The Joy of Ministry | TBN

The Joy of Ministry

Watch The Joy of Ministry
November 26, 2019
27:30

Turning Point with Dr. David Jeremiah

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The Joy of Ministry

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  • male announcer: Connect with "Turning Point" on the go,
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  • anytime, anywhere.
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  • Download the newly redesigned "Turning Point" app
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  • read daily devotionals, and more.
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  • Plus, for the young ones in your life,
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  • the new Airship Genesis: "Pathway to Jesus" mobile game,
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  • an engaging narrative puzzle adventure game
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  • that explores the life of Jesus available now on the App Store.
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  • Dr. David Jeremiah: How satisfied are you
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  • with your life?
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  • Are you constantly chasing success,
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  • but feel like you can never truly claim it?
  • 00:00:37.080 --> 00:00:40.240
  • What kind of legacy are you leaving?
  • 00:00:40.250 --> 00:00:44.100
  • If I told you there's a way for you
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  • to be completely fulfilled, would you want to know?
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  • Well, there is.
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  • 00:00:52.050 --> 00:01:02.030
  • 00:01:02.120 --> 00:01:08.120
  • Dr. Jeremiah: Hello, I'm David Jeremiah.
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  • Today, I'll share with you a truth
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  • that might sound contradictory,
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  • but can fill you with joy that no circumstance can change.
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  • If you can alter your perspective
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  • to view life through the lens of ministry,
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  • you will find the fulfillment that all human souls seek.
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  • So, join me as we study how to do just that
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  • on today's edition of "Turning Point."
  • 00:01:34.290 --> 00:01:37.250
  • 00:01:38.130 --> 00:01:43.190
  • female announcer: Are you waiting for joy to find you?
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  • Don't wait, claim a happiness that circumstances cannot change
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  • with Dr. Jeremiah's book, "Count It All Joy."
  • 00:01:53.020 --> 00:01:56.190
  • In this rich exploration of the biblical book of Philippians,
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  • Dr. Jeremiah uncovers the Apostle Paul's secret
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  • to experiencing the joy that carried Paul
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  • through the most difficult times.
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  • Discover this happiness for yourself
  • 00:02:08.190 --> 00:02:10.210
  • with "Count It All Joy," yours as a thank you
  • 00:02:10.220 --> 00:02:13.230
  • when you give a gift of any amount
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  • in support of this program.
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  • And if you generously give $60 or more,
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  • Dr. Jeremiah would like to send you, in appreciation,
  • 00:02:20.040 --> 00:02:23.010
  • the "Count It All Joy" set, which includes his book,
  • 00:02:23.020 --> 00:02:26.080
  • his complete newly preached 12-message series
  • 00:02:26.090 --> 00:02:29.070
  • on your choice of CD or DVD, and a correlating study guide.
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  • Dr. Jeremiah's "Count It All Joy" book or set,
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  • support this program and request these resources
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  • when you contact "Turning Point" today.
  • 00:02:40.170 --> 00:02:42.230
  • male announcer: Thank you for watching
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  • "Count It All Joy" on "Turning Point."
  • 00:02:45.220 --> 00:02:47.200
  • Now, here is Dr. Jeremiah with his message,
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  • "The Joy of Ministry."
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  • Dr. Jeremiah: Everyone in this room
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  • is a role model to somebody.
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  • I don't care who you are, somebody looks at you
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  • and takes their cues about life from the way you live,
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  • good, bad, or indifferent.
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  • In the book of Philippians in the second chapter,
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  • Paul is going to introduce to us three role models.
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  • First of all, the Apostle Paul,
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  • who will role model for us a life of sacrifice.
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  • And then young Timothy, Paul's protégé,
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  • who will show us how to live a life of service.
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  • And then a man whose name is hard to pronounce,
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  • Epaphroditus, who will teach us about suffering.
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  • Role models in sacrifice, service, and suffering.
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  • We began with the Apostle Paul
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  • because verse 17 begins with him.
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  • He says in the 17th verse
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  • as he writes to the Philippian believers,
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  • "Yes, and if I am being poured out as a drink
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  • offering on the sacrifice and service of your faith,
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  • I am glad and rejoice with you all.
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  • For the same reason you also be glad and rejoice with me."
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  • Now, in this passage that we're studying,
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  • six verses each are devoted to Timothy and Epaphroditus,
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  • and only two verses are dedicated to Paul,
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  • that seems kind of backwards to me.
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  • But it's amazing that in these two verses
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  • that speak of the apostle,
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  • the words "glad" and "rejoice" are found twice
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  • as Paul is talking about sacrifice.
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  • How many of you know glad, and rejoice, and sacrifice
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  • don't usually fit together in the same sentence?
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  • It's almost a disconnect.
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  • I want to take just a moment before I explain to you
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  • what this passage means,
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  • and relate to you a truth that I think is worthy of us
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  • taking a moment to talk about.
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  • I don't know what you say when people tell you
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  • that they would come to church
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  • if there weren't so many hypocrites in the church.
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  • When we hear that, here's what we say,
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  • and if you shake your head up and down,
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  • I'll know you agree with me.
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  • We say something like this, "Oh, you shouldn't
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  • watch other people, they will disappoint you.
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  • Keep your eyes on the Lord and He will never let you down."
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  • Isn't that what we say?
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  • And that sounds good and in a way it is true,
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  • but it's also flawed.
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  • First of all, the only Christ any people ever see
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  • is the Christ they see in us,
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  • Christ in us "the hope of glory."
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  • And secondly, the Apostle Paul in this passage
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  • sticks a fork in that whole deal.
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  • He tells us that isn't true.
