Biblical Apostolic Evangelism – How? Why? Where? When? Who?

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STUDY NOTES:

1st Corinthians 3:1-23 “And I, brethren, could not speak unto you as unto spiritual, but as unto carnal, even as unto babes in Christ. 2 I have fed you with milk, and not with meat: for hitherto ye were not able to bear it, neither yet now are ye able. 3 For ye are yet carnal: for whereas there is among you envying, and strife, and divisions, are ye not carnal, and walk as men?4 For while one saith, I am of Paul; and another, I am of Apollos; are ye not carnal? 5 Who then is Paul, and who is Apollos, but ministers by whom ye believed, even as the Lord gave to every man? 6 I have planted, Apollos watered; but God gave the increase. 7 So then neither is he that planteth any thing, neither he that watereth; but God that giveth the increase. 8 Now he that planteth and he that watereth are one: and every man shall receive his own reward according to his own labour. 9For we are labourers together with God: ye are God’s husbandry, ye are God’s building. 10 According to the grace of God which is given unto me, as a wise masterbuilder, I have laid the foundation, and another buildeth thereon. But let every man take heed how he buildeth thereupon. 11 For other foundation can no man lay than that is laid, which is Jesus Christ. 12 Now if any man build upon this foundation gold, silver, precious stones, wood, hay, stubble; 13 Every man’s work shall be made manifest: for the day shall declare it, because it shall be revealed by fire; and the fire shall try every man’s work of what sort it is. 14 If any man’s work abide which he hath built thereupon, he shall receive a reward. 15 If any man’s work shall be burned, he shall suffer loss: but he himself shall be saved; yet so as by fire. 16 Know ye not that ye are the temple of God, and that the Spirit of God dwelleth in you? 17 If any man defile the temple of God, him shall God destroy; for the temple of God is holy, which temple ye are. 18 Let no man deceive himself. If any man among you seemeth to be wise in this world, let him become a fool, that he may be wise. 19 For the wisdom of this world is foolishness with God. For it is written, He taketh the wise in their own craftiness. 20 And again, The Lord knoweth the thoughts of the wise, that they are vain. 21 Therefore let no man glory in men. For all things are your’s; 22 Whether Paul, or Apollos, or Cephas, or the world, or life, or death, or things present, or things to come; all are your’s; 23 And ye are Christ’s; and Christ is God’s.

The Characteristics of Biblical Evangelism According to the Apostles

1- Evangelism was the main objective of the church.  The Lord Jesus left his disciples a great commission “Mark 16:15-16 “And he said unto them, Go ye into all the world, and preach the gospel to every creature. 16 He that believeth and is baptized shall be saved(MAKING DISCIPLES); but he that believeth not shall be damned.” Therefore, the great commission of the church was very clear, to evangelize but it does not end there. There is ALWAYS an order to God and the believers (disciples) that truly love Jesus must obey His commands.  The apostles did exactly that and even when the numbers of the faithful reached tens of thousands, they never replaced evangelism with pastoral care or social services or construction or any other activities. They were well focused on evangelism. When there was a need for a social service, they asked the people to elect seven men to perform this service(elders/deacons), and to let them, the apostles, concentrate on evangelism and prayers (Acts 6:1-7). This does not mean every church needs 7 (elders/deacons).  The carnal, false “church” of today has no idea what it is to evangelize. It’s NOT to be done within the 4 walls of the church. It’s done OUTSIDE the church.

Acts 6:1-7 “And in those days, when the number of the disciples was multiplied, there arose a murmuring of the Grecians against the Hebrews, because their widows were neglected in the daily ministration. 2 Then the twelve called the multitude of the disciples unto them, and said, It is not reason that we should leave the word of God, and serve tables. 3 Wherefore, brethren, look ye out among you seven men of honest report, full of the Holy Ghost and wisdom, whom we may appoint over this business. 4 But we will give ourselves continually to prayer, and to the ministry of the word. 5 And the saying pleased the whole multitude: and they chose Stephen, a man full of faith and of the Holy Ghost, and Philip, and Prochorus, and Nicanor, and Timon, and Parmenas, and Nicolas a proselyte of Antioch: 6 Whom they set before the apostles: and when they had prayed, they laid their hands on them. 7 And the word of God increased; and the number of the disciples multiplied in Jerusalem greatly; and a great company of the priests were obedient to the faith.”

