Encouragement to be Faithful
2 Timothy 2:1-6, 11-13
2 Timothy contains Paul’s parting words to his younger associate, Timothy. By “listening in”, we can gain wise and godly counsel that is as relevant to us today as it was to Timothy in the first century. This is a powerful manual for spiritual combat. It encourages us to be diligent and courageous to make the most of the opportunities that God has given us.
Who was Timothy?
OCCUPATION: Leader in the early church
BEST KNOWN FOR:
· his close relationship to Paul
· being a second-generation Christian*
· his leadership in the church despite his youth
* Father was a Greek, mother was a Jewish Christian
2:2 “Thou hast heard of me among many witnesses” Refers to Paul’s preaching and teaching, which Timothy had heard repeatedly on all three missionary journeys. Paul is saying here is that all the preaching and teaching that Timothy had heard could be used to “teach others also”. You could say it was a type of work experience for Timothy…in a way. Basically, this is Paul’s advice to a young teen.
2:3 – 6 Paul gives three examples for Timothy to follow: (1) a soldier who wants to please his commander; (2) an athlete who follows the rules of the game; and (3) a farmer who works hard.
(1) Paul often used military illustrations in his letters. This is not surprising since he lived in a military state and was in prison himself. He described as a “good soldier of Jesus Christ”
He endures hardship (v. 3). In our daily lives as Christian teens we have many trials and sometimes even get persecuted. What are some areas that we have to face these struggles? Work, School, Home?? But a dedicated Christian is in a battle that requires spiritual endurance. This implies that every Christian must expect some kind of ill treatment, just as every soldier does. It does not mean that just because you are a Christian you have it easy and you’ve got nothing to worry about.
He avoids worldly entanglements (v. 4). He is totally committed to his Commanding Officer, the One who enlists him. In our case, this is Jesus Christ. Such service of the soldier demands complete separation from worldly business, single, whole-hearted devotion to obeying and the fulfilment of one’s commanding officer. What are the different areas of our lives that are caught up in the world? Maybe it’s a video game, our friends, the music we listen to. All these things just act as stumbling blocks on our walk with Jesus Christ, just like the barbed wire the soldiers get caught up in, we too get caught up in these worldly things. What I am saying here is that we should set apart our focus on the things of this world, and totally commit ourselves to our commanding officer, Jesus Christ. (Romans 12:1-2)
He is focused (v. 3-4). In both these verses it says that we (Christian teens) will go through trials, but before we all lose hope, there is a great truth in all of this, and that is, if we put all our focus on Christ and not ourselves we can survive these things. SS “Himpossible” (Mat. 19:26)