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  • You can't get away from godly living by just saying,
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  • "Don't watch me, watch Jesus."
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  • The Apostle Paul actually said the opposite.
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  • He said to his followers, "Watch me."
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  • Now, I know that's a pretty scary thing,
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  • we are role models to somebody.
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  • Somebody looks to us.
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  • Somebody wants to know,
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  • what is this Christian thing all about?
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  • And they think since we claim to be Christians,
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  • they can pick it up from us.
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  • Here's what I want you to know about Christianity,
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  • it's more caught than it's taught.
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  • People catch it more than they hear it
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  • and so what we do as role models is really important.
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  • So, let's talk about Paul and his selfless role model for us.
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  • First of all, he was selfless in the discipline of his own life.
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  • Here's a rather convoluted verse that we might not understand
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  • unless we dig a little deeper.
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  • Verse 17 says, "Yes, and if I am being poured out
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  • as a drink offering on the sacrifice
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  • and service of your faith, I am glad and rejoice."
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  • Now, we read that and we think,
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  • what in the world does that mean?
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  • It's fraught with Old Testament information.
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  • It's about a sacrifice in the Old Testament.
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  • Here's, here's what it means.
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  • Here's what Paul is talking about.
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  • In the Old Testament,
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  • if you had come to watch this sacrifice,
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  • you would have seen the Jewish worshipers come,
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  • they would have killed their animal,
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  • and they would have put their animal on the altar
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  • and sacrificed it to God.
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  • But at this point, they would often
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  • add something else to their offering.
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  • It was called a libation.
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  • They would take a cup of wine,
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  • and while the altar was white hot for the sacrifice,
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  • they would take that cup of wine and pour it on the altar,
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  • and in a puff of smoke, it would disappear.
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  • What Paul is saying is this,
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  • "I know you are worried about my situation.
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  • I am in prison and could be executed at any moment,
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  • but my life is not the important thing.
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  • It is your faith that really counts.
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  • Your faith is the main offering.
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  • My life is just the drink offering that's poured on
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  • at the end and it's really unimportant."
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  • In an age where everybody is promoting themselves,
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  • everybody trying to become somebody
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  • that basically they're not,
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  • Paul is giving to us this role model.
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  • He viewed his death as very unimportant
  • 00:08:10.180 --> 00:08:13.000
  • when compared to the spiritual needs
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  • of the believers in Philippi.
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  • He was filled with joy as he remembered
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  • his tireless labor on their behalf.
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  • And yes, he was in prison,
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  • and yes, he was to be executed,
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  • but to Paul, that was just,
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  • that was just the drink offering.
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  • The real sacrifice was ministry of the church and Philippi
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  • to whom he wrote this letter.
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  • He was also selfless in his discipling of Timothy.
  • 00:08:38.190 --> 00:08:41.260
  • Verse 22 says, "You know Timothy's proven character,
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  • that as a son with his father,
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  • he served with me in the gospel."
  • 00:08:48.090 --> 00:08:51.240
  • Another illustration of Paul's humble spirit
  • 00:08:51.250 --> 00:08:54.060
  • is found in this verse where we read
  • 00:08:54.070 --> 00:08:56.130
  • that Timothy served with him, as a son with his father.
  • 00:08:56.140 --> 00:09:02.270
  • Now, that verse reveals a lot about Timothy,
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  • but it also tells us a lot more about Paul.
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  • It doesn't say he served as a son to a father,
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  • he served as a son with him.
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  • In other words, Paul had put his arms around this young man,
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  • Timothy, who was learning to be a leader
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  • and a teacher of the Word of God
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  • who would ultimately become the pastor in Ephesus.
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  • And Paul was discipling him, and he considered him
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  • like he was his own son.
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  • He took Timothy under his arm.
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  • We'll learn more about that in a moment.
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  • And Timothy was able to catch the gospel from Paul.
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  • He watched him, he walked with him,
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  • he was in war with him.
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  • He saw everything there was about being a true leader
  • 00:09:46.170 --> 00:09:50.000
  • and spiritual leader
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  • and Timothy became Paul's disciple.
  • 00:09:52.180 --> 00:09:55.280
  • Paul was selfless in the discipline of his own life.
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  • He was just a drink offering.
  • 00:09:59.140 --> 00:10:02.100
  • He was selfless in discipling Timothy.
  • 00:10:02.110 --> 00:10:05.200
  • He was also selfless in dealing with the Philippians.
  • 00:10:05.210 --> 00:10:08.280
  • Notice again, verse 17 he said,
  • 00:10:08.290 --> 00:10:11.290
  • "I am being poured out as a drink offering
  • 00:10:12.000 --> 00:10:13.270
  • on the sacrifice and service of your faith.
  • 00:10:13.280 --> 00:10:17.130
  • I am glad and rejoice with you all."
  • 00:10:17.140 --> 00:10:21.050
  • You see, Paul saw his friends in Philippi
  • 00:10:21.060 --> 00:10:24.230
  • as worthy of the very best that he had.
  • 00:10:24.240 --> 00:10:28.280
  • Here's something so interesting, Paul, when he wrote this letter,
  • 00:10:28.290 --> 00:10:31.250
  • was in prison in Rome,
  • 00:10:31.260 --> 00:10:34.140
  • and Timothy had been sent to him by the Philippian church
  • 00:10:34.150 --> 00:10:37.170
  • to bring encouragement to him.
  • 00:10:37.180 --> 00:10:39.290
  • And while Timothy was there, I'm sure Paul really enjoyed
  • 00:10:40.000 --> 00:10:43.100
  • his fellowship, whatever it could have been.
