Commentary on "Keeping the Church Faithful (2 Thess. 2:133:18)"
Day 5: Wednesday, September 26, 2012 - Working and Eating (2 Thess. 3:912)
Today’s lesson continues to promote the idea that actions have the same authority as Scripture, when instead Paul taught that people should be disciplined workers to receive food, and his actions aligned with his authoritative teaching and writing. Again, the lesson has it backwards, teaching that Paul’s actions were authoritative; instead, Paul’s teaching was authoritative because it is God-breathed instruction, and he lived his life in alignment with that instruction (even though he had the right to do differently in this situation) in order to be a model for the church (2 Thessalonians 3:8, 9). Rather than pointing primarily to his actions, he pointed to what he had taught and that his actions lined up with his teaching (2 Thessalonians 3:10). By heavily emphasizing the authority of example, the lesson fits right in with the Adventist emphasis that Jesus primarily was our example.
Unlike the lesson’s point, Paul didn’t necessarily think his actions have equal authority with his words, as in 1 Corinthians 9:3-17 where he says the Lord directed those who proclaim the Gospel to get their living from the Gospel. Paul’s actions differed from that instruction because he instead followed the instruction for non church-leaders in order to show people what that looked like.
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