April 20th, 2021 – Tuesday Afternoon
“The things which you have heard from me in the presence of many witnesses, entrust these to faithful men who will be able to teach others also.” ~2 Timothy 2:2
“Older women likewise are to be reverent in their behavior, not malicious gossips nor enslaved to much wine, teaching what is good, so that they may encourage the young women to love their husbands, to love their children, to be sensible, pure, workers at home, kind, being subject to their own husbands, so that the word of God will not be dishonored.” ~Titus 2:3-5
There is much contained in these verses that is necessary and applicable, but my focus today is on the idea carried by the first passage and echoed by the second. That idea is the principle and execution of discipleship. Paul commanded Timothy to entrust (to deposit or commit to one’s charge) the things which Timothy had heard from Paul to faithful (worthy of trust; that can, be relied on) men. These men, in turn, were then equipped to teach others as well. Paul commanded Titus with a similar, though different, charge – this time in regard to older women being examples to and teachers of younger women.
What is discipleship? How does one go about entrusting or depositing truth into another’s life? The answer really entails all of life, but true discipleship also requires intentionality – both on the part of the teacher and on the part of the student. Everyone exerts influence on others in some way; even without seeking to, our lives are displaying a message to those around us. This message either verifies and reinforces the message our mouth is giving or it annuls and mocks it. The believers Paul refers to (men with others and women with women) are to live with both messages (faithful living and truthful speaking) constantly in mind as they seek to lead others into a deeper understanding of the Gospel and a more intimate walk with Christ. That’s what discipleship is: In every area of life, from the mundane and practical to the extraordinary and intellectual, believers are to live and speak the life of Christ to everyone, but especially to those who are under their wings of guidance and counsel.
The intentionality on the part of the student (and disciple) is found in their faithful response to the Lord and to their teachers; notice that Paul instructs Timothy to entrust his words to “faithful” men who will be able to teach others. The student is responsible (by the power of the Holy Spirit) to live a trusty life before God and others. This life of commitment to the Lord is the one that sets up the ability to hold and re-teach the entrusted instructions; without the faithfulness, the message breaks down like an empty façade or a whitewashed tomb. Students who do not learn to trust and obey do not become good teachers.
The questions, then, that bring the point home are these: Am I a faithful student or an unfaithful rebel? Am I living by the power of God’s Spirit a life that is identified with Christ and tender to Him and those He is using to teach me? Am I intentionally investing in those around me? Are those I am teaching becoming teachers too?
My dear brothers and sisters, what an amazing and awesome privilege we have been given and tasked with! Let us surrender to our Master and live with His strength, faithfully following and leading those around us in a deeper understanding and outworking of the Gospel for the glory of God.