2- Evangelism was not only the objective of the apostles but also of all the faithfuls. Everybody in the church had evangelism as an important objective.  Evangelism started immediately when the person became born-again and was baptized. Then it reinforced often when he/she received the holy communion, as they kept their eyes focused on the Lord’s commandment: “For as often as ye eat this bread, and drink this cup, ye do shew the Lord’s death till he come.” (1 Cor 11:26).  Forget “bible colleges”, online courses, etc! We see this clearly after the great persecution that followed the martyrdom of saint Stephen when the faithful were forced to leave Jerusalem.

This man just got delivered from 2,000 demons and wanted to travel with Jesus. He was told “no” and was instructed to go to his hometown and witness (evangelize) there.  Mark 5:18-20 “And when he was come into the ship, he that had been possessed with the devil prayed him that he might be with him. 19 Howbeit Jesus suffered him not, but saith unto him, Go home to thy friends, and tell them how great things the Lord hath done for thee, and hath had compassion on thee. 20 And he departed, and began to publish in Decapolis how great things Jesus had done for him: and all men did marvel.”

Philip Proclaims Christ in Samaria – The whole CITY was joyful! It’s not a “hit-n-run” Preach!

Acts 8:4-7 “Therefore they that were scattered abroad went every where preaching the word. 5 Then Philip went down to the city of Samaria, and preached Christ unto them. 6 And the people with one accord gave heed unto those things which Philip spake, hearing and seeing the miracles which he did. 7 For unclean spirits, crying with loud voice, came out of many that were possessed with them: and many taken with palsies, and that were lame, were healed. 8 And there was great joy in that city.”

We need to make it VERY CLEAR the importance of evangelism as every believer must witness Christ.

3- Salvation was an objective of evangelism. It’s not the “hit-n-run evangelism” many do today. The objective was not just preaching or educating or telling the story of Jesus, but rather ‘salvation.’  Not anyone joined the church, but only those who were saved “Praising God, and having favour with all the people. And the Lord added to the church daily such as should be saved.” (Acts 2:47).  The false “church” and false “evangelists” of today do not preach this.

4- Faith (OBEDIENCE) was a requirement to join the church.  In the book of Acts, we read about so many incidents in which there were direct correlation between salvation and faith, such as in: “Believe in the Lord Jesus Christ, and you will be saved, you and your household” (Acts 16:31).  So, faith(TRUE FAITH / OBEDIENCE) was a requirement for salvation and all believers were baptized (one of the 1st acts of faith). Nobody can get baptized without faith. Baptism is the act of obedience.

Acts 16:30-34 “And brought them out, and said, Sirs, what must I do to be saved? 31 And they said, Believe on the Lord Jesus Christ, and thou shalt be saved, and thy house. 32 And they spake unto him the word of the Lord, and to all that were in his house. 33 And he took them the same hour of the night, and washed their stripes; and was baptized, he and all his, straightway. 34 And when he had brought them into his house, he set meat before them, and rejoiced, believing in God with all his house.”

John 3:36 “He that believeth on the Son hath evering life: and he that believeth not (MEANING DOES NOT OBEY) the Son shall not see life; but the WRATH (HATRED/ABHORRENCE) of God abideth on him.”

5- The Holy Spirit directed the evangelism efforts.  We have read about the invitation of the Holy Spirit of Barnabas and Paul “the Holy Spirit said”.  Act 13:2 “As they ministered to the Lord, and fasted, the Holy Ghost said, Separate me Barnabas and Saul for the work whereunto I have called them.”  If you are truly abiding in Jesus, you are led by the Holy Spirit, not some schedule or event.

