibit diseased, spiritual lives. The tragedy of a spiritually unhealthy people is that it is not long until they begin to exhibit and approve of immoral and unethical behavior. The principle stands, what you indoctrinate and accept as truth has an impact in your present life, as well as eternal life and ultimately, your soul. 
In order to validate this statement, all one need do is consider some of the great denominations of past generations in our own nation, and compare it to what we are seeing today. The anthem of the modern church is "Let’s embrace and celebrate all forms of immorality!" And, its chorus, "Let’s reject the Bible as the authoritative Word of God and do whatever feels good to us!" Beloved, the demise of the once great church began when the pastors the Word of God and the people began to tolerate just a little bit of error from the pulpits. There less than a few pastors and churches left in our nation that are not either moving swiftly to tolerate, celebrate and promote error or that have not already conceded to the battle.
What has become prevalent in the church today, is the steady forward movement toward blatant. doctrinal error and heresy! Much to the surprise of many Christians, is the apostolic charge is quite negative. This is not to say there is not a positive aspect to Paul’s charge, because there is. So, before considering the negative aspect of the apostolic charge, let’s first look at the positive aspects of the charge.
Clearly, Timothy, is expected and therefore, by extension each person bearing the title "elder," will promote "the stewardship from God that is by faith." On the surface, this is what some believe, a confusing admonition. The construction becomes clearer, when we review Paul’s use of the Greek word "oikonoméō," which is translated "stewardship." In some translations, its translated as "administration" or "God’s plan." The thrust of the Apostle Paul’s statement is that an elder is responsible to promote God’s plan and work, which is to be administered as a stewardship. In other words, an elder is to act out of confidence in what God is doing. 
Furthermore, an elder is responsible to understand God’s work, in order to provide salvation for a fallen people and how that salvation is secured. Moreover, the elder is to carry out this labor through faith. God’s plan has always been to present His Son, Jesus Christ, as a sacrifice on behalf of a sinful, and fallen humanity. Because people are utterly contaminated, in virtually every facet of their being, they cannot please God through their own efforts. If God is to be propitiated, One who is perfect must be presented as a sacrifice in the place of the sinner. 
I have mentioned a conversation, more than a few times, that I once had with a minister of a particular church, during our conversation, I asked why he didn't preach certain books in the Bible, such as I and II Timothy,  Revelation and a number of others. After his reply, to the first question, I was compelled to ask him why he became a minister. His answer deeply disturbed me then, just as it disturbs me now. He said he became a minister, because it was easy. It didn't really demand much of his time, as he delegated most of his responsibilities to others in the church, and that it established him in the community, which he served.

Beloved, tragically, this man and his lack of respect for the Word of God, is no longer the exception among professed ministers of Christ, who are rapidly embracing the doctrines of demons. Quite the contrast, its become the "norm!"

