Monday, February 13, 2017

Reciprocal Relationship

2 Timothy = pastoral epistle and prison epistle.   Therefore = Paul's "last words" to Timothy.

Already looked at Paul's words concerning:  personal development
ie:  things Timothy needed to do in order to develop himself, his ministry, his effectiveness.

Now - look at things Timothy can do for Paul!!  2 Tim. 4:9-22
1)  come to me ....quickly ... before winter
2)  bring Mark!  (John Mark who wrote the gospel of Mark)
3)  bring my cloak and scrolls - studies, scriptures
4)  greet the brothers and sisters on my behalf

Additional words from other prison epistles
Eph. 6:19-20 - Pray for me - in prison
Col. 4:18 - remember my chains - in prison

Ask ourselves:
1)  What does this say about Paul? - WASM
2)  What does this say to us?? - ISM

A few observations about Paul:
#1.  He was human - who has surrendered himself to God and was sold out to Him.
    easy to forget or overlook because he was the great Apostle Paul, but -->James 5:17-18.  Elijah was just like us.

#2.  He had typical human needs
examples:  a cloak for the body, scrolls for the mind, companionship for the heart, soul (relational needs), assistance for the ministry, prayer for strength, courage, delivery.  To know he was not forgotten.....that his work mattered, that he mattered.

#3.  He was not above asking for human help in meeting those needs.

So, on the one hand, Phil. 4:13, however, the recognition that sometimes Christ provides that strength through people!!!

So, What's this say to us?  Application?  Isms?

This passage not teaching something we don't know... rather, illustrating and re-enforcing things we do know!!!

#1.  we're all pretty much in the same boat.
ie.  human, with human needs and human shortcomings.  1 Cor. 10:13 - "common to man"
But we also have human gifts, talents, abilities, resources... Contributions!!

Point:  You are both a liability and an asset.

#2.  We need One Another. 
On one hand, Timothy wouldn't be who he was without Paul.  However, Paul wouldn't be who he was without Timothy.  2 Tim. 1:4 -->adding TO Paul!!

Point:  this = a Reciprocal Relationship - by God's Design!!!

#3.  "We're better together" - (borrowed quote)
examples:  as a couple, family, friendship, small group, church, community, denomination, parachurch group, etc.)
idea of "body" - 1 Cor. 12:12, 14-20

Summary #1 - to our congregation:  (if you are called to OBC) WE NEED YOU - here and functioning
Summary #2 - (if you are called to OBC) YOU NEED US!!! - here and functioning

#4.  Sometimes God gives an awareness of Himself through people  (ie:  His Presence, concern, holding, healing)

This works 2 ways:  You may experience Him through other people.  But, others may experience His Presence through you!!   Therefore, need of the body, gathering, your ministry.

God works through His people - all of whom are potential vessels.

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