Be useful

Rising Joy, by Vicki Matheny

So if someone cleanses himself of such behavior, he will be a vessel for honorable use, set apart, useful for the Master, prepared for every good work. But keep away from youthful passions, and pursue righteousness, faithfulness, love, and peace, in company with others who call on the Lord from a pure heart. 2 Timothy 2.21-22

Paul is talking of repentance here. The behavior that he refers to is that of profane chatter which leads to ungodliness. The influence of ungodliness can spread through the body like gangrene. It can lead to the undermining of a person’s faith from which they might not recover. However, if someone cleanses himself of such behavior, through repentance, he can be used by the Master for good.

Profane chatter is not the only thing that we should avoid. Paul encourages Timothy to keep away from youthful passions. Maintain control of your actions and your emotions. Think through the situations in which you find yourself.

Now only does Paul tell Timothy what to avoid; he tells him what to pursue. We are to pursue righteousness, faithfulness, love and peace. We are not to pursue these things on our own, all alone. It is so important that we be in the company of other Christians who are faithful to the Lord. If we need help to overcome temptation, it is there that we will find it, as well as encouragement to continue toward the goal.

For the Lord knows those who are his.

#risingjoy #2-Timothy #repentance

Deliberate, not easy

Rising Joy, by Vicki Matheny

Make every effort to present yourself before God as a proven worker who does not need to be ashamed, teaching the message of truth accurately. But avoid profane chatter, because those occupied with it will stray further and further into ungodliness,(…) 2 Timothy 2.15-16

The Christian life is a deliberate one. It is also not an easy one. Paul writes to Timothy to make every effort. This is not a picture of being laid back and letting come what may. We have to be diligent in our lives to be what God wants. It does not come by instinct. We must teach the truth accurately. If we never read and study the Bible, it will not happen.

Paul also gives a warning: avoid profane chatter. What do you spend most of your time talking about? Is it politics? Is it books? Is it general gossip? Be careful. Paul warns that if we spend our time in profane chatter, we will stray further and further into ungodliness, exactly where we should not want to go.

Our message should be the gospel. So many are lost and wandering, looking for something to give meaning and hope to their lives. We have what they need. Are you sharing it?

#risingjoy #2-Timothy #meaning

What is your message?

Rising Joy, by Vicki Matheny

Remember Jesus Christ, raised from the dead, a descendant of David; such is my gospel, for which I suffer hardship to the point of imprisonment as a criminal, but God’s message is not imprisoned! So I endure all things for the sake of those chosen by God, that they too may obtain salvation in Christ Jesus and its eternal glory. 2 Timothy 2.8-10

What is your message? Is it the same message as Paul? If our message is anything other than the death of Jesus, his resurrection and ascension, we are sharing a different gospel. We are not respecting God’s word and his message.

Paul was willing to go to prison because of the gospel. However, that did not stop him from sharing the message with others. He shared with whoever he came into contact. How far are you willing to go to share the gospel?

#risingjoy #2-Timothy #message

Back on the right track

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.

#risingjoy #2-Timothy #focus

Useless discussions

Rising Joy, by Vicki Matheny

Because of this, in fact, I suffer as I do. But I am not ashamed, because I know the one in whom my faith is set and I am convinced that he is able to protect what has been entrusted to me until that day. Hold to the standard of sound words that you heard from me and do so with the faith and love that are in Christ Jesus. 2 Timothy 1.12-13

Paul was nearing the end of his life. This is the last known letter that he wrote. He wrote to Timothy, his son in the faith, to encourage him to stand firm in the faith. Earlier he had told Timothy to not be ashamed to admit his faith in Jesus and in Paul. Timothy could be fearful at times. He would get caught up in useless discussions that served no purpose but to draw the focus away from Jesus and the work that Timothy was to be doing. Paul in 1.7 wrote to Timothy that God did not give him a spirit of fear, but of power, love, and self-control. If we are fearful, we need to recognize that fear does not come from God. He gives us the same spirit of power, love, and self-control that he gave to Timothy. If we are called upon to suffer because of our faith in Jesus, we should not be ashamed. We should look to Jesus in whom our faith is set. We need to have the same conviction that Paul demonstrated that Jesus is capable. Do you let doubt creep in? Do you let fear get a foothold? Go back to the sound words that we hear from Paul and Jesus. We have to continue in the faith and love that are in Jesus Christ to remain strong in our faith. Read your Bible! For it is there and only there that we will find the sound words that are to be our model to follow.

#risingjoy #2-Timothy #faith

Based on his purpose, 2 Timothy 1.9

“He is the one who saved us and called us with a holy calling, not based on our works but on his own purpose and grace, granted to us in Christ Jesus before time began,”

2 Timothy 1.9

God’s eternal purpose was formed “before time began.” It was granted to us in Christ, based upon his merit, not our own. Through him we received our calling to be his people.

What a marvelous thought that God’s purpose reaches beyond time and includes us in his salvation! Let every day become timeless grace!

#votd #2-Timothy #in-Christ

Trustworthy saying: 2 Timothy 2.11

“This saying is trustworthy: If we died with him, we will also live with him.”

