- The Explore the Bible lesson for July 14 focuses on 2 Timothy 1:3-14.
As believers, we know we are the righteousness of God in Christ Jesus (2 Corinthians 5:21). Christ Jesus lives in us (2 Corinthians 13:5), and one day we will join him in heaven, where we will spend eternity (1 John 5:13). These foundational beliefs provide us the security to live this life boldly for the Lord, and being secure in Christ Jesus is the basis for our confidence.
Heritage (2 Timothy 1:3-5)
Pray always. Pray without ceasing. Night and day, we are to pray as Paul did for Timothy. Pray, trust and live with confidence in the Lord. Paul instructs Christians: “Pray continually” (1 Thessalonians 5:17). In good and difficult times, it always should occur to us to pray.
Daniel 9 tells us prayer should be focused on God and his character, should include sincere confession, unselfishness and dependence on God’s word. Paul demonstrates his unselfishness when he reminds Timothy of his family heritage of faith, and Paul encourages Timothy with the assurance that same faith now lives in him.
How do we exemplify the heritage of faith that has been passed on to us? How do you “pray continually”?
Gifted (2 Timothy 1:6-7)
We are to pray that our gifts are activated and used for God’s glory to motivate and encourage his people to faithfulness. Further, in times of trouble and difficulties, we are to move past fear in our thoughts or circumstance. We are called to action. We should do what God would have us to do at that moment—pray for help, praise and/or worship in song, read Scripture or whatever he leads. We are not powerless. Rather, we are victors (1 Corinthians 15:57) and children of the most-high God. The moment we accepted Jesus Christ, the Holy Spirit came to live in our hearts; therefore, we are gifted and fit for service. We are believers, and as such, we can go to God for help.
When was the last time you encouraged yourself in your gift(s) or stirred up the gift(s) of another?
Unashamed (2 Timothy 1:8-12)
Since we have assurance in Christ Jesus, we can share our faith wholeheartedly. Our boldness and excitement as believers are good for us and others who may need a word of encouragement via our testimony. We can trust the plan of God—salvation and a life of holiness. How awesome it is Jesus has made salvation and living a holy life real for us. His time on earth, sacrifice on the cross and resurrection are our paths to salvation and living holy. Because he died and rose with all power, we can live in the light of the gospel—the good news. Death and darkness are not a believer’s destiny. Like Christ, Paul and others, we may suffer darkness at times in our lives. We may even suffer because we build our life on the gospel. Yet, we are fully confident in the God we serve and in his power. Moreover, we stand on the promise that as we serve God, whatever we entrust to him he will guard. Praise God!
How have you recently shared your faith?
Loyal (2 Timothy 1:13-14)
With faith and love in Christ, we are to hold tight to sound biblical teaching. While we allow the Holy Spirit to help, we are to guard the good we have been entrusted with, pray, stand and use our gift(s) to help the next generation.
Prayer: Lord, thank you for your word to continually pray. Thank you for the legacy of faith some of us are privileged to enjoy. Help us to use our gifts to your glory and with boldness and loyalty serve you. In Jesus name, Amen.
Lisa M. Rainey, PhD., is a member of Bethlehem Baptist Church in Mansfield, Texas.