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Welcome to the Westside church’s special Monday Morning Coffee podcast with Mark Roberts. Mark is a disciple, a husband, father and grand dad, as well as a certified coffee geek, fan of CS Lewis’ writings and he loves his big red Jeep. He’s also the preacher for Westside church.
Hello, and welcome to the Westside churches special Monday Morning Coffee podcast on this podcast, our preacher Mark Roberts will help you get your week started right. With look back at yesterday's sermon so that we can think through it further and better work the applications into our daily lives . Mark will then look forward into this week's Bible reading so that we can know what to expect and watch for. And, he may have some extra bonus thoughts from time to time. So grab a cup of coffee as we start the week together on Monday Morning Coffee with Mark.Speaker 3:
Good morning. Good morning. Welcome to the Monday Morning Coffee podcast for Monday December the 12th. Dina is out of town. She is in Conway holding that new grandbaby, so it is just me and that means you just don't know what's gonna happen in this podcast. I might just, well, I've got a cup of coffee and I've got notes from yesterday's sermon. I've got my Bible open to second Timothy because we're going there directly. This is gonna be a great podcast as we start the week, right? Glad you're listening. Let's get started. Yesterday I preached the second in my series on the essentials by talking about repentance. I will change and I'm gonna give you just a little bit more on repentance. You can't say everything in the pulpit, but I really wished I could have fit. Oh, I wish I could have found a place for this. Why don't people repent? Man is not something that you're gonna miss if you read the Bible. Nobody says, oh, I, I , I , I didn't know about repentance. People may not have that all firmed up and know everything about everything, but people know they need to make a change if they're gonna serve the Lord. Why don't people repent? Let me quickly give you three big reasons here. Think about these. Think if you are using one of these as a reason not to repent. First and foremost, people don't repent because because repentance is painful and hard and difficult. Change is difficult. It costs , it hurts our self-esteem, our ego, it can change relationships, jobs, we don't wanna repent because we don't want to change. We don't wanna pay the price for repentance. Secondly, sometimes people don't want to repent because they have decided to substitute something else in place of repentance. You talk about repentance and before very long someone will say, well, you know, I started going to church. Well what about repentance? Well, I'm a member of good standing in the church. Have you ever repented? I go to church all the time. See what people are doing there. They are missing the question. Substituting good things. Good works is not the same as change as genuine repentance to honor God. Then thirdly, sometimes people don't repent because they know they need to repent and they plan to repent some day . Great illustration of that. Of course, in your Bible in Acts 24, 25 with Felix, and there are plenty of other people who have done exactly the same thing, some more convenient time, I'll, I'll see about that. I'm I need to do that. You're so right about that , but I'm not doing that right now and I wanna say to you that the reason I listed repentance in this essential series is because it is exactly that. You're never going to get started with Jesus until you repent and you can't continue with Jesus until you repent. Don't put it off. I hope you didn't listen to the sermon yesterday thinking of your neighbor or your coworker or someone else who wasn't even in the building. Think about yourself. What do you need to repent of so you can become a Christian and follow Jesus? What do you need to repent of so you can be the Christian you're called to be and follow Jesus closely? Repentance, it's an essential. Now let's talk about Bible reading. Get your Bible out. Let's head over to the book of Titus. It's Monday and we are reading Titus the third chapter today as Paul returns to his emphasis on good works from two 14 and Friday's reading. Now he picks that up in three one and we'll get more of that in three four and in three eight and then again in three 14 watch the emphasis. However, in God taking the initiative, there is plenty here that reminds us that it is God and by his grace that we are saved, so pay attention to that as we're working along today in verse one, I would say this the business about submission to rulers and authorities. There is some evidence that Crete was known for rebellion to the authorities and I'd add in verse two, the term be gentle is a difficult term to translate. We just don't have an appropriate English equivalent to the words there, but maybe it is the idea of graciousness or being conciliatory. I think sometimes gentle has an entirely different connotation for us in verse five than we are told that God saved us not because of works done by us in righteousness, but according to his own mercy by the washing of regeneration and renewal of the