Today’s thought “Proclaiming the Message” (August 27)

When the Nazarene master teacher performed his miracles, he asked the healed ones to go home and tell everything God did in them. This way, several people must have gone back to the place where they came from and told all over their village or town to their own people everything Jesus had done in them and how he had mercy on them. In such a way that Jesus became the talk of the town.

“ Return to thy house, and declare how great things God hath done for thee. And he went his way, publishing throughout the whole city how great things Jesus had done for him.” (Lu 8:39 ASV)

“19 And he suffered him not, but saith unto him, Go to thy house unto thy friends, and tell them how great things the Lord hath done for thee, and how he had mercy on thee. 20 And he went his way, and began to publish in Decapolis how great things Jesus had done for him: and all men marvelled.” (Mr 5:19-20 ASV)

In today’s Bible reading, we hear the apostle Paul confessing that if he proclaims the Message, it’s not to get something out of it for himself. Like the other apostles, he finds himself compelled to do it, and doomed if he doesn’t!

We should remember that in the first century those apostles were not paid ministers, like in many churches we can find paid priests and pastors. If the going around to tell about Jesus was their own idea of just another way to make a living, the apostle Paul would have expected some pay. But since it was not his idea but something solemnly entrusted to him, there was no reason at all to expect some payment for the work he was demanded to do.

Also today we can wonder why we should receive some money for our preaching work. Why would you expect to get paid? 1Was Paul or any other apostle getting anything out of it?

Well, Paul gives us the answer:

“16 For if I preach the gospel, I have nothing to glory of; for necessity is laid upon me; for woe is unto me, if I preach not the gospel. 17 For if I do this of mine own will, I have a reward: but if not of mine own will, I have a stewardship intrusted to me. 18 What then is my reward? That, when I preach the gospel, I may make the gospel without charge, so as not to use to the full my right in the gospel.” (1Co 9:16-18 ASV)

Yes, as a matter of fact: the pleasure of proclaiming the Message at no cost to anybody should drive us. Like the apostles in a way, we should even not have to ask for paying the expenses! Though that could make it sometimes difficult for us to go to many places. But there we should leave it to others to give freely is and when they want.

For this reason, to preach without being paid for it, all of our brethren are having a normal daily job to provide for their income. Some find ways to work part-time, others like some who are retired, take some extra job, for being able to pay for their preaching expenses, because for sure they are there, and have to be covered.

Are you also planting the seeds for further generations, proclaiming the Good News of salvation by Jesus,  telling about his return and the coming Kingdom of God?

 

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