paul's pastoral appeal


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PAUL'S PASTORAL APPEAL. Lesson 9 for November 26, 2011. This week we will study the personal characteristics of Paul that are worth imitating through the study of Galatians, 4: 12-20 :. Cared about converts A role model. Adaptable Suffering Truthful. CARED ABOUT CONVERTS. - PowerPoint PPT Presentation


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PAUL'S PASTORAL APPEALLesson 9 for November 26, 2011This week we will study the personal characteristics of Paul that are worth imitating through the study of Galatians, 4: 12-20:Cared about convertsA role modelAdaptableSufferingTruthfulCARED ABOUT CONVERTSWhen Paul speaks to the Galatians' hearts, he uses the verb to urge that has the special meaning of to beseech in Greek.He besought them as a friend. He besought them as their spiritual father. He besought them as the mother in the anguish of the childbirth.Paul suffered for the Galatians as he saw how Christ was formed in them again. Seeing how the new converts reflected Christ was the goal of the apostle.Brethren, I urge you... (Galatians, 4: 12)

My little children, for whom I labor in birth again until Christ is formed in you (Glatas, 4: 19)A ROLE MODELPaul encourage them to follow his example several times:Brethren, I urge you to become like me (Galatians, 4: 12)

Paul wanted all the believers to be like him as he was like Christ.Galatians were worried about their behavior (their works), but Paul wanted them to worry about how to be like him in his faith and trust in the power of Christ for salvation.Imitate me, just as I also imitate Christ(1 Corinthians, 11: 1)A ROLE MODEL

Brethren, I urge you to become like me, for I became like you (Galatians, 4: 12)ADAPTABLEHe made himself philosopher in Athens to reach thephilosophers (Acts, 17: 16-34)When he was with those who didn't eat food sacrificed to idols, he refrained from eating meat offered to idols (1 Corinthians, 8: 8-13)He made himself Jewish to reach the JewishHe made himself subjected to the law to reach those subjected to the lawHe made himself without law to reach those without lawHe made himself weak to reach the weakHe adapted to everyone to reach everyone (1 Corinthians, 9: 19-23)

Paul adapted his preaching and his behavior depending on the culture, the religion, the philosophy and even the economy of those who were listening to the Gospel. His purpose was to win all the souls for he could for Christ.Though I am free and belong to no one, I have made myself a slave to everyone, to win as many as possible(1 Corinthians, 9: 19 NIV)ADAPTABLE

SUFFERINGYou know that because of physical infirmity I preached the gospel to you at the first (Galatians, 4: 13)Paul's physical illness was not a reason for stop preaching the Gospel. He didn't blame God for his complaints, although he asked Him to take them away several times. Instead he use them as an opportunity to be more dependant on God's grace.

Paul had a bodily affliction; his eyesight was bad. He thought that by earnest prayer the difficulty might be removed. But the Lord had His own purpose, and He said to Paul, Speak to Me no more of this matter. My grace is sufficient. It will enable you to bear the infirmity The depression of spirits from which the apostle suffered was, however, attributable in a great degree to bodily infirmities, which made him very restless when not engaged in active service. But when working for the salvation of souls, he rose superior to physical debility. He felt that the disease under which he suffered was a terrible impediment to him in his great work, and repeatedly besought the Lord to relieve him. God did not see fit to answer his prayers in this respect, though He gave him assurance that divine grace should be sufficient for himE.G.W. (SDA Bible Commentary, on 2 Corinthians, 12: 7-9)Pauls affliction might have given the Galatians an excuse for treating him with contempt. In ancient times an affliction was commonly considered a direct punishment from God for some gross sin (cf. Acts 28:4). It would have been natural for the Galatians to conclude that Paul had offended the gods, and to regard his message as of little value. But they did not do so. Their response, under circumstances that could conceivably have led them to turn against him, had been wholeheartedly favorable. What reasonpersonal or otherwisecould they possibly have for turning against Paul now? Their former conduct testified against their present attitude(SDA Bible Commentary, on Galatians, 4: 14)And my trial which was in my flesh you did not despise or reject, but you received me as an angel of God, even as Christ Jesus. What then was the blessing you enjoyed? For I bear you witness that, if possible, you would have plucked out your own eyes and given them to me (Galatians, 4: 14-15)SUFFERING

TRUTHFULHave I therefore become your enemy because I tell you the truth?(Galatians, 4: 16)Those upon whom rests the burden of this work will not hold their peace when wrong is done, neither will they cover evil with a cloak of false charity. They will remember that God is no respecter of persons, and that severity to a few may prove mercy to many. They will remember also that in the one who rebukes evil the spirit of Christ should ever be revealedE.G.W. (Prophets and Kings, c. 57, pg. 675)Sometimes truth generates an adverse reaction on people. For that reason, Paul was afraid Galatians could feel offended by his words.Therefore, Paul contrasts his motivation to tell them the truth with the motivation of the Judaizers who want to impose their truth.The zeal of the Judaizers came from wanting to draw Galatians' attention to themselves (v. 17)Paul's zeal came from loving the Galatians so Christ could be formed in them (v. 19)

By studying Galatians, 4: 12-20 this week, we learn what personal characteristics of Paul are worth imitating. Let's show those characteristics too:Care about our brothers.Be a role model, because we follow Christ's model.Adapt to those who we are preaching to, so we can win asmany souls as possible.May we trust God despite our suffering, and may that notbecome an obstacle for preaching the Gospel.Be always truthful with the motivation of telling the truth for love.

Imitate me, just as I also imitate Christ(1 Corinthians, 11: 1)