2 Tim 1:8-12
If the child of God is going to be effective in the work of being a witness (Acts 1:8) He/she cannot be ashamed of God, one another, or the glorious gospel of Christ. Being ashamed will place the believer in the prison of fear, allowing them to be imprisoned on the island of isolation. Paul is trying to help Timothy embrace his call, and not be fearful as a follower of Jesus Christ.
Identify with me
8 So you must never be ashamed to tell others about our Lord. And don’t be ashamed of me, either, even though I’m in prison for Christ. With the strength God gives you, be ready to suffer with me for the proclamation of the Good News.
9 It is God who saved us and chose us to live a holy life. He did this not because we deserved it, but because that was his plan long before the world began — to show his love and kindness to us through Christ Jesus.
It is clear from vs. 7 that Timothy was very concerned about what others thought. So Paul encourages him to remember that God did not give him a spirit of fear, but of power, love and a sound mind.
Here in this verse Paul wants timothy to not only forsake being fearful, but also to embrace the testimony of the gospel, and not be ashamed about knowing Paul and being associated with the church.
- God will give him strength
- God will help him to be ready to suffer like Paul
- God will enable him to suffer for the proclamation of the gospel
Identity in Christ
10 And now he has made all of this plain to us by the coming of Christ Jesus, our Savior, who broke the power of death and showed us the way to everlasting life through the Good News.
11 And God chose me to be a preacher, an apostle, and a teacher of this Good News.
12 And that is why I am suffering here in prison. But I am not ashamed of it, for I know the one in whom I trust, and I am sure that he is able to guard what I have entrusted to him until the day of his return.
Paul Here is not only encouraging Timothy to identify with the sufferings that the gospel brings, but to also have an understanding of this identity. For in the Christian identity there is Power. “Christ broke the power of death over us” and gave us everlasting life. (vs.10) we are children filled with this eternal life and called to proclaim this good news.
Paul was called by God to embrace this new identity as a Preacher, Apostle, Teacher, and servant of God to preach the word.
When the child of God has an identity change, then they are no-longer the same! Their old identity is in the past, and the new identity is what they identify with.
Paul went from being a persecutor of Christians, to being a Christian.
How did He do this? He embraced the three principles of discipleship:
- He was willing to suffer for Christ
- He was not ashamed of Christ, His plan, His work of salvation or His relationship
- He learned to trust God in every area of his Life
- Are you ready to embrace the three principles of discipleship today?
- How is your life being lived as a witness, are you ashamed of the gospel? You should clarify by listing several ways that you carry out these three principles.