Audio available here (click to stream, right-click to download) or on our iTunes podcast. When people answer the call to serve God in ministry, they find that abruptly they will be the recipients of advice of some kind or another, some good, some bad, some solicited, some unsolicited, from everyone they encounter nearly.
In the New Testament, we encounter son called Timothy who got clarified God’s call to pastoral ministry. He previously the fantastic privilege to be mentored by none other than the Apostle Paul. Paul knew this son, and he understood the church that Timothy had gone to serve in Ephesus. How should he deal with these matters?
Perhaps he should form a committee. Maybe he should call in a chapel advisor or plan a particular conference to address the pressing issues? No, rather, Paul gives him one little bit of advice. One simple statement lays out Timothy’s ministerial strategy in the true face of most of these adversities. In 2 Timothy 4:2, he tells young Timothy, “Preach the Word.” Three words.
Preach the term. And these words are not merely one man’s opinion. This is God’s inspired truth recorded in sacred scripture to admonish us all of the sufficiency, the authority, and the reliability of God’s Word. Our passage today causes us to turn our thoughts to the subject of the Bible itself.
Peter says in 1:25, “This is actually the Word that was preached for you.” At some true point along the way in their lives, these people and children had come under the preaching and teaching of Scripture. And it had a revolutionary influence on their lives. Whenever we hear the Bible preached, when the Bible is read by us, or when we research it, we are not simply hearing empty words.
These words are powerful and effective if we incline ourselves to them. So we should be diligent as readers so that as hearers of the term and never believe we have just opened up one of so many other books, or listened to one of so great many other talks. That is God’s Word and it accomplishes God’s purposes whenever we take it in.
In verse 23, Peter talks of the portrayed phrase of God, and in verse 25, quoting Isaiah, he refers to the term of god, the father. And he says that this is the portrayed phrase that was preached to you. It is God’s Word. Now, I have to say that not all preaching is the preaching of God’s Word. It is the Scripture, and not the sermon that are God’s Word. In what’s called expository preaching, the sermon is thoroughly rooted in the sacred text message and the truths of that text are drawn out and explained. Says god, the father of hosts Thus, ‘Do not listen to what of the prophets who are prophesying to you.
They are leading you into futility; A vision is spoken by them of their own imagination, Not from the mouth of the LORD. Who has given heed to His phrase and listened? … I did not send these prophets, But they ran. I did not speak to them, However they prophesied. So, according to the Lord Himself, some who declare to speak for God do not.
Those who do are those who spend time with God and receive His word clearly, and announce His word then. Therefore, we have to never be lazy listeners. The Bible is God’s Word. We are informed that twice explicitly in these few verses in First Peter. Therefore, since it comes from God, there are certain things that must be true about it. And Peter elaborates on lots of those simple things here.
First he tells us that God’s Word holds true. In verse 22, he says that these Christians have been obedient to the reality. We read in Numbers 23:19, “God is not just a man that He should rest.” People lie. It is characteristic of humans to exaggerate, twist the facts, distort the reality, and inform daring confronted lies even.