Suffering For Equality

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God will give to each person according to what he has done. To those who by persistence in doing good seek glory, honor and immortality, He will give eternal life. But for those who are self-seeking and who reject the truth and follow evil, there will be wrath and anger. (Romans 2:6-8)

But the character of God is the guarantee that all wrongs will be righted someday; when “the day of God’s wrath, when His righteous judgement will be revealed” (Romans 2:5) arrives. Retribution will be exact, and no problems of cosmic unfairness will remain to haunt us. –J.I. Packer

The world suffers under the idea of fairness/equality. I personally would rather prosper under the idea of faith. We look to God for His provision and must have faith that He has given what He desires that we possess. Our mission is to glorify God in whatever provision we are given so that His light can shine forth from us. We all know that modern social status is based on wealth and position. God is also aware of that fallenness and uses our positioning in society to effect the people around us. God made you and knows where your heart will best serve His eternal kingdom. Don’t get down that you don’t compare well to somebody else. Shine where you are. Glorify God and seek His immortal kingdom and the provision that matters for all eternity is promised to you through Jesus Christ. Don’t look at a sinful person and wonder how it is that your righteousness doesn’t shine brighter. The darkness of the fallen blend into the darkness of the world. Don’t seek the prosperity of the fallen earth. Seek God, His provision, and His kingdom. God will judge this world and His perfect and righteous judgement will make all thing fair, and all things clear. Where the lost seek fairness for a lifetime, our God guarantees fairness for all eternity. Keep your eyes on the Heavenly Father and know He has you where He wants you, prosper in faith and avoid the suffering in fairness.

Image of The Lord’s Servant (Conclusion)

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(2 Timothy 2:24-26)  And the Lord’s servant must (1)not be quarrelsome but kind to everyone, (2)able to teach, (3)patiently enduring evil, (4)correcting his opponents with gentleness. God may perhaps grant them repentance leading to a knowledge of the truth, and they may come to their senses and escape from the snare of the devil, after being captured by him to do his will.

When the Lord’s servant is able to become active in the right way as described in 2 Timothy, God is able to grant them what they desire. That may be a changed heart that leads to repentance, but they may serve a bigger purpose than we can see. It is our job to lay God’s groundwork so that He can glorify Himself, through His will being accomplished, through His chosen. Adopt the qualities the Lord offers you just as He has adopted you so that these qualities could be yours. Don’t look past your purpose but serve God’s kingdom and let His bigger and better plan come to fruition. (Matthew 5:14-16) “You are the light of the world. A city set on a hill cannot be hidden.  Nor do people light a lamp and put it under a basket, but on a stand, and it gives light to all in the house. In the same way, let your light shine before others, so that they may see your good works and give glory to your Father who is in heaven.”

Image of The Lord’s Servant (4)

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(2 Timothy 2:24-26)  And the Lord’s servant must (1)not be quarrelsome but kind to everyone, (2)able to teach, (3)patiently enduring evil, (4)correcting his opponents with gentleness. God may perhaps grant them repentance leading to a knowledge of the truth, and they may come to their senses and escape from the snare of the devil, after being captured by him to do his will.

Correcting his opponents with gentleness

Gentleness is a fruit of the Holy Spirit. As the spirit matures in the Lord’s servant there is an outward manifestation of kindness in their heart, referred to as gentleness. It’s rare for people to enjoy correction. Only true Godly wisdom allows such a quality to exist. (Proverbs 9:8b-9a) reprove a wise man, and he will love you. Give instruction to a wise man, and he will be still wiser. Most correction isn’t truly accepted or appreciated until much later than when the words of reproof are spoken. A servant must realize this and be gentle as to insure that the seed of correction that has been planted has a place to grow that isn’t damaged by emotions. They must also realize that gentleness draws people in as they sense the softness of the correcting heart. This also leads to trust and mutual growth as later correction is better received and more easily given. These are the relationships where God’s spirit is allowed to move and stir maturity in His children.

 

Image of The Lord’s Servant (3)

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(2 Timothy 2:24-26)  And the Lord’s servant must (1)not be quarrelsome but kind to everyone, (2)able to teach, (3)patiently enduring evil, (4)correcting his opponents with gentleness. God may perhaps grant them repentance leading to a knowledge of the truth, and they may come to their senses and escape from the snare of the devil, after being captured by him to do his will.

Patiently enduring evil

There is patience in love. Love is patient and love is kind when its source is the Lord. Evil returned for evil only magnifies the darkness of the world. It requires a selfless spirit fueled by Jesus to show patience when evil tries to cover up the love to which we are called. It is almost certain that resistance of one evil moment will not change a heart, but patience as the evil is drown out by God’s love creates real change. The light of God drives out darkness just as the deceiver will flee in the name of our Savior.

Image of The Lord’s Servant (2)

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(2 Timothy 2:24-26)  And the Lord’s servant must (1)not be quarrelsome but kind to everyone, (2)able to teach, (3)patiently enduring evil, (4)correcting his opponents with gentleness. God may perhaps grant them repentance leading to a knowledge of the truth, and they may come to their senses and escape from the snare of the devil, after being captured by him to do his will.

Able to teach

Not only should a servant study the word, they should be able to lead others to the truths revealed to them by God. The Lord places truths in the hearts of servants who seek Him in order to serve His specific purpose. (Isaiah 55:11) so shall my word be that goes out from my mouth; it shall not return to me empty, but it shall accomplish that which I purpose, and shall succeed in the thing for which I sent it. Those truths can be told and shown to others through the action of His servant in order to spread His love to the people He has put into their lives. The word of God is not something we are meant to keep to ourselves, but to share with a lost world.

Image of The Lord’s Servant (1)

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(2 Timothy 2:24-26)  And the Lord’s servant must (1)not be quarrelsome but kind to everyone, (2)able to teach, (3)patiently enduring evil, (4)correcting his opponents with gentleness. God may perhaps grant them repentance leading to a knowledge of the truth, and they may come to their senses and escape from the snare of the devil, after being captured by him to do his will.

 Not Quarrelsome but kind to everyone

Don’t let a quarrelsome nature or a misguided passion turn you from a person or cause them to turn from you. Progress toward the power of God’s grace is made through our humility. Just as His power is made perfect in our weakness. A heart doesn’t change in a quarrel, only the emotional mind is affected. Hearts change in the presence of love in humility and kindness. The passion that leads us to defend the position of God will guide us into arguments if we are not careful. Rely on the love God gives you to overflow to every lost soul and let the kindness, which is a fruit of the spirit, develop fertile soil which God will use to do as He sees fit. Don’t step into a place God desires for Himself. God calls who He chooses to Himself for His glory. Let your kindness set the stage for God to act.

Image of The Lord’s Servant (Intro)

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(2 Timothy 2:24-26)  And the Lord’s servant must (1)not be quarrelsome but kind to everyone, (2)able to teach, (3)patiently enduring evil, (4)correcting his opponents with gentleness. God may perhaps grant them repentance leading to a knowledge of the truth, and they may come to their senses and escape from the snare of the devil, after being captured by him to do his will.

 

I feel this passage speaks to our call to evangelism. It speaks to each person being ready to spread the word of God in whatever capacity the Lord has led them into. God will put each of His chosen in situations that He has prepared for them, just as He has prepared His chosen for that situation through experience. While God prepares us through experience we must also rely on His spirit to help us act in a manner that reflects the light of God and draws people from the darkness of sin. The four elements of Lord’s evangelical servant deserve to be explored further. Let’s see what each looks like when we seek deeper appreciation for the qualities we are called to present in our walk.