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Building Strength for Lasting Impact

The Verdict / John Munro
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July 29, 2019 11:07 am

Building Strength for Lasting Impact

The Verdict / John Munro

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July 29, 2019 11:07 am

Pastor Timothy Hathaway July 28, 2019 1 Timothy 4:6-16

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Beautiful day as we work through the summer very quickly and looking to the following season that often has an extra amount of training this past week and a fellow opened her training camps past appears to be getting talked about a place of hope training here at the church other training that's going on in each of these, like most training in our lives. It are most worker or disciplines begins with a appearing of training and then a period of execution and in football there's training camp and the preseason and then there's the season we play the games and in those disciplines. Like many others were in work along with the execution along the season. There are tweaks professionally. There's continuing education there's more training even as we do, but some disciplines in life Terry training every single day and when you look at a couple of those today you would stand and this is our primary text you would stand and were going to read this together. First Timothy four, seven and eight was free. This have nothing to do with the reverent silly myths.

Rather, train yourself for godliness. While bodily training is of some value godliness is of value in every way as it holds promise for the present life and also for the life to come spray together. Father, thank you for your living word and suit it. We look now these words is alive and fresh to us today is when you inspired them thousands of years ago and father give his ears to hear, eyes to see hearts that are open to what you would have for us today remove any distractions. Father and speak to us. We do pray in the name of Christ. A minute thank you go ahead and be seated as seated going to turn if you want in your Bible to our primary text this morning that's in first Timothy chapter 4 many of you know the first Timothy second Timothy and Titus is recalled in Scripture of the past oral epistles, special expectations.

Teaching for church leaders. Every year we look at the qualifications in first Timothy chapter 3 and Titus one as we consider those who might service Elder and Deacon. We know that in the Bible. There's a high standard placed on those who teach and lead so in a sense this this passages is specific to Timothy for his role as a pastor, but elsewhere in Timothy Bible also says it also says all Scripture is given by inspiration for God is profitable for training in righteousness, so these principles today are applicable to each one of us and we consider a major component of leadership is influence that raises the stakes in and draws all of the sin, because as followers of Christ, we each want to influence and impact those around us also give these verses and isn't it wonderful how the Bible take something that's so clear and so relevant to us to teach us success. First of all, have nothing to do with irreverent silly myths it's talking about something that's bad, but rather, train yourself for godliness and then down here a little further.

Bodily training is of some value, but godliness is of value in every way, so we have the bad silly myths that irreverent myths we have something that's good bodily training, but we have something that's best and that's godly training in the world here that use for training is the same word that we get our word for gymnasium. It's it's definitely a reference to athletics into the physical and so we have this shown to us in a very clear way. Very simply, some things in our life are bad and are to be avoided. Some things are good, like physical exercise inured to be done in moderation. The best is training to be godly in a way this verse gives us our outline complaint. I completely in these two verses got the priority of building godliness or building spiritual strength. It mentions hindrances to building our spiritual strength gives us some practices for building spiritual strength and then she points out the impact of that really it's it's training and godliness.

We've used spiritual strength and a carrying that athletic analogy or example along with her. That's our emphasis today is growing and godliness growing in spiritual strength also get a couple of these principles.

First of all, the priority the priority of building spiritual strength in verse seven and eight that we just read receive award value very important to us.

There's value in physical training. But there's more value. There's eternal value and godly training. Physical training is good exercise. It may give us a healthier lifestyle maven from prolonging our earthly life, but at one point, our bodies will betray us outward self is wasting away. The Bible says but godly training is better in multiply in many dimensions, not only for us, for each day. But for those around us and for ever. FF Bruce gives his commentary on this. These two verses is the rigors of athletic training are contrasted with the self-discipline of one who makes godliness. His goal sews a transient value of physical training with the far more extensive and enduring benefits that accrue from godliness, its effects for good permeate every realm and are experienced both here and hereafter.

