·         If you don’t think that Paul is serious about preacing the Word, look at the intensity of the language – I charge you, therefore, before God…

·         Sometimes we’re chided for our emphasis on the Rapture – oh, well.

o   Every generation from then until now has had a “Marnatha!” attitude.

o   Everything they and we preached is within the context of the teaching in the NT of the immanency of His Coming.

o   In the whole counsel of Scripture, we see the truth of His soon coming, His appearing.

·         For Timothy to know the Word would have taken a significant effort.

o   We, comparatively, have a vastly greater position at least in so far as having the completed canon and so very many great tools to get into the Word

o   Could Paul say the same thing to us (“you have known the Scriptures from childhood”)

·         Tim was full of the Word.

·         Preach the Word is not just a slogan in Calvary Chapel – it’s a love affair.

o   It’s a glorious thing to wear out a Bible.

·         Paul’s language has an urgency in it.

o   A low view of the Word is very dangerous.

o   Paul is driven to encourage strongly Tim to be in it and to share it.

·         These words, “always be ready” must have had so much more impact with a guy (Tim) who couldn’t walk down to the Bible bookstore and get the latest software and commentaries and such.

o   It would have required tremendous effort.

o   We are in a much better position, in the sense of what’s available

o   So it’s even more urgent a call for us.

o   Some of the most important ministry opportunities take place outside of our established schedules.

§  Are you available?

§  Paul tells Tim to always be ready.

o   There is something you can call “the ministry of inconvenience.”

§  Your greatest divine appointments are those who never approach your “filters.”

o   God makes sure we never have the privilege of really saying “no” to Him.

·         The conviction of the Holy Spirit comes through a conviction of the Word.

o   Don’t ever apologize for the Word

o   Don’t ever apologize for being convinced

o   Don’t ever apologize for being convincing.

·         For the Word of God is living…powerful…

o   Either that’s true or not

o   Can’t have it halfway.

o   If I’m preaching the Word, that’s a good thing; if I’m preaching the “Ten Points of Tom” – I don’t know that I have that assurance really.

o   When you preach the Word, that sword goes right to the point of need.

o   If you preach the Word with conviction and confidence, you’ll spend a lifetime making people mad and glad.

§  The Word of God cuts.

·         We live in a postmodern world, and it’s not considered politically correct to correct people.

o   But in preaching the Word, we are commissioned to mind peoples’ business – to care about them and to apply the Word to their lives.

o   It’s part of our charge to get in the middle of peoples’ lives with the Word.

o   Because it’s our job to care for people, because Jesus cares for them.

·         Can you imagine the discernment that it would have taken for Tim to preach the Word with all the apocryphal and pseudoepigraphical books floating around and all the gnostic stories…?

·         Be really sure of your calling.

·         Being in hell brought out the evangelist in the rich man.

o   If we back off of difficult subjects like hell, we take the passion out of our evangelists.

o   We can all use 30 or 40 crazy people who are evangelists, who think a lot about hell and don’t want to see people go there.

·         The whole Book (even Leviticus) is about Jesus.

o   The Bible is not just a collection of neat short stories.

o   It’s a metanarrative of God’s work of redemption in the World.

o   The reason why the Pharisees were called blind guides is because they couldn’t see Jesus in the very Law that they were so proud of.

·         Pastors do live under a growing pressure to be more hip, cool, relevant, etc.

o   It’s not an issue when the method changes.

o   It’s an insurmountable issue when the message changes.

·         Labelling does nothing to help or edify anybody.

o   Address brothers as brothers, one-on-one.

·         When was the last time you went one-on-one with a complete stranger about the Lord?

o   People think that people won’t listen to the straight-up Gospel any more – you have to be relevant, etc.

§  That’s a lie.

§  Don’t be fooled; preach the Word.