March 15, 2021
It has now been just over a year since the world changed dramatically because of restrictions added to our lives to help battle COVID-19. When the initial restrictions were put in place, we were led to believe that they would be temporary, something along the lines of “two weeks to slow the spread,” so that hospitals would not be overrun by patients with the virus. Unfortunately, two weeks has now turned into more than 52 weeks of various levels of restrictions. Obviously, the “experts” either did not have a sufficient understanding of the severity virus, or they simply were willing to deceive the public in order to get us to abide by the restrictions, allowing us to think these restrictions would quickly be repealed, so we might as well stay home for a couple weeks. The frequently contradictory proclamations by these “experts” reminds me of the warning Paul gave to Timothy about people turning away from the truth, and turning towards fables.
Paul provided Timothy with very clear instructions about what Timothy should preach, and what would happen in the world. “I charge you therefore before God and the Lord Jesus Christ, who will judge the living and the dead at His appearing and His kingdom: Preach the word! Be ready in season and out of season. Convince, rebuke, exhort, with all longsuffering and teaching.” 2 Tim 4:1-2. What a beautifully simple message, “Preach the word!” I am thankful that here at Helmar we have been blessed by the Lord with a pastor, deacons, and many fellow congregants who do exactly that. We have the opportunity each week to hear moving sermons that teach us more about the word, we have deacons who care about us and pray over our spiritual needs, and we have many wonderful examples of how to live a faithful Christian life from many others in the congregation. These people help to teach us what being a Christian actual means, help us to gain a greater understanding of the word, and correct us and help to get us back on track when we stumble on our journey. What a blessing!
But Paul also warned Timothy, “For the time will come when they will not endure sound doctrine, but according to their own desires, because they have itching ears, they will heap up for themselves teachers; and they will turn their ears away from the truth and be turned aside to fables.” 2 Tim 4:3-4. Sadly, our world seems to be well down this path. We are told that there are as many genders as there are people, and we have certain denominations that have started to ignore portions of the word that they have deemed “offensive” to certain groups of people. The teaching of sound doctrine is indeed becoming harder to find in the world, and the word is actively attacked by many in society. “But you be watchful in all things, endure afflictions, do the work of an evangelist, fulfill your ministry.” 2 Tim 4:5. Finally, Paul told Timothy that there would be afflictions he would have to endure, but if he was watchful and did the work of an evangelist, he could fulfill his ministry. In this present world it seems that Christians and our beliefs are under attack more than ever in modern times, and that we must endure these afflictions from society. However, if we remain watchful against false teachings, and continue to “preach the word!” we can help fulfill the ministry and lead others to the Lord!