So we see compounded the value of training for godliness. Look also in our passage not only verses seven and eight, but also verses nine and 10 of first Timothy forces. First of all, the saying is trustworthy. In verse nine and deserving of full acceptance, drawing even more weight and attention to this lesson in verse 10, for to this end, we toil and strive because we have our hopes set on the living God, who is the Savior of all people, especially those who believe.

So we see there the word strive to work to toil and to strive it's another word really is agonizing. Scott athletic overtones to it.

Another passage is important to us. Colossians 128 and 29, almost a personal mission statement for the apostle Paul. It says are Christ.

We proclaim, warning everyone and teaching everyone with all wisdom, that we may present everyone mature in Christ. For this I toil ice are struggling with all of his energy to powerfully works within me so toiling and striving agonizing is the example here. This is an exercise of this is not just a casual walk in the park. I would approximate approach our training and godliness with endurance training for a marathon which is like in a physical sense. Were there some things to avoid spiritually. Of course we have things to avoid as well.

If you're training physically. Obviously, nutrition and rest, and many other things I need to be structured to perform in a maximum way physically slight wise it is in our spiritual life. One of these is mentioned), irreverent ops, silly myths and we can talk about a cup a few hindrances to spiritual life. What is first of all biggest evil in our lives than a question on it right mid Atlantic.

The Atlanta Falcons right if it no sin. Of course the biggest evil in our life is sin. It's is more than an casually implied here as a godless myth says irreverent myths godlessness me. These are things that are our sinfulness and we know that throughout Scripture, sin is what separates us from God from the beginning of our lives and growing in godliness and in this passage assumes a relationship with Christ in John chapter 10 Jesus says I am the door and I you and anyone who comes into his flock must come through him. He's the way, is the truth. He's the door. Talk about physical training is a very basic coming for going to be a part of a training club or whatever you need. Membership. That's a very simplistic description, but Jesus as he is the door, we must first have a relationship with Christ and it's the sin that separates us. This is the gospel. First Corinthians 15 versus three and four pulses I delivered to you that which is of first importance. The most important thing that Christ died that he was buried, that he was raised again and seen by hundreds bearing witness to this. Each one of us have sinned that sin separates us from God that sin has a penalty it's wages earned death for us, Christ is paid a penalty on the cross. We look to him.

If we confess our sins, declare that Jesus is Lord believe in our hearts that God has raised him from the dead. We will be saved. Those who call upon the name of the ward will be saved. So sin is our gigantic hindrance to building spiritual strength and if you don't have a personal relationship with Christ. That's the invitation and are most important decision today to follow Christ. Once a once a believer lower social walking, godliness, and were supposed to grow and godliness. Sin will hinder us in will separate us. It will drag us down as our senior pastor often says kill sin in your life or it will kill you, unconfessed sins, patterns of sin in our life will destroy us.

The first hindrance for godliness is, of course, is sin. The second one is meant mentioned in these verses. It says Iraq reverent silly myths are translated in other places as godly mitzvot, like trivial pursuits people Bible times love to debate ideas and ideologies but think of our time and how much our culture and how much time is wasted on silly things, silly arguments, silly pursuits, things that don't matter at all.

Think of obsession with social media or binge watching these things in Saugus this week, and an article in Time magazine I was looking at a 10 year trend in our nation. First of all, of exercise saying there's a nominal growth and are exercised, but more disturbing, but disturbing others of much larger growth in the amount of time that we sit around in their conclusion was there's just you can have more fun sitting around the house because of all the streaming all the media that we can just take into our lives.

Silly pursuits on Oz Guinness Christian author says we are reluctant even afraid to admit that we all without exception will die. We surround ourselves with entertaining distraction so we don't have to think about death, we tranquilize ourselves with the trivial as any generation ever been able to divert itself so happily for so long and was so many fascinating toys as ours with iPhones, iPods, DVR streaming services. We can lose ourselves in virtual reality and be entertained and distracted forever amusing ourselves to death as best-selling author Neil postman puts it, the pursuit of the trivial and the meaningless hindrance to his God wants a purity of purpose and a purity of doctrine in his church, not silly pursuits, or even worse, the pollution sinful pollution of ungodliness to send me a silly trivial pursuits. Another thing that can hinder us is just stuff.

