A Lost Epistle of Paul

Paul, an apostle of Jesus Christ, and Demas, his lawyer, to the church in Rome, greetings.

While in Corinth, I received your letter inquiring about my availability to speak at your seven-day Christian life conference this Spring. I would be delighted to do so, and I am flattered that you would ask me, considering the numerous apostles and apostolic delegates that speak at your church every year.

Unfortunately, however, I will be unable to attend on the first week you suggested, as I and several other apostolic “pillars” will be on an eight-day Mediterranean inspiration cruise with about five hundred brethren at once. It will be a wonderful spiritual renewal for everyone. I understand several of your more wealthy members will be attending.

I will, however, be available on the third week you suggested. I am going to send Demas, my lawyer and agent, a few days ahead of me to make the necessary arrangements. As you know, I will require an up-front payment to cover travel expenses, meals, and lodging to and from the conference. My fee for conducting the conference has not changed, and this can be paid when I arrive. I do, however, require a love offering to be collected to help cover the expense of my event staff, who will be joining me as usual.

There will be no need for volunteers on your end, and I will have my assistant, Timothy, handle the Ministry Resource Booth. I will be sending ahead several one-sheet flyers that I ask you to distribute during the church service just prior to your celebration of the Lord’s Supper the Sunday before the conference. These flyers remind people of my credentials and experience and also promote my new book, which I am calling Letter to the Corinthians. I am working on a sequel to this, though I doubt it will be ready before the conference. Anyway, copies of this new book, as well as new editions of my previous books, will be on sale at the Resource Booth. As usual, my lawyer, Demas, will work out an acceptable arrangement for you to receive a fair portion of the profits from the sale of these ministry resources.

In response to your request to make additional copies of my Letter to the Romans, both my publisher and Demas have advised against it, and I dare not go against their professional judgments. If you would let me know how many copies you require, I can send them ahead at a considerable discount. I am sorry, but if I let others copy my books, I will not be able to guarantee accuracy or quality of the final product. This is not about the money, though Demas is always worried that I will “give away the farm,” as he puts it. I suppose he is right—it takes money to do ministry, and if I were to start giving away copies of my books or let people copy them without paying me a royalty, it would not be long before I would have to send poor Timothy home to his dear old grandmother and lay off half my staff!

On the question of song sheets for the worship services, I will send those ahead for reproducing in advance. These will include, among other favorites, the “Kenosis Hymn” and the “Firstborn Chorus.” As you know, I did not write these hymns, so when you prepare the papyri hand-outs, please include my CCLI License No. 00001. The last thing I want is a lawsuit for reproducing Christian psalm, hymns, and spiritual songs written by our gifted brethren. As Christians, we need to be respectful of these copyright laws and not rob fellow believers of the money they deserve for selling us the songs God gave them to give to the church.

Finally, brethren, continue to pray for us. There is just so much ministry to do, and the Lord has been blessing Paul of Tarsus Ministries, Inc. so abundantly this year. We have set up offices as far as Crete! Some other competing ministries, such as Peter’s “Rock Ministries” and Barnabas’s “Encouragement for Living” have suffered some financial set-backs, but praise be to God that PTM has actually increased revenue through both donations and sales consistently over the last few years. Your generous support of this ministry has really been an encouragement to us. Thank you.

Greet all of our supporters and ministry partners with a holy kiss—and don’t forget to give them one of our flyers. May the grace of our Lord Jesus Christ be with you all. Amen.

Paul,

Founder, President, and C.E.O.
Paul of Tarsus Ministries, Inc.

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