1 The elder,To my dear friend Gaius, whom I love in the truth.
2 Dear friend, I pray that you may enjoy good health and that all may go well with you, just as you are progressing spiritually. 3 It gave me great joy when some believers came and testified about your faithfulness to the truth, telling how you continue to walk in it. 4 I have no greater joy than to hear that my children are walking in the truth.
5 Dear friend, you are faithful in what you are doing for the brothers and sisters, even though they are strangers to you. 6 They have told the church about your love. Please send them on their way in a manner that honours God. 7 It was for the sake of the Name that they went out, receiving no help from the pagans. 8 We ought therefore to show hospitality to such people so that we may work together for the truth.
9 I wrote to the church, but Diotrephes, who loves to be first, will not welcome us. 10 So when I come, I will call attention to what he is doing, spreading malicious nonsense about us. Not satisfied with that, he even refuses to welcome other believers. He also stops those who want to do so and puts them out of the church.
11 Dear friend, do not imitate what is evil but what is good. Anyone who does what is good is from God. Anyone who does what is evil has not seen God. 12 Demetrius is well spoken of by everyone – and even by the truth itself. We also speak well of him, and you know that our testimony is true.
13 I have much to write to you, but I do not want to do so with pen and ink. 14 I hope to see you soon, and we will talk face to face.
Peace to you. The friends here send their greetings. Greet the friends there by name.
Sunday, 3rd November 2013
Series: Letters from your Pastor, Part 3
1: Honour is and isn’t about position: There is appropriate honour we should show to those in authority…
Romans 13.7 …honour those who are in authority.
1 Thessalonians 5:12…Dear brothers and sisters, honour those who are your leaders in the Lord’s work. They work hard among you and give you spiritual guidance.
Honouring people in authority is counter-cultural in the UK, but we should exhibit this Kingdom culture. So, does that mean we can treat everyone else however we wish? Of course not – honour is bigger than position. Look:
Romans 12:10…Love each other with genuine affection, and take delight in honouring each other.
1 Corinthians 11:29 …for if you eat the bread or drink the cup without honouring the body of Christ, you are eating and drinking God’s judgment upon yourself.
We should honour each other regardless of position in life. Honour is a way of life for us as Christians.
2: Honour is and isn’t about a title: Pastor or, vicar, or bishop, or elder – these are titles that recognise an office or ‘authority’. It’s a healthy thing to use them if the motivation is honour. But, you can use the right title and still be dishonouring. If you call someone ‘Pastor’ in public, but are not honouring in private, you have missed the point.
3: Honour is absolutely about the language we use all the time: Honour is to do with the way we speak about others / leaders. Think about it: the fastest way to dishonour somebody is with the tongue. We must tame the tongues ability to strip others of honour.
4: Honour is about protecting others: so that their honour / dignity is preserved. You may have occasion to laugh at the mistakes in others, or be a critic of others – but you could be a guard and support for others in their embarrassment or shame. (Watch out: you reap what you sow)
5: Honour is recognition of what God is doing and whom God has chosen; to dishonour a man or woman of God is to doubt the God who chose them, and is working in and on them. Don’t dis-honour them, pray for them – they really need it!
6: Honour is only possible on the basis of humility; when you aren’t overly concerned about seeking your own honour, you are free to honour everyone around you. If your honour is your primary concern, you will not want others to steal it from you, and therefore not be as free in giving it out!
7: Honour is most shown in instances when we have opportunity to dis-honour (example-David + Saul 1 Samuel 24 – David had every opportunity to ‘touch the Lord’s anointed’, but didn’t, and entrusted God to care for his justification)
8: Honour is expressed in hospitality and service; 3 John – Gaius was hospitable to the visiting speakers, and served them well. In this way, honour is more than words, and more than holding back when we have opportunity to criticize – it is active in hospitality.
9: Honour is a recognition of our need for each other; Opposite of independent spirit that says ‘I don’t need others, I have it all’. Honour recognises the value in those around us and God’s purpose in making us family.
10: Honour precedes breakthrough – Mark 6:1-5 Jesus could perform no miracles because the people in this town did not honour him as the Christ; they dis-honoured him and saw no breakthrough. The platform for God to move is honouring Him and each other well!