I want to be very clear, I am in now way singling out or picking on a particular church or denomination here, as I have come to believe, that all denominations appear to be severely impaired with the rot of unbelief as those to whom we look for moral and ethical leadership have defected from doctrinal truth and essentially deserted the Faith. May I add here, that called to teach are qualified by virtue of character and calling to the faith. However, I believe that it has become evident this present day, credentials and religious connections are sought as the qualification for such a holy office, serving the Most High. This truth, will later be examined in greater detail when we come to the third chapter of this particular letter. 
Those whom Timothy was charged to confront were elders. There are multiple reasons one would draw this conclusion. First of all, these men presumed to be teachers They are described in 1 TIMOTHY 1:7 as "desiring to be teachers of the law," a role which is reserved for elders. Another reason to conclude that these were elders is that Paul, not the congregation, excommunicated Hymanaeus and Alexander. 
This would imply that the people in question were in positions of power and the congregation believed they could not deal with them. Because the Apostle has given detailed qualifications for elder-ship in 
I Timothy 3:1-7, it would appear that unqualified individuals had assumed the position of elder. 
Therefore, Timothy would require this list of qualifications to ensure that those who were unqualified would be replaced. Finally, Paul stresses that unqualified elders are to be publicly disciplined, indicating that such action had not previously been taken. The fact that Timothy was to confront "certain persons" would indicate that those disseminating false doctrine were not in a majority, they were few in number. However, false teachers seem to gain unprecedented notoriety and a larger following then one might imagine. 
I Corinthians 5:6 says "Your boasting is not good. Do you not know that a little leaven leavens the whole lump of dough?" I believe, this would certainly apply in this particular instance! 
What exactly were these errant elders, these false teachers, teaching? They weren’t presenting merely a slant on the Gospel message, they were out right teaching false doctrines! The Greek word is "heterodidaskaléo;" false teaching.
The Apostle Paul uses this word in I Timothy 6:3-5. "If anyone advocates a different doctrine and does not agree with sound words, those of our Lord Jesus Christ, and with the doctrine conforming to godliness,  he is conceited and understands nothing; but he has a morbid interest in controversial questions and disputes about words, out of which arise envy, strife, abusive language, evil suspicions, and constant friction between men of depraved mind and deprived of the truth, who suppose that godliness is a means of gain.  I'd like you to notice here that the "false doctrine" is in contrast to "the sound words, those of our Lord Jesus, and with the doctrine conforming to godliness." Therefore, I believe, that it becomes evident that Paul was not simply disturbed that the teaching was different, it was false and directly opposed to the healthy teaching of Jesus Himself. There are a number of other references, Galatians 1:6-10
My beloved, allow me caution you with a sobering truth: no believer in the Lord Jesus should imagine that he or she is not susceptible to errant teaching. When we cease to found our teaching on the Word of God, when we begin to accept what sounds plausible or when we cease to adhere to the standard of the Word, we are moving toward irrelevance. I must make a strong statement to those who seek to honor Christ the Lord.

In 1888, Charles Spurgeon, in a late edition of the newspaper he published, it is his statement as to why he separated from the compromising London Baptist Association. The Sword and Trowel, he wrote: "I have taken a deep interest in the struggles of the orthodox brethren; but I have never advised those struggles, nor entertained the slightest hope of their success. My course has been of another kind. As soon as I saw, or thought I saw, that error had become firmly established, I did not deliberate, but quitted the body at once. Since then my one counsel has been, ‘Come ye out from among them.’ If I have rejoiced in the loyalty to Christ’s truth which has been shown in other courses of action, yet I have felt that no protest could be equal to that of distinct separation from known evil."
I have found myself asking, "Why would any conscientious follower of Christ think to remain within a congregation that had departed the faith and teaching of our Lord Jesus Christ?" It is my belief, that hen a believer becomes convinced that those leading the assembly have forsaken the true Word of God, when a child of the True and Living God discovers, that those who presume to teach truth are delivering false doctrine, how can that child of God imagine that Christ is honored through clinging to what is purported to be fellowship when the supposed fellowship has no doctrinal basis? When we support by our presence what is opposed to the gospel of grace, we become complicit in rebellion against God Himself.

Let me say quite plainly, when there can be no spiritual communion, there should be no pretense of fellowship. Biblically, fellowship is known and vital error is participation in sin. Complicity with error will ensure that we sin against Him, whom we call Lord and Master. When a church has forsaken the sound doctrine of the Word, it no longer has no foundation; and "For no one can lay a foundation other than that which is laid," according to the Words of Christ Himself.

Allow me to refresh your memories with His teaching in Matthew chapter 7: "Therefore everyone who hears these words of Mine and acts on them, may be compared to a wise man who built his house on the rock. And the rain fell, and the floods came, and the winds blew and slammed against that house; and yet it did not fall, for it had been founded on the rock.  Everyone who hears these words of Mine and does not act on them, will be like a foolish man who built his house on the sand.  The rain fell, and the floods came, and the winds blew and slammed against that house; and it fell—and great was its fall."

