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Don't Forget

The Bible Study Hour / James Boice
The Truth Network Radio
March 14, 2021 8:00 am

Don't Forget

The Bible Study Hour / James Boice

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March 14, 2021 8:00 am

One of the greatest tasks of any preacher is the simple exercise of reminding his people. Join Dr. James Boice on The Bible Study Hour as he illustrates Paul’s command to Timothy to remind his people to not forget.

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One of the most important duties of a pastor is to remind his flock of the simple truths of the gospel because Christians like all people can so easily forget. Welcome to the Bible study out a radio and Internet broadcast with Dr. James Boyce preparing you to think and act quickly as Paul penned his second letter to Timothy with the admonition to remind. He also presents his protg with a series of images that represent the way in which Timothy is to conduct himself as a minister of the gospel. Listen as Dr. Boyce examines the duties of a pastor is a workman vessel, and most importantly as a servant of his people from second Timothy chapter 2, I would turn to second Timothy in a continuation of our studies of that book tonight.

Second Timothy two beginning with verse 14. I don't know why it is that Paul should have to say is see does here in the middle of this second chapter of Timothy. Keep reminding them of these things because Christians who have experienced the grace of God in the gospel and of known what it is to be delivered from the bondage and penalty of sin should certainly remember and live by that which they now yet. Perhaps just because of sin are because of the feebleness of human nature.

We do tend to forget. So Paul says here keep reminding them of the great duties of a minister. I try as much as I cannot to repeat myself again and again. At any rate, when I do say same thing. I try as much as I'm able to say in different ways and try to do different illustrations at times. I have to admit that much of what I do and much of what any preacher does is simply the task of reminding is to go over these things again and again and to say, look, this is what God is Don this is what you are. This is the task which are called.

Therefore, let's get on with the task and at times it seems burdensome or perhaps even irritating the way it often is. To a child that is constantly instructed by the parents just have to remember that these things are necessary. Furthermore, it's what Scripture instructs us to do help all begins this passage.

In that way and then goes on in a series of images to instruct Timothy in the way he is to conduct himself as a faithful minister of the gospel, by extension, however all to live the servants of Jesus Christ. Recall from our previous study that in the first half of this chapter. Paul's introduced three key images.

He first introduces the image of a soldier in his main idea. There is the day soldier indoors hardship hardness in order to please his commanding officer lays aside a lot of the enjoyments pleasures the encumbrances that you might otherwise have a humor citizen of the world and submits to this hardship willingly in order to please his commanding officer. Although Paul doesn't spell it out in great length. We certainly understand the way in which a slot is moving. We are soldiers of Jesus Christ. We are to just encumber ourselves in order that we might please him who died for us and commands us, tells us what we should do second image he uses is that of an athlete and hear his ideas slightly different and athlete. Of course, also submits to the hardship hardness of discipline and there are other places where Paul does develop the image in that way, but here he talks so much about the discipline is about the rules that he says will give an athlete doesn't compete. According to the rules is disqualified so we understand exactly what he saying he saying you were spiritual athletes in training was great race of life and Jesus Christ as your coach. He's the one who was laid down the rules for you and if you want to gain the price and that's what he desires for you. For each one of us and you have to compete according to the rules rules of the rules of God all says one occasion that he and trying to do that subjected himself to discipline all of his motions counted and he did it because when he got to heaven he didn't want to be a castaway that is one who has failed to qualify and therefore fails to participate in the reward of God's people. Paul says look I want you to do that, and finally uses the image of the farmer and his emphasis there is that a farmer participates in the reward. He works hard and the slaves away all summer.

Out in the heat of the fields under the blistering heat of the sun, but at the end when the harvest comes as a time of joy and he is the first partaker of the fruits. So Paul is saying look I want you to work as good husbandman farmers in the vineyard in the fields of the Lord. Now this section gives a stream on images already done this first rating brings in three more here and there.

