"Let no man despise thee..."Bro. David Chancellor
9/8/2002 6:00 PM
These things speak, and exhort, and rebuke with all authority. Let no man despise thee.
Let no man despise thee There are those that do not like authority. There may be times that people wont like you. What, then, is meant by let no man despise thee?
1 Timothy 3:7
Moreover he must have a good report of them which are without; lest he fall into reproach and the snare of the devil.
This begins to let us know what the verse in Titus means. It talks about the kind of life we live. We need to have a good report from those that disagree. It means something when someone that disagrees with you can still acknowledge that you live right. This means we must interact with those that are without. Christ intended for us to interact with others. We all interact with those that are without. How we live makes a difference. This is said of the bishop so that he can be an example to the church. If we dont leave a good report before others, how can we point others to God? People need to see God working in our lives. He that despises you, despises me (Luke 10:16) If people have a bad report with the world, but claim to be a Christian, they bring a reproach on Christ as well as on themselves. Our lives need to be above reproach. Humanity today is no different than humanity was a hundred or more years ago. There is still a desire for God. They may be trying to fill it with a lot of other things, but the desire is there. They need to see people that have a good report so that the desire can be reinforced. Wherever we go, and whatever we do, we are representatives of Christ. Everything an ambassador does represents the country hes from. What kind of ambassador are you for God? Have a good report of them that are without. The real work is without. What kind of report do we have there? We spend the most time there. It takes plenty of grace to do good at work or at school for 40 + hours a week. It means something if you have a good report there. We need a good report at home. Family needs to see that God is more than just going to church. We cant force respect. Respect is earned. If you say that youre different, dont be surprised if people say, Well, whats the difference? Its better when they can see the difference the grace of God in your life. There needs to be a clear testimony of what God can do. People ought to be able to see the difference that God has made in your life. A consistent Christian life, over time, will be noticeable. It doesnt take people very long to realize that there is a difference. They can just tell that there are some things that you dont do. Theyll see a consistency in your life. The life that will tell in the world will have purity and consistency in it.
1 Timothy 4:12
Let no man despise thy youth; but be thou an example of the believers, in word, in conversation, in charity, in spirit, in faith, in purity.
Let no man despise thy youth Inexperience and a lack of depth are often characterized by youth. You may be young, but you dont have to have a bad report. You will be inexperienced when you are young, but you can still be a good example for God. F. G. Smith wrote, What the Bible Teaches, when he was about 22 years old. He was a missionary in Syria when he wrote it. He meant business with God and put a lot into his experience. Elsie Egermeier was in her twenties when she wrote the Bible Storybook. It was written with the material she was using to teach children. She meant business with God. We can do a work for God in our youth. We can have some depth about us. We can be an example, even though we are young. When you are living for God, you can be an example of what a child of God is. People, even when theyre young, can be an example of the believers. Young people can set and example for older people. You can dig in the word and understand it, even when youre young. A young person can have a pretty good grasp of the Bible. in word and in conversation This covers both what we do and what we say. The times you do get to speak, it will be driven home by how you live. in charity Be an example in love. Really care about people, not just looking to see what you can get in return. in spirit What kind of spirit or attitudes do you have? Have a good attitude. Be meek (willing to listen and take heed, with the grit and grace to stand for the right). in purity Show the purity thats found in Christ. You can be an example even in your youth because of the grace you have in your heart.
1 Peter 4:14-16
If ye be reproached for the name of Christ, happy are ye; for the spirit of glory and of God resteth upon you: on their part he is evil spoken of, but on your part he is glorified. But let none of you suffer as a murderer, or as a thief, or as an evildoer, or as a busybody in other men's matters. Yet if any man suffer as a Christian, let him not be ashamed; but let him glorify God on this behalf.
You could be reproached for the name of Christ. They were reproached because they announced as Christ one that the Jews were calling an imposter. We may be reproached in the same way for following the same one. If youre following God, dont worry about being despised for doing so. Dont suffer as a thief or murderer or an evildoer or a busybody. Dont get into things where you dont belong. Were not out to hear the latest story or to get the latest gossip. Our goal is to be a help to our fellowman. We want God to be glorified. We dont want to be a bad reflection on Christ. Be careful how youre living if you claim Christ. Too many people have taken the name of Christ and then lived a despicable life. Why pretend to be a Christian if youre not going to live like Christ? Your life and your character need to be such that if the mud is thrown that it doesnt stick. Our character and nature need to be such that if people speak badly about us, others will look at us and say, No, that doesnt fit. Daniel was often on the receiving end of the mud slinging, but he was faithful to God, and it passed. God needs people that are above reproach to be a light to the world. Suffering reproach for the name of Christ is different than bringing reproach on the name of Christ. Live an example that the world will want to imitate. The world needs to see what happens when the Spirit of God dwells within, as opposed to religion thats external.