June 14, 2015 Bilingual English Worship:Voice Record
Worship Leader Rev.Shinichi Hirohashi 司会者 廣橋信一牧師
Accompanist Mrs.Kazusa Oba 奏楽者 大場かづさ姉妹
Preacher Rev.Sean Radke 説教者 ショーン ラドキ宣教師
Interpreter Rev.Shinichi Hirohashi 通訳者 廣橋信一牧師
Song Leader Elder Ｍuneyasu Nasu さんびリーダー 那須宗泰長老
Worship song : Majesty
Worship song : All Heaven Declares
Worship song : Amazing Grace-My chains are gone
Bible Reading ：Ⅱ Timothy 1:1-18 第二テモテ1:1-18
Message： Power,Love,and Self-control 「力と愛と慎みの霊」
Worship song: I will never be the same again
Worship song: Awesome God
Benediction Rev. Sean Radke
Message: “Power, love, and self-discipline” Text: 2 Timothy 1:6-10
“For this reason I remind you to fan into flame the gift of God, which is in you through the laying on of my hands. For the Spirit God gave us does not make us timid, but gives us power, love and self-discipline. So do not be ashamed of the testimony about our Lord or of me his prisoner. Rather, join with me in suffering for the gospel, by the power of God.
He has saved us and called us to a holy life—not because of anything we have done but because of his own purpose and grace. This grace was given us in Christ Jesus before the beginning of time, but it has now been revealed through the appearing of our Savior, Christ Jesus, who has destroyed death and has brought life and immortality to light through the gospel. And of this gospel I was appointed a herald and a teacher. That is why I am suffering as I am. Yet this is no cause for shame, because I know who I have believed and am convinced that he is able to guard what I have entrusted to him until that day.
“Courage is found in unlikely places.”
This is a kind-of-famous proverb taken from the classic novel, Lord of the Rings by JRR Tolkien. To an insecure, inexperienced, young man, facing a deceptive enemy these words were an encouragement. He was not given false hope that he would not face suffering. It was that he would find courage when he needed it, perhaps when he would not expect it. The one who spoke those words, the elf Gildor, told Bilbo that he would send others to help them on their dangerous journey. So he did not just give him words of hope, but he sent provision, too. What he would need in the form of friends and warriors. The elves stayed true to their promise, for the Hobbits found both the courage in unexpected places and the provision whenever they needed it.
In this story from 2 Timothy 1, we find a call to take courage – not in oneself, but in the powerful strength of another. It promises provision. It’s also for a younger friend who is on the mission against evil and feels very unsure of himself and is not trusting in what he has learned as the truth.
It’s from the Apostle Paul who is in a Roman jail cell for a second time- to his close friend and younger minister he calls his “son.” He perceives that he will die soon, so he is writing this last time to Timothy to ask him to come visit and bring important people and things. Timothy needed confidence in God instead of his insecurity. Paul’s heart for him was to see him “man up” to the false teachers in Ephesus who changed our Lord’s message he received. The Greek word for timidity in literature outside the bible from that era meant “cowardly running from the battle.”
The English word “Encouragement” literally means to put courage “in” to another person. We take in from others what we don’t already have by ourselves. This is a timeless issue. Men especially often wonder, Do I have what it takes? Maybe we were made with a longing for encouragement that is eternal. In our daily lives today, we face fears and insecurities of many kinds. We need more than clichés or false hope, but still the cheers of others so that we will have endurance.
Timothy must “fan into flame the gift of God,” That means to develop or nurture whatever spiritual gifts he was given, although his own gift is not clear. Maybe that is true for us also. Paul in Verse 7 says that God gives us the Spirit of power, love, and of self-discipline. “The Spirit of God enables man to do what God requires to be done.” WCF 20.7
So today’s message from 2 Timothy 1:7-14 focuses on how God gives us in Spirit what we need in order to be free from insecurity. He gives us Spirit as a result of what God has done for us in Christ.
First what does he give us in His spirit?
1 We are given the Spirit of power.
The Greek word for power here is the word that produced the English word dynamite. My brother in law works for a company that sells dynamite to mines. He sent me a video this past week that shows dynamite blowing up huge areas of land with force that is hard to imagine. The dynamite makes the work of deep mining in the ground possible. We are given the Spirit of Power. The Spirit helps us in our weakness. He assures us that the gospel is good news for sinners and sufferers. Sinners and sufferers are given the Spirit to rest in the power of the cross and find security in him.
2 We are given the Spirit of love.
The ancient church leader Augustine of Hippo said it this way about God’s love. “God’s love is incomprehensible, unchangeable. For it was not after we were reconciled to him through the blood of his son that he began to love us. Rather he has loved us before the world was created, that we might be among his sons- that in a marvelous and divine way he loved us even when he hated us. This is the wonder of grace! He loved what he could not love.”
“The Spirit you received does not make you slaves, so that you live in fear again; rather, the Spirit you received brought about your adoption to sonship. And by him we cry, “Abba, Father.” (Romans 8:15 NIV) We are given his love to rest in from all kinds of fear.
3 We are given the Spirit of self-discipline.
We need this because as Paul says in verse 9 are saved and called to live a holy life-but that it is not by anything we have done but because of his own purpose and grace. It is so important to remember that whole verse. A holy life takes strong effort on our part – self-discipline. However, we can easily start getting our spiritual strength from those disciplines and that is a problem because we are not depending on the Spirit at that point. The best book I have ever read on this and commend to you is the classic “Disciplined by Grace” by Jerry Bridges. How does our pursuit to live a holy life with strong effort and God’s grace go together? He defines discipline based on 1 Timothy 4:7, “certain activities designed to train a person in a particular skill” like when Paul told Timothy to “train himself, or discipline himself to be godly” (1 Tim. 4:7). We are called to what he calls “dependent discipline.”
Like there are two different wings of the same airplane, we have two important ways that together enable us to become like Jesus, “discipline and dependence.” He says it this way. “Now we will be looking at the discipline of ourselves, the responsibilities we must shoulder to pursue holiness. But the point of the airplane illustration is that we must not carry out our responsibilities in our own strength and willpower. We must depend upon the Holy Spirit to enable us. At the same time we must not assume that we have no responsibilities simply because we are dependent. God enables us to work, but He does not do the work for us (p. 130).” When we remember that, it helps us greatly.
I know when I first wake up in the morning I often feel especially vulnerable to worry, fear, and anxiety, as well as guilt and shame. I have learned that “preaching the gospel to myself” is really the greatest thing I need to do when I first start the day. I often begin listening to Scripture, helpful podcast messages, or music as soon as possible while I’m waking up. I am loved and accepted –secure in Him. I don’t have to fear any hard times or even suffering that I might face today. This is a way I can start the day seeking to express self-discipline of the Spirit. Paul summarizes the message of what unites us in verses 9-10. What’s he say?
He has saved us and called us to a holy life not because of what we have done but because of his grace. He planned for us to receive the grace before time! He revealed the grace when our Savior Christ Jesus appeared. He destroyed death and He brought immortality to light. He defeated death and brought eternal life. We didn’t do anything to be rescued. Let’s rest in what he has done for us! This message is all about Paul reminding Timothy and us of our true secure identity so we won’t focus on ourselves.
This is the best definition of grace that I have learned, “Grace is unconditional acceptance, Granted to an undeserving person, By an unobligated giver.” May we receive and rest in him now.
Let’s take time this week to think about how God gives us the provision of his Spirit for our fears and assures us with what God has done for us in Christ. May we be used by the Holy Spirit to boldly show this to others.