Holy Spirit. There is a tremendous amount of discussion about the expression, washing of regeneration and renewal of the Holy Spirit. Is that two separate items or one phrase and it does seem best to be seen as one action by those that know Greek and would be able to parse the original language. Washing here is certainly a reference to water baptism. I would think then that the renewal of the Holy Spirit is probably in line with the kinds of things that Paul discusses in Romans six and probably even something about uh , the kind of thing that we've heard about in Acts chapter two in verse 38, the gift of the Spirit. Let's not back away from what the Bible says about the Holy Spirit working in our lives. We don't want any part of error. I'm backing away from that all that I can, but here it is plain that God is working to bring salvation about. We rejoice in that even if we do not necessarily understand everything about that honestly. Do you understand everything about water baptism washing away sin? Of course not. We can explain that it is like the death barrel in resurrection of Jesus. Paul does that for us in Roman six and there's a washing aspect there. Act 2216, so some of that, yeah, we can, we can get our minds wrapped around that, but of course some of that we're never going to understand. Baptism works because God works in baptism. Colossians two 11 and 12 says, so it's the work of God. It's the place where God works and it is what God teaches through scripture that we must do in order to be saved. We accept it and rejoice in it. I think that's what we ought to do with verse five in verse nine. Their foolish controversies in avoiding them would not, it would not mean that we cannot engage in any kind of religious debate. We need to be mindful of that and we need to be able to tell the difference, and I talked about this last week between vain discussion and fruitless discussion and foolish controversies, things that stir up strife . The emphasis here is on not letting people stir up division. Then of course Titus concludes with some wonderful personal notes. We know about Tisha Kiss in verse 12. We met him when we read the letter to the Colossians and the Ephesians because he's carrying those letters and I talked a lot about Tiki back at that time when we were there in the reading schedule. We're not entirely sure where NY capitalist is, but Paul wants to meet ti is there. There were seven cities with that name in the ancient world. Most think this refers to a NY capitalist on the Western Jordan coast of VAA in the abrasion Gulf off the Adriatic Sea. Grab a map and take a look if you're planning to go to NY capitalist , what a wonderful, wonderful book the Book of Titus is. I have enjoyed reading it with you and I I am impressed with this emphasis on stopping error and doing good opposing false teaching and being about good works. Those that kind of emphasis, those emphases are so important and that makes that book so relevant for us today. Thanks for reading Titus. Let's go on to the last book we'll read this year. Tomorrow we start second Timothy, welcome to Tuesday and today we begin second Timothy. This is the last epistle that Paul wrote and as we date it and talk about where Paul is, you'll come to understand quickly why this is Paul's last epistle. It is clear from second Timothy that Paul is in prison . We'll get some of that in verse 17, verse 16 , 17 and 18 with Vanessa Forest finding Paul in Rome, and so this is turned by most scholars as Paul's second imprisonment. It seems that Paul was released from his first imprisonment in Rome. That is covered in Acts the 28th chapter, but what happens after that is not covered by Luke. There are various references as we saw in Titus one five for example. Toul being in places and preaching and doing that are not covered in acts. There's just nothing in Acts that would allow for that. There's no time for that in Acts. It has to be after Acts 28. That leads us to conclude that Paul got out of prison, but what Paul is saying here in second Timothy makes it clear he is back in prison and he has no expectation of being released here at all. Think about the things that he said to the Philippian brethren and the note of optimism that often finds its way into Paul's writing. There is none of that here in second Timothy. Paul knows that he is going to be executed, so when exactly would this be? Well, uc b s dates the martyrdom of Paul around 80, 67, so it can't be much later than that. Probably I would say somewhere around 80, 64 would be a good date for this book and this is the book where Paul says My race is finished. He knows the end is coming and it's coming soon. So Paul writes to Timothy who is remaining at Ephesus to encourage him to come see him when he can chapter four verse nine, but especially to remain faithful and steadfast. Chapter one in verse 15 tells us that there are some serious problems going on in Asia and where Timothy is and Timothy does seem like he is prone to some illness and maybe even to some timidity. Timothy needs some encouragement, needs to be bucked up a little bit if you will, given some backbone maybe even. And so Paul writes this last letter to say, come see me