Until Christ’s return, Christian ministers face a formidable Enemy who hates Jesus and the Gospel—yet the Holy Spirit equips believers to triumph. Paul’s last letter, written to his dear friend and disciple Timothy, offers timeless encouragement and warning. Derek Thomas shares from 2 Timothy about the sacrifices required for ministry, as well as the gifts that result. As we preach boldly, carefully guard our ministry and doctrine, and are willing to lay down our lives, God’s kingdom will surely advance.
1You then, my child, be strengthened by the grace that is in Christ Jesus, 2and what you have heard from me in the presence of many witnesses entrust to faithful men1 who will be able to teach others also. 3Share in suffering as a good soldier of Christ Jesus. 4No soldier gets entangled in civilian pursuits, since his aim is to please the one who enlisted him. 5An athlete is not crowned unless he competes according to the rules. 6It is the hard-working farmer who ought to have the first share of the crops. 7Think over what I say, for the Lord will give you understanding in everything.
8Remember Jesus Christ, risen from the dead, the offspring of David, as preached in my gospel, 9for which I am suffering, bound with chains as a criminal. But the word of God is not bound! 10Therefore I endure everything for the sake of the elect, that they also may obtain the salvation that is in Christ Jesus with eternal glory. 11The saying is trustworthy, for:
If we have died with him, we will also live with him;
12if we endure, we will also reign with him;
if we deny him, he also will deny us;
13if we are faithless, he remains faithful—
for he cannot deny himself.
14Remind them of these things, and charge them before God2 not to quarrel about words, which does no good, but only ruins the hearers.
Scripture taken from The Holy Bible, English Standard Version. Copyright ©2001 by Crossway Bibles, a publishing ministry of Good News Publishers. Used by permission. All rights reserved. Text provided by the Crossway Bibles Web Service.