Think of all the time that we spend acquiring things and then protecting and maintaining them. We spent time that we don't have pursuing things we don't need that when they're obtained, then cost us more time to maintain and ultimately even more time and energy to get rid of first Timothy six says godliness with contentment is great gain.

For we brought nothing into the world and we can't take anything out of the world, author John Warburg says computer using the monopoly and a metaphor at the end, it all goes back in the box we brought nothing into the world and we can't take anything out of the world, but if we have food and clothing with these we will be content.

So this continual pursuit and management of stuff in our lives hinders our godliness throughout red variance in book earlier this year, written by an atheist, called lost connections. Johan Hari is author wrote really talking about how in our society were more connected than ever.

Electronically, yet disconnected relationally. One of one of the principles and summaries, but he talks about this kind of representative family here. Speaking of silliness and stuff. He says if you peeked through the window. You think they have everything that you need for happiness each other two kids a good home. All the consumer goods were told by both of them worked really hard in jobs that they really don't have a lot of interest in so they can earn money with the money they earn. They buy the things that we've learned from television will make us happy those cars, gadgets and status symbols. They display these things so people they display these things to people I know on social media, and they get lots of likes and comments like, oh my, I'm so jealous.

After the brief buzz that comes from displaying their goods, they usually find they become dissatisfied and down again.

Their puzzled by this and they assume it's because it in by the right thing actually work harder to buy more goods they display them on their devices. They feel a short buzz slump slumped back to where they started this vicious cycle of just kind of meaninglessness all centered on trivial pursuits in the accumulation of stuff to do one more example of existing slipping here that's a hindrance to us and brought out in these verses is second best be having these verses, something not to mention it's good and that's physical exercise. Of course, but dislike with any good thing in our lives. If it becomes too important to be can become an idol looking for a says brothers, whatever is true, whatever is honorable, whatever is just, pure, lovely, or commendable, if there is any excellence there's anything worthy of praise, think about these things.

We should pursue good things in our life. Of course enjoy them.

Glorify God in the process. They always must remain secondary to our pursuit of the lorry of God and of knowing him personally and serving him wholeheartedly. So be careful even about good things in our life that they don't become the ultimate thing. Sin, silly and godless pursuit stuff.

Even the second best.

All can hinder us in our training for godliness six on that this morning. Some of the practices to build spiritual strength in our lives to build godliness, looking at first Timothy four verse 11 through 16. Let's we just read through this command and teach these things but no one despise you for your youth, but set the believer as an example in speech and conduct, in love and faith and purity until I come devote yourself to the public reading of Scripture, to exhortation to teaching. Don't neglect the gift you have, which was given you by prophecy. When the council of elders lay their hands on you practice these things immerse yourself in them so that all may see your progress. Keep a close walk close watch on yourself and on the teaching persist in this. By so doing you will save both yourself and your peers. Some of the principles that we can lift from these verses and from other places in Scripture really is a make the priority of training for godliness. First of all make studying God's word and prayer. Primary daily disciplines make the study of God's word and prayer. Your primary disciplines see this IN the passage here in verse 11 command teaching the word.

Verse 13 devote yourself to the public reading of Scripture up in verse six, words of faith and all throughout Scripture we have these these given as a primary disciplines in our life and it's a daily discipline is in it like the children of Israel in the Old Testament were given manna each day and they were told to gather only for that day. Except before the Sabbath together two days worth, it was a daily thing sealer daily throughout Scripture take up our cross daily, we pray. Give us this day our daily bread. Joshua one.

Talking about meditating on God's word it were to do this day and night to be a continual part of our lives needs to be the first priority make these disciplines are number one priority.

