The Introduction

You have walked with us through Paul’s first letter to Timothy. Remember all the things that Paul addressed and helped Pastor Timothy with?

  • teaching false doctrine
  • listening to silly, pointless myths
  • leaving the church
  • leaving the faith
  • loud
  • rambunctious
  • overly rebellious against authorities
  • corporately worshipping God while hating and despising others
  • women dressing immodestly
  • overly aggressive women
  • passive men
  • unqualified leaders
  • entertaining demons
  • demonic teaching
  • anti-gospel teaching
  • ageism
  • lack of support for widows
  • not honoring elders
  • not paying full-time elders
  • prejudice
  • favoritism
  • lack of self-care
  • rich people

That is a truckload of ministry and learning how to minister. You ain’t going to get that kind of training in seminary. Most of that is going to be on-the-job training.

But by this second letter, we know this ain’t Timothy’s first rodeo. But just like a rodeo, let us not assume you have everything figured out after just one. If you have been ministering for longer than a few moments, you know that you have only begun and the hits just keep on coming.

But Paul spends some considerable money, breaks out his writing utensil of choice and doesn’t stop with the Spirit-filled encouragement for Timothy and to the congregations in Ephesus.

The Text

2 Timothy 1:1–7 (CSB)
1 Paul, an apostle of Christ Jesus by God’s will, for the sake of the promise of life in Christ Jesus:

2 To Timothy, my dearly loved son. Grace, mercy, and peace from God the Father and Christ Jesus our Lord.

3 I thank God, whom I serve with a clear conscience as my ancestors did, when I constantly remember you in my prayers night and day.

4 Remembering your tears, I long to see you so that I may be filled with joy.

5 I recall your sincere faith that first lived in your grandmother Lois and in your mother Eunice and now, I am convinced, is in you also.

6 Therefore, I remind you to rekindle the gift of God that is in you through the laying on of my hands.

7 For God has not given us a spirit of fear, but one of power, love, and sound judgment.

The Meditation

The gifts of God will never depart us

2 Timothy 1:1–7 (CSB)
1 Paul, an apostle of Christ Jesus by God’s will, for the sake of the promise of life in Christ Jesus:

Romans 11:28-32 (CSB) Regarding the gospel, they are enemies for your advantage, but regarding election, they are loved because of the patriarchs, 29 since God’s gracious gifts and calling are irrevocable. 30 As you once disobeyed God but now have received mercy through their disobedience, 31 so they too have now disobeyed, resulting in mercy to you, so that they also may now receive mercy. 32 For God has imprisoned all in disobedience so that he may have mercy on all.

We live in a messed up world. And I wish that the church is perfect and free from wolves that seek to devour the little lambs of God. But it is and is not yet. I have seen countless times where people who were gifted in presenting the word and preaching the gospel but thought of themselves fit for the office of pastor and yet, was not given that grace.

Month after month, pastors falling from grace–some quietly and some spectacularly. They still have the gift of preaching but they have disqualified themselves from the role of elder/pastor/shepherd/bishop or even in deacon.

What do we do with this?

Repent of your Western culture and your Americanized influence: how about, it’s okay not to lead. How about, it’s okay not to be in the spotlight. How about, it’s okay:

1 Thessalonians 4:11-12 (CSB) o seek to lead a quiet life, to mind your own business, and to work with your own hands, as we commanded you, 12 so that you may behave properly in the presence of outsiders and not be dependent on anyone.

Is that good enough? Minister when God gives you grace? Stop forcing your way unto a platform. Stop willing yourself to the top? Stop trying to be in complete power.

We are a society who are exactly like the people in Genesis 6, obsessed with being in power and being famous. Our obsession with such things in America is only leading to our destruction and ruin.

What are you called to do? Think and pray on that. Make sure it is the Lord of Hosts and not what you think is super cool. Then make sure you are tested by godly men and women in your church. Not for your gifts but your character. And take your time–there is no rush. We are precious in the sight of God. Let John 21 be your guide.

Paul was called. Tested. And tried. He ended up stoned, rejected, beaten, captured, shipwrecked, bitten by a viper, only to live the end of his days in house arrest right before getting his head lopped off.

That is the calling and the end of pastors and preachers. Make sure you count the cost of following Christ, preaching his word, and feeding his lambs. Count the cost.

I don’t want to be captain obvious here but why are we doing this for?

for the sake of the promise of life in Christ Jesus

It is all about the gospel. The preaching of the word and the sharing of our lives because we love each other and we love our neighbors so much:

1 Thessalonians 2:8 (CSB) We cared so much for you that we were pleased to share with you not only the gospel of God but also our own lives, because you had become dear to us.

The blessings of God will never depart us

2 To Timothy, my dearly loved son. Grace, mercy, and peace from God the Father and Christ Jesus our Lord.

The will of God will never depart us

3 I thank God, whom I serve with a clear conscience as my ancestors did, when I constantly remember you in my prayers night and day.

The joy of God will never depart us

4 Remembering your tears, I long to see you so that I may be filled with joy.

The testimonies of God will never depart us

5 I recall your sincere faith that first lived in your grandmother Lois and in your mother Eunice and now, I am convinced, is in you also.

The fire of God will never depart us

6 Therefore, I remind you to rekindle the gift of God that is in you through the laying on of my hands.

The Spirit of God will never depart us

7 For God has not given us a spirit of fear, but one of power, love, and sound judgment.

The Gospel

God will never depart from us

The double grip of the Father and the Son:

John 10:27-30 (CSB) My sheep hear my voice, I know them, and they follow me. 28 I give them eternal life, and they will never perish. No one will snatch them out of my hand. 29 My Father, who has given them to me, is greater than all. No one is able to snatch them out of the Father’s hand. 30 I and the Father are one.”

Sealed by the Spirit:

Ephesians 1:13 (CSB) In him you also were sealed with the promised Holy Spirit when you heard the word of truth, the gospel of your salvation, and when you believed.

Your family may disown you, the Lord cannot:

Psalms 27:10 (CSB) Even if my father and mother abandon me, the LORD cares for me.

Call upon him, and he will answer you:

Psalms 9:9-10 (CSB) The LORD is a refuge for the persecuted, a refuge in times of trouble. 10 Those who know your name trust in you because you have not abandoned those who seek you, LORD.

Even in your deepest darkest pain when God feels so far, watch when God draws closer to those who cry out to him:

Psalms 22:1-5 (CSB) My God, my God, why have you abandoned me? Why are you so far from my deliverance and from my words of groaning? 2 My God, I cry by day, but you do not answer, by night, yet I have no rest. 3 But you are holy, enthroned on the praises of Israel. 4 Our ancestors trusted in you; they trusted, and you rescued them. 5 They cried to you and were set free; they trusted in you and were not disgraced.

The Prayer

My Deliverer
 
Do not lose your children! Save us forever!

Amen!

Media

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