These first of all he talks about a workman craftsman somebody who has a special skill. He discusses that in verses 14 to 19 and secondly, in verses 20 and 21 he talks about a vessel, a utensil in the household of a great man and has a point to make about that, and finally the very end talks about a sermon to slay the Lord's servant goes miss that image because were so used being called servants of the Lord, but he's using an image are all the same and in the sense this is the one that wraps up all the others so what we have to do is see what he says about these different things when he talks about work when he makes a contrast and it's obvious what are good workman in their band workman and good workman do their work well in bad workman not do their work well. The task of the workman, spiritually speaking, and he's looking here the leaders of the church is that of teaching and upholding the gospel. The Scriptures making the word of God known to be saying their people do that well.

The people don't do that well is encouraging Timothy and anybody who reads this to do it well.

To be in the former group gives examples Timothy is one of the first group, he gives examples of somewhere in the second group. Their names are Carmen ASN elitist that he says I want you to be like Timothy Timothy and anybody who reads this and I don't want you to be like them. In describing what he has in mind here uses several powerful firms and their infrequent barbs.

That is, you don't find them much in the New Testament Because some difficulty. Read the first passage.

As far as the point at which this firm concerning the work of a good workman occurs. Keep reminding them of these things warn them before God against quarreling about words.

It is of no value and only ruins those who listen. Do your best to present yourself to God as one approved, a workman who does not need to be ashamed and who correctly handles the word of truth. You know that verse from the King James Bible as many of us do one.

In my life I memorize this verse and I took it as a life verse to apply yourself and to be a good workman rightly dividing the word of truth. You know that that's the way the verses translated in the King James version, rightly dividing the word of truth because the word is made up of two Greek words ortho which means straight and tie all which means to cotton literally it means a straight cotton only occurs here in the New Testament. Nobody really knows Cicely how to translate that in church history, particularly in older periods of church history. There are those who assume that this meant chopping it up a little pieces in order to distributed another what Paul is talking about here was something like the Lord distributing the loaves and the fish gallantly breaking the word not putting it in the baskets and handing around the crowd dividing it up rightly so, that everybody had a little bit. The dispensation us take this as dividing the word up into segments, some of which apply to one.

Not another, and to make certain that all of Scripture is not applied us today. I think this is a false approach in today. Even the more perceptive of the dispensational is no that don't pursue it that way but nevertheless has been taken that way. Probably this translation of the new international version passes as good as any.

Correctly handling the difficulty with that is that it misses the real strength of the image when it says correctly handling well course, we want to correctly handle anything. Otherwise you get into trouble, but this is somewhat the strength of cuttings a straight line or cutting something in a straight way is I will howl for that word be used well. I think we got a clue from one of the other passages in the Bible that uses a word and I'm thinking now of the passage in Proverbs where the Septuagint, the Greek translation of the Old Testament uses this word in Proverbs 36 is that passage that we memorize verses five and six says they were not to trust ourselves for our own understanding but to commit our way under the Lord and he will make your paths straight. There's where that word is used. He will cut a straight path for you is what's verse says in the Greek translation versus any clue to how this is to be taken what Paul seems to be saying to me is when you expound the word. Make sure you cut a straight path for your hearers. See image of laying out a road you know you been on roads and wind all over the place in their nice beautiful delightful roads. If you don't have anywhere to go in a hurry just out on the John you're taking in the scenery you want to get somewhere better life or death. You don't want road that winds around like a road running down the edge of the Mississippi River you on a road that goes straight to its destination, and you say well I get the image now, but what's really talking about. Well I think he's talking about clarity and he's talking about, not misleading people is talking about being directly stuck about being simple.that the truth of the gospel are simplistic. Some of them are the deepest truths that the mind of man can ever wrestle with anything as you present these. I want you to present them like a straight row so anybody looking at them to look right down to the end and see where he's going and I got all kinds of comments when I preach and some of them I wouldn't repeat and some of them I would some of them I try to forget some of them I remember and I suppose the comment that I really appreciate the most when people reflect on a sermon that I give here morning and evening or somewhere else. As you make it so simple because I really is what a preacher is called upon to do not be profound on stand up here and say let me quote you a little verse from Aristophanes in Greek and those of you who know that I'm sure would appreciate it rather to make it as clear as you can and that's what Paul says he wants Timothy to do sometimes hard to make it clear something we have difficulty understanding ourselves, sometimes we don't want to believe it because we don't want to respond to the teaching and difficulties are there so far as we can to make this very very clear that he says a good workman does that we could carry over that image of a workman. I'm sure he'd say when you're building a house of revealed religion. I want you to make sure that the walls are at right angles and that there perpendicular to the ground and that the doors are all the right angles and that they don't stick with a open, close, I want everything to be there, just write the way it should be so encourages him to do that one of the most difficult things that young preachers have to learn is to really preach what's in the text and their times for aggressions as long as we realize, were depressing that we point out that were digressing or even times introduced personal opinions that may or may not be a direct implication of what stop there as long as we introduce them is personal opinions, but he says is a great danger and depressing. And that's often what happens habitually in the case of young preachers because the most difficult thing I supposedly preacher has to do is take the text and study the text and see what the text really says and that, in clear language say what the text really says to the people who are listening, illustrating it, all those things as well. That's not easy to do and he says bad workman heirs precisely along those lines. This is why your view of Scripture is so important because unless you regard this book is a revelation from God.

