A SPIRITUAL GIFT
Suggested Reading: 1 Timothy 3-4
Click scripture link to read online or HERE to listen online (then click the symbol of the audio speaker above the scripture portion).
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Key Verse: 1 Timothy 4:14a
Do not neglect the gift that is in you…
Chapter three gives practical instructions for those who carry the responsibilities of leadership in the church. The word “Bishop” is used interchangeably with “Pastor” in the churches of the first century. The role of a “Deacon” was defined in the first church in Jerusalem (read Acts 6:1-8). Stephen, the Jerusalem Deacon and first martyr, is a powerful example of someone who “served well” (1 Timothy 3:13b). Stephen most certainly had “great boldness in the faith, which is in Christ Jesus.”
Chapter four gives us a solemn warning concerning false teachers. We need to remember that Satan went into the religion business at the beginning of the human family (Genesis 3). Here are instructions for Timothy and all his helpers: (1) Instruct (2) Be a good minister (3) Follow carefully good doctrine (4) Reject fables (5) Exercise…to godliness (6) Bodily exercise profits a little – keep in good physical shape (7) Godliness is profitable in all things (8) Let no one despise your youth (9) Be an example (10) Give attention to reading (how about this blog) (11) Our key verse – exercise the gifts God has given (12) Meditate on these things (13) Take heed to yourself and the doctrine.This is good counsel for all of us too!
PRAYER FOR TODAY:
Lord God, I pray that I will not neglect the gift that is in me. May I faithfully recognize the gifts that are in my brothers and sisters in the faith. Help me to listen more carefully to the teaching of others who are called by You to teach, preach, witness, and serve. In Jesus’ Name I ask these requests, Amen!
100 PERSONAL WORDS:
When I look at the pictures my son has taken and freely shared with us, I recognize that obedience to the call of God requires, if necessary, death to my own plans and ambitions. While still a teenager, I took great delight in following Jesus. I realized that as I “Delight [myself] in the Lord, He will give [me] the desires of [my] heart.” I’ve just taken time to read from King David Psalm 37:1-8, which teaches me that I should seek to know what delights the heart of God, and then line my desires up with His. When my desires are the same as His desires, “He shall give you [me] the desires of your [my] heart” (Psalm 37:4).
Rev. Keith Running, now of Medicine Hat, Alberta, once planted a new congregation in Brighton, Ontario. I followed him as Pastor there in the Fall of 1958. He had developed a marvellous document called a “Local Church Constitution.” The roles of Pastor and Deacons were outlined carefully, as well as other organizational matters. I learned a great deal from Keith. Because of such a wise document, even the church business meetings were enjoyable.
Yours for learning and applying the practical teachings of ministry in the local church,