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Soldiers, Sports & Sodbusters (2 Timothy 2:1-7)
Sermon Notes
Sunday, 28 October 2012 00:00

Sunday we looked at 2 Timothy 2:1-7 and considered soldiers, sports and sodbusters.

1. Be empowered by grace to win the race! (2:1)
1You therefore, my child, be strong (empowered) by the grace which is in Christ Jesus.

2. Pass the baton to faithful men who will be competent to carry on (2:2).
2And the things which you heard from me among many witnesses, these things commit to faithful men who will be able to teach others also.

3. Consider what is necessary for you to do to win the victor’s crown (2:3-6).

Fight with purpose like a Soldier! (2:3-4) Good soldiers suffer with singular focus.
3You therefore must endure hardship as a good soldier of Jesus Christ.
4No one serving as a soldier entangles himself in the affairs of civilian life, in order that the one having enlisted him he may please.
Consider yourself to be like a soldier in Christ’s army (2:3-4) so that on that coming Day you can say, “I have fought the good fight,” (4:7a)
Paul’s first illustration is the soldier. The emphasis is on the importance of remaining free from entanglement with other lesser goals and activities while serving the Lord. As a soldier must be single-minded in his purpose, rigorous in his self-discipline, unquestioning in his obedience, and unwavering in his loyalty, so must every soldier of Christ.

Finish well like an athlete! (2:5) Winning athletes play fairly by the rules.
5And also, if anyone competes in athletics, he is not crowned as a victor unless he competes according to the rules.
Consider yourself to be like an athlete on Christ’s team (2:5) so that on that coming Day you can say, “I have finished the race,” (4:7b)
Winning the prize requires following the rules of the contest (1 Cor. 9:24-27).
As an athlete must deny self, endure hardship, and persevere to the end, so must every spiritual athlete.
“Our rules are the commands of the Word of God. While we live by faith in Christ and not by following rules, if our faith in Christ does not lead us to follow the rules, then we are not truly walking in the light by faith.” – Bob Wilkin, Grace NT Commentary, p. 998.

Faithfully work like a farmer! (2:6) Successful farmers stay faithful through it all.
6It is necessary for the hard working farmer to be first to receive of the crops.
Consider yourself to be like a farmer in Christ’s fields (2:6) so that on that coming Day you can say, “I have kept the faith.” (4:7c)
Farmers work hard today in preparation for the promise of a harvest in the future! This illustration emphasizes the toil necessary if one wants to enjoy the fruits of his or her labors.
A wise farmer depends upon God (to send rain, etc.) and so fears God and thereby honors God.

4. May the Lord give you understanding in all things considered (2:7).

7Consider the things which I say; may the Lord give you understanding in all things.
We look to God to open our eyes and help us understand the meaning of the Bible. He uses our meditation on the text but He is the One who gives us understanding.
All three illustrations emphasize the obvious necessity of preparing right now for their respective future battles, games, and harvests. Are you living your life right now in a way that is preparing you for future service to the King in His coming kingdom?
All three illustrations imply that when we serve God faithfully, not only do we reap the benefit, but so does the whole Body of Christ, and even unbelievers (Gal 6:10).
The whole nation benefits from the service of its soldiers.
The fans and owners of a team benefit from the success of its athletes.
The whole world benefits from the productivity of farmers.
If you serve God, then your wife, kids, neighbors, fellow-workers and others who come into contact with you, are all blessed! May it be so!





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