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Sadly, “Men of God” often use their office and influence to meet their personal agenda and personal gain.  Make no mistake, while they are labeled men of God, they are first and foremost MEN. Men are frail and always subject to their personal human nature. Often, they start out well—but, their desire for power or possessions begin to overtake their calling and mission.  Paul had seen many such men in his missionary journeys.  He had warned the flocks in several of the letters to be watchful for such men.

Sadly, many who are influenced by self-ascribed prophets are taken in by their eloquence or their promise of worldly gain for those follow most devoted.  In many cases, the leaders measure the devotion by the amount of treasure expended for the furtherance of the gospel. Their talks all center around the prosperity to be gained by giving more. Very little discussion is centered on knowing Christ or following his leadership—It is always how one can enjoy worldly wealth by faithfully sharing their earthly goods for the great ministry.

In our day little has changed.  There are still several preachers and evangelists who still work a crowd and gladly accept their gifts of faith to build a temple to their ministries.  While several that sacrificially give resemble the widow and her mites, the pastor and evangelists wear custom suits, drive luxury vehicles and travel the world to further the mission.  God tells us to be watchful—do not be taken in by those whom would use your offerings and devotion for their personal power and gain.  We vote with our feet.  If we walk by faith and follow God closely, we will be able to discern the truth and will be able to distinguish the true shepherds from those that are simply wolves in shepherds cloth.  Be courageous—stand with those who stand with him.

God Bless You

 I urge you, brothers and sisters, to watch out for those who cause divisions and put obstacles in your way that are contrary to the teaching you have learned. Keep away from them. 18 For such people are not serving our Lord Christ, but their own appetites. By smooth talk and flattery they deceive the minds of naive people. 19 Everyone has heard about your obedience, so I rejoice because of you; but I want you to be wise about what is good, and innocent about what is evil.

20 The God of peace will soon crush Satan under your feet.

The grace of our Lord Jesus be with you.

21 Timothy, my co-worker, sends his greetings to you, as do Lucius, Jason and Sosipater, my fellow Jews.

22 I, Tertius, who wrote down this letter, greet you in the Lord.

23 Gaius, whose hospitality I and the whole church here enjoy, sends you his greetings.

Erastus, who is the city’s director of public works, and our brother Quartus send you their greetings. [24] [e]

25 Now to him who is able to establish you in accordance with my gospel, the message I proclaim about Jesus Christ, in keeping with the revelation of the mystery hidden for long ages past, 26 but now revealed and made known through the prophetic writings by the command of the eternal God, so that all the Gentiles might come to the obedience that comes from[f] faith— 27 to the only wise God be glory forever through Jesus Christ! Amen.