  • 00:10:43.110 --> 00:10:46.060
  • But Paul understood that the church in Philippi
  • 00:10:46.070 --> 00:10:49.000
  • needed Timothy's leadership so at his own expense,
  • 00:10:49.010 --> 00:10:52.180
  • he dispatched Timothy and sent him back.
  • 00:10:52.190 --> 00:10:56.020
  • Paul was even willing to give up his life for the Philippians.
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  • He was willing to die for them.
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  • He wrote to Timothy,
  • 00:11:04.200 --> 00:11:06.140
  • "For I am already being poured out as a drink offering
  • 00:11:06.150 --> 00:11:09.140
  • and the time of my departure is at hand."
  • 00:11:09.150 --> 00:11:13.170
  • Now this passage, along with the reference in Philippians 2,
  • 00:11:13.180 --> 00:11:17.020
  • are the places in the Bible
  • 00:11:17.030 --> 00:11:18.250
  • where you see this idea of a drink offering
  • 00:11:18.260 --> 00:11:20.210
  • being used to describe death,
  • 00:11:20.220 --> 00:11:22.180
  • that's not in the Bible anyplace else
  • 00:11:22.190 --> 00:11:24.050
  • except the two references
  • 00:11:24.060 --> 00:11:26.150
  • and it's really an interesting expression, isn't it?
  • 00:11:26.160 --> 00:11:29.250
  • We often think of our death
  • 00:11:29.260 --> 00:11:31.050
  • as way, way more vital than that.
  • 00:11:31.060 --> 00:11:33.030
  • Paul said, "No, no, in light of the gospel,
  • 00:11:33.040 --> 00:11:35.190
  • in light of the sacrifice, in light of the church,
  • 00:11:35.200 --> 00:11:37.240
  • in light of the importance of everything else,
  • 00:11:37.250 --> 00:11:39.200
  • my death is incidental."
  • 00:11:39.210 --> 00:11:42.130
  • What a man he was.
  • 00:11:42.140 --> 00:11:44.150
  • And then he was selfless in determining God's will.
  • 00:11:44.160 --> 00:11:46.250
  • Let me touch on this just briefly in verse 23 and 24,
  • 00:11:46.260 --> 00:11:49.230
  • Paul's describing his desire
  • 00:11:49.240 --> 00:11:51.240
  • to go and visit with the Philippians.
  • 00:11:51.250 --> 00:11:53.160
  • Now remember, he's in jail,
  • 00:11:53.170 --> 00:11:54.270
  • he doesn't know if he's ever going to get out,
  • 00:11:54.280 --> 00:11:56.190
  • but he wants them to know
  • 00:11:56.200 --> 00:11:58.160
  • that he wants to come and see them.
  • 00:11:58.170 --> 00:12:00.070
  • But he mentions that he's gonna send them Timothy,
  • 00:12:00.080 --> 00:12:03.170
  • and he mentions it in such an interesting way.
  • 00:12:03.180 --> 00:12:05.240
  • Verses 23 and 24 he says,
  • 00:12:06.090 --> 00:12:08.040
  • "I hope to send Timothy at once and I trust in the Lord
  • 00:12:08.050 --> 00:12:13.230
  • that I myself shall come shortly."
  • 00:12:13.240 --> 00:12:16.290
  • It's interesting because that's not the way we talk.
  • 00:12:18.150 --> 00:12:21.010
  • "You want me to come? I'll be there shortly.
  • 00:12:21.020 --> 00:12:23.070
  • You need Timothy? You got it."
  • 00:12:23.080 --> 00:12:25.240
  • Paul measured everything in his life against the will of God.
  • 00:12:25.250 --> 00:12:29.280
  • I know from looking back over my shoulders,
  • 00:12:29.290 --> 00:12:31.220
  • I would have done a lot better if I had done that all the time.
  • 00:12:31.230 --> 00:12:35.040
  • You know, if you're a leader,
  • 00:12:35.050 --> 00:12:36.190
  • especially if you have a little type A in you,
  • 00:12:36.200 --> 00:12:38.190
  • you have a tendency to think that making a bad decision
  • 00:12:38.200 --> 00:12:41.060
  • is better than not making any decision at all.
  • 00:12:41.070 --> 00:12:43.150
  • Have you ever heard that?
  • 00:12:43.160 --> 00:12:45.090
  • Well, that's not true.
  • 00:12:45.100 --> 00:12:46.190
  • Making a bad decision can get you in a lot of trouble.
  • 00:12:46.200 --> 00:12:49.150
  • And if you're a Christian,
  • 00:12:49.160 --> 00:12:50.250
  • you need to take a cue from Paul.
  • 00:12:50.260 --> 00:12:52.160
  • Listen to what he said,
  • 00:12:52.170 --> 00:12:54.030
  • "I hope in the Lord, I trust in the Lord,
  • 00:12:54.040 --> 00:12:56.090
  • the Lord and I are together in these decisions
  • 00:12:56.100 --> 00:12:58.150
  • and you need to know that."
  • 00:12:58.160 --> 00:13:00.180
  • For him, everything was about Christ,
  • 00:13:00.190 --> 00:13:03.030
  • everything was about the gospel,
  • 00:13:03.040 --> 00:13:05.000
  • and he was very forgetful about himself.
  • 00:13:05.010 --> 00:13:08.260
  • May his tribe increase.
  • 00:13:08.270 --> 00:13:12.100
  • Let's take a look at Timothy, the model of service.
  • 00:13:12.110 --> 00:13:16.250
  • We read about him beginning at verse 19.
  • 00:13:16.260 --> 00:13:20.090
  • Paul writes, "But I trust in the Lord Jesus
  • 00:13:20.100 --> 00:13:22.100
  • to send Timothy to you shortly,
  • 00:13:22.110 --> 00:13:24.230
  • that I also may be encouraged when I know your state."
