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Summary: The pattern that Paul refers to is sound teaching but it includes several thoughts. 1- Keep the teaching 2- Guard the deposit 3- Show the mercy

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INTRO.- NLT 13 Hold on to the pattern of wholesome teaching you learned from me—a pattern shaped by the faith and love that you have in Christ Jesus.

Hold to the pattern. What’s the pattern? It depends on what you’re talking about. There is a pattern for almost anything and everything.

ILL.- For example, I have a pattern by which I prepare my book sermons that I preach. I study the text by paragraph and try to discover the main thought of the text to begin with. Next I try to break down the text (paragraph) based on the main thought or theme. Generally there is almost always several points or thoughts relating to the main theme of the text. (1, 2, 3, etc.)

Then once I have the points of the sermons that’s when begin to build the sermon based on those thoughts. I refer to it as putting meat on the bones. The sermon outline from the text is the bones and the meat refers to the applications and illustrations. AND THAT’S MY PATTERN FOR PREPARING BOOK SERMONS! And I know you’re so glad to hear about this!

ILL.- One time a little boy saw his father use a square to see if a board he was planing was straight. “Why are you so careful, Daddy?” asked the boy. “We can’t guess in carpenter work,” his dad said. “You have to be just right. People guess at too many things. God does not like that way of living.”

“I guess there are no squares to live by,” said the boy. “Yes, there are squares to live by, and you will find them in the Bible. Test all that you do by them, and you go straight in life, my boy.”

God’s Word gives us pattern for life which we must adhere to if we would see life. That is, if we would see the best life here and now and the life in the next.

PROP.- The pattern that Paul refers to is sound teaching but it includes several thoughts.

1- Keep the teaching

2- Guard the deposit

3- Show the mercy

I. KEEP THE TEACHING

13What you heard from me, keep as the pattern of sound teaching, with faith and love in Christ Jesus.

NLT Hold on to the pattern of wholesome teaching you learned from me—a pattern shaped by the faith and love that you have in Christ Jesus.

Keep the sound teaching, the solid stuff based on God’s Word.

ILL.- When my mother still lived at home and suffered with her Parkinson’s disease I would go back and visit her regularly. I remember one time when I was back to see mom that she had an envelope (I believe it was) lying on the table next to her chair and it had a long row of numbers on it. I asked mom, “What’s this?” She said, “I’m figuring my checkbook.”

Mom was figuring, balancing her checkbook the old fashioned way by adding up a long list of numbers. DO PEOPLE DO THAT ANY MORE? Don’t we have calculators for this? Why bother doing it the old fashioned way?

Mother said she did it that way because she said it was good for her mind. It exercised her brain. And when it comes to some things, the old way may well be the best way!!! Amen?

ILL.- For example, no one can beat the old fashion gospel about Jesus dying on the cross for the sins of the world! And it’s hard to beat old fashioned preaching of God’s Word, but today, we’ve got a new breed of preachers with new ideas and new ways of preaching.

Some use power point presentations extensively. I knew of one preacher who showed still pictures throughout his whole sermon and I know why. The content of his sermon was so poor or shallow that he showed pictures to cover up his lack of study.

Some use little or no scripture in their sermons. Their sermons are not sermons, but rather more like little pep talks filled with lots of entertaining stories. And yes, I know that I use lots of stories for illustrations in my sermons but I do this with a point in mind. AND THAT IS TO MAKE A STRONG POINT FROM SCRIPTURE! I never tell a story just to be telling a cute story. I always use it to point to something spiritual or something in scripture. Jesus told good stories too!

Some preachers today say little about sin, death and hell. I suppose they don’t want to offend their audience. We also have few people walking the aisles in our churches to accept Christ, confess Him and be baptized. Could this be the reason? If we don’t preach the truth about sin which separates us from God then it seems to me that people will never respond to God.

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