I. Spiritual Elements (vv1-26)
A. Be Strong in what God has provided for Us! (v1)
“Timothy, my dear son, be strong through the grace that God gives you in Christ Jesus.” (v1)
1. Foundation: Live in Grace ! …Find your Strength in It!
– Don’t find strength in Yourself, Find it in God!
B. Models: Living the life
Verses 2–6, give us 4 illustrations of Living the Spiritual Life: the teacher, the solider, the athlete, and the farmer, then Verses 15-26 gives us three more: the worker, the utensil, and the servant in each of these we can identify various costs and elements that we can live a strong spiritual life with…
1. THE TEACHER (v2)
“You have heard me teach things that have been confirmed by many reliable witnesses. Now teach these truths to other trustworthy people who will be able to pass them on to others.”
- Be Disciples who Make Disciples
(Just this week I had a great talk with the man who Checks all of the Fire Alarms in our Complex. Not that I that I a model of sharing our faith, but I have been able to be nice to him and connect with him over the years…Thursday we talked all about Christianity and Mormonism and Zoroastrianism. Great talk, gave him My Heart’s Christ Home and More than A Carpenter)
Water in Glasses are you pouring into someone Else?
* On another note, some times our Sharing is in suffering.
“Endure suffering along with me, as a good soldier of Christ Jesus.” (v3)
- Once Paul gives Timothy the charge to make disciples who make disciples, the very next thing he says is “Share in suffering.” And should we really be surprised? The Master disciple-maker was put to death on a cross. And Timothy’s own discipler is writing this letter to him from prison. Paul wasn’t in prison just for being a disciple of Jesus. If he would have just loved Jesus and kept it to himself, no one would have bothered to go to all the trouble to put Paul into prison. But what got him locked up was that he made disciples of Jesus. He was fruitful in multiplying his life. Paul was beheaded outside of Rome for sharing his faith!
- So We can Start with this Cost in verse 3: One of the costs of disciple making can be opposition, even persecution. Enemies of Jesus don’t typically bother opposing Christians who keep to themselves. It’s not worth the hassle. But when followers of Jesus are fruitful in making disciples, they become strategic targets for resistance. Very few today oppose simply holding the Christian faith; it’s proselytizing — or disciple-making – that will get you in trouble.
2. THE SOLDIER (v4)
“Soldiers don’t get tied up in the affairs of civilian life, for then they cannot please the officer who enlisted them.”
- Age of Distraction: Not only will disciple-making be sidelined if we use our Phones, tv, movies, Distract Sharing our Faith!, but Satan has a thousand readymade, event-oriented distractions to divert us from pleasing Jesus in the grunt work of advancing the gospel through the process of disciple-making.
- We are bombarded not just by obvious time-wasters, but good initiatives that, if we’re not careful, will not just supplement disciple-making, but supplant it. So the first cost is not getting “entangled in civilian pursuits,” but keeping our mission, the Great Commission in mind.
- Pleasing others: This is very hard for some of us (others can find it way too easy!). Our aim is “to please the one who enlisted” us.
- One of the hardest aspects of the disciple making process is “selection.” Jesus chose twelve, and in doing so left out hundreds, even thousands, who would have benefited from his time and energy.
3. The Athlete (v5)
“Athletes cannot win the prize unless they follow the rules.”
Disciple making often feels like a really long lap around the stadium. It would be so much easier to take a short cut across the field. Disciples who make disciples can’t be mass-produced. Christians invitation is relational, gospel-centered disciple making, impact others with time and Jesus.
- Another cost the athlete image calls to mind is the energy it involves to disciple. Early-morning and late-night intense conversations are demanding. It’s much easier to avoid them and just watch TV. Disciple making costs us energy. Paul, “I will gladly spend myself and all I have for you…” (2 Corinthians 12:15). When we think we can’t do any more, we keep pushing to the finish line, like an athlete, as we learn the invaluable dynamic of serving in another’s strength.
— Follower of Christ puts Effort into their Faith!
4. The Farmer (v6)
“Hardworking farmers should be the first to enjoy the fruit of their labor.”
- We are called to Cultivate the Land and enjoy the fruit. However, Disciple making, like raising crops, is time-consuming. It takes time to plow the field, time to plant, time to water, time to fertilize, then time to harvest. So with disciple making. It’s not one meeting, but often a year’s worth of regular meetings. It’s not one conversation, but sometime difficult conversation after conversation. Which requires patience. Like with crops, we don’t typically see the progress all at once, but over the course of months, it’s amazing what kind of harvest can happen.
