Monday, June 20 2016
My dad, Robert P. Eaby, Sr., is my pastor. After years of pastoring a church, he has the "privilege" of pastoring my brother and I. Having been my pastor nearly my entire life, I have gleaned a few things from him. The list that I am writing about is not comprehensive, but are important when dealing with others.
1. Be a servant
Jesus was the most influential man that ever lived, but he took on the role of a servant. He served rather than ruled. He blessed rather than cursed. He loved rather than hated. My dad taught me that a preacher is a servant. As pastor, he fixed cars and did plumbing for those that did not have the means to hire someone. We moved more people in and out of homes than I can count.
Dad is a worker. He is also handy. I am not great at fixing things, but it is the attitude of a servant that is important. He taught me that I should do for others and not look for anything in return. My purpose is not to build my kingdom, but the Kingdom of God.
Serving is difficult and sacrificial, but it is a requirement to be a minister of the Gospel.
2. Be ethical
Ethics is defined as, "Moral principles that govern a person's or group's behavior." As Christians and ministers, we should always be ethical toward each other. From early in my ministry, my dad has instilled in me that communicating with other pastors maintains trust.
A church cannot be built on the saints from church down the street. That is a house of cards. People will leave a church and pop up at another assembly. That is the cost of doing business, but ethics dictate that the receiving preacher does the right thing.
The body of Christ is not a group in one particular city. It is the entire body of believers around the world. Being ethical among each other insures that trust is maintained and keeps feelings from being hurt.
The ministry is here to bring the gospel to the entire world, and God has asked us to simply do the right thing.
3. Be a soul winner
My dad is a Bible - study teaching pastor that has seen many people filled with the Holy Ghost and baptized in Jesus name because he invested in them. God had brought him a mighty long way and he was willing to tell his story. He personifies the soul-winning pastor.
As a pastor, he never stopped winning souls. His eternal legacy includes pastors, preachers and church planters. He continues to teach Bible studies and reach the lost. His passion for souls is apparent and sets an example for the next generation of preachers.
Thank you, dad, for instilling principles to guide me as a Christian and a pastor.
Tuesday, June 14 2016
Demas was a member of the New Testament Church. We know very little of him and he is mentioned by Paul in three verses.
Colossians 4:14 Luke, the beloved physician, and Demas, greet you.
Philemon 1:24 Marcus, Aristarchus, Demas, Lucas, my fellowlabourers.
2 Timothy 4:10 For Demas hath forsaken me, having loved this present world, and is departed unto Thessalonica; Crescens to Galatia, Titus unto Dalmatia.
As the Apostle Paul wrote Colossians and Philemon, Demas was a loyal partner in the ministry of Paul. Paul would have invested hours in Demas teaching him the gospel of Jesus Christ. The depth of their conversations would have been amazing as they discussed the details of the scripture. How awesome would it be to be a student of the Apostle Paul?
The three mentions of Demas in the scripture give us enough information to glean a couple things from him.
1. Never forsake your pastor
Everyone (including pastors) need a pastor. We may not always like what they say or do, but God demands loyalty and obedience. Submission brings anointing. As long as your pastor is preaching truth, they are your shepherd. Be a fellow laborer in the Kingdom of God determined reach the lost of your community.
Hebrews13:17 Obey them that have the rule over you, and submit yourselves: for they watch for your souls, as they that must give account, that they may do it with joy, and not with grief: for that is unprofitable for you
Pastors should lead in love and we should follow in love.
2. Stay away from the world
In Genesis, Adam and Eve were given the entire Garden of Eden. When the devil wanted to tempt them, he was waiting for them at the one place that could cause them the most problems. God did not say, "Do not stand near the tree". His instructions were to not eat of the tree. What if Adam and Eve would have avoided the tree? What if they had drawn boundaries around the tree?
Most Christians would agree that drinking alcohol is a sin. Is it a sin to stand in a bar and not drink? How long would it be before you do drink?
Creating boundaries keep us from the temptation of sin and eventually sinning. Sin destroys and takes us to places that we never wanted to go.
The Apostle Paul wrote that Demas "loved this present world". We cannot love God and the world. We do not know what particular sin caused Demas to fall, but it really does not matter. He loved something in the world more than God.
1John 2:15 Love not the world, neither the things that are in the world. If any man love the world, the love of the Father is not in him.
1John 2:16 For all that is in the world, the lust of the flesh, and the lust of the eyes, and the pride of life, is not of the Father, but is of the world.
1John 2:17 And the world passeth away, and the lust thereof: but he that doeth the will of God abideth for ever.
Demas is an example of someone that started strong, but fell. It happens. Grace exists for those in that situation. We do not know if Demas ever made his way back to Jesus Christ. It is my hope that he did, but we can learn from his situation. It will be the faithful that make it to heaven. The faithful may fall, but they always get up.
Philippians 3:13 Brethren, I count not myself to have apprehended: but this one thing I do, forgetting those things which are behind, and reaching forth unto those things which are before,
Philippians 3:14 I press toward the mark for the prize of the high calling of God in Christ Jesus.
Monday, June 06 2016
In studying Exodus, I was reading the story of Moses and Aaron. The Bible says:
Exodus 5:1-2 KJV
 And afterward Moses and Aaron went in, and told Pharaoh, Thus saith the Lord God of Israel, Let my people go, that they may hold a feast unto me in the wilderness.
 And Pharaoh said, Who is the Lord , that I should obey his voice to let Israel go? I know not the Lord , neither will I let Israel go.
What amazes me about this story is the boldness of Moses and Aaron. These were two elderly men. One had been a slave his entire life and the other had spent time in the Pharaoh's house, but had been away in solitude for 40 years. They would not be on the top of anyone's list to deliver a nation, but Moses had encountered God in the burning bush and it was there that God told him that he would be used to deliver his people from slavery in Egypt. It is an amazingly true story that reveals the power of the Almighty God.
Pharaoh was the most powerful man on earth. His throne room would have been impressive and intimidating, but the Bible does not reveal that Moses and Aaron were either impressed or intimidated. They did not allow the distractions around them to keep them from accomplishing their mission.
As Christians, we have a mission. Jesus said to "Go". We are to reach, preach and teach as we raise up disciples of Jesus Christ. The enemy will place distractions around us to draw us away from our purpose to reach others and to live a life pleasing to God.
These distractions may or may not be sin, but they will draw you away from your relationship with Jesus Christ. We need to be aware of our weaknesses and the things that we prioritize in our lives.
1 Corinthians 9:24 KJV
 Know ye not that they which run in a race run all, but one receiveth the prize? So run, that ye may obtain.
Our focus must remain on Jesus through the good times and bad. It is a matter of faithfulness. Our message must be heard when it is popular and when it is not. We need to stand firm in our doctrine when nobody seems to be following because God will reward our faithfulness.
Like Moses and Aaron, we have purpose. Our purpose is stay focused and preach the gospel because there are people that do not have a relationship with Jesus. They need to experience the hope and joy that can only be given by God.
I challenge you today to evaluate your life and remove the distractions and priorities that effect your walk with God. Simply, stop looking around!