I'd like to draw your attention to the first word in the fourth verse of our text. It is the little yet powerful word "nor." The Apostle Paul is not introducing something additional to the charge of false doctrine; rather, he is merely expanding on what the false doctrine was.

Bear with me, as I try to help you understand Paul’s concern. Much of the rabbinical Haggadah consisted of fanciful rewriting of Scripture. The Book of Jubilees, Pseudo-Philo's "Liber antiquitatum Bibli-Carum," with its mania for family trees, and much of what we know as the Pseudepigrapha serve as examples of such Jewish fables and genealogies. To this day, there are many devout Jews that invest a considerable amount of time pursuing far fetched minutiae of rabbinical exegesis rather than seeking what God has revealed through His Word.

Before you assume that I am merely slamming our Jewish friends, I'd like you to consider how many evangelical Christians are capable of splitting a theological hair twenty-one different ways and never even whet the knife! In my lifetime as a Christian, I have observed some rather strange teachings, in any number of denominations. Allow me to share just a few to emphasize what I am cautioning you against. 

I recall a youth pastor who, I'll not name here, who was claiming Christ, whose teachings didn't measure against the Word of God. He later was found to be locking the doors on the room where he instruction the youth, claims of inappropriate conduct with the youth he ministered began to surface. He was investigated by undercover agents, upon a search of his private office, videos were discovered that were not only against biblical teachings, they were against Federal Law! He was charged with pedophilia and making child pornographic video's. They were unable to prove any distribution of the videos, so it was presumed it was for his own private usage. Needless to say, he was charged and convicted of multiple accounts of juvenile sexual abuse and was sentenced to a number of years in prison. The church, which was ran by his mother, a pastor, to my knowledge, has since closed. To make this story even more disturbing, my family knew this man and his family well!

I would encourage every believer, the true follower of Jesus Christ to establish in your minds that any teaching that is built on speculation, modern philosophy, any avoidance of doctrine, in order to please the hearer or a teaching that cannot be tied to the clear teaching of the Word of God, any tenet that is not established on the Word. The reason such teaching is extremely dangerous for a believer, is that it leads to further ungodliness, with a false pretense of right with God. 

 I am acutely aware that I have thrown out quite a lot of information at you today; so bear with me, while I point you to a portion of the Word where this is written, II Timothy 2:14-26. "Remind them of these things, and solemnly charge them in the presence of God not to wrangle about words, which is useless and leads to the ruin of the hearers. Be diligent to present yourself approved to God as a workman who does not need to be ashamed, accurately handling the word of truth. But avoid worldly and empty chatter, for it will lead to further ungodliness, and their talk will spread like gangrene. Among them are Hymenaeus and Philetus, men who have gone astray from the truth saying that the resurrection has already taken place, and they upset the faith of some. Nevertheless, the firm foundation of God stands, having this seal, "The Lord knows those who are His," and,"Everyone who names the name of the Lord is to abstain from wickedness. Now in a large house there are not only gold and silver vessels, but also vessels of wood and of earthenware, and some to honor and some to dishonor. Therefore, if anyone cleanses himself from these things, he will be a vessel for honor, sanctified, useful to the Master, prepared for every good work. Now flee from youthful lusts and pursue righteousness, faith, love and peace, with those who call on the Lord from a pure heart. But refuse foolish and ignorant speculations, knowing that they produce quarrels. The Lord’s bond-servant must not be quarrelsome, but be kind to all, able to teach, patient when wronged, with gentleness correcting those who are in opposition, if perhaps God may grant them repentance leading to the knowledge of the truth, and they may come to their senses and escape from the snare of the devil, having been held captive by him to do his will."

Beloved, the deviations and troubles that we are witnessing in the modern church, that which would plague the faithful began with a failure to “rightly handle the Word of Truth” and failure to “test everything!"

Surely, those who teach are responsible for careful presentation of Divine Truth. They are not to build doctrine for the people of God from tradition, current cultural wishes and demands; rather, the teacher who will please God the Father must appeal to the Word for what is taught. To stray beyond the boundaries of the Word is to introduce that which is unhealthy and which can only contaminate the faithful saints seeking to honor the Lord Christ. False teaching can only lead to speculations rather than the knowledge of God.