and persevere in what you're doing in your work there. The summary that I'm going to use here is the major theme for second Timothy, the summary that I'll use to answer the question. Question two on our reading schedule. What are the central themes in false preaching and teaching being emphasized in this epistle? That theme is going to be continue in what you have learned and preach it, continue in what you have learned and preach it. Now, I've given you a lot of notes now as we start second Timothy, I'll just say a couple of things about this first chapter. I don't think it's very difficult at all, but you should notice in verse one that Paul identifies himself as an apostle. However, in you may be thinking Timothy kind of knows that why are you running out your apostolic credentials at the end of the book in chapter four in verse 22, there is a pearl. You there what we use in Texans as y'all, which means a bunch of you, the Lord be with your spirit, grace be with you, all the grace be with you, the you there is that plural and that may mean that this letter was meant to be read in church in the assembly and that would account for Paul saying, I'm an apostle. Verses three to five then you should know are a single long sentence. And then Paul, as he often does beginning in verse six, talks about how important it is to suffer without shame and this is the place where we have some questions about Timothy. Is he letting his gift die down? Verse six, is he afraid? Verse seven, is he ashamed? And the answer to those questions are, eh , we just can't be sure. It is possible for me to write you a letter and say, stir up your passion for the Lord without meaning in any way that you've let that diminish. I could say Don't be ashamed of the testimony about our Lord without implying in some way that you are ashamed. Or I could even say God has not giving you a spirit of fear without implying that somehow you are a coward. Yet I would admit reading those verses makes us wonder about Timothy's demeanor and wonder if maybe he needs a little more encouragement. I'll end with the note about the controversy in verse 12. When Paul says, I know whom I have believed and I'm convinced he's able to guard until that day what has been entrusted to me? What has been entrusted DePaul? Well, that could be the gospel. Think about verse 14 in tomorrow's reading, or it could be Paul's life and work what Paul has given his life too . Lots of discussion about that. You think about that and study about that. But the point here either way is that God takes cure of Paul and Paul is saying he will take care of you too. Timothy, there's our reading for today, tomorrow an important passage about the pattern of sound words. I'll see you on Wednesday. It is Wednesday and today we finish second Timothy. The first chapter we're reading verses 13 to 18, not a long reading and I don't really think you'll have a difficult time with this reading at all, but I want to particularly emphasize verse 13, follow the pattern of the sound words that you have heard from me. This is pattern theology. This is the thinking, this is the teaching that the New Testament, the writings of Paul, the gospels, the writings of the others. When you take that together, that constitutes a blueprint. It certainly is not the same as the book of Leviticus or the book of numbers. It certainly is not the same as the pattern or the blueprint for the tabernacle, but Paul clearly intends Timothy to look through the sacred writings and to use those to construct what the church should do and be what Christians should do and be how we should live before the Lord. Sound words. Here is the term in Greek for an outlined sketch like an architect might make. It is patterned theology and any teaching one writer says that would fall outside of Paul's sketch would surely draw instant criticism for hi from him. I say that because it has become quite fashionable to say that the New Testament is not a pattern and that all of this attempt to establish Bible authority and to think about direct commands and apostolic examples and what's being inferred or implied by the text and the stories in the text and the examples in the text that gets poo-pooed a lot as if that is the most ignorant and foolish thing ever. Sometimes you hear this very provocative kind of thing. Jesus is the pattern as if anybody is gonna possibly deny that Jesus is our great example. But why then? Yeah, why then do we have the rest of the New Testament if all we need is the gospels? Paul says, follow the pattern of the sound words that you have heard from me and I want to emphasize to you the fact that through the years brethren may not have come to complete agreement on everything that is or is not in that pattern and that is often cited, oh, looky here they have a different pattern or they think the pattern is different. That doesn't mean there isn't a pattern, it just means we need to study more, work harder, pray more , think through the tax so that we can uncover what is and what is not part of the pattern of sound words. But don't let somebody tell you that there's no pattern. Paul says there's a pattern. Verse 15 mentions some individuals who we know absolutely