And because it comes from God being the inherent word of God utterly trustworthy and altered states, you are inevitably going to sit in judgment upon the Bible as a result, the Bible will not accomplish his purposes, and you you read something there that you don't like, and human nature being what it is you will say well that's probably part of the Bible is in error. I'll just disregard that part one to something else and what's necessary is to begin with a commitment. Scripture is the inerrant word of God which we do not judge but which in judgment upon us, and then on that basis. Allow the Bible to do the very thing that God intends it to do, namely lead us into an obedient and responsive relationship to God through the Lord Jesus Christ. That's what the Bible must do and what's good workman does and allows to happen. First of all to himself and then with those to whom he speaks. Secondly, verses 20 and 21 returns to the image of a clean vessel in a large house. He says there are articles not only of gold and silver, but also of wood and clay summer for noble purposes and some for ignoble man cleanses himself from the latter, he will be an instrument for noble purposes, made holy useful the master and prepared to do any good work. I think you have two distinctions in adverse word understand that you have to keep it clear. First of all there's a distinction between vessels for noble use and ignoble use of and secondly there's a distinction between vessels which are clean and vessels which are dirty.

Reason I say I think you have to keep that clear is that Paul uses elsewhere an image of vessels for honor and vessels were dishonored to distinguish between those who are elected and those who are not elect those who are believers.

Those who are not believers. Those were true teachers and those were false teachers, and I think he alludes to that kind of distinction here in the context having talked about. Those were false.

Workman I am sure when he talks about ignoble vessels. He's talking about that seat that's important because I don't think Paula would ever be saying that in the church of Jesus Christ are some Christians whom God is elected to ignoble tasks. We think that way, we say well Psalm have important jobs to do. Some have unimportant jobs to do summer noble summer ignoble was not saying that at all when he uses our terminologies talking about people who aren't even believers. According to Paul, everyone has a noble task to do what is making is further distinction here we come to point to that is that some vessels even the noble vessels the vessels of gold and silver and brass precious metals and sometimes be dirty and he saying that God uses clean assets even though is called you to a noble work. If you're Christian. He most certainly has called you to a noble work. What could be more noble than proclaiming the gospel of Jesus Christ to those who need to hear entities called you doing noble work. He has if you're a Christian and you must present a clean vessel to it, not one contaminated by the filth of sin and the desires of the flesh. Why, because God himself is a holy clean God. Fortunately, the word of God speaks very clearly on that because in first John 19 it says if we confess our sin.

We all need to do that, he is faithful and just to forgive us our sins and cleanse us from all unrighteousness. Jesus is the great dishwasher, he humbled himself to all kinds of task that I make sure he would accept that designation. We come with our dirty utensil. Jesus says if you confess your sin. I'm faithful and just cleanse you from all of that to present you before my father was a vessel clean suited to be used in the work that my father has for it. Why does it say in adverse that he is faithful and just why faithful because he is promised to forgive and cleanse if he promised to forgive and cleanse one condition of our confession of sin. It didn't do it. He would be unfaithfully would be breaking his promises, but is not is the faithful Jesus and therefore when we come we can only keep his promises. Why Jost because he doesn't merely forget about the sin, but he provides cleansing on the basis of the death of the Lord Jesus Christ. That's why Paul can say is he does Romans 326 that God is both just and the justifier of him the believes on Jesus. He justifies what he does it justly because he does it on the basis of the death of his son. So if you feel it's that vessel that you have is dirty is it often is you say and you can call knowing God is ready, willing and faithful and just to forgive. That said, if you'll confess it to. Then finally, in these last verses we come to the matter of the servants see how the progression is going.

