By Michael Julian
Pastor, Macedonia Baptist Church, Kenton
Focal Passage: 1 Timothy 2:1-8
There are other reasons, too, but let’s focus on a particular dynamic of prayer. We believe in it. We utilize it. We call for it. And we act on it. But, do we engage in praying for the salvation of others as often as we could and should?
Our second study is focusing on how to share Christ. Remember, we desire full participation in the ministry of reconciliation, making disciples as we go, while pleading with others to be reconciled to God.
This endeavor encompasses both the physical and spiritual realm, particularly the latter. Walking into this arena requires being fully prepared for the task at hand. The appropriateness of prayer as a forerunner to this endeavor cannot be overstated. The apostle Paul provides glowing insight into God’s ongoing work of the salvation of souls.
I Timothy 2:1-2: Paul states his intention loud and clear. Harking back to I Timothy 1:3, we see that Paul desires Christians to pray for all people to hear the message of the truth, since there are those who would distort that message through the teaching of strange doctrines. Let’s check our ears, for they have been known to itch for anything that sounds pleasant.
According to Scripture, people will seek to acquire those who would tickle their ears with delightful words so as to avoid sound doctrine. We need to make our ears sharp, homing in on the Word of God.
This will move us toward placing prayers for salvation in the seat of importance. This will be further aided by developing and maintaining a life unhindered by ungodly distractions, so as to aid the fulfillment of our God-given mission.
I Timothy 2:3-6: As followers of Christ, synchronizing ourselves with the heart of God registers at the highest level. In the Bible, we find certain Scriptures, like here, that focus our attention squarely upon the desire of God’s heart.
God is pleased with the actions of verses one and two. These various prayers being offered merge into the eternal plan of God for man’s redemption. We should be awestruck by God’s desire to save sinful man and to utilize sinful man.
And yet, this sinful man can be declared righteous by faith in the Savior, to accomplish this joyous work. He does this through the one mediator, the man Christ Jesus. When we share the gospel, we must not be afraid to make this bold and true assertion that Christ is the only way to be reconciled to God. And God genuinely desires to change man eternally. Let’s get synchronized with the heart of God.
I Timothy 2:7-8: In these verses, Paul demonstrates who he is as a follower of Christ. That God-given identity in Christ propels and compels him to make Christ known. Paul reiterates the emphasis placed upon holy living and prayer for the sake of the spread of the gospel.
That prayer should be directed at ourselves and upon others. In summary, pray, synchronize with God’s heart, and pray again. God beckons. An unbelieving world awaits. B&R