2 Timothy 1:1-14

Paul’s pastoral protégé was Timothy. A protégé is a protected one. The mentor/protégé relationship is special. In this case, it is a privilege to prepare another for the rigors of serving the Lord in a pulpit ministry. Here, Timothy was Paul’s son in the ministry; Paul wrote an inspired and inspiring open letter to Timothy from which we all can benefit as believers.

Dr. Warren W. Wiersbe, author and editor of more than 150 books, including his famous Be Series of devotional commentaries, fittingly titled his autobiography Be Myself. In his classic titled On Being a Servant of God, he shares, “The important thing is that we do our work and not waste too much time measuring ourselves. ‘[People] who do their best always do more, though they be haunted by the sense of failure,’ said Scottish minister George Morrison. ‘Be good and true; be patient; be undaunted. Leave your usefulness to God to estimate. He will see to it that you do not live in vain.'” Following the Be pattern, allow me to share three words of encouragement.

Be Unafraid (vv. 1-7)
Some Bible commentators refer to Timothy as Timid Tim. Being in pastoral ministry can be very intimidating. There is a need for holy boldness in the pulpit. Paul told Timothy to overcome fear by faith. The basis of faith is the Word of God (Rom. 10:17). Throughout the years of my ministry, I have prayed to be “as wise as a serpent, as harmless as a dove and as bold as a lion.” God answers prayers.

Be Unashamed (vv. 8-12)
Several years ago, I read a powerful ministerial mission statement and cited it in my book Sound Biblical Preaching: Giving the Bible a Voice, “I am a part of the Fellowship of the Unashamed. The die has been cast. The decision has been made. I have stepped over the line. I won’t look back, let up, slow down, back away or be still.

“My past is redeemed, my present makes sense, and my future is secure. I’m finished and done with low living, sight walking, small planning, smooth knees, colorless dreams, tamed visions, mundane talking, cheap giving and dwarfed goals.

“I no longer need preeminence, prosperity, position, promotions, plaudits or popularity. I don’t have to be right, first, tops, recognized, praised, regarded or rewarded. I now live by faith, lean on His presence, love with patience, live by prayer and labor with power.

“My face is set, my gait is fast, my goal is heaven, my road is narrow, my way is rough, my companions are few, my Guide is reliable, and my mission is clear. I cannot be bought, compromised, detoured, lured away, turned back, deluded or delayed. I will not flinch in the face of sacrifice, hesitate in the presence of adversity, negotiate at the table of the enemy, ponder at the pool of popularity or meander in the maze of mediocrity.

I won’t give up, shut up, let up or slow up until I have stayed up, stored up, prayed up, paid up and spoken up for the cause of Christ. I am a disciple of Jesus. I must go till He comes, give till I drop, preach till all know and work till He stops me. When He comes for His own, He will have no problem recognizing me. My banner is clear. I am a part of the fellowship of the unashamed.”

Be Unadulterated (vv. 13-14)
According to the Encyclopedia Britannica (1902), adulteration is “the act of debasing a pure or genuine commodity for pecuniary profit, by adding to it an inferior or spurious article, or by taking from it one or more of its constituents.”

Paul instructed Timothy to “hold fast the pattern of sound words” to vigilantly adhere to sound biblical doctrine. This is essential in making disciples. As believers are commanded to make disciples according to the great commission (Matt. 28:18-20; Mark 16:15; Luke 24:26; and John 20:21), likewise as pastors and believers, we are to mentor protégés (2 Tim. 2:22).

Who is your protégé? Are you working at the task of creating and mentoring disciples of Christ?

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