don’t give up
2 Timothy 1:1-18
First Kings 19:9-18 records a time when the prophet Elijah felt despondent in his ministry. Read to discover how the Lord ministered to His discouraged servant.
What are some promises you need to remember or doctrines you need to reaffirm in order to press on in serving God? How has God encouraged you to resist giving up?
Are you feeling weary, discouraged, weak, or disillusioned in serving God? Well, you’re not alone. That’s where Timothy is when we read 2 Timothy:1-4 and that’s where all of us are some of the time and where some of us are most of the time. When one is involved in the noble fight for the souls of men—going up against the world, the flesh, and the devil—the battle can be hard and incessant.
When Rome burned in 64 AD and Nero blamed the Christians, it became dangerous to be a believer. It was also dangerous to have contact with leaders of the church—including Paul.
Consequently, many believers—including some of Paul’s coworkers—had chosen to seek a much lower profile and become less aggressive in their ministries. Timothy faced temptation to do the same.
In 2 Timothy 1:1-18, Paul encouraged Timothy to stir up the gift of God that was within him. Timothy needed to consider anew the available resources—power, love, self- discipline—that God’s Spirit made available to him. He needed to accept the fact that suffering went along with his identification with Christ. He needed to realize that he had a duty to perform, and he needed to trust His Savior in the performance of that duty. It was all about God’s will and His glory. Timothy needed to affirm his doctrine, not question it, and he needed to identify with those who were faithful, not with those who were turning away from Jesus.
It’s an amazing paradox that God is sovereign and yet He uses people to preserve, guard, and pass on His Word. People like Timothy, who Paul told, “My dear son, be strong through the grace that God gives you in Christ Jesus” (2 Timothy 2:1).
NLT 365-day reading plan passage for today: 1 Samuel 24:1-22
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