6- Planting Churches: The apostles traveled from one city to another, proclaiming the Gospel, and baptizing people. Then they stayed in each city until they ordained priests(pastors) and deacons from the indigenous people (the new converts) and they started a fellowship (church). THEN and ONLY THEN did they move on. The apostles delivered the faith and established churches, ordaining clergy(elders) from the people for the people.  They delivered faith, prayers, and worship means, but not CULTure.

7- Evangelists were filled of joy and the Holy Spirit.  The lives of the faithful were characterized by joy and peace, as a result of the deep feeling of the work of the grace in their lives.  Their lives were drastically different from those who were not saved, which attracted the unsaved. Evangelists were not only filled with joy but also filled with the Holy Spirit and lives were CHANGED as they preached and displayed their godly works to others. Act 4:31 “And when they had prayed, the place was shaken where they were assembled together; and they were all filled with the Holy Ghost, and they spake the word of God with boldness.”

They were of ONE ACCORD! No DENOMINATIONS, no DIVISION and no “shotgun” outreaches! They also “TARRIED a while” everywhere they went and did not leave until a local church/fellowship was established. Further, they WENT BACK to exhort and strengthen the brethren.

Act 15:22-41”Then pleased it the apostles and elders, with the whole church, to send chosen men of their own company to Antioch with Paul and Barnabas; namely, Judas surnamed Barsabas, and Silas, chief men among the brethren: 23 And they wrote letters by them after this manner; The apostles and elders and brethren send greeting unto the brethren which are of the Gentiles in Antioch and Syria and Cilicia: 24 Forasmuch as we have heard, that certain which went out from us have troubled you with words, subverting your souls, saying, Ye must be circumcised, and keep the law: to whom we gave no such commandment: 25 It seemed good unto us, being assembled with one accord, to send chosen men unto you with our beloved Barnabas and Paul, 26 Men that have hazarded their lives for the name of our Lord Jesus Christ. 27 We have sent therefore Judas and Silas, who shall also tell you the same things by mouth. 28 For it seemed good to the Holy Ghost, and to us, to lay upon you no greater burden than these necessary things; 29 That ye abstain from meats offered to idols, and from blood, and from things strangled, and from fornication: from which if ye keep yourselves, ye shall do well. Fare ye well. 30 So when they were dismissed, they came to Antioch: and when they had gathered the multitude together, they delivered the epistle: 31 Which when they had read, they rejoiced for the consolation. 32 And Judas and Silas, being prophets also themselves, exhorted the brethren with many words, and confirmed them. 33 And after they had tarried there a space, they were let go in peace from the brethren unto the apostles. 34 Notwithstanding it pleased Silas to abide there still. 35 Paul also and Barnabas continued in Antioch, teaching and preaching the word of the Lord, with many others also. 36 And some days after Paul said unto Barnabas, Let us go again and visit our brethren in every city where we have preached the word of the Lord, and see how they do. 37 And Barnabas determined to take with them John, whose surname was Mark. 38 But Paul thought not good to take him with them, who departed from them from Pamphylia, and went not with them to the work. 39 And the contention was so sharp between them, that they departed asunder one from the other: and so Barnabas took Mark, and sailed unto Cyprus; 40 And Paul chose Silas, and departed, being recommended by the brethren unto the grace of God. 41 And he went through Syria and Cilicia, confirming the churches.”

You Must Have the The Full Assurance of Faith & Assemble

Heb 10:19-38 “Having therefore, brethren, boldness to enter into the holiest by the blood of Jesus, 20  By a new and living way, which he hath consecrated for us, through the veil, that is to say, his flesh; 21 And having an high priest over the house of God; 22 Let us draw near with a true heart in full assurance of faith, having our hearts sprinkled from an evil conscience, and our bodies washed with pure water. 23 Let us hold fast the profession of our faith without wavering; (for he is faithful that promised;) 24 And let us consider one another to provoke unto love and to good works: 25 Not forsaking the assembling of ourselves together, as the manner of some is; but exhorting one another: and so much the more, as ye see the day approaching.