The soldier actually a farmer workman a vessel observed since all of the others lead up to this.

We are servants of the Lord, the Lord Jesus Christ, the Lord Jehovah, and it behooves us to act as servants of him was servants we are. I notice as I read these verses and Paul introduces contrast between what were not doing what we are to do several of them. Verse 22 flee the evil desires of you and by contrast, pursue righteousness, faith, love and peace or again negatively in verse 23 don't have anything to do with foolish and stupid arguments because you know they produce quarrels in the Lord's servant must not quarrel and then the positive side, instead, be kind, everyone able to teach, not resentful Lord Jesus Christ as our Cmdr. He's our Lord and their things. We are not doing the things we are to do we simply can't hang loose in these matters and say all well doesn't matter. I consider Jesus on Sunday rest of the time I'll do what I please right insert Jesus in this area, but in this area. I'll do what I want.

Got of the servants is that a sermon like that is more trouble to his master that he or she is worth. Paul says now I want you to be is servants of Christ what you would be if you were a good servant good earthly master.

You know when we read that we recognize that all of the imagery that Paul is developed elsewhere in the Bible develops as a whole comes into play. At that point because usually we are by nature servants. We are not masters and until Jesus redeemed us by his death on the cross with the servants of sin, we were held in bondage by sin. Sin was a cruel taskmaster Jesus freed us from Latin brought us into the glorious liberty of his household where in a paradoxical way, we are free and servants at the same time we know that our naturally to be responsive to it and to desire to serve Jesus Christ wholeheartedly. Peter writes about it you know, and he gives the reasoning of Christ's death as a great motivation for us, he says, look, you were redeemed and to be redeemed, means to be brought out of one kind of slavery and to be made a servant of Christ you were redeemed, he said, not by perishable things like silver and gold, but by the precious blood of Christ, we became his servants by him becoming a servant and dying.

Even the death of the cross because we know that we are to serve give ourselves to him who gave his all Ross. I do know that there's anything can be added to that. That is simply the glorious truth in the glorious destiny of the glorious responsibility is what we desire to be. Let us pray our father, bless these truths to us. Rather, we might not only hear and meditate upon these things, but actually go out and live differently because of what Jesus our Savior is done for us. We pray in his name, and with Thanksgiving you're listening to the Bible study hours featuring the teaching of Dr. James Boyce.

Can we rely on human beings is a good example of how we are to live our lives as normal everyday people through whom God can work. Join Dr. Boyce as he examines this topic in our free CD offer entitled workers in the truth is our gift to you. Just give us a call at 1-800-488-1888 will be happy to send you a copy of workers in the truth that number again is 1-800-488-1888. As believers we all need to be reminded of God's faithfulness during his lifetime. Dr. Boyce endeavored to do just that and to encourage his listeners to keep on keeping on.

Help us keep Dr. Boyce is encouraging messages on the air and on the Internet with your generous support. You can make your donation by calling us directly at 1-800-488-1888, 40 can find us online at the Bible study. Our daughter work. Our mailing address is 600 Eden Rd., Lancaster, PA 17601. Thank you for your prayerful and financial support, think and act biblically is Dr. Boyce's daily devotional that corresponds with the message you just heard on the Bible study our read and subscribe to think and act biblically@thebiblestudyour.org hi Mark Daniels thanks for listening in today and anxious apostle looks to the future. The ungodliness of the secular world of the influences of the secular church pressing in on the fledgling faith, much of the work still to be done will be left to Timothy will he have the strength to carry on the work that Paul began to find out next time. Is Dr. James Boyce continues his study of second Timothy and shares Paul's charge to his apprentice. That's next time on the Bible study repairing you to think and act biblically


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