READ : 2 Timothy 4:1-5
Proclaim the message; be persistent whether the time is favorable or unfavorable; convince, rebuke, and encourage, with the utmost patience in teaching. (v. 2)
Was there ever a mandate more weighty and wonder-filled than this one? Paul charges Timothy “in the presence of God and of Christ Jesus, who will judge the living and the dead” (v. 1). He holds before this young friend as motivation the presence of the Lord, his awesome return, and the last judgment. What a buildup! Who wouldn’t tremble?
Now for the mission, clear and concise: “Proclaim the message; herald the Word.” Timothy knows what that is. It’s the God-breathed Word, the good news of salvation, the message of Jesus crucified and risen for us. In a wider sense, it is “the whole counsel of God,” all that he has made known in the Scriptures.
This is the apostle’s final charge to the “son” he loves. “Whatever else you do, Timothy, never stop proclaiming Christ. Do it when the moment seems favorable and even when it doesn’t. Be a preacher for all seasons. Never lose your sense of burning urgency. Keep on convincing people, rebuking where necessary, encouraging always, with never-failing patience. You’re in this for the long haul, Timothy, and many need to hear your message. Before the eye of heaven, until your last breath, preach the Word!”
O God, give to your church and the world such preachers!