Welcome to the Kerwin Baptist Podcast. And I am persuaded that in thee also. 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. For God hath not given us the spirit of fear. And if you can just imagine gradually through here, and not adding to the Word of God, but just for your own thinking, every once in a while you hear that personal Timothy. In other words, look at verse 7. For God hath not given us the spirit of fear, Timothy, but of power. You know, don't all of us need to be reminded of that every once in a while? And of love, and of a sound mind. Be not thou therefore ashamed of the testimony of our Lord, Timothy, nor of me, his prisoner, but be thou partaker of the affliction of the Gospel, according to the power of God, who hath saved us, and called us with an holy calling, not according to our works, but according to his own purpose and grace, which was given us in Christ Jesus before the world began.
Now hold on, we're almost there. But is now made manifest by the appearing of our Savior Jesus Christ, who hath abolished death, and hath brought life and immortality to light through the Gospel. Whereunto, unto the Gospel, I am appointed a preacher and an apostle and a teacher of the Gentiles.
For the which cause also I suffer these things. Nevertheless, I am not ashamed, for I know whom I have believed, and am persuaded that he is able to keep that which I have committed unto him against or till that day. Hold fast, Timothy, the form of sound words which thou hast heard of me, in faith and love which is in Christ Jesus. Can I help you a little bit here in verse 13? He says, Timothy, you better be persuaded to.
Hold fast. Don't just hold, hold it tightly, the things that you've learned. Look at verse 14. That good thing which was committed unto thee, keep by the Holy Ghost which dwelleth in us. In other words, as you've learned truth, Timothy, you need to depend on the Holy Ghost to make sure that you don't err from that truth. You need to know what you believe and you need to be persuaded beyond the shadow of a doubt that God is able.
Here is an experienced man of God giving some advice to his young protege. He says, I'm persuaded that God is able. Being persuaded that God is able, let's pray. Lord, we love you. Lord, as we dig through this passage over the next few weeks, please help us.
In Jesus' name we pray, amen. What's interesting here is Paul gives a little bit of Timothy's history, brags on him a little bit, tells him how much he means to him. And in verse 12, it literally, Paul gets to the point and he says, nevertheless, that means this has all been building up for me to make this point. Nevertheless, I know whom I have believed and am persuaded that he is able. In other words, Paul, all these things that he's telling Timothy, it all hinges on this point that Timothy, all these things in your life that I am encouraging you to do, you will only be able to do if you know what you believe and if you are absolutely persuaded, if you're convinced that God is able. I believe that you and I sometimes as God's people, we say he's able, but we act like he's not.
We kind of use church language. Oh, but God is good and God is, but sometimes we don't act like he is. Well, God is able and yet although we say God is able, every circumstance that comes into our life has victory over us. Yeah, but God is able. How are you going to get through this? I don't know, but I guess God's able.
What do you mean you guess? In other words, you say, oh yeah, I am going to get through this because I know God's able. Oh, I know this needs going to be met somehow.
We don't have to give a pity party to people for them to have pity on us, for them to feel sorry for us, for them to somehow think that we're just trudging through life, being abused for the cause of Christ. You and I need to have the attitude and the spirit whenever things come into our life. Yes, it's hard and it's difficult and this thing is absolutely eating my lunch, but I know I'm going to be fine and I know the needs are going to be met and I know things are going to be okay because God is able.
I'm convinced of that. Paul here has given some really good advice to a young man. Paul here has seen over the years at times when Paul thought he was able, he failed, but he was convinced and taught and persuaded through the things he had seen that God was absolutely able. Now today as he begins in verse 6, we find the first thing that Paul deals with Timothy about. Remember, it all hinges on verse 12. None of this is going to take place if you are not persuaded that God is able.
Look at verse 6 if you would. Paul says, Wherefore, Timothy, I put thee in remembrance that thou stir up the gift of God which is in thee by the putting on of my hands. Now what are we talking about here preacher?
Paul is looking to this young man Timothy and he is reminding him. Listen, God has given you gifts and God is the one that determined that and placed those gifts in your life. By the way, all of you who are here this morning, do you know God has placed certain gifts in your life? That came from God. And Paul says, Timothy, it is not enough for you just to have those gifts.
You have to stir them up. You have to use them for God. And you can't just have those gifts. God is the one that has to use those gifts.
