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God is our witness

For our appeal does not spring from error or impurity or any attempt to deceive, but just as we have been approved by God to be entrusted with the gospel, so we speak, not to please man, but to please God who tests our hearts. For we never came with words of flattery, as you know, nor with a pretext for greed—God is witness. Nor did we seek glory from people, whether from you or from others, though we could have made demands as apostles of Christ. 1 Thessalonians 2:3-6 ESV

From the text, Paul wants to straighten the record as to their intention of coming to Thessalonica. Timothy, Silas, and Paul went to Thessalonica not to propagate erroneous teaching but to declare the gospel coming from the truth of God’s Word. They were not there to deceive people by spreading false teaching. “We reject all shameful deeds and underhanded methods. We don’t try to trick anyone or distort the word of God. We tell the truth before God, and all who are honest know this” (2 Corinthians 4:2 NLT). It is not their purpose to impress the hearers but to honor God with what proceeds from their hearts. This is why they will not use flattery in preaching messages from God’s Word that will only tickle the ears and will not address sin in the lives of their hearers. Their message is about Christ and Him crucified. They are not there because of greed, selfish ambition, or motivated by profit. They only seek God’s approval and not man’s. God’s approval was all they seek. They were motivated in lifting up the Name of God. They were following in the footsteps of their Lord and Savior, Jesus Christ who came in to this earth and rebuked the religious leaders of their drive seeking the praise of men. “Your approval means nothing to me, because I know you don’t have God’s love within you. For I have come to you in my Father’s name, and you have rejected me. Yet if others come in their own name, you gladly welcome them. No wonder you can’t believe! For you gladly honor each other, but you don’t care about the honor that comes from the one who alone is God” (John 5:41-44 NLT). It is by God’s grace alone that they find the joy of ministering God’s Word to others. Knowing that God sees what is in our hearts, it will be wise for us not to allow wrong motives guide our actions in serving others. We cannot escape God for He is the invisible witness to all that we do. He searches our innermost being. “O Lord, you have examined my heart and know everything about me” (Psalm 139:1 NLT). Our actions will reflect who we are honoring and serving. So, let God be our witness that we will live our lives pleasing Him alone.



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