#DailyDevotion Pastors, Let God’s Grace Make You Strong
2 Tim. 2 You, my son, let God’s grace in Christ Jesus make you strong, 2and what you heard me say before many witnesses entrust to faithful people who will be able to teach others. 3Share hardships with me like a good soldier of Christ Jesus. 4If you’re in the army, you don’t get tangled up with the ways of making a living; you want to please him who made you a soldier. 5If you enter a contest, you win a prize only if you compete according to the rules. 6If you work the ground, you should be the first to get what grows on it. 7Try to understand what I say, because the Lord will give you understanding in everything.
Paul again reminds Timothy to let God’s grace in Christ Jesus make him strong. We need a lot of encouragement in Christ. It is because we live by faith and not by sight. We live by the promises we have from God in Christ Jesus. This is not an easy thing. We have to believe God is for us when the world and the devil do their best to show us he is against us. The world is constantly trying to show us there is an easier, softer way, but there is not one. The devil is always trying to deceive us that the path of Christ can be easier than it is by either tearing away at the commandments or God’s promises. If that doesn’t works, he’ll try to get us to be so picayune about the law of God we make it harder than it has to be or we even make up stuff and he robs the joy out of life and causes us to despair.
So we must let God’s grace in Christ Jesus make us strong. That means we must regularly keep our hearts and minds on the promises we have in Christ Jesus. We cannot do this by ourselves. We need each other’s encouragement when gather together as church. The promises we need t hear regularly are we are forgiven our sins for Christ’s sake. Jesus Christ is our ransom and redemption. Jesus is the propitiation for our sins. Jesus is our Passover Lamb whose blood causes Death to pass over us. In Jesus Christ we have passed over from death to life. Jesus has promised us he has gone ahead of us to prepare a place for us. A new heavens and a new earth where righteousness reigns is what Christ has promised all who trust in him. He has promised all who put their trust in him have eternal life now and will be raised to eternal life when he returns. We will live with him and the Father in their presence with the Holy Spirit. The riches of his grace is ours to have. With such promises we can look with scorn all the world promises to give, which are here today and gone tomorrow. With contempt we can look upon our very own lives and bodies when the devil promises a life of ease now if we but deny Christ.
With that in mind Paul tells Timothy and us to share in hardships like a good soldier in Christ. Now here he mainly speaks to Timothy as a pastor. We all will have hardships occasionally because we are Christians. Pastors in particularly will have hardships because of the devils works to destroy the work they are doing. As a solder in Christ we pastors are not to be getting entangled with the ways to make a living. Instead, we, like soldiers are trying to please the one who made us a pastor. That means praying, studying, preaching, teaching and visiting members of the flock. The prize we win is the reward at the end of our days if we play according to the rules. Pastors shouldn’t have to worry about what they and their families should eat, wear or where they will sleep. Those he prays for, studies for, preaches to, teaches and visits should be providing all those things.
Finally, back to verse one, Paul is concerned with true doctrine or teaching. Timothy is to be about entrusting the true teaching/doctrine to those who will be faithful in transmitting it. You have to remember the New Testament bible is just in the beginning stages of being written. We need the apostles’ teaching from Jesus concerning who he is how he fulfilled the Old Testament. Without pure teaching there will not be the love many try to emphasize to the point of teaching and preaching falsely. Love does not promote error concerning God’s word.
Heavenly Father, give us pastors who can transmit the faith to us and provide them will all there needs through those they serve. Encourage them with your promises to be fulfilled in the world to come. In Jesus’ name we pray. Amen.