Ministry Resources

NT Fire Starters – Day 298: 2 Timothy 2:1-26

READ: 2 Timothy 2:1-26

THINK: Are there issues and temptations that constantly get the best of you? Many Christians live with a self-induced sense of frustration and failure because they give in to the same sins over and over. They feel that in order to prove their spiritual strength and maturity, they must eventually reach the point of being exposed to a troublesome temptation without caving in. But God never told us to put ourselves to the exposure test. In fact, if we foolishly keep putting ourselves in compromising situations, we are setting ourselves up for a fall every time. We never gain spiritual strength by toying with temptation. The Bible says to exercise the wisdom and discipline to stay away from or “flee the evil desires” (v. 22). That’s how you develop strength to win spiritual victories, by leaving evil behind and vigorously pursuing what’s right.

RESPOND: In what way does verse 2 describe the discipleship process? (See 2:2 note.) What makes people “reliable” and “qualified” to disciple others? Why and how must you prepare to endure hardship? (See 2:3 note.) In what way does this compare with how a soldier (v. 4), an athlete (v. 5) and a farmer (v. 6) must pursue their goals and tasks? (See 2:3 note.) Though Paul was chained like a criminal (v. 9), how and why was his message still advancing? What hope do you have if your faith and love for Christ endures to the end? (See 2:12 note.) What does it mean that even when people are faithless, Christ will remain faithful? (See 2:13 note.) How is this a comfort to those who remain loyal to Christ and a warning to those who reject or abandon Him? Whom in particular was Timothy to warn, and why? (See 2:14-18 note.) How can “quarreling about words” (v. 14) ruin those who listen? What must you do and what must you avoid “to present yourself to God as one approved, a workman who does not need to be ashamed…”? (See vv. 15-16.) What is “God’s solid foundation” and why will it always stand firm? (See 2:19 note.) What must we do to be reserved for God’s noble purposes, and what can keep us from being usable for the Master’s “good work”? (See 2:21 note.) According to verse 22, what must you “flee” from and what must you “pursue” in order to serve God out of a pure heart? (See 2:22 note.) What deliberate choices does this involve? How can focusing on the positive pursuit of righteousness keep you from getting caught up in the evil desires you are to avoid?

PRAY: Thank Jesus for the strength He provides to overcome temptation as you flee evil desires and pursue righteousness.

ACT: If you are constantly giving in to the same temptations, make the changes necessary to get away from these things and quit exposing yourself to them. Then, put that time and effort into something spiritually productive.

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