Summary: A sermon examining the contrast between vessels of honor and vessels of dishonor.
Vessels Of Honor
The book of II Timothy contains a wealth of information concerning “Christian living”.A major theme of this letter is instructions concerning Church organization.
It is believed that Timothy was converted by Paul during his First Missionary Journey. It is also believed that Paul returned to Ephesus and when he departed, put Timothy in charge of the Church - 1 Timothy 1:3 When I left for Macedonia, I urged you to stay there in Ephesus and stop those whose teaching is contrary to the truth.
Throughout 1st & 2nd Timothy Paul delivers a charge to Timothy concerning the operation of the church. Though much we read was intended directly from Paul to Timothy, they are truths that we should learn & APPLY in our own lives as well. In the specific verses we will consider today we read of “Vessels Of Honor” to be used by God. That is the subject I would like to examine today, So join me as we consider the thought “Vessels Of Honor”
In the house of a wealthy man there were different types of vessels. Some were made of Gold & Silver. Some were made of wood and clay. Those that were made of gold and silver were used for special tasks. The cheap ones were for everyday use.
Paul is illustrating the church as a whole… we are God’s household and we have to understand that in our house are vessels of both honor & dishonor! Simply put, in the church there are vessels that bring honor to God and vessels that don’t!
In our text, Paul tells Timothy that those that keep themselves pure will be used of God to for every good work.
1. Do you want to be special or ordinary?
2. Would you rather be described as gold & silver or wood & clay?
3. Are you a vessel of honor or a vessel of dishonor?
Hopefully by the end of this message you will be able to examine your life and discern where you stand with God
There are 3 things that we must consider about our lives:
I. Consider Your Worth - v20 But in a great house there are not only vessels of gold and of silver, but also of wood and of earth; and some to honour, and some to dishonor.
The “great house” here represents the whole system of Christianity.The different vessels represent the different “members” in that “house”. The specific assembly that Paul is referring to is the Church at Ephesus. Paul’s description of Ephesus is one that fits church assemblies in 2013.
He speaks of two types of vessels: There are “worthy vessels” and there are “unworthy vessels”… “vessels of honor” and “Vessels of dishonor”If you are a part of this or any other church, I encourage you to “Consider Your Worth”
A. Some Are Worthy Vessels: v20“Some to honor” – “vessels of gold & silver”
Paul speaks of vessels of gold and silver These are the important, holy, sincere, and useful teachers and members.
Much like today, Gold & Silver were very valuable in Paul’s day. These metals are described as precious. Today you can’t watch T.V without William Devane trying to get you to invest in these items. We often think of them as materials used to make jewelry but they are also very useful as conductors of electricity (silver in computers & cell phones) That is the description here, though gold & silver are beautiful more importantly they were USEFUL!
Notice the phrase “some to honor”. In the church there were some who were strong, faithful and guarded against false teachers.(More on this in a moment)
B. Some Are Worthless Vessels: v20 “Some to dishonor” – “vessels of wood & earth”
Here Paul mentions vessels of wood and of earth. Gold & Silver were scarce and when found had to be mined out of the earth,
Wood & clay are materials that are cheap and easy to come by. they are found everywhere and in abundance. Here, the picture of earthen and wood vessels speaks of things uses for garbage disposal or the carrying out of human waste.
What is referred to here are the false and heretical teachers, such as Hymeneus and Philetus, and their followers. (verse 17) There were not only false teachers but also members who were led away by the heretical teachers So as you consider your worth? Where do you fit in?
Not only should you consider your worth, you must also:
II. Consider Your Work v21
The “vessels” that are spoken of served a purpose. They were used for a specific work.
We all know that those who have been saved have a specific purpose in the “Church”.You are a vessel in this great house! But maybe you are not a vessel of honor! YOU CAN BE! There is a transformation described on verse 21. Notice: