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On Guard!

The Bible Study Hour / James Boice
The Truth Network Radio
February 28, 2021 7:00 am

On Guard!

The Bible Study Hour / James Boice

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February 28, 2021 7:00 am

Today, on The Bible Study Paul pens his final letter to Timothy, knowing his time on earth is short, the apostle repeats a vital request to his spiritual son: Guard what is given to your care." Guard the gospel, Timothyand preach the truth. Listen as Dr. James Boice begins his study of II Timothy, the last letter of a guardian of the faith who’s about to meet his God.

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Paul languishes in a Roman prison a death sentence awaits many thoughts go through his mind, but his foremost considerations are his son in the faith in the future of the gospel as the apostle ponders these things, he begins to preserve those thoughts in a final letter welcome to the Bible study our radio and Internet broadcast with Dr. James Bortz repairing you to think and act biblically.

It's a poignant letter from a man about to die. Paul needs to say many things, but is first and foremost concern is that the apostles protg in the faith, would guard the gospel that's been given into his care and pass it on to those who will follow.

Join Dr. Boyce as he begins his study of the importance of passing the torch of faith from second Timothy chapter 1 become the new book of the Bible in our studies, returning to second Timothy after a study of Paul's first letter to Timothy, therefore, to a book that has a lot in common with the one before it got a lot of differences.

All of the similarities are on the surface the book by Paul written to Timothy, the obvious concern of the apostles to instruct Timothy in the way should proceed after Paul is gone. With Timothy's many responsibilities, and furthermore, as we read these things.

A lot of the same terms keep coming up pointed out as we were finishing last chapter of first Timothy that there's a carryover. Second Timothy in the phrase guard what's been entrusted to your care.

You find it in first Timothy 620 but then it appears again in second Timothy 114 so a lot of the themes are the same when the author is the same in the subject is the same yet. There's this great difference. But when Paul wrote second Timothy. He was imprisoned. The very last time he had no hope of the deliverance and therefore he writes with the urgency of a man about to appear before God. What people say on their deathbed is important. If they have lived such dissolute blindness they are likely to say something corresponds with the lifestyle they've lived with their devout are inclined to say something devout and Paul was most certainly the latter so here is the rights to Timothy he writes with urgency and with what is very evidently a sense of concern that comes from his deep devotion to God was leaving Timothy behind Timothy was a young man and now they'd have even heavier responsibilities than he did before know we raise the subject when we were studying first Timothy and we pointed out that Timothy was left in charge of a large group of churches in Asia. Just as Titus was left in charge of the church is on Creech. We might say with something like the bishop he was certainly an overseer over a certain geographical area, and Paul sensed I believe that first letter that this was almost perhaps too much for Timothy. That's wise encouraging them to do it to be strong and not be timid in all those things that you know at that stage. Even though Timothy had this large responsibility, and although Paul was not with him. Paul was nevertheless living at any questions you write to Paul and the things were desperate, he could say Paul come help me. I need your help. Now Paul was about to be offered up is about to give his life as a martyr for the faith in Timothy's going to be left behind. So here you have that situation. You see, poignant, and the departure of the great apostle and pointed in the responsibility comes of this young man what Paul wants to tell them is to stand firm guard the gospel and be strong. As I read this first chapter which are looking at tonight.

I see Paul giving Timothy three charges. First of all, he tells them as we read in verse six to fan into flame the gift God has given them. Secondly, as he says in verse eight he tells him not be ashamed to testify about our Lord and then thirdly, in verse 14 guard the good deposit that was entrusted to you. That is the deposit of the gospel want to take our time to look at each of those one of the time. First of all, he tells them to fan into flame the gift of God which was given to him. Let me confess at the beginning that I don't know what this gift of God once and that's for a very good reason Paul doesn't say commentators speculate over what it may be, I suppose, with some justification, they think since it was given through the ordination of this young man and the laying on of hands ordination which Paul himself took part might've been some special gift for the Christian ministry gift, a proclamation or evangelism or shepherding the flock or some such thing.

