Not for Our Own Pleasure

Teach the Word
2 Timothy 4:1-2 ESV

“I charge you in the presence of God and of Christ Jesus, who is to judge the living and the dead, and by his appearing and his kingdom: preach the word; be ready in season and out of season; reprove, rebuke, and exhort, with complete patience and teaching.”

We who believe in Jesus Christ to be Lord and Savior of our lives are all called of God to share the light of the gospel with others. For, we are the light of the world and the salt of the earth, and we are to share the excellencies of him who called us out of darkness into his wonderful light.

But the gospel message isn’t just that Jesus died on a cross one day many years ago in order to take on our sins and to put them to death so that we could be forgiven our sins, escape hell, and go to heaven when we die. And we don’t receive this salvation by a mere confession of faith in him.

Jesus died to free us from our slavery to sin, so we would become slaves to him and to his righteousness. He died that we would die with him to sin and live to him and to his righteousness, and so we would no longer live for ourselves but for Him who gave his life up for us.

He died on that cross to redeem us (to buy us back for God) so that we would now glorify God with our lives, and so we would now walk (in conduct, in practice) according to the Spirit and no longer according to the flesh, and so we would be God’s possession to serve him with our lives.

The gospel we should have all been taught is that we are to put away our old lives of living for sin and self, be changed in heart and mind of the Spirit of God, and now we must walk in obedience to our Lord, doing what he says, going where he sends us, and saying whatever he gives us to say.

Our lives are no longer our own, to be lived however we want, for we were bought back for God with the blood of Christ shed on the cross for our sins. Now we are to live our lives to please our Lord in all that we do, and we are to be saying “No!” to sin and “Yes!” to God every day.

For, if after we have professed faith in Jesus Christ, we continue deliberately in making sin our practice (habit), and righteousness is not what we practice, we will die in our sins, not have eternal life with God.

[Matt 5:13-16; 1 Pet 2:9; Rom 6:1-23; 1 Pet 2:24; 2 Co 5:15; 1 Co 6:19-20; Rom 8:1-17; Tit 2:11-14; Eph 4:17-24; Lu 9:23-26; Gal 5:16-21]

Having Itching Ears
2 Timothy 4:3-4 ESV

“For the time is coming when people will not endure sound teaching, but having itching ears they will accumulate for themselves teachers to suit their own passions, and will turn away from listening to the truth and wander off into myths.”

This time has already come. Most people, it seems, are not enduring sound teaching (doctrine), but they are accumulating for themselves teachers to suit their own passions, and they are definitely turning away from listening to the truth, and they are wandering off to follow after myths (lies).

A cheapened, adulterated and altered version of the gospel of God’s grace is permeating today’s church, and it appears the vast majority of those professing faith in Jesus Christ are following after the lies, and they are strongly rejecting the truth of the gospel and its messengers.

These teachers of this adulterated gospel are telling people that they can “believe” in Jesus, although “belief” is rarely defined, and that now heaven is secured for them no matter what, and that it can never be taken away from them, no matter how much they sin from that point forward.

But that is a twisting of God’s grace. For, Jesus died on that cross to deliver us out of our slavery to sin so that we would now live according to his ways and purposes for our lives. He didn’t die to forgive us our sins so that we could now continue deliberately living in sin guilt free.

It is not God’s grace if it leaves us still in bondage (addiction) to sin, still living for ourselves, doing whatever we want to do, and with no requirements for repentance, obedience, and submission to Christ as Lord (owner-master) of our lives. That is hopeless!

Yet, many of these false teachers of the gospel are teaching a diluted gospel to appeal to the itching ears of those who want a gospel to suit their own fleshly passions, for that is truly what that gospel is about. For, it does not put sin to death in the life of the sinner, but it leaves him still dead in sin.

So, please know the truth. Jesus died to free us from our slavery to sin so that we would now be slaves of his righteousness. If we continue living in sin, deliberately, we will die in our sins, not have eternal life with God.

[Lu 9:23-26; Rom 6:1-23; Rom 8:1-17; 1 Jn 1:5-9; 1 Jn 2:3-6; 1 Jn 3:7; Gal 5:16-21; Eph 5:3-6; Gal 6:7-8; Rom 2:6-8; 1 Co 6:9-10; 2 Co 5:10]

Be Sober-Minded
2 Timothy 4:5 ESV

“As for you, always be sober-minded, endure suffering, do the work of an evangelist, fulfill your ministry.”

The Christian life is not all fun and games, bells and whistles, entertainment galore, getting what we want, throwing a party, and living like we did before we “believed” in Jesus. It is dying with Christ to sin, suffering for the sake of righteousness, and living for Jesus Christ for the glory of God.

It is not all about us, and what Jesus did for us, and what God can do for us, but it is about Jesus Christ/God and his glory, and us submitting to him, and us living for him and for his righteousness, and us doing his will, and us obeying his commands, and us forsaking our sins.

This doesn’t mean we go around with frowns on our faces all the time or that we can never laugh or have fun (appropriate, decent), but it does mean that we take God and his word and life seriously, and we take sin seriously, and we no longer walk in sin, but we now walk according to God’s Spirit.

And it means we live for the Lord and not for ourselves, and that Jesus truly is our owner-master, and that he has full power over our lives, and that we follow him in living how he requires and desires that we live for his purposes and for his glory and praise.

For we were not put on this earth for our own pleasure, but in order that we would please our Lord in all that we do. We see our lives as no longer our own, and we follow Jesus and his leading in our lives in doing what he has called, equipped, trained, and empowered us to do for his praise.

He Gives Purpose

An Original Work / June 9, 2012

“Listen to Me when I’m calling to you.
Obey freely My word.
Follow Me in all of My ways.
Do all that I say.
Hear Me gently whisper to you
My will for your life and future.
Give all of your life and heart to
Follow Me always.”

Repent of your sins and worship Jesus.
He’s your Lord and Master.
He died for your sins so you could
Live with Him today.
He has a plan for your life and
He gives purpose and direction.
He gives meaning to your life,
So, follow Him today.

“I love you so much I gave My life for
You to walk in My ways,
Living for Me each day as you
Bow to Me and pray.
Witness for Me of your love for Me and
Of My grace and mercy,
How I died to save you of your
Sins now and always.”

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