In Closing...

As we conclude our study of this portion of the Word, I believe it beneficial for us to discover how to discern doctrinal error when it presents itself. All Christians have convictions and preferences; I believe that distinguishing between the two is very critical. Preferences are expressions of secondary matters; they are in theological parlance, adiaphora, merely matters of indifference. Those who the teachings of Lord, Jesus Christ, should not condemn fellow believers over such secondary issues. Whether we practice a congregation form of church governance or whether we practise a Presbyterian form of ecclesiastical governance should not cause any believer to anathematise our fellow Christians. We should each be convinced in our own mind, and avoid destroying one another over inconsequential gray matters. This is but a practical application of the apostolic instruction to avoid making an issue out of foods. 

In I Corinthians 8:8-13, Paul teaches us that "But food will not commend us to God; we are neither the worse if we do not eat, nor the better if we do eat. But take care that this liberty of yours does not somehow become a stumbling block to the weak. For if someone sees you, who have knowledge, dining in an idol’s temple, will not his conscience, if he is weak, be strengthened to eat things sacrificed to idols? For through your knowledge he who is weak is ruined, the brother for whose sake Christ died. And so, by sinning against the brethren and wounding their conscience when it is weak, you sin against Christ. Therefore, if food causes my brother to stumble, I will never eat meat again, so that I will not cause my brother to stumble."
Convictions are based upon foundational truths which has been revealed to us in the Word of God. Convictions consist of essential doctrines that cannot be dismissed without denying the faith of which one so proclaims to believe. Christians will, at a minimum, hold the biblical view as presented in the Scripture: Jesus was born of a virgin and lived a sinless life. He presented His life as a sacrifice, paying the price for sin in the place of a sinful humanity. He was buried and rose from the grave on the third day. He was witnessed as truly alive before ascending into the heavens where He is now seated at the right hand of the Father. Salvation, the forgiveness of sin, is the free gift of grace by God, received through faith in Jesus the Son of God, without any work on man’s part. Further, Jesus Christ is both fully divine and fully human. That is that Jesus Christ is truly and fully God. Which is the testimony presented in the Bible, which is the written Word and which is to be received as the inerrant and infallible Word of God.

All throughout the Gospels are warnings against presumption. Jesus Himself warned in Matthew 7:21-23. "Not everyone who says to Me, ‘Lord, Lord,’ will enter the kingdom of heaven, but he who does the will of My Father who is in heaven will enter. Many will say to Me on that day, ‘Lord, Lord, did we not prophesy in Your name, and in Your name cast out demons, and in Your name perform many miracles?’ And then I will declare to them, ‘I never knew you; depart from Me, you who practice lawlessness.’"

It is my prayer that this post will encourage believers to ready, reading, studying and testing those teaching the Word, against it's source, the Word of God. It also my prayer, that anyone abstaining from teaching the whole counsel of God, will be convicted and called to repentance, that none should perish.

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

Copyright © 2019-2021 All Rights Reserved

The Brian Monzon Ministries



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      " Finally, brethren, pray for us that the word of the Lord will spread rapidly and be glorified, just as it did also with you; 2  and that we will be rescued from perverse and evil men; for not all have faith. 3  But the Lord is faithful, and He will strengthen and protect you from the evil one . 4  We have confidence in the Lord concerning you, that you are doing and will continue to do what we command. 5  May the Lord direct your hearts into the love of God and into the steadfastness of Christ." II Thessalonians 3:1-5     Good Morning my beloved,   Welcome to all of our beloved brothers and sisters, from all around the world, who have been prompted to join us today. We are glad to have you here!   I believe that peace, encouragement and good hope are present realities for any true believer. It stands in stark contrast to what the world offers. In the face of life's challenges, discouragements persecution, and shattered dreams, God brings encouragement to th