The acquiring team from Germany saying this morning. Psalm 34. Taste and see that the Lord is good and in a sense devouring God's word is an acquired taste more that we feed on God's word.

The more that we want. It's it's similar way to physical sometimes getting on a training program to just taking that first step in at first workout is the hardest one. Same with the word it's it's getting those first initial steps and then continuing on in his book I which I would recommend it. Irresistible fat faith Scott Saul's says, just as a steady diet of healthy foods nurture a healthy body. So a steady diet of God's word aided an animated by the Holy Spirit nurtures a healthy soul with God's word becomes our chief guiding reality 11 Frazier chief guiding reality. We abide in Jesus by abiding in his word, we agree with our Savior. That man will not live by bread alone, but by every word that proceeds from the mouth of God would become positioned by God to live more beautiful and compelling lives required taste of growing in God's word before any other pursuit.

Make sure that were blocking time for God's word and prayer, and that were continuing in that even as we work out or we carry out any good activity. I think if we look at our calendars, our budgets and our calendars always reflect what's important. Some of us have exercise locked in. Already this week, but we leave it a little more haphazard for the study of God's word and prayer.

Make that our first priority. A second.

I participate with a strong and growing Christian community verses 11 and 12 command and teach these things. Let no one despise you for you.

Be an example in speech, conduct, love, faith, purity, all of these assume the context of the body of Christ. Take a take the athletic example given force. Every successful at every successful athlete needs a trainer for accountability and encouragement.

Specially those were professional but even even the casual one of us is just trying to kind of stay in shape 11 play basketball play basketball, try, try to couple mornings a week with a great group of guys.

Some of those recovery guys and in here this morning. Love the game of exercise. Love the camaraderie. Just enjoy it. But on the off days try to do something else. Aerobic I can tell you maybe just me but I can tell you that I'm much less inclined to miss that group gathering that I've signed up for that I am the personal commitment that I make and it's is one of just one of the basic premise of principles that we need accountability of others and how much greater is that in our spiritual sense. Think of all of the commandments or all that God has stressed in the community of believers. Jesus said in the New Testament that a new commandment I give to you that everybody will know you are my disciples, if you have love for one another and that's is one of dozens of one another's in the New Testament. How that would glorify God by serving one another, submitting to one another, welcoming and accepting one another.

They go on and on.

So we have the example of the body of Christ, and think of the accountability that we have. This is at the heart of discipleship that we are accountable to a mentor or a trainer in an environment of other like-minded people that are growing together. That's what works.

That's what makes an athletic team work, a common goal and pushing themselves together, how much more in our spiritual lives, and we have these great opportunities.

One of the calibrator worship to sit under teaching like Dr. Monroe every week and there's so many ministries designed to strengthen us and to teach us in God's word but we need to make sure that we are participating with people where we have interaction about God's word and about spiritual things were looking at each other face-to-face and into each other's eyes and talking about our spiritual walk. Whether that's one-on-one with a trainer or a mentor and discipleship in a small group and in ALG. Make sure that we are participating with a strong and growing Christian community third principle here boldly surrender any perceived weakness to God's power boldly surrender any perceived weakness to God's power. Look in verse 12. Here first Timothy four positivity.

Don't let anybody despise you for your youth. Get the idea of elsewhere, and in these epistles that Timothy was timid. Second Timothy one verse seven that we don't have the spirit of fear but of power and of love and of a sound mind. So Timothy probably struggled with being timid and he's perhaps East part of that was his youth here.

Others looked at his look down on his youth that I think the pressure of our own weakness. The pressure of our culture can look at our weaknesses and exploit them and beat us into submission and cause us to hide. Think of what God says about our weaknesses. Think of Paul.

This thorn in the flesh. Second Corinthians 12, Paul says three times I pleaded with the Lord that he would remove this thorn in the flesh. Whatever it was, God said to me, my grace is sufficient for you, for my power is made perfect in weakness.