2 Timothy 2.11

Five times in his letters to evangelists Paul uses the phrase about trustworthy sayings. It indicates an essential truth. Some think verses 11-13 were taken from an ancient hymn. To die with Christ is to accept any suffering so that people can be saved, v. 10.

Christ died to save others. So do we. His task is ours. We embrace hardship for his mission. This is the calling of every follower. Are you willing?

#votd #2-Timothy #suffering

In company with others: 2 Timothy 2.22

“But keep away from youthful passions, and pursue righteousness, faithfulness, love, and peace, in company with others who call on the Lord from a pure heart.”

2 Timothy 2.22

In order to refrain from untoward desires, Timothy must “give positive attention” (Phillips) to the virtues of Christ. This is done together with the saints.

Sin may be avoided and righteousness obtained as a part of God’s worshiping family. Seek every opportunity to be with Christ’s disciples.

#votd #2-Timothy #church

June 2015 Issue of Christian Worker (Preaching God’s Word)

Here’s a link to the latest PDF issue of the Christian Worker.

Here are the topics that you will find:

  • “Preach in View of the Judgment” (Rick Brumback)
  • “Reprove…Rebuke” (Sam Willcut)
  • “Be Instant in Season; out of Season” (Al Macias)
  • Exhort (John Moore)
  • Preach with All Longsuffering (Wayne Jones)
  • Preach Sound Doctrine (Joshua Moore)
  • Who Are False Teachers? (Don Walker)
  • The Role of a Preacher (Dewayne Bryant)

Christian Worker is an edification effort of the Southwest church of Christ in Austin, Texas.

You can subscribe to the email version of the Christian Worker paper by clicking on the publications link on their website and then following the given instructions…or by clicking on the link provided here in The Fellowship Room under the “Friends” category to your right.

Copyright © 2015 Southwest church of Christ, All rights reserved.

#2-timothy, #christian-worker, #day-of-judgment, #exhortation, #false-teachers, #longsuffering, #preaching-the-gospel, #rebuking, #reproving, #role-of-a-preacher, #sound-doctrine

An Example of a Sincere Faith

The Word of God tells  us   of many   men and  women of faith. We read about how they  put their faith into action.  Serving  God requires  action on our  part. If we are willing to  accept the Lord Jesus as  our  Savior and obey the Gospel by being  “buried with Him in baptism,”  God had promised that  our  sins will be  remitted and we will receive the “Gift of the Holy Spirit.” (Acts 2:38)

We  must  want to  grow “in the grace and  knowledge of the Lord Jesus.” The Lord has promised to  equip His  followers  for  service.  We  must  put  our faith into action and  be “doers of the Word and not  hearers only.” We must desire to grow spiritually.

We  must endeavor  to have a  faith that is real, a faith that is  active and ongoing. The  Apostle Paul had that  kind of  faith and he shared the importance of that faith with Timothy, as well as others.  Paul never ceased to encourage Timothy. I’m sure  he learned that, in part, from Barnabus, who is  called “the son of encouragement.”

Faith, like other characteristics of  believers  is meant to  grow. All of us are at  different  places  in our  spiritual pilgrimage.  Paul in 1 &  2nd Timothy  is attempting to  encourage Timothy and get  him to build upon his  faith in Jesus. In the  2nd  Epistle, Paul who is in prison  in Rome  awaiting  execution knows that this is   last  chance  to write to Timothy. He   wants Timothy to come to  Rome; we  do not know  if he  made it.

In  2 Timothy  1:3-5 we have Paul reminding Timothy of the  heritage  he has in Christ. He  first  tells him that he  is  praying for him.  Secondly, he reminds Timothy of his spiritual heritage.  Timothy was  blessed to have  a  faithful grandmother and mother.

Paul tells  Timothy  that  he  is confident of the  faith of Lois and Eunice and that  he  believe that  kind of  faith is  present in  Timothy also.  Paul calls it a “sincere” faith (ESV). The  NKJV uses the  word “genuine,” while  the  ASV uses  “unfeigned.”

Denny Petrillo, President of Bear Valley Bible  Institute of Denver, in a  series of  expository  lessons  on  2 Timothy given at the 2012 “Re Charge Me Conference” in Monterey, CA explained “sincere faith” in the  following  manner.   “It is a  faith that is  present, even in the dark. It is a  24/7 faith. His faith is the   ‘real deal.’”

It seems, according  to 2 Timothy 1:6-7 that Timothy’s  faith  may have  been weakening. Paul admonishes  him to “fan into flame” (ESV) or “kindle afresh” (NASB1977).  We  must always  be growing  in Jesus, using what  He  has   given to  equip us  for  service. We must take  advantage of all the Lord has  for us.

If we have the “sincere faith” Paul  mentions  here, we will be  able  to live an  abundant life in the Lord  Jesus and  help others  to the  same, thus living out our faith as the Lord Jesus  told us in  Matthew 5:16: “In the  same way, let your light shine before  others, so that they may see your good works and give glory  to your Father who is in Heaven.

Having a  “sincere or genuine faith” means  putting Jesus first and living out our faith.

 

#2-timothy, #faith