2 Timothy 1

2 Timothy 1 begins Paul’s second letter to his protégé Timothy.  He begins like he does in all his letters, reminding us that he is an apostle according to the will of God, not because of what he or any other man plans for him.  Paul is in prison in Rome as he writes and was facing execution.  So this letter has some intensity behind it.  Paul begins by reminding Timothy of his heritage.  “I am reminded of  your sincere faith, a faith that dwelt first in your grandmother Lois and your mother Eunice and now, I am sure, dwells in you as well”.  Timothy’s genuine faith was due, in no small way, to his godly upbringing and the influence of his grandmother and mother.

It wasn’t enough that this genuine faith was in Timothy’s grandmother and mother; it had to be in Timothy also. Our children, once of age to be accountable before God, must have their own relationship with Jesus Christ. Mom and dad’s relationship with God will not then bring eternal life to them.  Because of his history, Paul encourages Timothy to pour gas onto his faith fire.  “For this reason I remind you to fan into flame the gift of God….for God gave us a spirit not of fear but of power and love and self-control”.  When it comes to our faith, we must be bold, get going, go for it.  It should drive us and we need to keep poking at it so the flame continues to burn and grown.

Paul challenges Timothy to stand tall and firm in his faith.  “Therefore do not be ashamed of the testimony about our Lord, nor of me his prisoner, but share in suffering for the gospel by the power of God, who saved us and called us to a holy calling, not because of our works but because of his own purpose and grace, which he gave us in Christ Jesus before the ages began, and which now has been manifested through the appearing of our Savior Christ Jesus, who abolished death and brought life and immortality to light through the gospel, for which I was appointed a preacher and apostle and teacher, which is why I suffer as I do”.  That’s a mouth full of words.  Paul challenges Timothy to recognize just how special and amazing God’s gift of grace is through Christ, and the eternal outcome He gave of victory over death and the promise of eternal life to all who believe.  That’s the message Paul taught and is encouraging Timothy to shout from the rooftops.

It’s a personal mission for Paul.  “I am not ashamed, for I know whom I have believed, and I am convinced that he is able to guard until that Day  what has been entrusted to me”.  He sits in a Roman prison but has assurance of his salvation through Christ at a level that cannot be shaken.  We must know what we believe; but it is even more important to know whom we believe.  Paul knew exactly what he believed. Paul had committed everything to Jesus – his life, his body, his character and reputation, his life’s work, everything that was precious.  Paul knew he could not keep his own life; he knew that only God could keep it.  Paul was all in for Jesus.  That’s what he calls Timothy, and each of us as Christ Followers to do as well.  We need to be all in for Jesus.

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