2 Timothy 2:1-14
-Paul wrote 2nd timothy around 64-67 AD.
-Accepted that this is the last letter Paul wrote
-July 18th 64 AD was the start of the great fire in Rome, Nero rumored to have started fire (probably didn’t) blame shifted to the Christians to quiet the rumors.
-The following account was written by the Roman historian Tacitus “Therefore, to stop the rumor [that he had set Rome on fire], he [Emperor Nero] falsely charged with guilt, and punished with the most fearful tortures, the persons commonly called Christians, who were [generally] hated for their enormities….. Accordingly first those were arrested who confessed they were Christians; next on their information, a vast multitude were convicted, not so much on the charge of burning the city, as of “hating the human race.”
-Paul in prison, convinced his death is imminent ch.4:6 “the time of my departure is at hand.”
-Paul was Abandoned by all in Asia ch1:15, faced his prosecutors (Nero) alone ch.4:16
V.1 – Not of this world?
–Abandoned, betrayed, imprisoned, stripped of his rights as a roman citizen, stripped of all human rights, and left for dead. You therefore be strong in….
-Politics, financial security, greatness of Rome, establishing laws that “honor” god, personal rights etc….
-Aware his time was close Paul chooses not to address any pressing issue of the world.
-Timothy a beloved son of Paul (spiritually) was pointed to the grace that is in Jesus
-Our children’s future does not depend on the laws we pass or an amendment but in the grace that is in Jesus.
-1st timothy is mostly about timothy’s calling or gifts, but 2nd timothy has mostly to do with character.
-Timothy was a timid man, had a weak stomach and enjoyed a good cry ch1:4. Paul pulled no punches. People will abandon you, ministry hurts, requires hard work and good character, and you will suffer. You therefore be strong in the grace that is in Jesus.
V.3-7 Character revealed
-we must endure hardship, not may, not could, but must.
-A distracted soldier is a liability to the men around him, Lance Armstrong is not remembered for all his charity and accomplishments.
-Character is revealed in a snap shot, but established between chapters. David ran at goliath because he had an established relationship with the lord, Saul only knew Samuel. We don’t read the day to day events in the bible only the moments that reveal, but we do not rise to an occasion, our strength is in HIS grace, and we are more than conquerors.
-Soldiers, farmers, and athletes are all familiar with pain, suffering and hard work
-A good soldier is not concerned with anything other than the battle in front of him/her. Hence Paul does not address the issues of Rome which may have included, at the time, the martyrdom and the torture of Christian people. He does not call for a new leader, or mention Nero by name. This was not Paul’s war.
-Consider Joseph, trials can make us bitter or better. We do not develop calluses to protect ourselves, we fight like Mexican boxers.
-Julio Cesar Chavez V. Meldrick Taylor. Chavez allowed Taylor, the younger quicker fighter, in range. In order to hit Taylor once Chavez got hit 3 times. Joseph suffered enough for multiple life times to land one big shot. Chavez got beat for 9 rounds straight, Meldrick Taylor can no longer speak properly. Joseph trusted in God’s plan when there is no way he could have known what he would do for a nation.
-Sometimes the hard work is sitting down before the Lord and meditating on his word, “Consider what I say, and may the lord give you understanding.”
-We must endure hardship, we must spend time with the lord. Bitter or better can hinge on the time we spend with our God.
-You can have my notes, but I’d rather have you turn the paper over to the blank side and have you take your own notes.
-God wants to meet with you, and the Holy Spirit wants to give you understanding.
V.2, 8-10 the bloody mess
-Lee Shaw called me to encourage me after Petey passed away. He warned me away from ministry and when I wouldn’t concede he said “it’s a bloody mess out here, and I’ll do anything I can to help you.”
-Commit these things to faithful men, not the most gifted, not the best looking but the ones who will not quit.
-Petey asked me to open his house for study… then to pull a trailer to set up at church…. then to a prayer meeting…. then to teaching the youth twice a month…. then to teaching the youth full time… then to be on the board…. then to teach on Sunday.
-Teaching someone who can teach others, proves extremely difficult and costly
-I was a man not worth committing anything to.
-“But I’m not called to be a pastor?”