nothing else about, just don't know much about these guys from what we have here in verse 15, there's a reference here to Asia, which was the Roman province covering the western half of Asia Minor and we don't know anything about these guys that are being singled out. And the truth of the matter is we don't know much about Ernest for us either except that he is mentioned here and then his household is mentioned again in chapter four in verse 19. It seems that he is a special person to Paul because he has helped him in this time of imprisonment. He sought me earnestly and found me. Verse 17, may the Lord grant him to find mercy from the Lord. Lord on that day. What a fine and wonderful person Odessa forests must surely be. I'm impressed with his example, how wonderful it is to have your name written in the scriptures. Think about that. There's our reading for today. Tomorrow we set off into second Timothy chapter two. See you on Thursday. Welcome to Thursday. Let's read second Timothy chapter two. A reading for Thursday is second Timothy chapter two verses one to 13. And I love how this begins where Paul starts talking about committing what you've heard from me, second Timothy two , two in the presence of many witnesses to entrust that to faithful men who will be able to teach others also, one scholar made an excellent observation here that Paul is not just writing to tell Timothy to try harder and do better. Instead he encourages him to find the resources for his ministry that he needs so that he can, so that he can do the work that God wants done and get things stabilized there. Rather than trying to do that all on his own, he is to marshal additional brothers and sisters in Christ who will help him with that. And in fact, the expression in trust is related to the noun deposit in chapter one, verse 12 in chapter one, verse 14 , and also in verse empathy chapter six and verse 20, Timothy is to see that the gospel is a sacred trust and he is to entrust that to others so that the gospel is not lost. And it's fair to note here that Christianity is not some kind of secret religion with secret rights and ordinances that outsiders cannot come to know about. No, we're telling everybody and anybody about it, trying to make more people into disciples, more people into Christians. Paul then uses three metaphors to talk about suffering and reward and really picks up that theme beginning in verse eight. Verses eight to 13 are about facing hardship. And notice, look at verse A , the offspring of David. There's that promise from Second Samuel seven front and center. Once again, that's part of Jesus' Messianic credentials. And verse nine gets our attention because Paul says he is bound with chains as a criminal. That would certainly say his situation is much worse than what was covered in Acts chapter 28, where Paul seems to be under house arrest and as a Roman citizen, this must have truly been dreadful. Finally then verse 11, the saying or this saying is trustworthy. Which saying? The saying that he just said verse 10 or the things that are about to follow, most people think it is what follows. And if this poetic section may be set apart with a different kind of margin in your Bible may in fact be a hymn or part of a hymn. The only part of that that is difficult is the last part. If we are faithless , he remains faithful. What does that exactly mean? Most scholars, the consensus would be at least that this is a negative corresponding to the line which proceeds it. If Christians are faithless, ie . They are in apostacy, God will still be faithful to himself. And handout judgment, God can't change his character and what he has said and what he has promised. And we need to hold on to that. Paul says, Friday is here, we're concluding second Timothy chapter two. You've made it to the end of the work week as we start second Timothy chapter two verse 14. This begins the second major division in second Timothy in chapter one, down through two 13, Paul speaks directly and personally to Timothy. Now Paul begins to discuss the problem going on at Ephesus, and this may be some stuff that he intends to have red in the assembly. These things remind them, verse 14 of these things probably references the entire epistle , not just some of these faithful sayings here. And here is where we get the famous verse second Timothy two 15, do your best to present yourself to God as one prove to worker who is no need to be ashamed, rightly dividing the word of truth. Okay? Your Bible probably doesn't say rightly dividing the word of truth unless you're holding a King James version. But that of course is how we learned it and we've heard it quoted and it just rolls off the tongue. And I've heard lots and lots of sermons about rightly dividing the word of truth. And we do need to rightly divide the word of truth. Usually the point of those sermons is to say there's a distinction between the Old Testament and the New Testament and to talk about the mistake of trying to use the Old Testament to authorize New Testament practices. For example, when we have that conversation about instrumental music, here it comes. Someone's gonna read about David with a harp in the book of Psalms and they