  • 00:13:24.240 --> 00:13:28.250
  • Now, watch here's what he says about Timothy.
  • 00:13:28.260 --> 00:13:30.220
  • This sounds like something on the back cover of a book.
  • 00:13:30.230 --> 00:13:33.290
  • "For I have no one like-minded,
  • 00:13:34.000 --> 00:13:36.120
  • who will sincerely care for your state.
  • 00:13:36.130 --> 00:13:39.010
  • For all seek their own,
  • 00:13:39.020 --> 00:13:40.140
  • not the things which are of Christ Jesus.
  • 00:13:40.150 --> 00:13:42.180
  • But you know Timothy's proven character,
  • 00:13:42.190 --> 00:13:45.030
  • that as a son with his father he served with me in the gospel.
  • 00:13:45.040 --> 00:13:48.120
  • Therefore I hope to send him at once,
  • 00:13:48.130 --> 00:13:50.180
  • as soon as I see how it goes with me.
  • 00:13:50.190 --> 00:13:53.000
  • But I trust in the Lord that I myself
  • 00:13:53.010 --> 00:13:54.250
  • shall come shortly."
  • 00:13:54.260 --> 00:13:56.270
  • Paul was responsible for Timothy becoming a follower of Christ.
  • 00:13:56.280 --> 00:14:02.090
  • And when Paul was on his second missionary journey,
  • 00:14:02.100 --> 00:14:05.070
  • he came to Timothy
  • 00:14:05.080 --> 00:14:06.170
  • and enlisted him to join him as his helper.
  • 00:14:06.180 --> 00:14:10.110
  • He said, "There's no one like-minded as Timothy is."
  • 00:14:10.120 --> 00:14:13.150
  • And the word he uses is a word which means equal soul.
  • 00:14:13.160 --> 00:14:17.090
  • We would say today, "Timothy's my soulmate.
  • 00:14:17.100 --> 00:14:20.180
  • Timothy is who I am in a different body.
  • 00:14:20.190 --> 00:14:24.100
  • He represents my values. He represents my core.
  • 00:14:24.110 --> 00:14:27.280
  • I'm sending you Timothy because I couldn't come myself,
  • 00:14:27.290 --> 00:14:30.170
  • but I'm sending you the best thing I can,
  • 00:14:30.180 --> 00:14:32.260
  • not being able to come myself."
  • 00:14:32.270 --> 00:14:34.220
  • And he said, there's nobody like him, no one like him.
  • 00:14:34.230 --> 00:14:37.130
  • And Timothy was naturally concerned for these people.
  • 00:14:37.140 --> 00:14:41.100
  • It says in verse 20 that Timothy would sincerely care
  • 00:14:41.110 --> 00:14:45.090
  • for your state, he will care for you.
  • 00:14:45.100 --> 00:14:47.240
  • How did Paul know that?
  • 00:14:47.250 --> 00:14:49.040
  • He knew that because he knew Timothy
  • 00:14:49.050 --> 00:14:50.210
  • and he knew Timothy had his heart.
  • 00:14:50.220 --> 00:14:53.120
  • Oh, what a joy it is when you get somebody
  • 00:14:53.130 --> 00:14:55.070
  • to work with you who knows your heart,
  • 00:14:55.080 --> 00:14:57.290
  • who represents your heart, who when put in the crunch
  • 00:14:58.000 --> 00:15:01.050
  • where people are asking or criticizing you,
  • 00:15:01.060 --> 00:15:03.210
  • can speak for you and you know that they will speak honestly,
  • 00:15:03.220 --> 00:15:07.190
  • and fairly, and you are safe in their hands.
  • 00:15:07.200 --> 00:15:11.080
  • Timothy was the guy that Paul had like that.
  • 00:15:11.090 --> 00:15:16.070
  • He was a good man, and he was one of Paul's disciples.
  • 00:15:16.080 --> 00:15:21.050
  • One last person before we're done and that's Epaphroditus.
  • 00:15:21.060 --> 00:15:26.080
  • He's the model of suffering and he teaches us one basic lesson,
  • 00:15:26.090 --> 00:15:31.180
  • that life and ministry is not easy,
  • 00:15:31.190 --> 00:15:34.110
  • it never has been, and it never will be.
  • 00:15:34.120 --> 00:15:37.070
  • This letter that we know as the book of Philippians,
  • 00:15:37.080 --> 00:15:39.210
  • was delivered to the Philippians by Epaphroditus.
  • 00:15:39.220 --> 00:15:43.110
  • Paul sent Epaphroditus back,
  • 00:15:43.120 --> 00:15:45.090
  • and he carried this letter back with him.
  • 00:15:45.100 --> 00:15:47.150
  • And the Bible says that when Epaphroditus
  • 00:15:47.160 --> 00:15:50.110
  • came to be with Paul,
  • 00:15:50.120 --> 00:15:52.110
  • while he was there, he got really sick.
  • 00:15:52.120 --> 00:15:55.080
  • In fact, the Scripture describes it as "nigh unto death."
  • 00:15:55.090 --> 00:15:57.240
  • He almost died.
  • 00:15:57.250 --> 00:15:59.220
  • All right, that's going on in Rome where Paul is,
  • 00:15:59.230 --> 00:16:02.140
  • and the word has gotten back now to Philippi,
  • 00:16:02.150 --> 00:16:05.000
  • and the Philippians are all full of anxiety,
  • 00:16:05.010 --> 00:16:08.270
  • because their brother, Epaphroditus, is over in Rome,
  • 00:16:08.280 --> 00:16:13.030
  • and it looks like he's not gonna make it and they're worried.