-Are we called to be like Christ? Are we called to make disciples of all nations? Are we called to teach our wives and our children?
-Consider Stephen and Peter
-Peter spoke to the religious leaders in Acts ch.4
-Acts 4:13 “They perceived that they were uneducated and untrained men.”
-Stephen was called to wait tables, Stephen was the help.
-Stephen also addressed the religious leaders like peter did.
-Acts 7:54 “When they heard these things they were cut to the heart.”
-Stephen was a man of good character, a student of the bible ready in season.
-The religious leaders marveled because Peter and John weren’t that sharp, but when Stephen spoke they were cut to the heart.
-Stephen the table waiter….. -Acts 6:8 “and Stephen full of faith and power, did great wonders and signs among the people.”
-Paul suffered as a criminal because he chose to serve God
-We do not suffer for the sake of suffering, but for the elect. Not for the sanctity of marriage, not for the greatness of America, not because “America was founded on god,” not because of health care, not for anything of this world.
-We must not cling to the edifice of a decadent past, we may yearn nostalgically for a time when America was a God fearing nation, but I don’t know that time and neither will my kids if there ever was a time like that.
-Pick a side and lose the rest of the people on the other side. John Wayne is the worst actor ever, I probably just upset someone (like my dad). Let the Gospel offend and let those of this world fight for it. We fight for the elect and must cautious not to alienate those chosen by God by picking sides in any arena other than that of our faith.
-John Wayne is fine……
-“Remember that Jesus Christ, of the seed of David was raised from the dead.”
-Our God conquered death, we need not fret over…. anything.
V.11-13 Faithful departed
-Baptized into his death
-Romans 6:4 “Therefore we were buried with him through baptism into death, that just as Christ was raised from the dead by the glory of the Father, even so we also should walk in newness of life
-martyrdom, “The context here seems rather to point to physical death as the highest point of suffering for Christ. The reference then is to the martyr’s death now viewed from the standpoint of the crowning day.” (Hiebert)
-Stephen, Paul, Peter, James etc. were faithful to the end. The worst punishment our society can place on a person is death, but death has become a crowning day.
-Paul suffered for the sake of the elect, he endured chains and trouble but it’s worth it. Notice Paul only encourages timothy to press on. He does not waiver. This is a dying man’s last letter he will write to a beloved son, had it not been worth it certainly Paul would have told his Son to walk away.
-This passage is more speaking towards (I believe) the millennial reign, which is found in revelation.
-regardless, in this life or the next, it is worth it. “O taste and see that The Lord is good”
-That means YOU must taste and see, you must meet with the lord. Saul confronted with an enemy ran to a medium to raise Samuel. Saul was not familiar with inquiring of the lord, and that is the only thing that separates Saul from David.
-If we deny him he will also deny us. When a human tries to comprehend the free will of man and the sovereignty of God it is merely a guess, and when religious people guess wrong then proceed to teach it, it is always disastrous. Continue in the faith
-No matter your condition spiritually and no matter what you believe we cannot change God. When we sin or transgress his grace is sufficient.
-where sin abounds grace abounds much more
-God is always faithful and he does not change
-Sin has already been paid for and there remains a road or way for you in the grace that is in Christ Jesus.
-I don’t pick my kids up when they fall, because they have to learn to get up. I will not talk to the coach to get my daughter more playing time though I have paid for it, she must earn it through hard work. I challenge them in their weak areas to teach them to overcome. I charge my son with the protection of the girls when I’m out of the house, because he will one day need to fulfill that call. The sports they play are tools for me to help them develop a foundation. I challenge their thought to teach them to think freely and understand. I listen so they can develop a voice….. I try to listen.
-When I want to teach them to be strong in the grace that is in our God, I confess my failures to them, ask for forgiveness when I have wronged them and so they see that HE remains faithful even when we are faithless.
-Our future will not be through legislation nor will we see things get better, our war will become our kids if they make that choice.
-Character must be developed not talent, the Faithful departed are men and women of character.
- Stephen (not a pastor) was called to serve tables, but did so much more. What is your idea of the pastoral staffs job description?
- God picks leaders based on character, in what areas can you build character?
- What is the greatest gift we can give our children or our future children?