I can tell you're looking at me like you don't understand what I mean. And I want you to understand this. Paul here when he says, Timothy, you need to stir up your gift. That word stir means to rekindle. He is saying, Timothy, when you are persuaded that God is able, that will motivate you to stir up the gifts that God has given you.
Now, I want you to listen this morning so I can understand the process. Do you know what the word gift is here in the Greek? That word here, stir up the gift. You know what that word gift is? Anybody venture a guess what that Greek word is?
Some of you might know. It's the word charisma. That's the word. That's where we get our word charisma or charismatic. What it simply means is gifted. Now, there might be some that would put more emphasis on the gift than the God who gave it. A lot of times we look at a person and say, well, they're very charismatic. That means that they were just naturally gifted at being outgoing with people.
That's where that word stems from. But listen to me. There are some people that can literally put more emphasis on their gifts than the Holy Spirit that uses it.
Now, listen to me. Our gifts should not get the attention that God who gave them should. Now, you and I need to understand that God has put certain gifts in our life, but we don't go around trying to show everybody that we have these particular gifts. And we don't organize our beliefs and our doctrine around our gifts.
We organize it and structure it around our God. Everybody understand the difference? Now, listen to me. If you and I rely on our gifts, we will soon realize that we are not able.
Do you get where I'm going this morning? Paul's saying, Timothy, you have been given some natural gifts, but the danger with that is this, is that when you begin to think you are gifted enough that you can do it or that you are gifted enough that you can rely on those God-given gifts. He said, if you're not careful, if you don't stir it up, he said, you will fail. Now, I have met a lot of people that rely on themselves. I have even met a lot of preachers that were naturally gifted at the pulpit. And do you know that that natural gift can only take you so far, folks? You might be here naturally gifted with certain things and so some things have just come easier to you and it just seems natural, but dear friend, I'm here to tell you, listen to me, if you get this, please, you and I must rely on God's ability, not our gifts. And Paul is saying, Timothy, listen, unless you're persuaded that God is able, you will think that you are able. Do you guys understand that unless I'm convinced that God's able, I will let myself think that I'm able.
As long as there's any part of me that thinks I'm able to do something without God, then I am not 100% persuaded that only he's able. You know, that happens to a lot of Christians. You say, preacher, what are you saying?
Listen to me. That is why God here in this verse, look at verse six, through Paul, God makes it clear to Timothy, look if you would at verse six and notice closely at the end, that's why God says that this gift is in you. The gift is not you.
You get that? You're not the gift. If you have the ability, you would be the gift, but the gift is not us. We have no part of it. I mean, we have no ability. We have no strength. We have no power apart from God. Whatever God uses is what he has put in. It's his, not ours.
Are you getting this at all so far? Listen to me. Paul is teaching this, listen, that when an individual is persuaded or convinced that God is able, it changes our lives. And the first one he deals with is in verse six. Wherefore. Wherefore, in verse six. All the bragging I've done on you and all the lineage that I've described and how much I love you, how proud I am of you, but we get to verse six and he says, wherefore, because of everything I've said, I am going to put you in remembrance that you stir up, that you rekindle the gift of God.
Why? Because you and I are always susceptible of thinking that we can rely on our ability. Now I want you to think with me this morning real quickly, and I want to deal first what happens in your life and my life when we are persuaded that we are able. This is what happens whenever you or me in our life, if we're convinced somehow that we are able, if we're convinced somehow that we can rely on our God-given gifts to get through this thing, this is what happens when that takes place.
Are you ready for this? Number one, we fail. Do you know what happens whenever you and I think that we can rely on our gifts? We fail.
What do you mean? Look at this verse on the screen, John 15 five, I'm the vine, you're the branches. He that abideth in me and I in him, huh, the same bringeth forth much fruit, for without me, ye can do nothing. As soon as you or I begin to let ourselves think that we can rely on our ability or our gifts, we fail. God is the one that puts the fruit on your branch, not you. Listen to me, get this, get this, get this, get this. You and I may have a list of gifts in our life that God has given us, but whenever you and I try to use them without God's power, we accomplish nothing.
Do you get it? Paul says, Timothy, you've got some gifts, but you're gonna have to stir them up. You're gonna have to rekindle that fire. Because although you've been given gifts, if you don't work hard at keeping those gifts burning, they're gonna burn out.
