This Sunday at Church: Make Sure You’re not Competing With Others

I am a trained pastor, and I absolutely love teaching the truths of God’s Word. This also means I absolutely love learning more about God’s Word. I could be like those pastors who have to be the leader and share all they have learned, and you had better listen! But almost every time I teach, God uses my fellow disciples to teach me something, too.
My point here: this could easily be paired with the positive aspect of “remain teachable this Sunday” and always.


The Domain for Truth

This Sunday at Church I want to encourage you to do the following:  Make Sure You’re not Competing With Others.

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VerseD: Hebrews 12:1

Therefore, since we are surrounded by so great a cloud of witnesses, let us also lay aside every weight, and sin which clings so closely, and let us run with endurance the race that is set before us
Hebrews 12:1, ESV

We should remember history, through the Church and back to Creation, by looking at how Christ’s Spirit has moved and worked through the saints to guide us in all truth to who Christ is and to share Him with the world.

VerseD: Hosea 6:6

For I desire steadfast love and not sacrifice, the knowledge of God rather than burnt offerings.
Hosea 6:6, ESV

The Lord is looking for faithful servants and sons (and daughters!), those who sacrifice of themselves for the sake of Christ through whom we find our adoption – not merely giving out of their abundance, who give out of love, not obligation.

Seven Letters to Seven Churches-Ephesus Part 8

To add to Wally’s thoughts, I have heard most of the same things he writes here, but I have also heard that, based on vv. 14-15, the Nicolaitians did the same things as Balaam. And to go with this, it may be that Nicolaus was not necessarily an apostate, merely misunderstood by those who came after him. Regardless …
What does this mean? They engaged in seeking pleasure in all of its forms, from eating and drinking to sex of various kinds and anything else that makes us happy. Further, they may have picked up the habit of making everyone a prophet, even excusing wrong prophecies.
How much of this is accurate? I am not sure, but it sounds a lot like what is happening within the global church today. Many strange beliefs, teachings, and practices have arisen, especially in the past 20-30 years!


Truth in Palmyra

Revelation 2:1-7

“But this thou hast, that thou hatest the deeds of the Nicolaitanes, which I also hate” Revelation 2:6

Jesus offered some commendations for the church at Ephesus, followed by some negative issues He also had; this further commendation is sort of tacked on at the end, after the corrective action.

Why is this commendation tacked on after the initial commendation and the correction? I have no clue. So, if you have one feel quite free to share it; I would value your thoughts.

So, who were these guys, the Nicolaitanes? Nobody seems to know exactly, but there are several opinions around from different commentators.

It seems clear that they were heretical in some way, we just can’t say the way that was dogmatically.

There is a school of thought that says the Nicolaitanes were some who followed the teachings of Nicolas of Antioch, who may have been…

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VerseD: Philippians 4:19

And my God will supply every need of yours according to his riches in glory in Christ Jesus.
Philippians 4:19, ESV

This is not promising you will have all you ask for or think you need.

Remember, God’s primary aim is to glorify His name, and He will meet those needs that help us bring Him glory through sharing the Gospel.

(But he does like giving us good gifts, too!)

VerseD: John 10:10

The thief comes only to steal and kill and destroy. I came that they may have life and have it abundantly.
John 10:10, ESV

The Deceiver will try to drag you down, to doubt yourself, your life, your salvation.

But Jesus defeated him at the cross! When worries come, focus on Christ!

VerseD: Matthew 6:7-8

“And when you pray, do not heap up empty phrases as the Gentiles do, for they think that they will be heard for their many words. Do not be like them, for your Father knows what you need before you ask him.”
Matthew 6:7‭-‬8 ESV

The difference between simply repeating a prayer and praying the same thing repeatedly is the first is doing a religious work while the second can be a sincere desire to hear/see God answer as you seek His presence.