  • 00:16:13.040 --> 00:16:16.010
  • And then Epaphroditus hears about it,
  • 00:16:16.020 --> 00:16:17.280
  • and he's worried that they're worried.
  • 00:16:17.290 --> 00:16:22.150
  • So, Paul says, "I'm gonna send it back to you
  • 00:16:22.160 --> 00:16:24.250
  • so you can check him out and see that he's okay."
  • 00:16:24.260 --> 00:16:27.210
  • Paul loved Epaphroditus, and he worked with him.
  • 00:16:28.090 --> 00:16:31.090
  • But when Paul spoke of Epaphroditus,
  • 00:16:31.100 --> 00:16:33.220
  • he used some words to describe him in the text.
  • 00:16:33.230 --> 00:16:36.240
  • Let me point them out to you.
  • 00:16:36.250 --> 00:16:38.140
  • First of all, he called him a brother.
  • 00:16:38.150 --> 00:16:40.280
  • That's one of Paul's favorite names for Christians, brother.
  • 00:16:40.290 --> 00:16:44.020
  • How many of you know that if you're a member
  • 00:16:44.030 --> 00:16:45.200
  • of the body of Christ, you're a brother?
  • 00:16:45.210 --> 00:16:48.030
  • If you're--if you know Jesus Christ
  • 00:16:48.040 --> 00:16:49.170
  • as your personal Savior,
  • 00:16:49.180 --> 00:16:51.130
  • all the other people who are in the family,
  • 00:16:51.140 --> 00:16:54.070
  • brothers and sisters,
  • 00:16:54.080 --> 00:16:55.180
  • they belong to you and you belong to them.
  • 00:16:55.190 --> 00:16:57.040
  • In this room today,
  • 00:16:57.050 --> 00:16:58.160
  • we have a whole group of brothers and sisters,
  • 00:16:58.170 --> 00:17:01.270
  • isn't that something?
  • 00:17:01.280 --> 00:17:03.130
  • And the Bible says that Paul
  • 00:17:03.140 --> 00:17:04.270
  • spoke of Epaphroditus as his brother.
  • 00:17:04.280 --> 00:17:08.190
  • In fact, he used the word nine times
  • 00:17:08.200 --> 00:17:11.130
  • in the book of Philippians,
  • 00:17:11.140 --> 00:17:13.070
  • and then he calls him something else.
  • 00:17:13.080 --> 00:17:14.230
  • He calls him a fellow worker.
  • 00:17:14.240 --> 00:17:16.270
  • This is another phrase that Paul likes,
  • 00:17:16.280 --> 00:17:18.200
  • he uses that several times.
  • 00:17:18.210 --> 00:17:20.100
  • Paul says, "Epaphroditus is my brother,
  • 00:17:20.110 --> 00:17:23.030
  • and he's my fellow worker."
  • 00:17:23.040 --> 00:17:25.030
  • And then he says something even more important, he says,
  • 00:17:25.040 --> 00:17:27.150
  • "He's a fellow soldier."
  • 00:17:27.160 --> 00:17:29.160
  • How many of you know it's not just enough
  • 00:17:29.170 --> 00:17:31.000
  • to be a worker in the field,
  • 00:17:31.010 --> 00:17:32.200
  • you need to be a warrior too and especially today?
  • 00:17:32.210 --> 00:17:36.130
  • If you get into the ministry today,
  • 00:17:36.140 --> 00:17:38.030
  • don't think it's a walk in the park.
  • 00:17:38.040 --> 00:17:40.120
  • In fact, if you're thinking about becoming a minister,
  • 00:17:40.130 --> 00:17:43.170
  • or you're thinking about being in the ministry,
  • 00:17:43.180 --> 00:17:45.280
  • make sure you know for sure that's what God wants you to do
  • 00:17:45.290 --> 00:17:49.060
  • 'cause if you don't know that for sure, you will not stay.
  • 00:17:49.070 --> 00:17:52.260
  • I'm not here to complain. I love everything I do.
  • 00:17:52.270 --> 00:17:56.000
  • I wouldn't want to do anything else in my life,
  • 00:17:56.010 --> 00:17:58.070
  • but I'm also here to tell you it's not an easy task.
  • 00:17:58.080 --> 00:18:02.120
  • And every year with the dissipation
  • 00:18:02.130 --> 00:18:04.180
  • of Bible knowledge and comfort with the faith,
  • 00:18:04.190 --> 00:18:07.190
  • a pastor in an evangelical church
  • 00:18:07.200 --> 00:18:10.100
  • is more at risk than he's ever been.
  • 00:18:10.110 --> 00:18:13.110
  • Paul championed Epaphroditus
  • 00:18:13.120 --> 00:18:15.290
  • because he was not only his brother,
  • 00:18:16.000 --> 00:18:19.020
  • he was also his fellow worker, but he was a fellow soldier.
  • 00:18:19.030 --> 00:18:23.010
  • He soldiered on in the faith
  • 00:18:23.020 --> 00:18:26.090
  • and stand against the strategies of the devil.
  • 00:18:26.100 --> 00:18:29.150
  • These three descriptions of Epaphroditus
  • 00:18:31.060 --> 00:18:34.050
  • point to a man who you can understand
  • 00:18:34.060 --> 00:18:37.130
  • was really important to Paul.
  • 00:18:37.140 --> 00:18:41.030
  • In his service to Paul, Epaphroditus suffered.
  • 00:18:41.040 --> 00:18:45.260
  • The Bible tells us that he was sick almost to death.
