Archive for June 23rd, 2016

Be Diligent

June 23, 2016

The idea of mentoring is not new.  Paul was a mentor to young Timothy back in the first century.  We have in the Bible two examples of what Paul said to his young student.

I.  Beware!  I Timothy 4:1-3

 Now the Spirit expressly says that in latter times some will depart from the faith, giving heed to deceiving spirits and doctrines of demons, speaking lies in hypocrisy, having their own conscience seared with a hot iron, forbidding to marry, and commanding to abstain from foods which God created to be received with thanksgiving by those who believe and know the truth.

It is now almost two thousand years after Paul wrote these words.  Clearly, these are “latter times”.  Also clear, there are people who are deceived.  Sadly, when people are deceived, they do not know it.  Their conscience is seared and only the Word of God, combined with the Spirit of God can set them free.  We should share with them the truth, and pray that God will open their minds and hearts by His Spirit.

Today, not many people are denying marriage or abstinence from certain foods, but there still is deception and false doctrine.  Many of them are found at the extreme ranges of biblical interpretation.  One extreme is liberalism.  An example is when  a Christian minister in a Christian church performs a marriage for two people of the same sex.  The only way to justify this is to ignore certain scriptures.  (For example: Lev 18:22, 20:13, I Cor 6:9-10, I Tim 1:8-11, and Rom 1:18-32)

The other extreme is a legalism that makes salvation a matter of doing, or not doing certain works, or of holding to certain theological beliefs that are not truly essential to the Christian message.  An example is those who believe that unless you are baptized by immersion in the name of the Lord Jesus Christ you cannot be saved.

Our salvation is by grace, through faith for good works.

Paul gives advice to Timothy that is even more important to us all today.  II Timothy 2:15

 Be diligent to present yourself approved to God, a worker who does not need to be ashamed, rightly dividing the word of truth.

II.  Be An Example:  I Timothy 4:12

 Let no one despise your youth, but be an example to the believers in word, in conduct, in love, in spirit, in faith, in purity.

This is good advice to people of all ages.  We should seek to set an example by what we say, what we do, and by our attitudes to others.  People do not just listen to our words, they observe our lives.

III.  Be Content:  I Timothy 6:6-10

 Now godliness with contentment is great gain. For we brought nothing into this world, and it is certain we can carry nothing out. And having food and clothing, with these we shall be content. But those who desire to be rich fall into temptation and a snare, and into many foolish and harmful lusts which drown men in destruction and perdition. 10 For the love of money is a root of all kinds of evil, for which some have strayed from the faith in their greediness, and pierced themselves through with many sorrows.

The ability to be content is a great thing.  It is not to be confused with complacency.  Being content means that we can be happy in our current state, even as we work to become the person that God means for us to be.

Please note that it is the love of money which is the root of all kinds of evil.  Many people misquote this verse by saying that money is the root.  Money is just a material thing, it is our attitude towards it, and what we do with it that can be evil.

IV.  Be Diligent:  I Timothy 6:11-12

But you, O man of God, flee these things and pursue righteousness, godliness, faith, love, patience, gentleness. 12 Fight the good fight of faith, lay hold on eternal life, to which you were also called and have confessed the good confession in the presence of many witnesses.

Be diligent to pursue the growth that God wants to bring to our lives.  We do not simply coast through life.  We should seek to be all that God calls and enables us to be.

We should be diligent to fight the good fight.  To share the hope that is within us, the gospel of Jesus Christ whenever possible and to pray that the Word will take root in the lives of people.

Don’t quit!        Beware of deception!        Be an example!        Be content!        Be diligent!

These are the sermon notes from 6/19/16.  The quotes are from the New King James Version of the Bible.  Any advertisements that might appear are placed by WordPress.  I have no control over them, nor do I receive any money from them. 

 

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