Acts 18:3 And because he [Paul] was of the same trade, he remained with them and worked; for they were tentmakers by trade. 20:34 You yourselves know that these hands have ministered to my needs and to those who are with me. (35) In all things I have shown you by example that toiling in this way we ought to support the weak and to remember the words of the Lord Jesus, that He Himself said, It is more blessed to give than to receive.
This [Acts 18:3] indicates that while Paul was carrying out the ministry of the Lord, he still had a job. He refers to this in 1 Corinthians 4:12, "We labor, working with our own hands." Furthermore, in both 1 Thessalonians 2:9 and 2 Thessalonians 3:8 Paul says that he labored day and night so as not to be burdensome to the saints. Paul's practice was different from that of many Christian workers today. Often when a person becomes a minister or a missionary, he will no longer do any other kind of work. But while Paul was ministering the word, he also worked with his hands in order to earn a living. This he did not only to support himself, but also to support his co-workers. Once again Paul set up a good pattern. Those who serve the Lord full-time should not regard their work for the Lord as their profession. If necessary, some may still need to work in order to make a living for themselves. Whether or not we do this depends on how much our burden occupies us. If your burden occupies you in full and the environment affords you a living, then you should certainly spend all your time on the Lord's work. But if not, you should still work to support yourself, and not only yourself but also your co-workers, especially the younger ones. (c) 2007 Living Stream Ministry.
Bible verses are taken from the Recovery Version of the Bible and Words of Ministry from Witness Lee, Life-study of Acts, pp. 415-416. Both are published by Living Stream Ministry, Anaheim, CA. Please visit us at www.emanna.com. Send comments to: firstname.lastname@example.org.
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