Probably it was one of those but it doesn't say all it says is the Timothy was given the gift and I can read into this. What may very well be God's purpose in not specifying in so many words were Timothy's gift was icy a lesson here that God is given to each of us a gift and therefore our responsibility is to fan that gift in the flame.

You know the old translation said start up the gift that is in you, but I think this translation that the new international version uses is a lot more vivid.

The Greek word is one of those compound words. It starts with the prefects, and then did so and then it's pure and inane, though, it's Anna.

So pureing, but is based upon a very simple Greek word which is the word pure P you are as we would transliterated that word means flame I would come closer to the real meaning in our work purify say it's the same thing. How do you purify something with a different ways of purifying something that one way you would purify a metal is in the fire put in the fire flame is applied to the metal and then the bosses burned off and it's purified well, that's that word pure and what Paul is saying is that the gift that was given to Timothy is like that little flame and what he wants Timothy to do is coax it into a veritable blanks. I think that Paul is saying that something like that is true spiritual gifts datastream many talents, but he saying it's just the fact that you have the gift doesn't mean that gift in itself is going to go on and grow and become a great thing that's a blessing.

Other people work at that yet to fan it into flame after rekindling it necessary to blow upon its in order that it might become all that it should be. I think as he looked Timothy recognized in him the kind of tendency that's in so many of us to sit back with her because of shyness or laziness or whatever it may be and say well if God is going to save the heathen God is going to do the work of building up the church of God is going to evangelize more power to him. I won't stand in his way and so flame you say gets lower and lower. And even if it doesn't go out of doesn't do any good. So he saying, look whatever your gift is what abilities God is giving you what spiritual gifts God has given you. Use the use them in order that they might grow and be a blessing. Other people God he says is given is not a spirit of timidity, but a spirit of power and of love and of self-discipline. I think the emphasis comes up on last term. Secondly, he talks about shame is charge to Timothy. At this point is not to be ashamed not to be ashamed of a number of things and as he writes that I'm sure he was well aware that there were things about which Christians perhaps Timothy among them, often were shame, he mentions a few by saying don't be ashamed to testify about our Lord. He saying that sometimes Christians are ashamed of their Lord and when he goes on to say, ashamed of me and his prisoner. He saying that sometimes Christians are ashamed of other Christians when he goes on later to talk about the gospel he saying I am sure that sometimes Christians are ashamed of the gospel. Why should we be ashamed of these things well. The reason is that the world is ashamed by them and we are so sensitive to the opinions of the world and so insensitive to the opinions of our Lord that we listen to the world rather than to our Lord, how I don't mean to imply by this that sometimes Christians don't do shameful things. When a Christian goes back on his or her profession of faith in Christ by behaving in a way that disgraces I profession by open sin. There is a proper measure of shame and we should be ashamed for them and ashamed ourselves such a thing to take place within the company of God's people. Those who been redeemed from sin. That's what Paul's talking about. He saying that there are Christians and uses himself as an example here who have taken a stand for the sake of the gospel and because they have stood effectively for the gospel are scorned by the world and in Paul's case was even arrested, locked up in prison left now in Rome. Diane was soon going to face his execution and he saying some Christians were out of the outside were doing well. The not yet suffering for Christ are afraid to identify themselves with Christians like that too closely, and there ashamed of them say. I suppose somebody could say to Timothy one day say I hear about this. Paul is Paul's been arrested by the Roman authorities he's in jail, they can execute them.

You know him.

At one time did Joe used to be a close friend of yours, Timothy Guida said well I knew him started in a casual why I really wasn't very intimate with him and I really don't know the circumstances under which he was arrested.

