|3:1||Wherefore when we could no longer forbear, we thought it good to be left at Athens alone;|
|3:2||And sent Timotheus, our brother, and minister of God, and our fellowlabourer in the gospel of Christ, to establish you, and to comfort you concerning your faith:|
|3:3||That no man should be moved by these afflictions: for yourselves know that we are appointed thereunto.|
|3:4||For verily, when we were with you, we told you before that we should suffer tribulation; even as it came to pass, and ye know.|
|3:5||For this cause, when I could no longer forbear, I sent to know your faith, lest by some means the tempter have tempted you, and our labour be in vain.|
|3:6||But now when Timotheus came from you unto us, and brought us good tidings of your faith and charity, and that ye have good remembrance of us always, desiring greatly to see us, as we also to see you:|
|3:7||Therefore, brethren, we were comforted over you in all our affliction and distress by your faith:|
|3:8||For now we live, if ye stand fast in the Lord.|
|3:9||For what thanks can we render to God again for you, for all the joy wherewith we joy for your sakes before our God;|
|3:10||Night and day praying exceedingly that we might see your face, and might perfect that which is lacking in your faith?|
[Introduction] As I have already told you this on Friday, the ministries in the United States and Kenya went amazingly well by the grace of our Lord. And also, with the professors of the seminary, we hosted the forum on the Divided Korean-American Families, which was attended by the two Houses at a conference room of the Capital in Washington D.C. It is safe to say that the message of the Gospel was declared at the core of America—the modern day Rome. It reminded me of Job 8:7. After that, I flew to Kenya to attend our overseas camp. Kenya is now opening up to the Gospel with its own Saemaul Movement, and it is attracting huge interests of political leaders including the governor and council officials to work together. The reason why we are so passionate about the NGO ministry is to turn the world economy into the Gospel economy. Now it is December, the last month of this year. In December, there are a lot of changes in the church ministries; we have finished the arrangement of districts for next year and you can see it in the church bulletin. I strongly say that every last Yewon believers. Be passionate to the duties you may be given. Take part in it with enthusiasm. There is still a week left for you. I bless you in the name of our Lord that you may see how God’s purpose works in your life through the duties in the church.
1. God’s Worker
In verses 1 to 3, Apostle Paul is looking at the believers of the Thessalonian Church with the heart of a father. Paul had tried several times to go to the Thessalonian Church but the doors did not open. So he gave up going there. But he found an alternative, which was sending Timothy. He especially used a very important expression towards Timothy. He called Timothy, “God’s worker in the Gospel of Christ”. That is the spiritual identity that all believers must have. Originally, the expression of God’s worker means God’s fellow worker. It is an expression of having that much of an amazing value. He reveals that the most important thing to be used as a worker of God is to be completely imprinted, rooted and natured by the Gospel. According to Acts 16:2, it explains Timothy like this, “He was well spoken of by the brothers at Lystra and Iconium.” May all of Yewon believers, especially those who received church positions get recognition like that before God and people. We should be God’s workers. God wants workers who do all in, focus on and fight to have a victory in a given mission, so that they can bear fruits. I bless you in the name of the Lord that all Yewon believers, especially those who received church positions come to be God’s workers like the people in the Bible.
2. The Comforters of Faith
In verses 6 to 7, Timothy came back to Apostle Paul with good news. Contrary to what Apostle Paul worried about, the believers of Thessalonian church were standing firm in faith in Christ. They became each other’s comforter of faith. This is the normal relationship between believers and pastor. All church workers must have a spiritual attitude to eagerly maintain the unity of the Holy Spirit. In verses 8 to 9, there is Apostle Paul’s confession of thanksgiving. My greatest joy also is your growth in faith. To grow in faith, we must hold onto the pulpit message and go into the spiritual training. In verse 10, Apostle Paul reveals that he prays most earnestly, night and day to supply what is lacking in their faith. He said he was comforted by their faith and now he says their faith is lacking; it may seem to be preposterous. Here is what he really meant. The faith of the believers of Thessalonian church was so passionate but the spiritual knowledge of them was short. If the knowledge about the Word is short, you will hesitate among the situations you must chose. I bless you in the name of our Lord that all Yewon believers become spiritual partners of mutual help comforting each other and expand God’s kingdom.
[Conclusion] I came back from Kenya via Dubai. Dubai is the city that made something out of nothing. You may think it is because the city has a lot of money but there was nothing but a dessert just 20 to 30 years ago. The discovery of oil gave this country the enormous capital strength, but Sheikh Zayed, the former President of the United Arab Emirates did not sell the oil at once to gather wealth, but checked the time when it would be exhausted. It was to build up infrastructure for the descendants of the nation to live on. Now, his son Sheikh Khalifa is the President and he is very imaginative. The landmarks in Dubai are the masterpieces from his idea. The reason why I am telling you this is that you must see how important the mind of a leader is. Imagine having creativity when you take on your duty at a church. This means that you can make your spiritual master plan. I bless you in the name of the Lord that may all Yewon believers be the biblical steward who can confess that the duties are the path of the blessings and be the God’s worker who received the Gospel.