2 Timothy (Part 7)

v.8. 1. Because Timothy had the spirit of power and not of fear (v.7), Paul exhorts him "therefore" to not be ashamed of the testimony of the Lord. A. Testimony: "Personal or documentary evidence or attestation in support of a fact or statement; hence, any form of evidence or proof." B. Those who saw Jesus Christ gave the personal evidence of Him and His claims. ACT 10:37-43; 1CO 15:5-8; 1JO 1:1-4. C. The Scriptures are the documentary evidence of Jesus Christ. REV 19:10; 2PE 1:20-21; JOH 16:13-14; 5:39; 20:30-31. D. The testimony of Christ is so evident that no one need be ashamed of it. GAL 3:1. E. It is perfectly in keeping with a sound mind (v.7) to accept the testimony of Jesus Christ. ACT 26:24-26; 2PE 1:16. F. This verse shows that being a partaker of the afflictions of the gospel contrasts with being ashamed of the testimony of the Lord. (1) The testimony of the Lord IS the gospel! (2) The gospel sets forth a saving hope (ROM 8:24) and “…hope maketh not ashamed" (ROM 5:5). (3) Why should we therefore be ashamed of the good news and certain hope of salvation by the power of Jesus Christ? ROM 1:16. G. Soundness in God's word is antidotal to being ashamed of it or by it. PSA 119:5-6, 80 c/w 2TI 2:15. 2. Timothy was not to be ashamed of Paul even though Paul was a social outcast. 3. Paul was the prisoner of Christ. A. It was for Christ's sake that Paul was a prisoner. 2TI 2:8-9; ACT 28:20. B. The Lord loves HIS prisoners. PSA 69:33. C. We should love His prisoners. HEB 13:3 c/w MAT 25:34-40. 4. Because the world, the flesh, and the devil hate the gospel; there will be afflictions to be endured in being identified with the gospel. REV 12:17. 5. The power of God is the resource for a bold defense of the gospel. MAT 28:18-20; COL 1:28-29; 1CO 3:6-7, 9. A. This power is active through the putting on of His armor. EPH 6:10-17. B. This power is accessed through prayer. EPH 6:18-20. v.9. 1. GOD has done the saving! Salvation is of the LORD. JON 2:9. 2. God HAS DONE the saving. Scripture declares the eternal salvation of the elect to be a finished work. A. "...we were reconciled to God by the death of his Son..." (ROM 5:10). B. "...when he had by himself purged our sins..." (HEB 1:3). C. "...having obtained eternal redemption for us" (HEB 9:12). D. "...he appeared to put away sin by the sacrifice of himself" (HEB 9:26). E. "...he hath perfected forever them that are sanctified" (HEB 10:14). F. "...which delivered us from the wrath to come" (1TH 1:10). G. "...who hath delivered us from the power of darkness..." (COL 1:13). H. "...I have finished the work..." (JOH 17:4). I. "...It is finished..." (JOH 19:30). J. A false savior is commonly taught who saved nobody at his first advent but only made salvation a possibility by his blood, death and resurrection. (1) Promoters of this savior scorn the doctrine of a limited atonement. (2) Who is really limiting the atoning blood of Christ: those who say that it actually, fully, finally saved all and only all that the Father gave to Christ to save, OR those who say that it actually saved nobody? 3. God calls those whom He saves. A. This call is by means of Jesus Christ. 1PE 5:10. B. This call is effectual. JOH 5:25. C. This is a holy calling. (1) God's call is a call to holiness. 1TH 4:7. (2) The recipients of this call are made holy. ROM 8:30; TIT 3:5; EPH 4:24. (3) God does not save His people TO sin, but FROM sin. MAT 1:21. 4. Paul had personal assurance of salvation in that he said God "HATH saved us and called us..." A. Christ loved the church (EPH 5:25). That Christ loved ME makes it personal. GAL 2:20. B. God has chosen His people (EPH 1:4). That God chose Rufus makes election personal. ROM 16:13. C. The fact that Christ died is history; the fact that Christ died for me is salvation. 4. God's salvation and calling are not according to (in a manner agreeing with, consistent with, or answering to) man's works. A. Sinners have no good works. ROM 3:10-12. B. In salvation God does not cooperate with or respond to man's good works. C. Salvation does not agree with man's works; it rather destroys his works. COL 1:21-22; HEB 9:14. 5. Salvation is God's response to His OWN purpose. ROM 8:28-29; EPH 1:5, 11. 6. Grace was given to God's people in Christ before the world began. A. God chose His people IN CHRIST before the world began. EPH 1:4. B. Grace was then given to them IN CHRIST, their representative. C. IN CHRIST, the elect received saving grace BEFORE the world began! 7. A sinner is vitally saved when he is regenerated or quickened (TIT 3:5; EPH 2:5), but his salvation was PLANNED before the world began. A. PRO 22:3 says, A prudent man foreseeth the evil and hideth himself..." B. Our prudent God foresaw the evil of our sin and hid US in Christ! COL 3:3. 8. The gospel is the declaration of God's plans for God's glory. EPH 1:5-6, 11-12. A. The gospel does NOT magnify the will and ambition of men. 1CO 1:26-31. B. God does not save sinners because of anything of worth in them; but because of what is in HIMSELF, because of His OWN purpose. C. In the face of perilous times when "men shall be lovers of their own selves (2TI 3:2)," Paul recommends a bold defense of the self-abasing gospel. D. The gospel commands self-denial, NOT self-esteem. MAT 16:24. E. Satan's gospel magnifies self rather than God. 2CO 11:4; GEN 3:5; EZE 28:17. F. When one properly perceives God for whom He is, self-esteem is effectively quashed. ISA 6:1-5.
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