Let's talk about something else. And Paul says I'll be ashamed of me. Don't be ashamed of those who suffer for the gospel sake didn't say it but he could have gone on to say that these are the heroes of the faith. These are the ones with which we should be proud to be identified on the gospel. I suppose people Christians are sometimes ashamed of the gospel. Paul acknowledged as much in writing to the Corinthians, you know, because he said as he traveled about Roman world of his day. He soon learned that the gospel of salvation through Jesus Christ was a stumbling block to the Jews and foolishness to the Greeks and scorned because of its weakness to the Romans, so he understood that he knew how the world look down on these things we hold precious yet as he said the Corinthians that which the Jews regarded as a stumbling block. I have found to be the foundation of revealed religion. The foundation stone, upon which they stumbled that which the Greeks regarded as foolishness. Priding themselves in their wisdom.

I have found to be the wisdom of God. That which makes one wise. Under salvation, wiser even than once teachers that which Romans found to be weak and therefore a cause of scorn I have discovered to be the power of God's mighty to the breaking down even stronghold so he would say to Timothy, you say, even though you may be tempted to be ashamed of these things the Lord. Other Christians of the gospel. Don't be okay because there's no real cause reason why we shouldn't be ashamed of other Christians is that we are just sinners saved by grace that we see ourselves in the proper light. A sinner saved by grace, that we can't possibly be looking down on anyone else see the reason why were ashamed of other Christians is not because we recognize that they are doing something good and we are not all that may sometimes be the case and be under the surface, but because we consider ourselves to be better than they are, or at least we want the world to think so.

Paul's imprisonment well it might be unjustly but perhaps Paul really did something to deserve his imprisonment. I'm so glad that I didn't do anything like that led the way we think are here so and so that everybody is making fun of wristband her stand for Christ. Well, that really is kind of foolish.

The way in which they're operating. I'm glad that I'm not like that. See that's really the way were thinking when were ashamed of others. The cure for that is to recognize our own sins we are nothing.

All we are we are, by the grace of God and therefore we are to stand and testify with all power to that great God. All I wish we might do that do that or more effectively as time goes on.

Also something else here. If you know in verse 12. He's talking about his not being ashamed and he's explaining why in his case he was not ashamed and here it is. I am not ashamed because I know whom I have believed and am convinced that he is able to guard what I've entrusted to him for that day. Do you notice as I read that the Paul did not say yet I am not ashamed because I know walk. I have believed all knew what he believed. All right also underwrote the books. Paul's the one who gave us Romans would we study to find out what we should believe he certainly knew the doctrine at least talking about shame and not shame and power in weakness and wisdom and all the lab. Paul's testimony is that he knows whom he has believed that is Jesus Christ saying you see the reason I'm not ashamed to go forth into this world that scorns my Lord is that I know my Lord, I know that he's worthy of all honor and all praise the law will one day before and in the meantime since I marks of the service of such a great King. I'm not all ashamed to commit everything I am all I have is safekeeping because I know we'll hold it and keep it for me and blessed that I'll be vindicated the last day I finally in verse 14, Paul gives Timothy's third charge of this chapter. Guard good deposit that was entrusted to you guard it with the help of the Holy Spirit's who lives in us is interesting contrast between that and the verses ago, before which I just read Paul says in verse 12.

I have committed something to Christ and I know that he is able to guard it. Now he says in verse 14 Christ has committed something to me and it is my responsibility to guard that understand that connection.

What I committed to Christ.

I've committed to Christ.

My hope and salvation. Jesus is offered salvation and the gospel.

He said he died for my Cindy said commit yourself to me, follow me. I'll bless you and keep you and give you purpose in this life and I give you the joys of the life to come. Backslide committed to him and he's able to keep that now Paul says there's this exchange. We've given that, the Christ, and he's able to keep it Christ at the same time that we have given that to him was given us something. What is given us is the gospel very gospel in which we believe which we are entrusted to keep and pass on to others that it is our responsibility to do that in a faithfulness which is patterned on his own, is not always easy.

