On Being Faithful

by Jeffrey W. Hamilton

Text: I Corinthians 4:1-5


I.         If you were a boss, what kind of person would you want working for you?

            A.        You probably would want someone who performed his duties well, skilled in the particular task that you needed done.

            B.        But one thing that I think most bosses would highly desire is someone whom they could completely trust - Nehemiah 13:13

                        1.         Even if they weren’t the fastest, or the brightest that the world has to offer, if I could trust that they were reliable, I could do so much.

                        2.         You don’t have to constantly monitor a faithful employee, as Joseph exemplified - Genesis 39:2-6; 20-23

                        3.         You could focus on the things only you must handle, knowing that the things left in someone else’s charge would be handled - Matthew 24:45-47

            C.        The parable of the talents involves a man who must journey and so leaves his possessions in the care of his servants - Matthew 25:14-15

                        1.         On his return he asks for an accounting - Matthew 25:19-23

                        2.         Notice that even though one was not as prosperous as the other, he was still praised as a faithful servant.

                        3.         He did his best and was rewarded.

                        4.         It was the lazy, cowardly servant who faced his master’s wrath - Matthew 25:24-27

            D.        Paul draws a parallel between a trustworthy servant and a child of God - I Corinthians 4:1-2

II.        God sets the standard for faithfulness

            A.        God reliably cares for his children - I Corinthians 10:13

                        1.         He can preserve us - I Thessalonians 5:23-24

                        2.         He will protect us - II Thessalonians 3:3

                        3.         He will forgive us - I John 1:9

            B.        We can have confidence that God will reward His servants - I Corinthians 1:4-9

            C.        Confident in our salvation - II Corinthians 1:15-22

                        1.         Man’s plans must change at times, but God’s plan is firm

            D.        Jesus showed himself to be faithful - Hebrews 3:1-2

                        1.         He is called the faithful witness - Revelation 1:5; 3:14

III.       Because the Bible is God’s word, like its author, it is found trustworthy

            A.        It is filled with statements that can be trusted - I Timothy 1:15; 4:8-9; II Timothy 2:11-12

            B.        Elders are to hold fast the faithful word - Titus 1:9

            C.        A trusted statement that those who trust God will be careful to maintain good works - Titus 3:8

IV.      The result is that God’s reliability should inspire us to be trustworthy servants of Him - Hebrews 10:23

            A.        Thomas was offered evidence and encouraged to be faithful - John 20:27

            B.        Those with Christ are the called, the chosen, the faithful - Revelation 17:14

            C.        A complete trust in a faithful Creator - I Peter 4:17-19

            D.        Faithfulness must reach all aspects of life - Luke 16:10-12

                        1.         It is a lifestyle. It is not something you turn on or off.

                        2.         All that we do is done faithfully - III John 4-8

                        3.         The elder or deacon’s wife - I Timothy 3:11

            E.        Faithfulness is so important, that the concept becomes a name for the Christian

                        1.         Letters are addressed to the faithful - Ephesians 1:1; Colossians 1:2

                        2.         Believing and Faithful are translated from the same Greek word

                        3.         Paul was made trustworthy - I Corinthians 7:25

                        4.         Those who are faithful - I Timothy 4:3

                        5.         Savior of those who believe - I Timothy 4:10

                        6.         An example to believers - I Timothy 4:12

                        7.         A believing man or woman - I Timothy 5:16

                        8.         Believing masters - I Timothy 6:2

                        9.         Passing on to faithful men - II Timothy 2:2

            F.        Reliable servants, the great complement

                        1.         The Lord found Paul faithful - I Timothy 1:12

                        2.         Paul found Timothy reliable, calling him his son in the Lord - I Corinthians 4:17

                                    a.         The statement is more than Paul’s reliance on Timothy.

                                    b.         Timothy was faithful to God and so Paul found him trustworthy.

                        3.         Tychicus, a faithful minister - Ephesians 6:21; Colossians 4:7

                        4.         Onesimus - Colossians 4:9

                        5.         Epaphras - Colossians 1:7

                        6.         Silvanus - I Peter 5:12

                        7.         Antipas - Revelation 2:13

V.        Be faithful unto death - Revelation 2:10

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