You're gonna fail. Number two, we get discouraged. This is always what happens. First, we say, you know, we don't say, we will tell everybody, oh, I can't do anything without God, but we act differently. We go through life making decisions, never asking God's opinion, never asking God's wisdom, not fully relying upon God. We barely pray, we barely spend time with God, and yet we say, well, I'm totally dependent on God. I can't do anything without God.
Well, you sure have, and I sure have. So what happens when we do that? Number one, we always fail. Number two, we get discouraged.
Why? Because we fail. This is the system that every Christian goes on. We allow ourselves to depend on our own ability, and we fail.
And then what happens next? We get discouraged. That's why Christians are so often discouraged.
You know why? Because they're operating in their own ability. Listen to me. We soon realize that we're fighting a losing battle when we depend on our ability. We begin to lose the motivation to keep fighting because we keep losing. Why would I want to keep fighting if I keep losing? Listen to me. We've given it our best shot, but our best shot just hasn't been good enough. So we get discouraged.
Let me explain it this way if I can. I've not been pastoring long enough to be able to get up and look back and say, well, years ago, these are the lessons I've learned. I'm still learning a bunch. But I have been pastoring long enough now that I could look back and I can tell you this. That when I first became pastor, you're trying your hardest. You're burning the midnight oil. You're doing everything you can do, 90% of which nobody will ever be. And I remember thinking, Lord, I see these needs and I see a trend and I see this issue.
I see this problem and I know that probably our folks don't see it or some folks don't see this. Lord, I know that they could live the victorious Christian life and I know that maybe if they'll just hear what I have to say on this particular subject, somehow, Lord, that'll get in them and that will change them and all of a sudden awake them and maybe they'll realize that I can change this and I can live a different way and I don't have to keep going this route and I don't have to keep being up and down. Man, I would pray and I would say, Lord, I would study and literally without saying it, without trying it, what I would tend to do is, man, I'm going to give this my best shot. And I would get up and, man, I would pray and, boy, I would give it all my heart and we would sing for invitation.
Nothing. And I remember a period of time, and I'm sure at times there were folks that came whatever, but I just gradually got more and more discouraged week after week after week. And I remember talking to somebody one day and, you know, I said, well, the church is doing good, people have been great, and I said this statement. I said, I'm going to be honest with you, it's just tough. I feel like I'm giving it my best shot, but I don't think they have a concern at all with what I have to say. And listen to me, dear friend, my best shot will never be good enough. You know why you and I get discouraged? Because we're giving things in our life our best shot.
But our best shot will never be good enough. We have to be convinced that God's able to do this. You see, I can get discouraged every Sunday if I want to. I can get discouraged every service if I want to. I could concentrate and at times I had.
Everybody that's not here instead of everybody that is here. I can get discouraged if I want to, listen to me, but the reason I'm going to get discouraged is because I think somehow I have not had the ability to get done what needed to be done, and that's going to discourage me. But if you and I show up at church or you show up at work or you show up with the problems or burdens that you have and you are 100% convinced that you are not able to do it but that God is able to do it, that'll keep you from getting discouraged. That's always what we do. We fail and then we get discouraged. We've tried to make our marriage better. We've tried to make our home stronger. We've tried to make our family sweeter. We've tried to get victory over that temptation. We've tried to control that temper of ours. We have tried to keep our mouth shut and the list goes on and on and on and on.
We've given it our best shot. We have tried. We literally thought that somehow inside of us we had what it took to overcome this, to fix this, to get beyond this and yet we fail and fail and fail and then we get discouraged and then we don't even want to come to church and then we don't want to read our Bible and the simple reason is not that we didn't have the gifts to do so.
We just tried to use them without God's power. It gets discouraging to wake up every morning just to lose another battle. Number three, we get tired. This is how it always goes. We tend to rely on our own ability then we fail and when we fail then we get discouraged and when you and I get discouraged we get tired. That's the way it always goes.
And that's logically the next step by the way. Who doesn't get tired when they're discouraged? Now my son plays basketball right now and I played basketball in high school and we have our upwards ministry and my son's all played in that and you go there and you watch a game. I'm going to tell you something. You watch some basketball players when they're running up and down that court and they play defense and when they come down and they don't ever get the ball or when they finally get the ball and say I'm going to take a shot and it's worse than a brick.
It doesn't even come close. You see the body language going back down the court. You ever seen it? Up and down, up and down and they seem to get more tired, more tired, more down.
