Thursday – October 26, 2017 – Know Those You Follow
2 Timothy 2:1-2 (NIV) You then, my son, be strong in the grace that is in Christ Jesus.
2 And the things you have heard me say in the presence of many witnesses entrust to reliable people who will also be qualified to teach others.
2 Timothy 3:10-14 (NIV) You, however, know all about my teaching, my way of life, my purpose, faith, patience, love, endurance, 11 persecutions, sufferings—what kinds of things happened to me in Antioch, Iconium and Lystra, the persecutions I endured. Yet the Lord rescued me from all of them. 12 In fact, everyone who wants to live a godly life in Christ Jesus will be persecuted, 13 while evildoers and impostors will go from bad to worse, deceiving and being deceived. 14 But as for you, continue in what you have learned and have become convinced of, because you know those from whom you learned it,
1 Corinthians 4:17 (NIV) For this reason I have sent to you Timothy, my son whom I love, who is faithful in the Lord. He will remind you of my way of life in Christ Jesus, which agrees with what I teach everywhere in every church.
This great big world we live in has been getting smaller. On our computers and television screens we watch things and hear people speak from halfway around the world. We read of things on the internet that we receive as gospel, only to find out it was fake news meant to destroy people’s reputation or to take money out of your pocket. We seek people’s opinions that are either ill-informed or have no information whatsoever, but because they have some notoriety we think they have knowledge.
Paul encouraged his young protégé Timothy to be confident of what he learned, because he knew and was closely connected to the one he learned it from. Timothy had travelled with Paul, and saw the price that he was willing to pay to advance the gospel and introduce people to Jesus. Timothy witnessed the persecution that Paul endured that was designed to silence him, but it only served to make Paul bolder. Being stoned and left for dead would have silenced most people, but Paul was determined to continue to teach. There isn’t much stronger evidence that one is convinced of the truth of what they teach than being willing to die for the message. Timothy was confident in Paul because he knew him.
In return, Paul was confident in Timothy. He was a spiritual father to Timothy and knew his character. He knew that what he was passing on to him would be passed on to others who he hoped would be as reliable as he believed Timothy would be.
We have heard it said that familiarity breeds contempt, but that should only happen when the ones we are familiar with are unfaithful. Familiarity also breeds confidence when the words people speak line up with the lives that they live. Paul said one thing, lived that way and he changed the course of western civilization. Timothy came along side of him and became a part of that legacy.
Prayer: Thank you Lord for the legacy that Paul left as a follower of Jesus. Thank you for Timothy who took that legacy and trained other reliable people. Thank you that I am one of those reliable people.
Proverbs 26 | Audio
Honor is no more associated with fools
than snow with summer or rain with harvest.
2 Like a fluttering sparrow or a darting swallow,
an undeserved curse will not land on its intended victim.
3 Guide a horse with a whip, a donkey with a bridle,
and a fool with a rod to his back!
4 Don’t answer the foolish arguments of fools,
or you will become as foolish as they are.
5 Be sure to answer the foolish arguments of fools,
or they will become wise in their own estimation.
6 Trusting a fool to convey a message
is like cutting off one’s feet or drinking poison!
7 A proverb in the mouth of a fool
is as useless as a paralyzed leg.
8 Honoring a fool
is as foolish as tying a stone to a slingshot.
9 A proverb in the mouth of a fool
is like a thorny branch brandished by a drunk.
10 An employer who hires a fool or a bystander
is like an archer who shoots at random.
11 As a dog returns to its vomit,
so a fool repeats his foolishness.
12 There is more hope for fools
than for people who think they are wise.
13 The lazy person claims, “There’s a lion on the road!
Yes, I’m sure there’s a lion out there!”
14 As a door swings back and forth on its hinges,
so the lazy person turns over in bed.
15 Lazy people take food in their hand
but don’t even lift it to their mouth.
16 Lazy people consider themselves smarter
than seven wise counselors.
17 Interfering in someone else’s argument
is as foolish as yanking a dog’s ears.
18 Just as damaging
as a madman shooting a deadly weapon
19 is someone who lies to a friend
and then says, “I was only joking.”
20 Fire goes out without wood,
and quarrels disappear when gossip stops.
21 A quarrelsome person starts fights
as easily as hot embers light charcoal or fire lights wood.
22 Rumors are dainty morsels
that sink deep into one’s heart.
23 Smooth[a] words may hide a wicked heart,
just as a pretty glaze covers a clay pot.
24 People may cover their hatred with pleasant words,
but they’re deceiving you.
25 They pretend to be kind, but don’t believe them.
Their hearts are full of many evils.[b]
26 While their hatred may be concealed by trickery,
their wrongdoing will be exposed in public.
27 If you set a trap for others,
you will get caught in it yourself.
If you roll a boulder down on others,
it will crush you instead.
28 A lying tongue hates its victims,
and flattering words cause ruin.