The Gospel We Proclaim

2 Timothy  •  Sermon  •  Submitted   •  Presented   •  19:32
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We live in an age of the consumer driven church model. People want to go be entertained and be served rather than following the model of Jesus to be a servant to others. They look for churches based on the programs that are offered and how many people consider the church to be the “cool” church. People have a serious case of FOMO, or Fear of Missing Out, when it comes to material possessions, but even when it comes to which church to go to.
All of this matters because leaders can get sucked up into the fear of losing out on these people. No pastor wants to be the pastor of the church that hasn’t baptized a person in years or that has barely got enough people to keep the lights on.
The temptation is to start preaching a different message, to tinker with the gospel. Maybe they don’t change it all the way, but they distort it just enough that the church becomes unhealthy and fat and not the church Christ intended for it to be.
Worse case scenario is that the church can become completely apostate.
Paul wrote to counter this and we are going to look at what he had to say tonight.
2 Timothy 2:8–13 ESV
8 Remember Jesus Christ, risen from the dead, the offspring of David, as preached in my gospel, 9 for which I am suffering, bound with chains as a criminal. But the word of God is not bound! 10 Therefore I endure everything for the sake of the elect, that they also may obtain the salvation that is in Christ Jesus with eternal glory. 11 The saying is trustworthy, for: If we have died with him, we will also live with him; 12 if we endure, we will also reign with him; if we deny him, he also will deny us; 13 if we are faithless, he remains faithful— for he cannot deny himself.

1. Jesus must be the focus of the gospel we preach (v.8)

The word that is used for remember is the same word we get the word mnemonic from, as in mnemonic device.
Paul tells Timothy that the focus of his preaching is to be the same focus that Paul had in his gospel. His focus was entirely upon the Lord Jesus Christ.
We can focus on a lot of things in our preaching. We can focus on living a more prosperous life, how to be happy, how to _____.
All of these things may be great to talk about, but they are not the main thing we should be focusing on in our preaching.
People’s greatest need is not to live a happier life or to have more success. The greatest need of man is to hear the gospel that Jesus Christ, died for their sins on the cross, was buried, and three days later rose again. That is the message people need to hear.
They need to hear that there is a sin problem that separates us from God and brings His righteous judgment upon us. They need to hear that He has provided a sacrifice for our sins, and they need to hear that He has conquered death for us so that we can live with Him in heaven.

2. We suffer for the spread of the gospel (v.9-10)

This message that we preach is the reason that we are willing to suffer for the sake of the gospel.
All around the world persecution is increasing towards Christians who believe the biblical mandate to share their faith. You can believe whatever you want as long as you don’t share it with anyone. But this news must be shared! We cannot keep the gospel to ourselves.
Illustration: Israel’s proposed new law banning sharing the gospel
We are seeing this in Canada with the punishment of pastors who preach against transgenderism.
Unless the Lord revives his work in this country, we should prepare for the day when we could face the same backlash. It is already getting difficult to preach on biblical values like wives submitting to husbands or divorce without being ostracized by the culture.
Paul was willing to suffer and go to prison being treated as a criminal because of the importance of the gospel. The early disciples were willing to die for the sake of spreading the gospel.
Are we?

3. God’s word is powerful and never bound (v.9b)

Despite the fact that Paul was in prison, he knew that the word of God is never bound. Paul was chained to Roman soldiers and preached the gospel and then even people in Caesar’s own house got saved.
Paul shared the gospel by letters to the churches who shared it with others as well.
Do you have that kind of faith in the Word of God? God’s Word is what does the work, not us. The Holy Spirit uses the Word of God to save people.
God has promised that his Word will go out an not return void.
Isaiah 55:11 ESV
11 so shall my word be that goes out from my mouth; it shall not return to me empty, but it shall accomplish that which I purpose, and shall succeed in the thing for which I sent it.

4. God’s promises are faithful (vv. 11-13)

God’s is faithful. Paul endured all of this so that the elect would be saved. He was confident that they would because it is the work of the Holy Spirit that saves us.
Paul then recites a saying that was known in the churches.
The promise is that if we die with him we have heaven to look forward to.
If we endure with him through tribulation, we will reign with him.
If we deny Him, He will deny us.
But one thing God cannot do is deny Himself. God is faithful and cannot lie.
God’s promises are faithful. We can trust them. We can depend on them.
We can trust the gospel.
We can suffer for the gospel.
We can trust God’s Word to do what God promises.
We can endure everything for the sake the One who called us.
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