God’s WordBro. David Chancellor
4/17/2005 11:00 AM
2 Timothy 4:1-4
I charge thee therefore before God, and the Lord Jesus Christ, who shall judge the quick and the dead at his appearing and his kingdom; Preach the word; be instant in season, out of season; reprove, rebuke, exhort with all longsuffering and doctrine. For the time will come when they will not endure sound doctrine; but after their own lusts shall they heap to themselves teachers, having itching ears; And they shall turn away their ears from the truth, and shall be turned unto fables.
Paul was describing a time when men would become wrapped up in themselves. While this day and age is that way, we don’t have to be that way. Paul encouraged Timothy to preach the word. The word of God is what matter’s and makes the difference in people’s lives.
To be instant is to be ready at all times. If the word is within us, then we will be ready. It is natural that it will come out and be shared with others.
Reproof and rebuke have their place, even when it is hard. There are times when it will stop us and cause us to reflect. When Jesus rebuked Peter, it got his attention. Peter had been looking at the situation from the human point of view. There are times when our ideas get out of control, and God may have to rebuke us to get us back on track.
God also has words of encouragement to help us move forward. The word "doctrine" means "teaching." The word of God is the word of God. We shouldn’t hold up one part over another. We should exhort one another in a teaching way. We need teaching and instruction so that we can grow in the things of God.
One of themselves, even a prophet of their own, said, The Cretians are alway liars, evil beasts, slow bellies. This witness is true. Wherefore rebuke them sharply, that they may be sound in the faith; Not giving heed to Jewish fables, and commandments of men, that turn from the truth. Unto the pure all things are pure: but unto them that are defiled and unbelieving is nothing pure; but even their mind and conscience is defiled. They profess that they know God; but in works they deny him, being abominable, and disobedient, and unto every good work reprobate.
Titus was left in Crete to put some things in order. The description of these people might be offensive, but it was a natural tendency. Paul was encouraging Titus to help these avoid the natural tendency. He wanted to help them rise above the natural tendency. God can help us to rise above some things.
But speak thou the things which become sound doctrine: That the aged men be sober, grave, temperate, sound in faith, in charity, in patience.
Paul encouraged them to work on certain qualities. "Grave" refers to being venerable; someone who could be looked up to and respected, mature; someone who can find the important things; someone who can sift through things and find what really matters. "Temperate" – moderate, able to find balance on things; not taking things to the extreme. "Sound in faith, in charity, in patience…" – be strong in faith, and in love. Be able to take more. Patience has to do with being able to endure things graciously.
The aged women likewise, that they be in behaviour as becometh holiness, not false accusers, not given to much wine, teachers of good things; That they may teach the young women to be sober, to love their husbands, to love their children, To be discreet, chaste, keepers at home, good, obedient to their own husbands, that the word of God be not blasphemed.
We want to be able to progress to being a teacher. The best way to teach is to be an example of it. If we are behaving in a way that becomes holiness, we can be a good example. The older women should teach the younger ones how the home out to be. Home should be a place of love. "Keeper at home" does not mean "housekeeper." The thought is that the wife should "stay home" and not be a busybody or a social butterfly. Don’t feel like you have to be in all the social stuff. If the gospel works as it should, it will help the condition of women – in that men will treat them with love and respect. The gospel will work good by promoting the good of the home for both the man and the woman. The man needs to take some responsibility at home, too. "It’s all yours; she’s just your helper." The gospel should cause the home to be a place of love and harmony. We can change things by living the gospel out where we are at. The gospel should make things better.
Young men likewise exhort to be sober minded. In all things showing thyself a pattern of good works: in doctrine showing uncorruptness, gravity, sincerity, Sound speech, that cannot be condemned; that he that is of the contrary part may be ashamed, having no evil thing to say of you.
The young men are to be a "pattern of good works." Speak things that are useful and beneficial to others. Apply yourself to that which is right. Behave such that no one can speak evil of you. You don’t have to have a vice or a bad habit. When our lives back up what we say, that’s when it will have a good effect.
Exhort servants to be obedient unto their own masters, and to please them well in all things; not answering again; Not purloining, but showing all good fidelity; that they may adorn the doctrine of God our Saviour in all things.
This is the picture of a good faithful worker. The best qualification you can have is "saint." Saintly behavior makes a good worker. The qualities we show at work should be the qualities that every employer wants. Our performance on the job should bring a good reflection on the gospel.
For the grace of God that bringeth salvation hath appeared to all men, Teaching us that, denying ungodliness and worldly lusts, we should live soberly, righteously, and godly, in this present world;
The grace of God is for everyone. It came for everybody. We should live so as to make everyone want it. If our lives turn people away from the gospel, we need to be rebuked. Our job is to cause others to seek after what we have.
Looking for that blessed hope, and the glorious appearing of the great God and our Saviour Jesus Christ; Who gave himself for us, that he might redeem us from all iniquity, and purify unto himself a peculiar people, zealous of good works. These things speak, and exhort, and rebuke with all authority. Let no man despise thee.
These things are what we need to know about our behavior. These behaviors are what Paul wanted them to have. These behaviors should glorify God and lift up the gospel. People should see a difference in our behavior. They should see us living for God and having a good time doing it. Take time to stop and think about God and what he’d have for you.
As many as I love, I rebuke and chasten: be zealous therefore, and repent.
Rebuke and reproof may come and be difficult to take, but when God sends those things, it is because he loves and cares about us. He doesn’t want us to continue down a path that would be destructive and detrimental to us. He will pull us up short and show us the way that we need to go. When we see that we’re headed the wrong direction, we need to be willing to change. We can ask God to help us to change and he will help us. We want to live the way that God would have us to live.