Sunday Message Summary, 27 December 2020
The Apostle Paul warned Timothy that there would be perilous times when the world would be in the church. These are difficult days that are hard to bear and we are living in those times. Many Christians in the church are lovers of themselves, self-absorbed and narcissistic; many are lovers of money, worrying only about what to do and what to give in order to receive all the time (2 Timothy 3:1-2). At the core, GOD has been taken out and it is all about self. People have gone back to that from which they were delivered, as a result there is an overflow of carnality in the church and no presence of GOD. Notwithstanding, Paul exhorts Timothy, warning him not to be discouraged, but to speak and preach the Word. Timothy is called to rebuke, correct, reprimand and scold by and through the Word of God (2 Timothy 4:2).
Sadly, many modern-day Christians get offended by correction because they are gods unto themselves. When we only want ministers who will tell us what we want to hear, that means the minister is a puppet and we are puppet masters. However, if we understood the Word, we would know that the Word corrects and rebukes. Scripture is useful for discipline, and to be complete & perfect, thoroughly equipped for the work of GOD, we must be partakers of the rebuke and correction in the Word of God (2 Timothy 3:16-17). True servants of GOD are there to discipline, rebuke and correct us, and a true child of GOD will be there to submit and pay respect. Furthermore, unless we listen to the men/women that GOD has brought into our lives, we cannot listen to GOD. If we have not partaken of divine correction and rebuke, we are illegitimate children and we are not heirs of GOD, notwithstanding our knowledge of Scripture (Hebrews 12:8-11).
GOD does not derive pleasure from our pain or discomfort, but He disciplines us for our own good, that afterwards we may share in His righteousness. Righteousness is a free gift, but it must be practiced, producing right doing, right living and right conduct. Obedience, however, is a by-product of character, and character develops through a process. Similarly, faith development and growth are a process (James 1:2-4). Not everything comes by teaching, because if everything came by teaching GOD would not allow trials. There is need for trials and a process to develop a character of godliness; the trials, tribulations, and discipline of Scripture(Romans 5:1-5). GOD causes everything to work together for our good, including the hardships. It is a necessary ingredient for heirs of GOD (Romans 8:28).
It is the Word of God that prepares us for blessings and abundance. If we reject this Word of God how can we receive blessings? We cannot plant disobedience to the Word of God and expect to reap blessings from that same Word. The harvest we reap reveals the seed that was planted. It is the Holy Spirit who reveals the Word of GOD to us, so when we obey Him, we allow Him to do the work in us. A wise person therefore learns from their error or mistake (Proverbs 9:8), recognising that they are in error, also taking responsibility for their error or mistake.
Scripture is useful for discipline, and to be complete & perfect, thoroughly equipped for the work of God, we must be partakers of the rebuke and correction in the Word of God.