Believing in the sufficiency of scripture will significantly impact us in two ways. First, it will impact our lives and how we live. When faced with significant choices, we will began to ask ourselves, “what saith the scripture? We will understand more of what the Lord meant when He said, “man cannot live by bread alone, but by every word that proceeds from the mouth of God.” The word is vital, as necessary as our daily bread in maintaining and nourishing our spiritual life.
Second, believing in scriptures sufficiency will have a huge impact on how we do ministry, and why we go to church, and what kind of churches we may attend. I’ve always believed that our number one reason for going to a church is to hear and obey Gods word. I understand that not all feel the same way I do on this issue, but I would rather go to a place where the word of God is preached, even if the music ministry in that church may not be as good and exciting, as other places that perhaps don’t emphasize Gods word. God will be our Judge on these issues not me!
In the portion of the Bible under discussion, Paul builds upon what he has established, e.g. Scriptures divine origin and sufficiency, by giving Timothy clear guidelines, on how and what he is supposed to preach, and I quote,
2 Tim 4:1-5 NKJV.
4 I charge you therefore before God and the Lord Jesus Christ, who will judge the living and the dead at His appearing and His kingdom: 2 Preach the word! Be ready in season and out of season. Convince, rebuke, exhort, with all longsuffering and teaching. 3 For the time will come when they will not endure sound doctrine, but according to their own desires, because they have itching ears, they will heap up for themselves teachers; 4 and they will turn their ears away from the truth, and be turned aside to fables. 5 But you be watchful in all things, endure afflictions, do the work of an evangelist, fulfill your ministry.
In Paul’s original letter to Timothy, there were no chapter and verses. He was building on what he had previously said to Timothy, about the scriptures fully equipping us. The old saying, “if you see a therefore, see what it’s there for has a lot of truth to it, and is a good rule to follow, if we are to keep verses in context.
Note first of all that Timothy is charged, [ commanded] because of the urgency of the hour, the Lord’s soon return in His kingdom, who will also judge the living and the dead, to preach the word! Timothy is to do this in season and out, in other words when it is favorable and when it is not!
As Timothy carries out this mandate, he will see four things begin to happen in his ministry, he will convince, rebuke, exhort, and teach. [ or rather the word of God will fulfill this.] Timothy is told in what manner he is to conduct himself in this ministry, “with all longsuffering,” he is called to be in this for the long haul, this kind of ministering will take some time.
Paul warns Timothy that the time will come when folks will not endure [ put up with] sound doctrine, but will seek Teachers that are more in line with their desires. In fact, Paul predicts that they will not only gather Teachers, but “they will heap up for themselves teachers.” Sounds like quite a collection!
In this ministry, Paul is preparing Timothy to expect conflict. He tells him to be watchful in everything, [e.g. watching over the flock of God.] to expect afflictions, but to soak it up without complaining, to evangelize and to fulfill his ministry.
It is clear from this passage of scripture what the Preacher is supposed to emphasize! I will be posting one more blog on this topic and then will be through perhaps?