Summary: What a Christian is to be doing
Do you have a gourd growing in your life that is taking over and choking the life out of important things?
When the things of God do not stir you
When the glories of heaven do not interest you
When the horrors of hell do not concern you
When the peril of the lost doesn’t move you
When the Word of God does not attract you
When the idea of prayer does not draw you
When the House of God does not delight you
When you do not see the other things in your life as a way to perform the will of God,
…then you know that “gourds” have taken over your life.
What am I to do with my life? I Tim 1:1-20
This add was given in a London Newspaper: “Men wanted for hazardous journey, small wages, bitter cold, long months of complete darkness, constant danger, safe return doubtful. Honor and recognition in case of success.” Would you believe there were thousands of men who responded to this? The reason for such a turn out was the ad was placed by the noted Artic explorer, Sir Ernest Shackleton. It causes me to wonder what kind of ad Jesus would give to us today. “Men and women wanted for the task of helping to build my church. You will often be misunderstood, even by those working with you. You will face constant attack from an invisible enemy. You may not see the results of your labor, and your full reward will not come until all your work is completed. It may cost you your home, your family, your friends, even your life.” As we see in the Bible Timothy was one who took this calling. He took on some of the tough assignments in churches Paul had founded. He came from a mixed home for his dad was Greek and his mother a Jew. Timothy did face times of discouragement. Paul wrote to Timothy to help him understand how a local church should be managed. It is in Timothy that we read the responsibilities of a pastor and local church. Let us see what chapter one says.
I. WE ARE TO INSTRUCT IN SOUND DOCTRINE. 1-11, 5 “The purpose of my instruction is that all the Christians there would be filled with love that comes from a pure heart, a clear conscience, and sincere faith.” The people of the church in Ephesus needed to know that Timothy was the man of God; God had given them to lead them in spiritual things. The man of God has to give out the truth for there are many false teachers trying to lead believers astray. Paul would say to us you are a Christian soldier under orders from the King of kings. We are to guard the truth and pass it on to faithful people. Paul had given Timothy the Word of God to give to others, there was no complete bible then so it was a great responsibility to pass along all the truth in the right way. We have that same job today with the written Word of God. There were myths and endless genealogies in that day just as there is in our day. The false teachers raise questions that lead people away from the truth and do not promote God’s saving plan. They do not want to produce love, purity and a clear conscience but divisions, hypocrisy and problems with people. What a terrible thing when Christians get off tract because they refuse healthy doctrine. It is not only in preaching that we find no doctrinal preaching but it is also coming in man many songs that some say are contemporary. Some that has Words with little meaning. A Mighty fortress is our God vs. “Spring up, o Well.” Much of what Paul wrote had to do with false teachers getting people to be in bondage to the law instead of living in the freedom of grace. Our nature says that if we have list of rules and follow them we can appear to be holy with an empty heart. The law has never and never will save someone from sin. The law only exposes us to our sin and tells us we need a savior. In vs. 9, 10 Paul centered on five of the Ten Commandments 5-9 which deal with how we treat our mother and father and our neighbors.
As we live for Jesus there are some rich truths we need to keep in mind:
What ever is at the center of our attention is what has us. What is the center of your attention?
God loves you enough to save you as you are but He loves you to much to leave you where you are.
Nothing is as relevant as the eternal.