READ : 1 Timothy 4:14-16
Do not neglect the gift that is in you, which was given to you through prophecy with the laying on of hands by the council of elders. (v. 14)
Paul looks on Timothy as a dear son and colleague in ministry. As both Timothy’s spiritual father and “senior pastor,” Paul offers him—and all who are called into ministry—some fatherly instructions:
- Don’t neglect the gift God has given you. It’s a sacred trust bestowed on you by his church through the laying on of hands. It’s an anointing from above for a great work.
- Keep using your gifts at every opportunity. Faithful practice will develop and enhance them, so that all can see that you are growing as a servant of the Lord. That will inspire confidence in your leadership.
- Keep a careful watch over your life and example as a Christian, and over the faithfulness of your teaching ministry. You need to adorn the gospel with a godly life, and be sure you proclaim God’s authentic Word.
How much is at stake in the way we ministers live and preach! We bear an awesome responsibility. If we follow Paul’s counsel, we share in his heartening promise to Timothy: “In doing this, you will both save yourself and your hearers” (v. 16). What could be better than that?
Lord Jesus, may I use my gifts for your glory.