  • 00:18:45.270 --> 00:18:50.120
  • The phrase, "not regarding his own life,"
  • 00:18:50.130 --> 00:18:54.060
  • that's at the end of the verse,
  • 00:18:54.070 --> 00:18:56.020
  • comes from the Greek word paraboleumai.
  • 00:18:56.030 --> 00:18:59.110
  • It's the only time it is used in the New Testament,
  • 00:18:59.120 --> 00:19:02.220
  • "Not regarding his own life."
  • 00:19:02.230 --> 00:19:04.240
  • In other words, Epaphroditus bet on his own life.
  • 00:19:04.250 --> 00:19:08.100
  • He gambled his own life to fulfill the work
  • 00:19:08.110 --> 00:19:11.080
  • that God had called him to do.
  • 00:19:11.090 --> 00:19:13.240
  • The early Christians called those
  • 00:19:13.250 --> 00:19:16.000
  • who risk their lives for Christ parabolani
  • 00:19:16.010 --> 00:19:20.220
  • and the word is interesting
  • 00:19:20.230 --> 00:19:22.100
  • because the word actually means gambler, or risker.
  • 00:19:22.110 --> 00:19:26.150
  • Aquila and Priscilla would have been members of this group.
  • 00:19:26.160 --> 00:19:29.230
  • Paul wrote about them in Romans 16.
  • 00:19:29.240 --> 00:19:32.070
  • He said, "Greet Priscilla and Aquila,
  • 00:19:32.080 --> 00:19:34.090
  • my fellow workers in Christ Jesus,
  • 00:19:34.100 --> 00:19:36.240
  • who risked their own necks for my life."
  • 00:19:36.250 --> 00:19:40.230
  • I've not been asked to do that, that I'm aware of,
  • 00:19:43.140 --> 00:19:47.230
  • but I do feel knowing what's going on in the world today,
  • 00:19:47.240 --> 00:19:52.000
  • I'm closer to being asked to do that than I've ever been.
  • 00:19:52.010 --> 00:19:56.020
  • Ladies and gentlemen,
  • 00:19:56.030 --> 00:19:57.120
  • in the culture in which you and I live,
  • 00:19:57.130 --> 00:19:59.290
  • it's getting less and less comfortable to be a Christian,
  • 00:20:00.000 --> 00:20:02.240
  • less and less acceptable to be a follower of Christ.
  • 00:20:02.250 --> 00:20:06.060
  • Let's not speak of it out loud too much
  • 00:20:06.070 --> 00:20:08.030
  • according to the culture, you will not be accepted.
  • 00:20:08.040 --> 00:20:12.010
  • And where at one time it was a mark of a good person
  • 00:20:12.020 --> 00:20:15.020
  • that they went to church and that they knew God,
  • 00:20:15.030 --> 00:20:17.200
  • now it's become almost
  • 00:20:17.210 --> 00:20:19.280
  • like the first critical thing people say.
  • 00:20:19.290 --> 00:20:24.190
  • Sometime along the way,
  • 00:20:24.200 --> 00:20:26.020
  • God will ask you to gamble in the right way
  • 00:20:26.030 --> 00:20:30.170
  • on who you are and who Christ is.
  • 00:20:30.180 --> 00:20:33.130
  • That's what Epaphroditus did. He put his life on the line.
  • 00:20:33.140 --> 00:20:36.030
  • He didn't know if he was going to get better or not.
  • 00:20:36.040 --> 00:20:37.180
  • He knew that what God had called him to do,
  • 00:20:37.190 --> 00:20:39.090
  • he needed to do it, so he did it.
  • 00:20:39.100 --> 00:20:41.110
  • Let his life be the afterthought.
  • 00:20:41.120 --> 00:20:45.010
  • But this man Epaphroditus
  • 00:20:45.020 --> 00:20:46.220
  • also had great sympathy for the Philippians.
  • 00:20:46.230 --> 00:20:49.080
  • It says in verse 26, "He was longing for you all,
  • 00:20:49.090 --> 00:20:52.000
  • and was distressed
  • 00:20:52.010 --> 00:20:54.020
  • because you had heard that he was sick."
  • 00:20:54.030 --> 00:20:57.070
  • So, here are these three examples,
  • 00:20:57.080 --> 00:20:59.020
  • Paul, who shows us how to live selflessly.
  • 00:20:59.030 --> 00:21:02.130
  • He's the drink offering on the sacrifice.
  • 00:21:02.140 --> 00:21:07.130
  • And here's Timothy, who served Paul,
  • 00:21:07.140 --> 00:21:11.020
  • and it was his brother and soulmate,
  • 00:21:11.030 --> 00:21:13.150
  • and no one was like Timothy.
  • 00:21:13.160 --> 00:21:15.140
  • And he left Paul in Rome and went to minister
  • 00:21:15.150 --> 00:21:19.270
  • to the Philippians and serve them.
  • 00:21:19.280 --> 00:21:22.100
  • And here's Epaphroditus,
  • 00:21:22.110 --> 00:21:23.270
  • the gambler who risked his neck for the gospel.
  • 00:21:23.280 --> 00:21:28.020
  • And these three men are men we can look to and say,
  • 00:21:28.030 --> 00:21:32.040
  • "I can learn from these guys.
  • 00:21:32.050 --> 00:21:34.150
  • I can learn how to become more like Christ
  • 00:21:34.160 --> 00:21:37.120
  • by watching these guys."
  • 00:21:37.130 --> 00:21:40.160
  • Now, I mentioned at the beginning
  • 00:21:40.170 --> 00:21:43.060
  • something that's kind of convicting
  • 00:21:43.070 --> 00:21:47.140
  • if you want to know the truth, we are all role models.
  • 00:21:47.150 --> 00:21:53.220
  • We must ask God to help us understand that that is true.
