The weeks of anticipation are finally over…how excited are you to be diving in to 2 Timothy over the next 35 days? Every time a book left the building I would do a celebration dance in my mind. Why? — Because I’ve read Acts 2 and seen what happens when people come together and are unified. “Everyone kept feeling a sense of awe; and many wonders and signs were taking place through the apostles. And all those who had believed were together and had all things in common; and began selling their property and possessions and were sharing them with all, as anyone might have need, Day by day continuing with one mind in the temple, and breaking bread from house to house, they were taking their meals together with gladness and sincerity of heart, praising God and having favor with all the people. And the Lord was adding to their number day by day those who were being saved” Acts 2:43-47
WOW! Can you picture it? What will God do over the next 35 days as we come together with the same purpose, same passion and with a mind of unity that we will commit to studying and guarding this treasure that has been entrusted to us?
WARNING – As we start this journey together I have to warn you: put all your distractions aside for this moment and read this carefully….ready? The next 35 days are going to be very hard for you. Encouraging way to start isn’t it! Listen closely friends…the devil does not want you to study; distractions will come; a crisis or what might feel like crisis will occur … maybe sickness or simply the desire to do something else. I want to encourage you to press on, knowing that there are many others who are studying with you. Set aside a time each day to do the heart work from the book. If you have to wake up earlier, lock yourself in a room, or whatever it takes to carve out some time to study, do it but be diligent and make every effort to do the study every day and then join us here on the blog as well as online in our Wednesday evening classes and I promise your study will not be in vain.
Ready? Here is Day 1
Have you ever thought about the last words you might ever share on this earth? Over the years I have been in contact with people who have lost loved ones suddenly and, in some cases, their loved one has passed away after an argument. This can be rather difficult as the loved one left behind is burdened with the guilt of never saying “I’m sorry. Maybe you’ve even experienced something similar: you didn’t have that last chance to tell someone that you loved them before they died. I’ve always wondered what my last words would be when the time comes; will they be profound, will they be recorded in this history books, will years later someone be sharing my last words as a quote on the new Facebook type website? In thinking about last words I decided to do an extensive google research on some people and their now recorded last words. Here are a few for your enjoyment.
- James French convicted of murder and sitting in the electric chair yelled to the press “How’s this for a headline “French Fries.”
- General William Erskine after jumping out a window said “Now why did I do that.”
- Mary Surratt who was facing execution by hanging for her part in the assignation of President Lincoln was heard saying “Now please don’t let me fall.”
Some of these last words might be humorous, but certainly not profound in any way. The Bible is filled with occurrences where the last words of men are recorded. A few examples are Moses, Peter, Paul, and even Jesus before He ascended to heaven.
In 2 Timothy, the book we are studying together, we read the last words from the Apostle Paul. As we continue to unpack the context and purpose of Paul’s writing this week keep in mind that he will not pen another letter after this. This is why I love this letter: it is Paul passing the baton on to Timothy and Timothy is to take these final words and put them into action.
What about you? Have you thought about what your final words might be? Will they edify and build the kingdom of God? Will your last words be as meaningless as James French’s or will your last words be words of instruction and exhortation to the one you have mentored and discipled, so that the treasure we are called to guard will also then be entrusted to other faithful men who will carry on the furtherance of God’s kingdom here on earth?