Rising Joy, by Vicki Matheny
So you, my child, be strong in the grace that is in Christ Jesus. And entrust what you heard me say in the presence of many others as witnesses to faithful people who will be competent to teach others as well. Take your share of suffering as a good soldier of Christ Jesus. 2 Timothy 2.1-3
Timothy was a young man. Paul considered him as a son in the faith. He encourages Timothy to teach faithful people what he himself has heard Paul teach others. These people need to be able to teach others so that the gospel will spread.
Paul is encouraging Timothy to think on some general principles. He gives three examples of people and their situations in life: a soldier, an athlete, and the farmer. The soldier is only valuable if he stays focused on his mission. If he becomes distracted with civilian life, he can lose his focus and put all in jeopardy. An athlete will not be crowned the winner if he does not abide by the rules of the sport. If he breaks the rules, he is disqualified. Finally, the farmer who sows the seed and works hard to have a crop should be the first to reap the benefits of his labor. However, if he does not work then there will be no crop.
Paul encourages Timothy to think about what he was telling him. We understand that Timothy was easily caught up in discussions that were not productive in any way. Apparently he was fearful to take a stand or perhaps to offend. Paul gently points him back to the right track where focus and persistence are necessary.
We need to be careful and heed Paul’s words. We need to stay focused on what is important which is teaching others who can teach others. This is our mission.