Give Diligence

  1. INTRODUCTION:
    1. SCRIPTURE READING -- II TIMOTHY 2:15 =
      1. [KJV] "Study to shew thyself approved unto God, a workman that needeth not to be ashamed, rightly dividing the word of truth."
      2. [ASV] "Give diligence to present thyself approved unto God, a workman that needeth not to be ashamed, handling aright the word of truth."
        Comment: The subject of our study for the hour is taken from the first two words of the American Standard Version.
    2. THREE IMPORTANT THINGS ARE POINTED OUT IN THIS VERSE FOR A SERVANT OF GOD TO CONSIDER:
      1. The need of preparation.
      2. The objective to be achieved.
      3. The method of achieving the objective.
  2. DISCUSSION:
    1. THE NEED OF PREPARATION:
      Note: "Give diligence" [ASV] --- "Study" [KJV]
      1. The heart and mind must be cultivated -- a state of spirituality and deep devotion to God must be attained.
        1. The ground must be cultivated readied for the seed to be sown and we are told in Luke 8:11 = "Now the parable is this: The seed is the word of God."
          1. The seed in the unprepared soil of the "way side" finds no means of getting into the heart of the ground and "…then cometh the devil and taketh away the word out of their hearts,…" = Luke 8:12.
          2. The seed that is on the rock has only a shallow surface that welcomes the seed but only for a short period of time -- "…They hear, receive the word with joy,…" but the seed can not take "root, which for a while believe and in time of temptation fall away." = Luke 8:13.
          3. The seed that is among the thorns receives (hears) the seed, but "…are choked with cares and riches and pleasures of this life, and bring no fruit to perfection." = Luke 8:14.
          4. The seed that is on the cultivated (prepared ground) finds a lodging place "…in an honest and good heart, having heard the word, keep it, and bring forth fruit with patience." = Luke 8:15.
      2. How is the heart cultivated and prepared?
        1. This is done by preparation of careful study of God's Word.
        2. On must take time to eat, drink, sleep and work to live.
        3. A servant of God must take time to:
          1. Eat the Word of God.
            Matt 5:6 = "Blessed are they which do hunger and thirst after righteousness: for they shall be filled."
            Col 1:9-11 = "For this cause we also, since the day we heard it, do not cease to pray for you, and to desire that ye might be filled with the knowledge of his will in all wisdom and spiritual understanding; That ye might walk worthy of the Lord unto all pleasing, being fruitful in every good work, and increasing in the knowledge of God; Strengthened with all might, according to his glorious power, unto all patience and longsuffering with joyfulness;"
          2. Drink the Word of God.
            Eph 5:18 = "And be not drunk with wine, wherein is excess; but be filled with the Spirit;"
            1 Cor 10:31 = "Whether therefore ye eat, or drink, or whatsoever ye do, do all to the glory of God."
            John 4:10-14 = "Jesus answered and said unto her, If thou knewest the gift of God, and who it is that saith to thee, Give me to drink; thou wouldest have asked of him, and he would have given thee living water. The woman saith unto him, Sir, thou hast nothing to draw with, and the well is deep: from whence then hast thou that living water? Art thou greater than our father Jacob, which gave us the well, and drank thereof himself, and his children, and his cattle? Jesus answered and said unto her, Whosoever drinketh of this water shall thirst again: But whosoever drinketh of the water that I shall give him shall never thirst; but the water that I shall give him shall be in him a well of water springing up into everlasting life."
            Rev 22:17 = "And the Spirit and the bride say, Come. And let him that heareth say, Come. And let him that is athirst come. And whosoever will, let him take the water of life freely."
          3. Sleep in the peace of the Word of God.
            1 Thess 4:14-15 = "For if we believe that Jesus died and rose again, even so them also which sleep in Jesus will God bring with him. For this we say unto you by the word of the Lord, that we which are alive and remain unto the coming of the Lord shall not prevent them which are asleep."
            1 Thess 5:10-11 = "Who died for us, that, whether we wake or sleep, we should live together with him. Wherefore comfort yourselves together, and edify one another, even as also ye do."
          4. Work the Word of God to have eternal life.
            Eph 2:10 = "For we are his workmanship, created in Christ Jesus unto good works, which God hath before ordained that we should walk in them."
            Titus 2:7-8 = "In all things shewing thyself a pattern of good works: in doctrine shewing uncorruptness, gravity, sincerity, Sound speech, that cannot be condemned; that he that is of the contrary part may be ashamed, having no evil thing to say of you."
            1 Cor 9:16 = "For though I preach the gospel, I have nothing to glory of: for necessity is laid upon me; yea, woe is unto me, if I preach not the gospel!"