8- The church was a church of prayers.  Prayers were the source of power for this church.  From this church we learned about the great power of corporate prayer “Act 4:31  And when they had prayed, the place was shaken where they were assembled together; and they were all filled with the Holy Ghost, and they spake the word of God with boldness.” Many nowadays belittle the corporate prayer meetings yet our fellowships flourish because of them all over the world. In evangelism, we need to restore corporate prayers. We need also to live the pure, holy life they lived which filled their hearts with ‘gladness and simplicity of heart’.

9- A church of unity. These verses are just one example of numerous verses talking about the unity of this church.  They loved each other deeply. The ones who had more money than the others brought their money to the apostles and distributed it to everyone, as he needed.Act 4:32-37 “And the multitude of them that believed were of one heart and of one soul: neither said any of them that ought of the things which he possessed was his own; but they had all things common. 33 And with great power gave the apostles witness of the resurrection of the Lord Jesus: and great grace was upon them all. 34 Neither was there any among them that lacked: for as many as were possessors of lands or houses sold them, and brought the prices of the things that were sold, 35 And laid them down at the apostles’ feet: and distribution was made unto every man according as he had need. 36 And Joses, who by the apostles was surnamed Barnabas, (which is, being interpreted, The son of consolation,) a Levite, and of the country of Cyprus, 37 Having land, sold it, and brought the money, and laid it at the apostles’ feet.”

The Apostles NEVER Preached CULTure:

This church never imposed any cultural aspects on any nation or community.  Even though most of the apostles were raised in Israel, they preached the TRUE gospel, not the watered-down “easy believism” or “relevant” abominable false gospel. We never read about any application of Israel’s culture on any church whatsoever, a lesson that we need to learn when we evangelize to others. Their objective was preaching the unadulterated Gospel. The power of the Gospel will change people’s lives, not “pizza parties” “small groups” and “making sinners comfortable” like the emergent false church does to their destruction.  It is a grave mistake when the church tries to deliver culture instead of pure and strong salvation FROM SIN unto HOLINESS. The Apostolic church of Acts is the greatest church example in spirituality because its people truly lived the Gospel and were filled with the Holy Spirit without any help of the cultural aspects that are available today in the church. This is EXACTLY how is must be today too.

1Th 1:2-10 “We give thanks to God always for you all, making mention of you in our prayers; 3 Remembering without ceasing your work of faith, and labour of love, and patience of hope in our Lord Jesus Christ, in the sight of God and our Father; 4 Knowing, brethren beloved, your election of God. 5 For our gospel came not unto you in word only, but also in power, and in the Holy Ghost, and in much assurance; as ye know what manner of men we were among you for your sake. 6 And ye became FOLLOWERS OF US, and of the Lord, having received the word in much affliction, with joy of the Holy Ghost: 7 So that YE WERE ENSAMPLES to all that believe in Macedonia and Achaia. 8 For from you sounded out the word(PREACHED) of the Lord not only in Macedonia and Achaia, but also IN EVERY PLACE your faith to God-ward is spread abroad; so that we need not to speak any thing. 9 For they themselves shew of us what manner of entering in we had unto you, and how ye turned to God from idols to serve the living and true God; 10 And to wait for his Son from heaven, whom he raised from the dead, even Jesus, which delivered us from the wrath to come.”

1- The apostles concentrated on the essence of salvation: faith, true repentance, baptism, …etc.  Their main interest was a church full of saved people (never sinners) who show the fruits of the work of the Holy Spirit in their lives (holy living, witnessing, helping the orphan and widow, etc), as a result of burying the old man and live in the newness in Christ.

James 1:27 “Pure religion and undefiled before God and the Father is this, To visit the fatherless and widows in their affliction, and to keep himself unspotted from the world.”

Compare this with most all churches nowadays that are full of people who are not enjoying the fruits of salvation because the old man still mastering their lives. They are sinners listening to a sinning “pastor” heading to an eternal hellfire.

