HOW TO PREACH THE WORD (2 Timothy – 17)
READ: 2 Timothy 4:1-2
Paul commanded Timothy, and us, to preach the Word, always be ready to correct, rebuke and encourage others. That is what we are to do. Next Paul will tell Timothy how to do it. “Preach the word; be prepared in season and out of season; correct, rebuke and encourage—with great patience and careful instruction” (2 Timothy 4:2). How are we to “preach the Word”? We are to communicate it with patience and accuracy.
First, we must use “great patience” in teaching and applying God’s Word. The Greek word means “patience endurance.” It’s like “run with patience” (Hebrews 12:1). It is a continuing, ongoing, active action but done with patient faithfulness. Often, we must teach and explain the same thing over and over and over. Parents must do that with children, and God must do it with His children, too. It takes great patience to be a good parent, and to be a good pastor. Patience doesn’t come naturally or easily. It is a fruit of God’s Spirit (Galatians 5:22-23), not something we can produce on our own. It’s not something we can fake or pretend we have. It either is real or we don’t have it. God’s fruit is only produced in us when we live close to Him and have no sin in our life. We need patience to pastor. As Paul says, we need great patience.
The other way we are to share God’s truth is by “careful instruction.” We must teach all the Bible, not just a few favorite parts. We must cover everything a passage or verse says, not just pick out what we want to talk about. We must go over it again and again until people really understand it. Then we must make sure it is accurately applied to their lives. The Bible must be taught in an organized, systematic way. My book, “Bible Overview,” will help you understand the Bible and organize your teaching of it (see https://www.christiantrainingonline.org/our-ministries/india/books/).
A good way to become a better Bible teacher is to teach children, your own children or grandchildren or those in your church. That will help you break Bible truths down to make them simpler and more understandable. Children will tell you when they don’t understand. You will have to think and plan more carefully before talking and that is good.
There is much error in the world today. Only the Bible is God’s absolute authority of truth. People, even pastors, can be easily misled if they don’t totally and completely know the Bible. That’s why it is so important for us to “preach the Word” and to do it with “great patience” and “careful instruction.”
PAUL’S ADVICE: Communicating God’s Word must be done with great patience and careful instruction.
Hebrews 12:1-3 Therefore, since we are surrounded by such a great cloud of witnesses, let us throw off everything that hinders and the sin that so easily entangles, and let us run with perseverance the race marked out for us. Let us fix our eyes on Jesus, the author and perfecter of our faith, who for the joy set before him endured the cross, scorning its shame, and sat down at the right hand of the throne of God. Consider him who endured such opposition from sinful men, so that you will not grow weary and lose heart.
Are you a patient person?
Would your family say you are patient?
What must you do to become more patient and therefore more Christlike?
cto Rev. Dr. JERRY SCHMOYER
Christian Training Organization
(India Outreach, Spiritual Warfare, Family Ministries, Counseling, World View)
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