Posted by: SandreS | November 26, 2009

God’s Outsiders: The Called-Out Ones (A Biblical Look at God’s Ecclesia), Part 24

A Forgotten Tradition

Often, when we speak of tradition, there is one that we have forgotten. It must be remembered that there is another tradition, a godly one that we are to follow: the Pauline tradition.

“Therefore, brethren, stand fast, and hold the traditions which you have been taught, whether by word, or our epistle” (II Thessalonians 2:15).

“Now we command you, brethren, in the name of our Lord Jesus Christ, that you withdraw yourselves from every brother that walks disorderly, and not after the tradition which he received of us” (II Thessalonians 3:6).

We are to receive the traditions of Paul because:

●     He is Our divinely Appointed Pattern.

“And these things, brethren, I have in a figure transferred to myself and to Apollos for your sakes; that you might learn in us …” (I Corinthians 4:6).

“Wherefore I beseech you, be followers of me. For this cause have I sent unto you Timotheus … who shall bring you into remembrance of my ways which are in Christ …” (I Corinthians 4:16, 17).

“Be followers of me, even as I also am of Christ” (I Corinthians 11:1).

“Those things, which you have both learned, and received, and heard, and seen in me, do …” (Philippians 4:9).

“Hold fast the form of sound words, which you have heard of me …” (II Timothy 1:13).

“But you have fully known my doctrine, manner of life …” (II Timothy 3:10).

●     He is Our divinely Appointed Apostle.

“For I speak to you Gentiles, inasmuch as I am the apostle of the Gentiles, I magnify my office” (Romans 11:13).

“That I should be the minister of Jesus Christ to the Gentiles, ministering the gospel of God, that the offering up of the Gentiles might be acceptable, being sanctified by the Holy Spirit” (Romans 15:16).

“Unto me, who am less than the least of all saints, is this grace given, that I should preach among the Gentiles the unsearchable riches of Christ” (Ephesians 3:8).

“Whereunto I am ordained a preacher, and an apostle, (I speak the truth in Christ, and lie not;) a teacher of the Gentiles in faith and verity” (I Timothy 2:7).

“Whereunto I am appointed a preacher, and an apostle, and a teacher of the Gentiles …” (II Timothy 1:11).

●     To Him has been Committed this Current dispensation.

“For this cause I Paul, the prisoner of Jesus Christ for you Gentiles, if ye have heard of the dispensation of the grace of God which is given me to you” (Ephesians 3:1-2).

“Whereof I am made a minister, according to the dispensation of God which is given to me for you, to fulfill the Word of God” (Colossians 1:25).

“… A dispensation of the gospel is committed unto me” (I Corinthians 9:17).

“According to the glorious gospel of the blessed God, which was committed to my trust” (I Timothy 1:11).

“… The gospel of the uncircumcision was committed unto me …” (Galatians 2:7).

“But has in due times manifested His Word through preaching, which is committed unto me according to the commandment of God our Savior” (Titus 1:3).

This current dispensation and its message were committed to Paul as a trust. The word “commit” means “to give in trust; to put into the hands or power of another; to entrust; to put into any place for preservation; to deposit;”[1] “to deposit (as a trust or for protection), to entrust.”[2]

The word “trust” means a “charge received in confidence; that which is committed to one’s care; something committed to a person’s care for use or management, and for which an account must be rendered.”[3]

As we receive the truth of this dispensation, we also receive the very dispensation itself, like Paul, becoming dispensers of God’s grace.

“… Which is given me to you” (Ephesians 3:2).

“… Which is given to me for you” (Colossians 1:25).

“O Timothy, keep that which is committed to your trust … And the things that you have heard of me among many witnesses, the same commit to faithful men, who shall be able to teach others also” (I Timothy 6:20; II Timothy 2:2).

Why was Timothy to commit his trust to men who were faithful? Because,

“… It is required in stewards, that a man be found faithful” (I Corinthians 4:2).

We now have a trusteeship that has been committed to our own trust. We need to be faithful to Paul’s pattern – Paul’s tradition – and be ever so careful of the religious traditions of men!

Are we following Paul’s traditions, or man’s?

Clyde L. Pilkington, Jr.
Bible Student’s Notebook
© 2000, 2009

[1]Noah Webster, American Dictionary of the English Language, 1828.
[2]James Strong, Strongs Exhaustive Concordance, Lexicon #3908, #4100.



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