want that in the New Testament note. We need to divide, we need to rightly divide. That's a valid point, but it shouldn't come out a second Timothy two 15 because that isn't actually what the tax says. The term here is a term for rightly handling. It actually means to cut straight or to cut a straight path. And so the idea is to be accurate. Um, and maybe even there may even be some implications here for how you live. The term is used outside of the Bible to think about ethically correct behavior. So this may be that you cut it straight, you teach it correctly and and I guess that distinction between the old and New Testaments would be part of that. I I get that. I see that, but that's not the major emphasis here. Rightly handling cut straight, handle the Bible accurately. But there may even, as I said, be some implications about you need to handle yourself, yourself correctly. You need to live right, particularly in because of the error that's going on in Ephesus Hyman as in verse 17 are being mentioned here. They've swerved from the truth saying the resurrection verse 18 has already happened. This is a rare peak into some of the false doctrine that is being propagated in Ephesus. And we just don't know everything about that error. Lots of people have tried to find an ism that they can drop that error into. Can't do that. Not sure of that, but that certainly is an absolute mistake. In contrast to that, God's firm foundation stands with this seal verse 19. And that firm foundation may be the church in general. It may be the faithful Christians in Ephesus, it may be individual Christians that Timothy is going to use that he's going to entrust the truth to. Second Timothy two verse two. You'll need to study that and think a little bit more about that and where that works as a seal was used to indicate ownership and protection and authentication. I think about the Holy Spirit being given as a seal. Second Corinthians one in verse 22, here, Paul mentions the seal of God. God is identifying here. These people are his. The Lord knows those who are his. Let everyone who names the name of the Lord depart from iniquity. Those who are on the Lord's side aren't going to be involved in evil doing that will separate them from some of the things that are happening in Ephesus. So then Paul talks about our work and being ready for noble work because there are gold and silver vessels that are very honored. Maybe you have some good China, your grandma's good China only use it on good occasions. Those are vessels, plates of honor. And then you have your everyday plates that you just use all the time. They can go in the microwave. And then of course there are vessels of dishonor, like trash cans, maybe bed pans. Those aren't, yeah, those aren't vessels that we , uh, that we would give a lot of honor to . Paul says we need to prepare ourselves to be useful as a vessel for the Lord. And he gives Timothy some very direct instruction in verse 22 and 23 and 24. I particularly want you to note not being quarrelsome, being con kind, how much we need that admonition today in a time when so many people are rejecting religion because they think particularly Christianity is so judgmental . We don't want to play into the hands of those who are looking for an excuse to say, oh , I knew it. I knew it. That's just bad. That's just awful. They're so intolerant. We need to make sure that we're teaching the truth, cutting it straight, handling it accurately. But there is a way to teach the truth and Timothy gets good instruction about that there. Finally at verse 25, we do that so that God may perhaps grant them repentance. That does not deny human free will, but it does say that God acts when men and women are willing to act to repent and return to the Lord. And that's our Bible reading for today. Next week we'll finish. Yeah, we finish the year with Paul. Can you believe it? We'll read second Timothy three and second Timothy four. Looking forward to that already. But I do thank you for listening to the podcast. If you love the Monday Morning Coffee podcast, please follow or subscribe and rate and review the podcast. That helps more people find it. Tell somebody about the show. Share it on social media. We're coming up to the end of the year, and as we begin a new year, people will be thinking about Bible reading. And if you can say, I've been with this podcast, this really helped me stay in my daily Bible reading. Yes, Lord willing, there'll be a podcast in 2023 as well. Then you can recommend that to others. You can use that as an evangelism tool. But until next week, then may your coffee be delightful. May your Friday be wonderful, and may the Lord be with you today all day. I'll see you on Monday with a cup of coffee.Speaker 1:
Thanks for listening to the Westside church of Christ podcast. Monday morning coffee with mark . For more information about west side , you can connect with us through our website, just christians.com and our Facebook page. Our music is from upbeat.is that's upbeat with two P'S UPP , B E A T , where creators can get free music. Please share our podcast with others. And we look forward to seeing you again with a company coffee, of course, on next Monday,