      3. The study of God's Word must become a daily part of our life.
    2. THE OBJECTIVE TO BE ACHIEVED:
      1. II Timothy 2:15 --
        1. [KJV] "…Shew thyself approved unto God, a workman that needeth not to be ashamed, …".
        2. [ASV] "…Present thyself approved unto God, a workman that needeth not to be ashamed, …".
      2. God is our Creator, Preserver and Provider.
        1. In Him we live, move and have our being.
          Acts 17:28 = "For in him we live, and move, and have our being; as certain also of your own poets have said, For we are also his offspring."
        2. He knows our thoughts and works.
          Heb 4:12-13 = "For the word of God is quick, and powerful, and sharper than any twoedged sword, piercing even to the dividing asunder of soul and spirit, and of the joints and marrow, and is a discerner of the thoughts and intents of the heart. Neither is there any creature that is not manifest in his sight: but all things are naked and opened unto the eyes of him with whom we have to do."
        3. In judgment we do not want to stand before him ashamed.
          2 Tim 1:12 = "For the which cause I also suffer these things: nevertheless I am not ashamed: for I know whom I have believed, and am persuaded that he is able to keep that which I have committed unto him against that day."
          1 Peter 4:16 = "Yet if any man suffer as a Christian, let him not be ashamed; but let him glorify God on this behalf."
          1 John 2:28 = "And now, little children, abide in him; that, when he shall appear, we may have confidence, and not be ashamed before him at his coming."
      3. We strive therefore to please Him, and to receive His blessed approval
        Matt 25:21 = "His lord said unto him, Well done, thou good and faithful servant: thou hast been faithful over a few things, I will make thee ruler over many things: enter thou into the joy of thy lord."
    3. THE METHOD OF ACHIEVING THE OBJECTIVE:
      1. II Timothy 2:15 --
        1. [KJV] ", …Rightly dividing the word of truth."
        2. [ASV] ", …Handling aright the word of truth."
      2. Each Christian should be given (fed) that spiritual portion of God's Word in due season.
        1. To a babe in Christ it might be simple Bible study or lessons.
          1 Cor 3:2 = "I have fed you with milk, and not with meat: for hitherto ye were not able to bear it, neither yet now are ye able."
          Heb. 5:13 = "For every one that useth milk is unskilful in the word of righteousness: for he is a babe."
        2. To a mature Christian it might be strong meat.
          Heb 5:14 = "But strong meat belongeth to them that are of full age, even those who by reason of use have their senses exercised to discern both good and evil."
        3. To a alien sinner and weak Christian it might be first principles.
          Heb. 5:12 = ""For when for the time ye ought to be teachers, ye have need that one teach you again which be the first principles of the oracles of God; and are become such as have need of milk, and not of strong meat"
        4. To one broken-hearted it might be words of comfort.
          2 Cor 1:4 = "Who comforteth us in all our tribulation, that we may be able to comfort them which are in any trouble, by the comfort wherewith we ourselves are comforted of God."
        5. To one careless and indifferent it might be reproof.
          2 Tim 4:2-4 = "Preach the word; be instant in season, out of season; reprove, rebuke, exhort with all longsuffering and doctrine. For the time will come when they will not endure sound doctrine; but after their own lusts shall they heap to themselves teachers, having itching ears; And they shall turn away their ears from the truth, and shall be turned unto fables."
          2 Tim 3:16-17 = "All scripture is given by inspiration of God, and is profitable for doctrine, for reproof, for correction, for instruction in righteousness: That the man of God may be perfect, throughly furnished unto all good works."
      3. We need to learn the necessities of the different members and teach them how to meet their particular needs and necessities of Christian living in order for us to work together.
        Eph 4:12-16 = "For the perfecting of the saints, for the work of the ministry, for the edifying of the body of Christ: Till we all come in the unity of the faith, and of the knowledge of the Son of God, unto a perfect man, unto the measure of the stature of the fulness of Christ: That we henceforth be no more children, tossed to and fro, and carried about with every wind of doctrine, by the sleight of men, and cunning craftiness, whereby they lie in wait to deceive; But speaking the truth in love, may grow up into him in all things, which is the head, even Christ: From whom the whole body fitly joined together and compacted by that which every joint supplieth, according to the effectual working in the measure of every part, maketh increase of the body unto the edifying of itself in love."
  3. CONCLUSION:
    1. IS THE SOIL OF YOUR HEART PREPARED TO RECEIVE THE WORD OF GOD?
    2. DO YOU DESIRE TO RECEIVE THE HEAVENLY OBJECTIVE?
    3. HAVE YOU APPLIED THE PROPER METHOD OF ACHIEVING THE HEAVENLY OBJECTIVE?

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