Girl, Gospel, Go | Day Eighteen

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By: Megan Gover | Preach the Word, Baby! | To type in your answers to today’s study, click here.

“Preach the word; be ready in season and out of season, reprove, rebuke, and exhort, with complete patience and teaching.” [2 Timothy 4:2]

One of my favorite genres of podcasts and tv shows I enjoy are about criminal cases. It fascinates me to see how the law works to provide justice for victims, the guilty, and the innocent.

Two words you often hear on these shows is charged and testify. A government entity formally accuses criminals with the crimes they are guilty of committing while a defendant might be called to the stand to testify about information in a case.

Paul uses these court-like words in chapter four of 2 Timothy. Let’s read through the first few verses of this passage to see how it applies to us today.

Read 2 Timothy 4:1-2. These verses set the scene of God on His rightful throne. Who did Paul say the Lord would judge? What will he judge us for?

We will all stand before the Lord--giving an account of our sins and actions. How should knowing we will be judged by God in the future spur us on today?  

What was Paul ultimately charging Timothy to do? Fill in the blanks below for verse two.

“_________ the word; be _________  in season and out of season, _________ , _________ , and _________ , with complete _________  and _________ .”

Let’s pull out the meaning of these words a little bit more. What does it mean to preach? What characteristics do you associate with preaching?

The Greek word used for preach means to be a herald. The only familiarity you might have with a herald is at Christmastime when we sing, “Hark! the herald angels sing, glory to the newborn king.” However, few of us know what it means.

A herald was someone who was sent from by a king to deliver a message to others. This person was a force to be reckoned with, must be listened to with respect, and demanded obedience. They announced the king’s messages with all authority of the king.

Knowing this background, what parallels can you draw from the historical use of a herald to us today being called to preach?

What are we called to declare?

Would you say you are committed to sharing the Gospel both in season and out of season? Explain.

Paul goes on to mention three specific verbs. Google the definitions below.

  • Reprove -

  • Rebuke -

  • Exhort -

Though these are similar, they each embody different characteristics. Reprove means “to convict, refute by conviction, to ring to the light, to expose and call into account.” There is a sense of gentleness associated with this action. It calls people out of their sin and calls people up to the level of God’s holiness.

When has someone called you out and called you up? How did you react to it?

Rebuke, on the other hand, involves sharply and strictly calling people out. The Greek equivalent of this word is used primarily in the New Testament, specifically the Gospels. Do you know who the main character of the Gospels is? Jesus. This word associates most with Christ's actions and speech!

What can we learn knowing Jesus rebuked others and often so?

Lastly, we are called to exhort others. The heart of this verb is to encourage, comfort, and strengthen those around us. There is a sense of urging and begging others to surrender to the Lord in every aspect of life.

Take an exhort inventory. When was the last time you genuinely encouraged or comforted someone in the name of the Lord? If it’s been a minute, who can you take the time to exhort today or this week?

Out of the three commands Paul listed, rate them from 1 - gentlest to 3 - harshest.

Rebuke ________

Reprove ________

Exhort ________

What does this communicate about our approach in delivering truth?

Also, why does Paul mention to do these things with patience and teaching? What happens when we do them impatiently and without using it to teach?

When we finish out the first part of 2 Timothy 4 tomorrow, we will see Paul’s urgency for Timothy, as well as believers, to be ready to preach, reprove, rebuke and exhort. For now, end this time thanking the Lord for allowing us to help bring the message of hope to this hurting world.

2 TimothyMegan GoverComment