2- It was a passionate / sold-out church.  The church was waiting for His second coming and had an urgency ALL Christians should have.  “MARANATHA” is a word found in 1. Corinthians 16:22. It means “The Lord Cometh.” It was a word of greeting in the early church. When believers met they said “Maranatha.” It was a constant reminder of the fact of the Lord’s return. They had great passion with a great desire to be vigilant and to evangelize as souls are on the line. 160,000 souls go to judgement daily, what are you doing to spread the Good News? I pray you are following the Apostles example.

James 5:8-9 “Be ye also patient; stablish your hearts: for the coming of the Lord draweth nigh(close). 9 Grudge not one against another, brethren, lest ye be condemned: behold, the judge standeth before the door.”

3- A poor church. It refused all materialistic richness, although it could collect much wealth if it wanted as the abominable false “church” does today.  Christ never called the church to live in materialistic richness. The “prosperity / word of faith” gospel is a gospel from hell. He ordered His disciples: “Take nothing for the journey, neither staffs nor bag nor bread nor money, and don’t have two tunics apiece” (Luke 9:3). This does not mean we do not work hard for money to eat, to help others, etc. IN fact, it’s commanded. It means to trust the Lord to do His part IF you do yours.

2Th 3:6  “Now we command you, brethren, in the name of our Lord Jesus Christ, that ye withdraw yourselves from every brother that walketh disorderly(idle), and not after the tradition which he received of us.7 For yourselves know how ye ought to follow us: for we behaved not ourselves disorderly among you; 8 Neither did we eat any man’s bread for nought; but wrought with labour and travail night and day, that we might not be chargeable to any of you: 9 Not because we have not power, but to make ourselves an ensample unto you to follow us. 10 For even when we were with you, we would give you this command: If anyone is not willing to work, let him not eat.”

Acts 20:35 “I have shewed you all things, how that so LABOURING ye ought to SUPPORT THE WEAK, and to remember the words of the Lord Jesus, how he said, IT IS MORE BLESSED TO GIVE THAN TO RECEIVE.”

Later on in the history when the church started to build up wealth and to live not according to the poverty of the gospel, the apostate church lost the power of evangelism.

In conclusion, this church faithfully worked very hard in evangelism and succeeded in evangelizing most of the known civilized countries at the time with the sole purpose of building local body of believers.  We need to devote more time to study the characteristics of this church as an introduction for us to learn about proper, biblical, Apostolic evangelism.

What was the beginning of the TRUE Christian Church (the Ecclesia)?

The first Christian churches (body of believers) were formed after Jesus’ death, return to life, and ascension up into heaven in A.D. 33. The first Christian church was located in Jerusalem. It began immediately after Jesus returned to heaven.

Acts 1:9-15 “And when he had spoken these things, while they beheld, he was taken up; and a cloud received him out of their sight. 10 And while they looked stedfastly toward heaven as he went up, behold, two men stood by them in white apparel; 11 Which also said, Ye men of Galilee, why stand ye gazing up into heaven? this same Jesus, which is taken up from you into heaven, shall so come in like manner as ye have seen him go into heaven. 12 Then returned they unto Jerusalem from the mount called Olivet, which is from Jerusalem a sabbath day’s journey. 13 And when they were come in, they went up into an upper room, where abode both Peter, and James, and John, and Andrew, Philip, and Thomas, Bartholomew, and Matthew, James the son of Alphaeus, and Simon Zelotes (za lo tees), and Judas the brother of James. 14 These all continued with one accord in prayer and supplication, with the women, and Mary the mother of Jesus, and with his brethren. 15 And in those days Peter stood up in the midst of the disciples, and said, (the number of names together were about an hundred and twenty,)”

This was the first assembly convened to transact the business of the church. Please note that the vote is so important a matter as electing and elder (in the early Church an Apostle, now, a bishop / pastor, elder, deacon, etc) was done by the entire church. It settles the question that the election of a minister and pastor should be by the church, and that a pastor should not be placed over a church by a patron, or by an ecclesiastical body.

These early believers did not have church buildings to meet in. They met mostly in homes. The first church buildings did not start to appear until the early 200’s. Home churches in these last days are very biblical as the number of TRUE believers is so low and the cost to maintain such buildings is, in most cases, astronomical.

