Thursday November 8, 2018
Text: 2 TIMOTHY1:1-18
MEMORISE: When I call to remembrance the genuine faith that is in you, which dwelt first in your grandmother Lois and your mother Eunice, and I am persuaded is in you also. Therefore I remind you to stir up the gift of God which is in you through the laying on of my hands (2 Timothy 1:5-6).
Because the gift of God in verse 6, Paul spoke about Timothy’s genuine faith in verse 5. These two verses remind us of Paul’s first letter to Timothy where he reminded his mentee that the aim of his charge as a pastor is love that issues from a pure heart, good conscience and sincere faith (1 Tim. 1:5).
To Paul, having a sincere faith is foundational to the outworking of the gift of God. Indeed, the Apostle said that it is for this reason that Timothy ought to fan into flame the gift of God (NIV) which is in him through Paul’s laying of hands. What is this “gift”? The subsequent verses imply it as the grace to courageously speak forth God’s Word for the salvation of souls.
Paul seems to be telling Timothy: “Get your relationship with God straightened out first; grow your faith by staying close to God, then allow that to direct and enhance the gifting that God has deposited in you.” Indeed, Hebrew 11 reminds us that without faith (and even if with an abundance of talents and gifting), we cannot please God.
Sometimes, it seems that the Christian community has gotten Paul’s exhortation upside down. We place a higher premium on “gift” than “faith”; especially when it comes to appointing people to serve in various areas of ministry. We become easily excited by the many gifts that a person expresses, rather than the faith that he or she possesses in relationship with Christ, our Lord. We take the easy way out because it is easier to have someone to do the work of ministry than to work with this person closely, prior to, or in parallel to the work of ministry.
While the work of ministry can help in the growth of faith, we need to take into account what comes first or that which is more foundational-genuine faith in Christ Jesus. Such a ministry philosophy will help the church save a lot of heartaches and disunity in the future and will also help the one who is called to serve, to go in the right direction.
1. Lord, may You forgive us for turning Your priorities upside down. Help us to be people who risk all to serve in accordance with Your Word.
2. Lord, help me to pay attention to my walk with You than getting carried away with works that don’t profit You.
3. Lord, let Your face shine on Nigeria; show us unusual mercy.
EXTRA READING FOR TODAY: Jeremiah 39 – 41
Source: Living Water Daily Devotional