5. The Worker (v15)
“Work hard so you can present yourself to God and receive his approval. Be a good worker, one who does not need to be ashamed and who correctly explains the word of truth.”
- Be Diligent as a worker, Our Job is to Handle the Word accurately!
- Not the only job of a minister, but the job of every Christian. We all are called to “Explain the Word” in big and small ways.
6. The Utensil (vv20-21)
“In a wealthy home some utensils are made of gold and silver, and some are made of wood and clay. The expensive utensils are used for special occasions, and the cheap ones are for everyday use. f you keep yourself pure, you will be a special utensil for honorable use. Your life will be clean, and you will be ready for the Master to use you for every good work.”
- Be made Holy
- Be useful to the Master
- Be prepared for every Good Work
- A Utensil of Honor is marked by Usefulness to the Master. When you take a spiritual survey of your life, are you Useful to the Master and prepared for every good work? Or are you just enjoying church? Tough question…
7. The Servant (vv23-26)
“Again I say, don’t get involved in foolish, ignorant arguments that only start fights. A servant of the Lord must not quarrel but must be kind to everyone, be able to teach, and be patient with difficult people. Gently instruct those who oppose the truth. Perhaps God will change those people’s hearts, and they will learn the truth. Then they will come to their senses and escape from the devil’s trap. For they have been held captive by him to do whatever he wants.”
- “A Servant of the Lord” (v24) must not be the Quarreling Kind … We may instruct others for purpose of leading them to repentance …But, we must not be quarrelsome, but instead be kind.
- “Gently instruct” (v25) those who are against you and the Word. Lord willing they will be changed by the Spirit and the Love of Other Christians.
- “They will come to their senses” (v26) sin makes people nonsensical…come to your senses so you may Escape the devil’s trap.
Why live in these ways… Why do we live as the solider, the athlete, the farmer, the worker, the utensil, and the servant…what are our Motives….
II. Spiritual Foundations (vv8-13)
8 Always remember that Jesus Christ, a descendant of King David, was raised from the dead. This is the Good News I preach. 9 And because I preach this Good News, I am suffering and have been chained like a criminal. But the word of God cannot be chained. 10 So I am willing to endure anything if it will bring salvation and eternal glory in Christ Jesus to those God has chosen.
11 This is a trustworthy saying: If we die with him, we will also live with him. 12 If we endure hardship, we will reign with him. If we deny him, he will deny us. 13 If we are unfaithful, he remains faithful, for he cannot deny who he is.
A. Preach Christ (v8)
- In a recent poll of ministers when asked the question do you believe in the resurrection of Jesus from the dead? 51% of the Methodist ministers answered no. 35% of Episcopalians. 33% American Baptist. 30% Presbyterians and 13% of the American Lutherans.
- Remember our Savior
- Remember the Good News
B. Model Paul (v9) “So I am willing to endure anything” (v10)
- If it will bring Honor …Honor to Christ and Salvation to People!
- Even If, it means I die with Him, I will remain faithful (v13)
III. Spiritual Actions (vv14-23)…..7 Actions of the Spiritual Life:
Paul’s imperative to Timothy in this section is to Remind everyone…
- Who is “Everyone”? “The Trustworthy People” (v2) that he is charged to instruct,
- What’s “The Reminder”? that Timothy was to deliver is…
- Remind Everyone (v14), “Remind everyone about these things, and command them in God’s presence to stop fighting over words.”
These Arguments are no Value…“Such arguments are useless” and they can “ruin those who hear them.”
2. Work Hard (v15), “Work hard so you can present yourself to God and receive his approval.”
3. Avoid Worthless Talk (v16), “Avoid worthless, foolish talk that only leads to more godless behavior.”
“This kind of talk spreads like cancer, as in the case of Hymenaeus and Philetus. They have left the path of truth, claiming that the resurrection of the dead has already occurred; in this way, they have turned some people away from the faith.” (vv17-18)
4. Turn Away (v19), “All who belong to the Lord must turn away from evil.”
+ The Sin of the Ungodly cannot shake the foundation God has established. That foundation is sealed with two truths: “The Lord knows those who are His” and “Those who confess the Name of the Lord must turn away from evil.“
5. Run (v22), “Run from anything that stimulates youthful lusts.”
+ Paul writes to those living in Corinth – 1 Corinthians 6:18
“Run from sexual sin! No other sin so clearly affects the body as this one does. For sexual immorality is a sin against your own body.”
6. Pursue (v22), “Instead, pursue righteous living, faithfulness, love, and peace. Enjoy the companionship of those who call on the Lord with pure hearts.”
7. Don’t Get Involved (v23), “Again I say, don’t get involved in foolish, ignorant arguments that only start fights.”