Rom 16:5 “Likewise greet the church that is in their house. Salute my wellbeloved Epaenetus, who is the firstfruits of Achaia unto Christ.”

1Co 16:19 “The churches of Asia salute you. Aquila and Priscilla salute you much in the Lord, with the church that is in their house.

Col 4:15 “Salute the brethren which are in Laodicea, and Nymphas, and the church which is in his house.”

The apostles remained in Jerusalem and on the first day of Pentecost, a week long Jewish feast, God started the church. The Holy Spirit came and empowered the apostle Peter’s sermon. The people believed what Peter told them about Jesus (Acts 2 v. 44), were convicted of their sin of rejecting Jesus (Acts 2 v. 37), and asked, “What shall we do?” How many people responded?

Act 2:37-38 “Now when they heard this, they were pricked in their heart, and said unto Peter and to the rest of the apostles, Men and brethren, what shall we do? 38 Then Peter said unto them, Repent, and be baptized every one of you in the name of Jesus Christ for the remission of sins, and ye shall receive the gift of the Holy Ghost.”

The TRUE Fellowship of the Believers

Acts 2:41-47 “Then they that gladly received his word were baptized: and the same day there were added unto them about three thousand souls. And they continued stedfastly in the apostles’ doctrine and fellowship, and in breaking of bread, and in prayers. 43 And fear came upon every soul: and many wonders and signs were done by the apostles. 44 And all that believed were together, and had all things common; 45 And sold their possessions and goods, and parted them to all men, as every man had need. 46 And they, continuing daily with one accord in the temple, and breaking bread from house to house, did eat their meat with gladness and singleness of heart, 47 Praising God, and having favour with all the people. And the Lord added to the church daily such as should be saved.”

This was the start of the church.

Evangelism – Bible Style

From there the wonderful news about Jesus started spreading to many cities. The truth about Jesus was then preached in the cities of Samaria (Acts 8:5-15), Damascus (Acts 9:1-19), Joppa (Acts 9:1-43), and Antioch. (Acts 11:25-27). The news about Jesus Christ continued to spread up into Greece and then into Italy. We know that it spread into Egypt and Africa (Acts 8:26-39).

We must follow after the teachings of the Holy Bible.

The Christian church in Jerusalem was the center of the Christian faith. It was there that the apostles were first located. The church had elders with James, Jesus’ brother, being the lead elder of the church (Acts 15:3-23). From there the truth about Jesus spread and God caused the Christian church to grow.

Act 15:3-23 And being brought on their way by the church, they passed through Phenice and Samaria, declaring the conversion of the Gentiles: and they caused great joy unto all the brethren. 4 And when they were come to Jerusalem, they were received of the church, and of the apostles and elders, and they declared all things that God had done with them. 5 But there rose up certain of the sect of the Pharisees which believed, saying, That it was needful to circumcise them, and to command them to keep the law of Moses. 6 And the apostles and elders came together for to consider of this matter. 7 And when there had been much disputing, Peter rose up, and said unto them, Men and brethren, ye know how that a good while ago God made choice among us, that the Gentiles by my mouth should hear the word of the gospel, and believe. 8 And God, which knoweth the hearts, bare them witness, giving them the Holy Ghost, even as he did unto us; 9 And put no difference between us and them, purifying their hearts by faith. 10 Now therefore why tempt ye God, to put a yoke upon the neck of the disciples, which neither our fathers nor we were able to bear? 11 But we believe that through the grace of the Lord Jesus Christ we shall be saved, even as they. 12 Then all the multitude kept silence, and gave audience to Barnabas and Paul, declaring what miracles and wonders God had wrought among the Gentiles by them. 13 And after they had held their peace, James answered, saying, Men and brethren, hearken unto me: 14 Simeon hath declared how God at the first did visit the Gentiles, to take out of them a people for his name. 15 And to this agree the words of the prophets; as it is written, 16 After this I will return, and will build again the tabernacle of David, which is fallen down; and I will build again the ruins thereof, and I will set it up: 17 That the residue of men might seek after the Lord, and all the Gentiles, upon whom my name is called, saith the Lord, who doeth all these things. 18 Known unto God are all his works from the beginning of the world. 19 Wherefore my sentence is, that we trouble not them, which from among the Gentiles are turned to God: 20 But that we write unto them, that they abstain from pollutions of idols, and from fornication, and from things strangled, and from blood. 21 For Moses of old time hath in every city them that preach him, being read in the synagogues every sabbath day. 22 Then pleased it the apostles and elders, with the whole church, to send chosen men of their own company to Antioch with Paul and Barnabas; namely, Judas surnamed Barsabas, and Silas, chief men among the brethren: 23 And they wrote letters by them after this manner; The apostles and elders and brethren send greeting unto the brethren which are of the Gentiles in Antioch and Syria and Cilicia”