Therefore I will boast all the more gladly of my weaknesses, so that the power of Christ may rest upon me something good and everything in an area of not weaknesses in an area Timothy it's his. It's his youth pulsing. Don't let that shrink back because some people look down on you because you're young, whatever our weakness or weaknesses are kid shrink in because it is a good Paul gives us the example bag and replead the Lord, take take this away for me.

But the Lord took chooses not to miss an opportunity for him to be glorified by his grace and his power working in and through us as were trying to grow in godliness, don't be stunted or stopped because of some weakness. I just can't get accomplish. I can grow because of such and such, whatever that surrendering to God. Next principle I hear verse 12 to consider their influence. Consider your influence excess air to Timothy set the believers. An example in speech and conduct, in love and faith and impurity to consider our impact on others are those who are working out physically when that professionally or casually, just like the verse teaches us as benefit for ourselves.

Maybe a little bit of benefit for others. Godliness has a benefit of for many people for others and also for eternity. So as we grow in godliness as we trainer remember it's not just for us, for others to strengthen the body of Christ, consider the influence that God has given you and I though I would say along those lines to again. Let's not let the world can form or shape our view of what's what's important in the world would say to get as many followers as you possibly can sometimes is not what God has for us is a season of life we may be more isolated badge in caring for a loved one I were worried.

We don't have as much interaction we certainly it's more than a day to day almost survival of God is ordained of circumstances told New Testament that part of our fellowship with Christ.

The sharing and suffering. So if the Navy or if you're isolated by an illness or hardening remain faithful saying Psalm 34 earlier in the service on 3418 says the Lord is close to the brokenhearted and saves those who are crushed in spirit. So consider your influence whether that's in large weather that may be just very small group of people for a season remain faithful God will be glorified next year as well. A Timothy exercise a spiritual gift that God is giving you exercise their spiritual gifts that God has given to you here with Timothy. It's the laying on of the hands of the church leader said ship was associated with this with with his leadership at each Christian has been given a spiritual gift at salvation. Romans 12 list some of these first Corinthians 12, God gives us a spiritual gift and while part of the body of Christ are these, all hands on deck kind opportunities were we just we just help and serve. We can be very we can become to invalid individualistic about it, but sometimes our God has given us as a gift.

And sometimes we can just let that gift kinda disappear.

Paul said to Timothy fan into flame the gift that God has given you wonderful pictures and fan into flame the gift of God is given to don't let it lie dormant their spiritual gifts assessments that you can take online that help you and you know if you been serving God and serving in ministries you know where that that spark is that your uniqueness that you bring to the body of Christ that that is just so especially alive and exercise a spiritual gift that God has given to us last. Lastly, here be relentless in your pursuit of Christ be relentless in your pursuit of Christ.

Verse 15 pulse summary here to Timothy to us practice these things immerse yourself in the sit all may see your progress.

There again, the impact influence. Keep a close watch on yourself and on the teaching persisting this for by some for by so doing you will say both yourself and your hearers be persistent. Look at these words that are listed here. Practice these things immerse yourself in them persist in this verse 16 reflect backup in verse 10, strive and toil be relentless in our pursuit of Christ.

Why is it that Jim's are packed in January and much less crowded in April. Why is it that Christians sometimes have read Genesis dozens of times, but Nehemiah only a few times this principle of sticking with it isn't about being persistent. All these things work together. Countability commitment time of the word prayer be relentless in your pursuit of crisis and principles. Therefore us make a make word of God and prayer. Our primary daily discipline. Make sure that were committed to a growing community of believers and interacting with them, consider our influence surrender our weaknesses to God exercise the gifts God has given to us and relentlessly pursue Christ now.