  • 00:21:53.230 --> 00:21:56.190
  • Someone is watching us,
  • 00:21:56.200 --> 00:21:58.240
  • someone's trying to observe us and see how we do.
  • 00:21:58.250 --> 00:22:01.270
  • I never felt that more than when I went through cancer.
  • 00:22:01.280 --> 00:22:05.160
  • For years, I had told people Jesus Christ was sufficient
  • 00:22:05.170 --> 00:22:08.050
  • and God was enough,
  • 00:22:08.060 --> 00:22:09.260
  • and then my life was almost taken from me.
  • 00:22:09.270 --> 00:22:12.060
  • And I stood in this pulpit every week, and I couldn't help
  • 00:22:12.070 --> 00:22:14.110
  • but feel your piercing eyes looking at me,
  • 00:22:14.120 --> 00:22:17.140
  • seeing if I was really gonna still say the same things
  • 00:22:17.150 --> 00:22:20.150
  • after I was touched by all that.
  • 00:22:20.160 --> 00:22:23.210
  • We're all being watched.
  • 00:22:23.220 --> 00:22:25.220
  • You see, what we do matters, how we live counts.
  • 00:22:25.230 --> 00:22:28.150
  • We may not like to accept that responsibility,
  • 00:22:28.160 --> 00:22:30.240
  • but I've told you before that God has called me
  • 00:22:30.250 --> 00:22:33.080
  • to comfort the afflicted and afflict the comfortable,
  • 00:22:33.090 --> 00:22:36.020
  • and I'm trying to do that this morning.
  • 00:22:36.030 --> 00:22:39.070
  • We need to get to the place where we understand
  • 00:22:39.080 --> 00:22:41.270
  • that we have a decisive role
  • 00:22:41.280 --> 00:22:44.130
  • in the lives of people who are around us,
  • 00:22:44.140 --> 00:22:47.030
  • our families, our neighbors, the people we work with.
  • 00:22:47.040 --> 00:22:50.080
  • We are Jesus Christ to them.
  • 00:22:50.090 --> 00:22:53.070
  • The only Christ they will ever see
  • 00:22:53.080 --> 00:22:55.040
  • is the Christ they see in us.
  • 00:22:55.050 --> 00:22:57.070
  • We may not like that. We may feel that's not fair.
  • 00:22:57.080 --> 00:22:59.280
  • We might try to wiggle out from under that.
  • 00:22:59.290 --> 00:23:03.260
  • I'm just telling you, it's true.
  • 00:23:03.270 --> 00:23:06.110
  • It's true for me, it's true for you.
  • 00:23:06.120 --> 00:23:08.260
  • And so, I pray this week,
  • 00:23:08.270 --> 00:23:10.240
  • "God, I want to be a better role model for my family,
  • 00:23:10.250 --> 00:23:13.270
  • for my children, for my grandchildren,
  • 00:23:13.280 --> 00:23:16.090
  • for the people I lead in this church."
  • 00:23:16.100 --> 00:23:18.130
  • I want you to ask that prayer yourself,
  • 00:23:18.140 --> 00:23:21.010
  • "Lord God, help me to be the person you want me to be
  • 00:23:21.020 --> 00:23:23.190
  • so that when others see me, they will be drawn to you."
  • 00:23:23.200 --> 00:23:27.200
  • That's what our goal should be, that we draw people to Christ
  • 00:23:27.210 --> 00:23:31.180
  • as we live his life wherever we go.
  • 00:23:31.190 --> 00:23:34.090
  • Is it a tall order? No, it's not a tall order.
  • 00:23:34.100 --> 00:23:37.010
  • Is it impossible?
  • 00:23:37.020 --> 00:23:38.150
  • Yes, it's impossible, but that's why you have the Holy Spirit.
  • 00:23:38.160 --> 00:23:43.140
  • The Holy Spirit's been given to you and to me
  • 00:23:43.150 --> 00:23:46.040
  • to help us do the impossible.
  • 00:23:46.050 --> 00:23:48.130
  • We can't do it in our own strength,
  • 00:23:48.140 --> 00:23:50.030
  • but the Spirit of God who lives within us,
  • 00:23:50.040 --> 00:23:52.020
  • and if we give our lives to him
  • 00:23:52.030 --> 00:23:53.190
  • and we say to him in the morning,
  • 00:23:53.200 --> 00:23:55.000
  • "Holy Spirit, control my life today,
  • 00:23:55.010 --> 00:23:58.170
  • show me to do the things that I don't normally do.
  • 00:23:58.180 --> 00:24:01.260
  • Lord, get me outside of myself."
  • 00:24:01.270 --> 00:24:04.150
  • The Spirit of God will do that. He will do it.
  • 00:24:04.160 --> 00:24:06.240
  • I know he will do it. He's done it for me.
  • 00:24:06.250 --> 00:24:08.270
  • I'm no special person, he'll do it for you
  • 00:24:08.280 --> 00:24:11.060
  • and he will help you to be the person
  • 00:24:11.070 --> 00:24:13.190
  • Christ wants you to be
  • 00:24:13.200 --> 00:24:16.020
  • so that when people see you, they will see him.
  • 00:24:16.030 --> 00:24:19.290
  • That's what happened with Paul,
  • 00:24:20.000 --> 00:24:21.200
  • that's what happened with Timothy,
  • 00:24:21.210 --> 00:24:23.080
  • and that's what happened with Epaphroditus,
  • 00:24:23.090 --> 00:24:26.130
  • role models for Christ.
  • 00:24:26.140 --> 00:24:28.110
  • announcer: Dr. Jeremiah will return in a moment
  • 00:24:29.240 --> 00:24:31.220
  • to close today's program right after this.