Paul Speaks to the Ephesian Elders – An Example & WARNING to ALL Christians

Act 20:17-38 ”And from Miletus he sent to Ephesus, and called the elders of the church. 18 And when they were come to him, he said unto them, Ye know, from the first day that I came into Asia, after what manner I have been with you at all seasons, 19 Serving the Lord with all humility of mind, and with many tears, and temptations, which befell me by the lying in wait of the Jews: 20 And how I kept back nothing that was profitable unto you, but have shewed you, and have taught you publicly, and from HOUSE TO HOUSE, 21 Testifying both to the Jews, and also to the Greeks, REPENTANCE toward God, AND FAITH toward our Lord Jesus Christ. 22 And now, behold, I go bound in the spirit unto Jerusalem, not knowing the things that shall befall me there: 23 Save that the Holy Ghost witnesseth in every city, saying that BONDS and AFFLICTIONS abide me. 24 But none of these things move me, NEITHER COUT I MY LIFE DEAR TO MYSELF, so that I might FINISH MY COURSE WITH JOY, and the ministry, which I have received of the Lord Jesus, to TESTIFY THE GOSPEL of the grace of God. 25 And now, behold, I know that ye all, among whom I have gone preaching the kingdom of God, shall see my face no more. 26 Wherefore I take you to record this day, that I am pure from the blood of all men. 27 For I HAVE NOT SHUNNED TO DECLARE UNTO YOU ALL THE COUNSEL OF GOD. 28 Take heed therefore unto yourselves, and to all the flock, over the which the Holy Ghost hath made you overseers, to feed the church of God, which he hath purchased with his own blood. 29 For I know this, that after my departing shall GRIEVOUS WOLVES ENTER IN AMONG YOU, NOT SPARING THE FLOCK. 30 Also OF YOUR OWN SELVES shall men arise, speaking perverse things, to DRAW AWAY DISCIPLES after them. 31 Therefore WATCH, and REMEMBER, that by the space of three years I CEASED NOT TO WARN EVERYONE DAY AND NIGHT WITH TEARS. 32 And now, brethren, I commend you to God, and to the word of his grace, which is able to build you up, and to give you an inheritance among all them which are sanctified. 33 I have coveted no man’s silver, or gold, or apparel. [I have not coveted (desired). I have not made it an object of my living among you to obtain your property. Thus, 2Co 12:14 he says, “I seek not yours, but you.” Paul had power to demand support in the, ministry as the reward of his labor, 1Co 9:13-14. Yet he did not choose to exercise it, lest it should bring the charge of avarice against the ministry, 1Co 9:12, 1Co 9:15.] 34 Yea, ye yourselves know, that these hands have ministered unto my necessities, and to them that were with me. 35 I have shewed you all things, how that so labouring ye ought to support the weak, and to remember the words of the Lord Jesus, how he said, It is more blessed to give than to receive. 36 And when he had thus spoken, he kneeled down, and prayed with them all. 37 And they all wept sore, and fell on Paul’s neck, and kissed him, 38 Sorrowing most of all for the words which he spake, that they should see his face no more. And they accompanied him unto the ship.”

Jesus is LORD. Obey HIM.