Lastly, here what's the impact. The impact of building spiritual strength impact of godliness. First of all, here we see in verse 16. Persist in this, for by so doing you will say both yourself. We know that only the God and God alone provides salvation is chosen for us to be instruments of the gospel to proclaim and so it matters to more than just us ourselves and God. Whether were growing in godliness to state the obvious. It has an impact on those around us. See throughout Scripture to submit ourselves to one another to preferred the interests of each other. Bible says in Philippians so we have as we grow in godliness. It says in verse 15 that all may see your progress and it's something that we can says in John for the wonders growing out of his very heart will flow written rivers of living water, so I could take a picture of ourselves as we grow in godliness like we might physically think that it's caught it it it, we can't help it to have a goose from us as we grow in Christ. The impact of growing in godliness says will save yourself and your hearers.

Also, all the way back up in verse six, if you put these things before the brothers will be a good servant of Christ Jesus. Also, throughout this passage studying God's word also need to study the doctrines of Christianity, or church, a statement of faith is a great place to start. That helps us put it all together but it says here that we will be a good servant. And what greater goals should there be in our life as a Christian and that day will stand before the Lord and to hear well done a good and faithful servant to the impact of our Christianity and of growing in godliness is that it will impact others of and that it will result in us being a good good servant for Christ dear Mr. Nana if I didn't mention. As he prayed for the family for Patty Lutz and family of the passing of Lamar's funeral here at Calvary yesterday about I guess 10 or 11 days ago last Wednesday. Our staff gathers for devotions.

Each Wednesday morning right now were going to the Psalms and that morning we focus on Psalm 90 Rodney Navy gave the devotion Psalm 90 was written by Moses and Pat verse 12 is a famous verse arm are familiar verse and that teach us to number our days, we might apply our hearts to listen that phrase number our days, and the challenge that morning was that life is short and make every moment count second had a thought ringing through my mind all morning and then at noon we got the call that the text that Lamar had suffered a brain aneurysm and hospital in Spartanburg and then a few days later, the law or saw fit to to call him home manner faithful servant of Christ in his 50s just given a clean bill of health. By his physician, Lord: home completely unexpected I think each of us sometimes just kind of pushed off the reality of our own mortality. You know it's like anything. Something that we don't really want to do is, push it off and Kennedy that in our life. We just get carried along the in the stream of the culture and the way everything goes in that we need to stop and think what's really important because we don't know we don't know how much time that we have left and when I was talking to Patty in the hospital just a few hours before Lamar passed away were talking about trips they had taken in different ways they had served and she made the statement but you know how heartbroken they were, but we have no regrets. I have no regrets. I thought what a powerful example because we tend to kinda plan our lives outgoing with all the lists that will someday were to do this and this and this is good. It's good to plan that someone is taken before we would say is there time and summary of the to live our lives with no regrets, and it is not what we want to be able to say that we have no regrets and not to change that.

Not not to wait for someday in the future to kinda turn things around, but the focus on what's really really important. This day I think God stresses that here don't have anything to do with silly and reverent things. Sin get rid of it completely enjoy the good things stay in shape and so many other good things in life far more important than any of that is training in godliness with commit to that train just a couple of verses as we close, here. The first one second rented for 16 we don't lose heart. Though our outer self is wasting away our inner self is being renewed day by day and in Hebrews chapter 12 13123 since we are surrounded by so great a cloud of witnesses, let us lay aside every weight, and sin which seemed to cling so closely the hindrances that we talk about. Let us run with endurance the race that is set before us. Another athletic reference looking to Jesus, the founder and perfecter of our faith, who for the joy that was set before him endured the cross, despising the shame, and is seated at the right hand of God just like we've seen in first Timothy 410 to this and we toil and strive because we have our hopes set on the living God, pray together thought we thank you for your word personally thank you for the grace of our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ for his sacrifice for each of us father, your grace, that not only saves us but sustains us and we pray that you would strengthen us word tells us to be strengthened in the grace of God, but I know even in preparing this or so many things in my life that I feel are such a waste of time and have know matter for what's really got a pretty good help us to see clearly to not just get caught up in the stream of culture and the way everything is done is let that creep in and we drift along father but that we would pursue you with all of our heart we would strive with determination father to know you more and to serve you with all of our heart for all of our days we give your thanks and our praise in the name Christ in

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