  • 00:24:31.230 --> 00:24:34.150
  • female announcer: Thank you for watching "Turning Point."
  • 00:24:36.060 --> 00:24:38.090
  • When you support this program with a gift of any amount,
  • 00:24:38.100 --> 00:24:41.140
  • Dr. Jeremiah would like to send you, in appreciation,
  • 00:24:41.150 --> 00:24:44.200
  • his book, "Count It All Joy."
  • 00:24:44.210 --> 00:24:47.070
  • In its pages, you'll discover practical steps
  • 00:24:47.080 --> 00:24:49.290
  • about how to claim a happiness
  • 00:24:50.000 --> 00:24:51.210
  • that circumstances cannot change.
  • 00:24:51.220 --> 00:24:54.080
  • And if you generously give $60 or more,
  • 00:24:54.090 --> 00:24:57.000
  • you will receive Dr. Jeremiah's comprehensive
  • 00:24:57.010 --> 00:24:59.270
  • "Count It All Joy" set, which includes his book,
  • 00:24:59.280 --> 00:25:04.040
  • his complete newly preached 12-message teaching series
  • 00:25:04.050 --> 00:25:07.190
  • on your choice of CD or DVD, and a correlating study guide.
  • 00:25:07.200 --> 00:25:13.030
  • Thank you for watching and supporting
  • 00:25:13.040 --> 00:25:14.220
  • the ministry of "Turning Point."
  • 00:25:14.230 --> 00:25:16.170
  • Call or go online to request these resources today.
  • 00:25:16.180 --> 00:25:20.100
  • male announcer: And now with one last word
  • 00:25:22.280 --> 00:25:24.170
  • for today's program, here is Dr. Jeremiah.
  • 00:25:24.180 --> 00:25:27.130
  • Dr. Jeremiah: We often forget that the Apostle Paul
  • 00:25:28.130 --> 00:25:30.280
  • was more than just a theologian and church planter.
  • 00:25:30.290 --> 00:25:34.250
  • He was also a teammate and a co-worker
  • 00:25:34.260 --> 00:25:37.230
  • in the gospel with others.
  • 00:25:37.240 --> 00:25:39.290
  • He experienced great joy ministering with close friends
  • 00:25:40.000 --> 00:25:43.080
  • like Silas, and Barnabas, and Luke.
  • 00:25:43.090 --> 00:25:46.200
  • And in today's message we met two more,
  • 00:25:46.210 --> 00:25:49.190
  • Timothy the servant and Epaphroditus the soldier.
  • 00:25:49.200 --> 00:25:54.060
  • I hope you know the joy of ministering with others
  • 00:25:54.070 --> 00:25:56.200
  • through service, fellowship, and prayer,
  • 00:25:56.210 --> 00:25:59.200
  • but ministering with others for Christ
  • 00:25:59.210 --> 00:26:02.130
  • requires first being in Christ.
  • 00:26:02.140 --> 00:26:05.260
  • I'd love to tell you more about living in Christ
  • 00:26:05.270 --> 00:26:08.210
  • by sending you two free gifts.
  • 00:26:08.220 --> 00:26:11.070
  • One is our booklet called "Your Greatest Turning Point,"
  • 00:26:11.220 --> 00:26:15.030
  • and the other is our monthly devotional magazine
  • 00:26:15.040 --> 00:26:17.230
  • called "Turning Points."
  • 00:26:17.240 --> 00:26:19.260
  • We will gladly send both these resources to you free of charge
  • 00:26:19.270 --> 00:26:24.000
  • if you will contact us here at "Turning Point" today.
  • 00:26:24.010 --> 00:26:27.160
  • announcer: In addition to these free study resources,
  • 00:26:29.060 --> 00:26:31.270
  • nothing is as profound as the Word of God.
  • 00:26:31.280 --> 00:26:34.230
  • And now Dr. Jeremiah has a Bible for every member of the family.
  • 00:26:34.240 --> 00:26:39.010
  • There are numerous versions of "The Jeremiah Study Bible"
  • 00:26:39.020 --> 00:26:41.150
  • perfect for adults and teens,
  • 00:26:41.160 --> 00:26:43.140
  • and the "Airship Genesis Kids Study Bible"
  • 00:26:43.150 --> 00:26:46.070
  • will bring the truth of God's Word
  • 00:26:46.080 --> 00:26:47.280
  • to the young ones in your life.
  • 00:26:47.290 --> 00:26:49.180
  • Contact "Turning Point" for more information or to order today.
  • 00:26:49.190 --> 00:26:53.190
  • announcer: Next time on, "Turning Point".
  • 00:26:56.120 --> 00:26:58.230
  • Dr. Jeremiah: All you can do is say,
  • 00:26:58.240 --> 00:27:00.100
  • "Lord God, I realize I have failed you, I am sinner,
  • 00:27:00.110 --> 00:27:03.130
  • I need to be forgiven.
  • 00:27:03.140 --> 00:27:05.010
  • I want to have your grace and mercy in my life.
  • 00:27:05.020 --> 00:27:07.140
  • Please accept me as your son.
  • 00:27:07.150 --> 00:27:10.030
  • I want to accept you as my Savior."
  • 00:27:10.040 --> 00:27:11.240
  • You pray that prayer, you just punched your ticked to heaven.
  • 00:27:11.250 --> 00:27:14.200
  • announcer: Thank you for being with us today.
  • 00:27:15.250 --> 00:27:17.170
  • Join us next time for Dr. Jeremiah's message,
  • 00:27:17.180 --> 00:27:20.040
  • "The Joy of Humility", here on, "Turning Point".
  • 00:27:20.050 --> 00:27:24.100