A Charge to keep

A Charge to keep

The Gospel Preacher Association—Missionary Journal 13by

Dr. Edwin G. Moore, Jr. European Director for the GPA

“I charge thee therefore before God, and the Lord Jesus Christ, who shall judge the quick and the dead at his appearing and his kingdom; 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. But watch thou in all things, endure afflictions, do the work of an evangelist, make full proof oath ministry.” 2 Timothy 4:1-5

WE FIND IN THESE VERSES:

A charge to keep

PREACH THE WORD. It does not say to preach about the Word or interpret the Word or even defend the Word, but PREACH it. Mark 13:31 says, “Heaven and earth shall pass away: but my words shall not pass away.” The Spirit defends it. We preach it.

A warning to heed

A time is coming to the Church when men will not hear the practical truths of the Gospel, when they will prefer speculative opinions (which either do no good to the soul, or corrupt and destroy it) rather than the wholesome doctrine of deny thyself, take up thy cross and follow me, which Jesus Christ has left to His Church. They will “be turned unto fables,” and hate those preachers and that doctrine by which they are opposed. They will believe any kind of nonsense; for, as one has justly observed, “Those who reject the truth are abandoned by the just judgment of God to credit the most degrading nonsense.” This is remarkably the case with most deists: their creed often exhibits what is grossly absurd.

A mission to accomplish

That is to “make full proof of thy ministry.” Push all your principles to their utmost power of activity; carry them on to all their consequences; and see what God will do for you and by you. Neglect no part of your sacred function; perform faithfully all the duties of which it is composed; and do God’s work in His own way and in His own Spirit.

These are not new to the Christian, but they are of much importance today, if not more than they have ever been. To some extent the turning away from the Word and its principles has always existed, however today we see a sharp decline in individuals being moved by the preaching of the Word. We have the psychology preachers, the success preachers, and the glad rag preachers. The missing note in many cases is a lack of applying biblical truth. In bygone days, we heard men who came from the back woods with a message burning in their hearts. Today men come from the colleges and seminaries with their hearts burning for fame.

We see the results of catering to itching ears

Today more Christians live outside the United States and Europe than inside. Last Sunday there were more Christians in church in China than in all of Europe. There are more missionaries from Brazil than Canada and England combined. More Presbyterians are in Ghana than Scotland (where it started). More Baptists are in one state of India than in all of South America. More Anglicans are in Kenya or Uganda or Nigeria than in England (where it started). More Christians are in China than in America.

What should we learn from this?

I think, first, we should realize the work of missionaries has yielded a bountiful harvest. Secondly, it is evident, at least to me that the basics work. We see this in the work of missionaries on the foreign field where usually they are not in competition with anyone and do not have the pressure of numbers, except from supporters. Thirdly, the fulfillment of our commission is to PREACH the Word. Nowhere are we told to pacify worldlings with their longing to have their ears tickled. We have never been instructed to build the world’s largest church or be the psychiatrist for saints. However, we are clearly instructed to

 Faithfully preach sound doctrine.

  

A Charge to keep

The Gospel Preacher Association—Missionary Journal 13by

Dr. Edwin G. Moore, Jr. European Director for the GPA

“I charge thee therefore before God, and the Lord Jesus Christ, who shall judge the quick and the dead at his appearing and his kingdom; 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. But watch thou in all things, endure afflictions, do the work of an evangelist, make full proof oath ministry.” 2 Timothy 4:1-5

WE FIND IN THESE VERSES:

A charge to keep

PREACH THE WORD. It does not say to preach about the Word or interpret the Word or even defend the Word, but PREACH it. Mark 13:31 says, “Heaven and earth shall pass away: but my words shall not pass away.” The Spirit defends it. We preach it.

A warning to heed

A time is coming to the Church when men will not hear the practical truths of the Gospel, when they will prefer speculative opinions (which either do no good to the soul, or corrupt and destroy it) rather than the wholesome doctrine of deny thyself, take up thy cross and follow me, which Jesus Christ has left to His Church. They will “be turned unto fables,” and hate those preachers and that doctrine by which they are opposed. They will believe any kind of nonsense; for, as one has justly observed, “Those who reject the truth are abandoned by the just judgment of God to credit the most degrading nonsense.” This is remarkably the case with most deists: their creed often exhibits what is grossly absurd.

A mission to accomplish

That is to “make full proof of thy ministry.” Push all your principles to their utmost power of activity; carry them on to all their consequences; and see what God will do for you and by you. Neglect no part of your sacred function; perform faithfully all the duties of which it is composed; and do God’s work in His own way and in His own Spirit.

These are not new to the Christian, but they are of much importance today, if not more than they have ever been. To some extent the turning away from the Word and its principles has always existed, however today we see a sharp decline in individuals being moved by the preaching of the Word. We have the psychology preachers, the success preachers, and the glad rag preachers. The missing note in many cases is a lack of applying biblical truth. In bygone days, we heard men who came from the back woods with a message burning in their hearts. Today men come from the colleges and seminaries with their hearts burning for fame.

We see the results of catering to itching ears

Today more Christians live outside the United States and Europe than inside. Last Sunday there were more Christians in church in China than in all of Europe. There are more missionaries from Brazil than Canada and England combined. More Presbyterians are in Ghana than Scotland (where it started). More Baptists are in one state of India than in all of South America. More Anglicans are in Kenya or Uganda or Nigeria than in England (where it started). More Christians are in China than in America.

What should we learn from this?

I think, first, we should realize the work of missionaries has yielded a bountiful harvest. Secondly, it is evident, at least to me that the basics work. We see this in the work of missionaries on the foreign field where usually they are not in competition with anyone and do not have the pressure of numbers, except from supporters. Thirdly, the fulfillment of our commission is to PREACH the Word. Nowhere are we told to pacify worldlings with their longing to have their ears tickled. We have never been instructed to build the world’s largest church or be the psychiatrist for saints. However, we are clearly instructed to Faithfully preach sound doctrine.