The body language gets worse. But I'm going to tell you somehow on one of those trips down if somehow the ball gets to them and they throw it up and that ball goes in, have you ever seen them run back to the other end of the court for defense? I mean the play before they're like. But once they score, once something like that happens all of a sudden they have renewed energy. I mean they were almost too tired to make it down to the end of the court five minutes ago.
But as soon as that ball goes through that hoop, boy they're ready. You know why you and I get tired? Because we get discouraged. And you know why we get discouraged?
Because we fail. Could there be some that might be a little bit tired today? I don't just mean well it's been a long holiday, I mean spiritually tired. You know why you and I get spiritually tired?
Because we are doing this in our own ability, we fail, then we get discouraged and now we're tired. Now when a person gets to the point in their life that they are spiritually tired, listen to me I want you to get this, they have two options. They can either change or they can just adjust to be content. Now I can either be at this point spiritually right now in my life where I'm tired, I don't have motivation to do anything really for God, I want to have that motivation and I want to want to, but I'm gonna be honest I'm just spiritually tired preacher.
Now you've got two options and I have two options. I can either change this or I can just be content with where I'm at. Now I don't know about you, what most people often choose is being content. Because being content is a lot easier than having to change.
I mean we're already tired. Who feels like the challenge of changing? And that's the predicament a lot of Christians get in.
I keep failing, I keep getting discouraged, I'm so tired because I'm discouraged and because I keep failing and now that means I'm gonna have to change things for there to be a different result, but I'm too tired to change. Has anybody ever been there? We're given here the illustration of fire. Paul looks at Timothy and he says listen you need to stir up, rekindle this word as your gift.
Isn't that amazing that he uses a word that literally has to do with fire. And this is what Paul is telling Timothy. Timothy as a young man I want you to know right now that you need to stir up this fire that God has put inside of you. Y'all remember the prophet in the Old Testament that is there not a fire burning in my soul? And here's what happens if you and I don't stoke that fire, if we don't kindle that fire, if we don't do something here's what happens. God has put this fire in us, but if we don't give attention to it and if we don't stay close to God and if we don't depend on his power that fire that God put in is slowly going to burn down and down and down.
And Paul says Timothy what's gonna happen? You're gonna do it in your own ability probably eventually and you're gonna fail and then you're gonna get discouraged and then you're gonna get tired. And what happens when you get tired the next step number 4 is we get cold. We get cold.
And you might already be there today maybe somebody here. It's gone beyond the point where I've discouraged and man I've gone discouraged and I've been tired now I'm just cold. You see if you don't stoke that fire if you don't kindle that gift eventually it's gonna burn out and you're gonna get cold. It's a sad thing when God's people get cold. Well the Bible talks about it doesn't it?
Not even gonna go through all the verses. Our time's almost gone this morning so I want to get right to the point but I have preached a lot of different times in cold churches. It's not that the people there don't have gifts or abilities or talents. It's not even that the people there couldn't be doing great things for God and building the house of God and seeing people saved.
It's not that they don't have those abilities it's the fact that those abilities they have used without God's power. Now that fire has slowly begun to burn out and they're just cold. Here's what's interesting about cold Christians they get really uncomfortable when they get around really on fire Christians. When you're really cold and you get around somebody that's really hot here's what happens. It makes you feel guilty. Deep down you're thinking I want to be that hot but it makes us uncomfortable. So what we got to do is we got to criticize somebody that's on fire.
So we feel better about ours burning out. Y'all know I'm telling you the truth this morning. Alright, you say alright preacher thank you for all the encouragement today this is great. So I fail, I get discouraged, I get tired, I get cold. Let's go home eat some lunch.
Great. Quickly I want you to see what happens in our life when we are persuaded that God is able. That's what happens when we think we're able, we're going to fail, we get discouraged, we get tired, then we get cold. Maybe it's describing if everybody knew it it might be describing your heart here today. So what happens when we're persuaded that God is able? Look at verse 6. Paul says this is what I want to do about this. Notice first he says wherefore I put thee in what?
Remembrance. Thank you for listening today. We hope you received a blessing from our broadcast. The Kirtland Baptist Church is located at 4520 Old Hollow Road in Kernersville, North Carolina. You may also contact us by phone at 336-993-5192 or via the web at kirtlandbaptistchurch.com. Enjoy our services live and all our media on our website and church app. Thank you for listening to the Kerwin broadcast today. God bless you.
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