Paul was aware that we most certainly are a gospel is under attack from enemies without it's in danger of being abandoned by those who apparently are within that is it's knockdown on one side it's undermined. On the other nurses call our task is to guard that and preserve it and proclaim it all was very aware of how the ground can be undercut from Christian witness by those defects from the truth. Just after the service this morning a lot happens after boarding services. I was talking with somebody who pointed out an interesting verse in the 19th chapter of acts since verse 31, where it says the mist of that chapter, which you know deals with a riot in Ephesus that the chief rulers of the province of Asia who were Paul's friends came to him and encourage him not to go into the theater. The Greek word is AC are: Arco means a ruler in the AC means Asia really means. These were the rulers of Asia, the chief man of the whole province of Asia verse tells us in a very indirect way is it's not writing about whose Paul's friends were simply talking about this ride in Ephesus and the people came out to Paul and said, look, things are so bad in the arena there that Orion don't go in there that you stay out so they advised him to stay out the purpose of the passage, but in an indirect way by dropping in this phrase were friends of Paul verse tells us that in those days in Asia.

Paul was not only known by was friends with all the chief rulers of the province and now it is a say. Not many years later in Rome, abandoned by his friends.

He says you know that everyone in the province of Asia has deserted me your time to go in the kingdom of God work in the church.

The proclamation of the gospel when which seems that we are just born along an Eagles wings everything goes well and people are believing and we have friends in high places and people that are important to the world's eyes are becoming Christians. Times like that, at times like this. Come to the friends are gone. The important people abandon the gospel with its even undermined by those who bid its friends in times past, yet it's the same Paul. The one situation in the other the same gospel of the one situation and the other, and it's the same tax guard that gospel, regardless of attacks or popularity or defections by those who once proclaimed, no I said earlier that the reason Paul wasn't ashamed of the gospel is that he knew the one in whom he had placed his trust is parallel here Paul is not afraid for the gospel either because he knows the one who stands beside him. The defendant that once the Holy Spirit guard.

The good deposit that was entrusted to you guard with the help of the Holy Spirit who lives in us. See if we were guarding alone.

It was up to us alone to maintain and I don't want to fall into the opposite error saying well it's not us at all because Paul is saying garnets responsibility. But if it was evidently up to us to guard and there was nobody going to do it, but simple whole ask hinged upon what we do. Well I for one would be scared to death that I'd quit because of the absolutely hopeless, but Paul says will take great courage from this and as you guard at precious treasure you proclaim it to the world as you hold it forth and protected against attack.

You can know that the Holy Spirit is there with you and the Holy Spirit, I might add, is a far greater interest in the gospel, even when you do so, be encouraged by that and stand firm. If we are faithless, he will remain faithful for he cannot disown himself, the Lord Jesus Christ, our commander in chief is in the field and he is faithful and it's a knowledge of that that you keep us for what's guard the gospel was proclaim its share it with others by the power of the same Holy Spirit see many come to faith in him. Let us pray father Wesley screws to our hearts.

We thank you for the challenge to Timothy which we ourselves receive family gift ought to be ashamed of the Lord or the gospel or other Christians to guard the gospel itself with all the strength at our disposal buses. To that end, and honor the proclamation of that gospel in the winning of metadata faith in Christ as Savior we pray in his name, a matinee and error listening to the Bible study hours teaching. The teaching of Dr. James Boyce.

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We truly appreciate your support. The Bible study hours a broadcast ministry of the alliance of confessing Evangelicals, proclaiming biblical doctrine in order to foster a reformed awakening in today's church connect with our online publishing broadcast in the event hi Mark Daniels thank you for listening. But you are called to be different. As Paul writes his final letter to Timothy from his prison cell in Rome. He reminds Timothy that he must stay strong in the gospel. Despite the culture in which he lives.

Join Dr. James Boyce next time about Bible study our as he looks at Paul's charge to Timothy to endure in this ministry and pass on the torch of the gospel to others. That's next time one of Bible study hours preparing you to think and act

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