A Ministry of Prayer• We know that Paul was so concerned for Titus and the Corinthians that outreach was put on hold (2 Corinthians 2:12-13)• “I face daily the pressure of my concern for all the churches.” (2 Corinthians 11:28)• He prayed constantly (Colossians 1:9, Ephesians 1:16)• “But Jesus often withdrew to lonely places and prayed.” (Luke 5:16)• If we desire to be effective, we have to pray
A Ministry of Encouragement• ‘Parakaleō’- to ask, beg, plead; to comfort, encourage, exhort, urge; to call, invite. Occurs four times in this short section• Paul had a ministry of encouragement• He encouraged believers from the scriptures• It was a key component of his ministry• Our encouragement is found in God’s Word
A Ministry of Compassion• “Now, however, I am on my way to Jerusalem in the service of the saints there. For Macedonia and Achaia were pleased to make a contribution for the poor among the saints in Jerusalem” (Romans 15:25-26)
A Ministry of Compassion• “Now about the collection for God’s people: Do what I told the Galatian churches to do. On the first day of every week, each one of you should set aside a sum of money in keeping with his income, saving it up, so that when I come no collections will have to be made. Then, when I arrive, I will give letters of introduction to the men you approve and send them with your gift to Jerusalem.” (1 Corinthians 16:1-3)
A Ministry of Compassion• “And now, brothers, we want you to know about the grace that God has given the Macedonian churches. Out of the most severe trial, their overflowing joy and their extreme poverty welled up in rich generosity. For I testify that they gave as much as they were able, and even beyond their ability. Entirely on their own, they urgently pleaded with us for the privilege of sharing in this service to the saints.” (2 Corinthians 8:1-4)
A Ministry of Compassion• The poor in Jerusalem mattered to Paul• These were new believers• Are we passionate about the poor?
A Ministry Opposed• “Five times I received from the Jews the forty lashes minus one. Three times I was beaten with rods, once I was stoned, three times I was shipwrecked, I spent a night and a day in the open sea, I have been constantly on the move. I have been in danger from rivers, in danger from bandits, in danger from my own countrymen, in danger from Gentiles; in danger in the city, in danger in the country, in danger at sea; and in danger from false brothers. I have laboured and toiled and have often gone without sleep; I have known hunger and thirst and have often gone without food; I have been cold and naked.” (2 Corinthians 11:24-27)
A Ministry Opposed• Paul’s life was constantly threatened (20:3)• “In fact, everyone who wants to live a godly life in Christ Jesus will be persecuted” (2 Timothy 3:15)• Are we persecuted?
A Ministry of Power• We love Paul, he was a courageous and driven individual with a huge intellect• Paul had a ministry that was miraculous• Here a dead man is raised to life• “My message and my preaching were not with wise and persuasive words, but with a demonstration of the Spirit’s power” (1 Corinthians 2:4)
A Ministry of Power• “Does God give you his Spirit and work miracles among you because you observe the law, or because you believe what you heard?” (Galatians 3:5)• Is God still a God of miracles?