“Be diligent to present yourself approved to God, a worker who does not need to be ashamed, rightly diving the word of truth.” 2 Timothy 2:15
We noted last week the idea of meditating on the word of God, and how many times the Bible writers emphasized how we should meditate, think and consider daily what God is saying to us. Every year we publish a calendar of daily Scripture reading, and it is my prayer that each member here take a few minutes out of each day to listen to, meditate on and to do what God has said.
As we see Paul encouraging a young preacher to be diligent (or “study” in the KJV) we see the reason why we (all of us) should be diligent. We need to present ourselves approved to God.
Imagine standing on the day of judgment, facing Jesus. (Acts 17:30-31). He looks at us, knowing every sin we have committed, but also knowing of our faith, of our faithfulness, and of our works for him (Hebrews 4:13). He knows whether or not we have obeyed him; he knows whether or not we have studied, meditated and have grown for him. More importantly, he knows whether or not we have tried to live out the principles he has taught us in His word.
The idea Paul emphasizes to Timothy is that we need to present ourselves approved to God. I remember how I wanted to please my earthly father in the jobs he wanted me to do. I would rejoice when he showed approval; I would be crestfallen when I failed him. How much more should I strive to please my heavenly Father? I have often stated that what I want to hear him say on the day of judgement is “Well done, good and faithful servant, enter into the joy of the Lord” (Matthew 25:31-33). Notice he only says this to good servants, and faithful servants. Consider, then, these thoughts . . .
Are we good servants? Can he count on us to do what he has told us to do? Do we have to be guilted or cajoled into being obedient, or do we do it because we want to please him? Can people tell we love our Heavenly Father and his son, Jesus? Can he count on our faithfulness? Faithfulness extends beyond attending worship with the church faithfully. It means LIVING his word faithfully every day. It means I must examine my life in the mirror of God’s word, see where I am lacking and strive to be a better Christian today than I was yesterday. It means I will be willing to do the hard things he asks me to do, and sometimes that means I have to get out of my comfort zone.
Paul goes further in talking with Timothy about the need to be a worker. Specifically, he emphasizes that we need to work at “rightly dividing the word of truth.” We often take that to mean that we should “rightly divide what is applicable to us, and what was applicable to Noah, or Moses, or those under the Patriarchal or Mosaic period).” This is true.
We must, however, be workers in understanding how the Scripture applies to my life, in the circumstances that I am in. How well do I apply Scripture to my life? Do I truly seek to apply these things to me, or am I always able to see how it applies to someone else’s life? Do I think about how I need to change something in me, or how someone else needs to change?
Let it be understood that we need to be WORKERS! Workers in studying and meditating on God’s word, and workers in applying these things to our lives.
Some final thoughts and questions that we all should meditate on this week:
Can we honestly say that as we face Jesus on judgment day, that we have been workers for him? Further, will we be ashamed, or will we look forward to facing him to receive his approval of what we have done?
Our answer now may make a difference later! Love, Tommy