Summary: Encouraging singles, widows, and Christ followers without believing spouses to successfully face the difficult task of following Christ solo.
We’re in the series "No Perfect Families Allowed" and we’re gleaning valuable real to life, hope-inspiring principles for family encouragement from the recorded biographies of Bible families. Last week we established our theme verse for this series..
Romans 5:20b (Amplified Bible) Where sin increased and abounded, grace (God’s unmerited favor) has surpassed it and increased and superabounded…
Applied to family life that means that God’s grace is greater than the past hurts or mistakes of your family! If you will trust God you have hope with every family need.
Today on Mother’s Day we look at the family of a mother who was following Christ but her husband wasn’t. Her name was Eunice.
Many today mirror her experience. There are a lot of people following Christ who don’t have believing spouses, many widows and widowers who serve Christ alone at home, there are lots and lots of Christian singles. We’re going to look today at what the Bible says to them from the experience of this woman who was following Christ without the benefit and blessing of having a husband who shared her faith. We’re going to consider Following Christ Solo.
One caveat: Some of you Christ followers are married to believing spouses so you might be tempted to write this message off thinking that you don’t need to hear it – that it doesn’t apply to you. But please don’t do that because you are called to care for your brothers and sisters who walk this path.
God’s Word says “Don’t look out only for your own interests, but take an interest in others, too.” Philippians 2:4 (NLT)
Others of you here today may not yet follow Christ. We’re glad you’re here! At Pathway we’ll never pressure you or try to intimidate you in any way. But we do want to share the love of Christ with you and be a place where you can safely come and learn more about what it means to be a follower of Christ just in case you would ever want to cross that line.
So we’re going to look at this woman in Scripture who was following Christ but apparently had a husband who didn’t. Here’s her Bible biography. Luke writes in the early church history Book of Acts:
1 Paul went first to Derbe and then to Lystra, where there was a young disciple named Timothy. His mother was a Jewish believer, but his father was a Greek. 2 Timothy was well thought of by the believers in Lystra and Iconium, 3 so Paul wanted him to join them on their journey. Acts 16:1-3a (NLT)
Paul, an apostle and missionary of the early church, was on a return trip to strengthen the churches established on his first missionary journey. While doing so he is impressed with the reputation of a young Christ follower named Timothy. But notice right away that Timothy is not mentioned without Luke also citing his Christian mother and her situation.
Timothy’s mother was a Jewish woman who had become a follower of Christ. “But,” Luke writes that Timothy’s father was a Greek. Luke does not add that Timothy’s father was also a Christian, only that he’s a Gentile. So we conclude that Timothy’s mom was married to an unbelieving husband.
The next and only other time Timothy’s mother Eunice is mentioned in Scripture is in a letter Paul wrote years later when he’s in a dungeon far away in Rome for preaching the good news about Jesus. In this writing Paul rehearses the robust faith Timothy exemplified, which was modeled in his mother and grandmother.
Incidentally, the letter we’re about to read from, Second Timothy, contains the last recorded words of Paul before his death as a martyr. He’s actually on death row when he writes these encouraging words to Timothy.
4Recalling your tears, I long to see you, so that I may be filled with joy.5 I remember your genuine faith, for you share the faith that first filled your grandmother Lois and your mother, Eunice. And I know that same faith continues strong in you. 6 This is why I remind you to fan into flames the spiritual gift God gave you when I laid my hands on you. 7 For God has not given us a spirit of fear and timidity, but of power, love, and self-discipline. 2 Timothy 1:5-7 (NLT)
What does this brief Scriptural biography of Timothy’s mom Eunice tell us about Following Christ Solo?
PRINCIPLES FOR FOLLOWING CHRIST SOLO & SUCCESSFULLY
FOLLOWING CHRIST SOLO IS NOT SECOND CLASS.
Eunice didn’t have a believing husband but she still didn’t let that stop her from passing her faith along to her son. The Bible says that Timothy was well thought of by the believers in his church. The Bible tells us that his genuine faith was first found in his mother and grandmother. He had sound Christian training at home in spite of the fact that he only had one believing parent.