2Timothy 1:1-2
Last Words

The book that we are looking at tonight is unique in two ways.
    1. It was the last book written by the Apostle Paul.  Paul was in
        prison when he wrote this letter.  He may or may not have
        gotten out for a period of time.  If he did, he did not stay
        out long, and he did not write any more epistles while he was
        out.  Either way, he will soon be beheaded for preaching the
        gospel.
    2. Paul was writing to Timothy, a seasoned Christian and servant
        of the Lord Jesus Christ.  I would think that the commands
        Paul gave to Timothy in this letter would be some of the
        deeper or perhaps the more important challenges.  Yet, the
        epistle is an open book and the challenges God gave were to
        us as well as to Timothy.

With that in mind, letís look at some of Paulís LAST WORDS.

I. \\#1:6\\ Paul told Timothy to stir up the gift within him.

2Tim 1:6  Wherefore I put thee in remembrance
that thou stir up the gift of God, which is in
thee by the putting on of my hands.

    A. There are several implications from this verse.
        1. Timothy had a gift given to him from God.
            a. We will suppose that Timothyís gift was that of
                preaching the gospel, perhaps the gift of pastoring.
            b. But what is important is that God gave him that gift.
            c. A gift is a special calling and empowering from God
                to accomplish something God.
            d. Pastoring is one of those gifts:

Eph 4:11  And he gave some, apostles; and some,
prophets; and some, evangelists; and some,
pastors and teachers;

            e. That is the reason those who claim to have some gifts
                need to be examined to be certain that God is working
                in and through them.
            f. Good men may have a desire to handle the Word of
                God and that is all right, but pastors need to
                be called by God.
            g. Just a sub thought here.  Everyone has some type of
                gift or manifestation from God.

1Corthinians 12:7  But the manifestation of the
Spirit is given to every man to profit withal.

        2. Our gifts need to be stirred from time to time.
            a. This was the command that Paul was giving here.
            b. Stir it, fan the flame, keep it hot.
            c. Even those with God-given gifts and callings can grow
                cold.
        3. It is the responsibility of the called to stir his/her
            gift.
             a. Again, that is what Paul was commanding Timothy to
                 do.
             b. Paul did not offer to stir the gift for Timothy nor
                 did he pray that God might stir Timothyís gift.
             c. He told Timothy to do it.
             d. How does one keep his gift aflame?
                 (1) Be aware of the need.
                 (2) Be in the company of other firebrands. (Whatever
                      your gift is let others with the same gift
                      challenge you.)
                 (3) Be near the Source of the flame (God).
    B. So we must stir our gifts and our commitments to God.

II. \\#1:8\\ Donít be ashamed of the afflictions of gospel.

2Timothy 1:8  Be not thou therefore ashamed of
the testimony of our Lord, nor of me his
prisoner: but be thou partaker of the afflictions
of the gospel according to the power of God;

    A. Most would prefer that their friends, family, and co-laborers
        were not felons.
        1. Some of Paulís did too.
        2. He had lost friends for his stand for Jesus and for the
            suffering that he had endured.
    B. Again, there is an implication from this command.
        1. There will be afflictions for serving Jesus.
            a. Paul paid the greatest price.
            b. He was mocked, arrested, beaten, and ultimately
                beheaded for Christ.
            c. He was not ashamed of these things for he received
                them in the line of service for Jesus.
        2. As times get tougher on this planet, we will be called
            upon to make some payments in the bank of suffering.
            a. Our goal is not to be arrogant when that day comes,
                just committed.
            b. It should be our goal not to abandon Jesus.
    C. There is a similar command that might be more like what will
        happen for a time.

2Tim 2:3  Thou therefore endure hardness, as a
good soldier of Jesus Christ.

         1. Hardness is not the same thing as suffering afflictions.
         2. Hardness might be embarrassment or even light
             persecutions: skipped over for a promotion, laughed at,
             perhaps even fired.
         3. So far, I have endured no affliction and very little
             hardship.
         4. Letís grow our character so that we will not fail our
             Jesus.

III. \\#1:13\\ Hold to sound words.

2Tim 1:13  Hold fast the form of sound words,
which thou hast heard of me, in faith and love
which is in Christ Jesus.

    A. Paulís command to Timothy was to stay true to the Word of God.
        1. We sometimes use the word compromise when we speak of
            people that quit standing for the Word of God.
        2. I donít think compromising is the correct term.
        3. I do not view compromising as sacrificing principal or
            truth.
        4. Compromising is bending with someone who is also bending
            to accomplish a good purpose.
        5. Husbands and wives compromise, political parties compromise
            for the good of the people.
        6. But a Politianís who sells out capitalism for socialism or
            democracy for a dictatorship is not compromising.  He is
            betraying his country.
        7. When a Christian sells out the Word of God, he is not
            compromising.  He is betraying his God.
    B. Again, I see implications being made.
        1. It was possible that Timothy could turn from the Word of
            God.
            a. Paul had seen others do it.
            b. They had started believing but later rejected the
                Word.
        2. If Timothy could, we can.  We need to watch out.

IV. \\#2:15\\ Study to show you were called by God.

2Timothy 2:15  Study to shew thyself approved
unto God, a workman that needeth not to be
ashamed, rightly dividing the word of truth.

    A. The word "approved" means tested and proven.
        1. Every Christians is called to handle the Word of God.
        2. But some are called to pastor flocks.
        3. That is a calling from God.

Eph 4:11  And he gave some, apostles; and some,
prophets; and some, evangelists; and some,
pastors and teachers;

        4. Those who claim to be called to such a position should
            show some indication of it by their skills and abilities
            with the Word.
    B.  The Word of God should be studied.
        1. This is true of all, but it was also true of Timothy.
            a. Timothy had a calling, but he still needed to study.
            b. Timothy had the Holy Ghost, but he still needed
                to study.
            c. Timothy had heard some great preaching, but he still
                needed to study.
            d. Timothy had read the Word of God, but he still needed
                to study.
        2.. Nothing replaces studying the Word of God.

V. \\#4:2\\ Preach the Word

2Timothy 4:2  Preach the word; be instant in
season, out of season; reprove, rebuke, exhort
with all longsuffering and doctrine.

    A. First I will say that this was Timothyís command because of
        his calling.
    B. However, this is every believersí command.
        1. Not everyone is called to pastor but everyone is called
            to preach at least one message.
        2. That is the message of salvation.
            a. There is sin.
            b. There is a Savior.
            c. There is salvation.
            d. There is service.

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