Category : General
2 Tim.2: 24 (KJV)
24 And the servant of the Lord must not strive; but be gentle unto all men, apt to teach, patient.
It is said that the history of the Church, was in great part an history of ignorance and instruction, of corruptions and reformations, and yet we find that among the most prominent of the servants of the Lord, among the most remarkable leaders in religious progress, were those who, though apt to teach were also very apt to strive, and so far from being patterns of gentleness, patience and meekness, were rather remarkable for qualities of an opposite description, for rudeness, for hastiness, and for intemperance of language and action.
Here we are given the antidote for the vain and conceited babbling with which some busied themselves, the same being a very noble and beautiful picture of the kind of personality that should be exhibited by God’s preachers. While the physician or nurse does not respond to the illness of the patients with blows and threats, but with gentleness, forbearance and understanding.
Our verse today while referring primarily to the Christian minister, is also applicable to all Christians; fit is for all who profess to be the servants of the Lord. The believer “Must not strive”. it is also noted, the servant of God must stand aloof from contentions; but foolish questions are contentions; therefore, whoever desires to be a ‘servant of God,’ and to be accounted such, ought to shun them.” And if superfluous questions ought to be avoided on this single ground, that it is unseemly for a servant of God to fight, how impudently do they act, who have the open effrontery of claiming applause for raising incessant controversies? The more progress any man has made in it, the more unfit will he be for serving, Christ.
He may calmly inquire after truth; he may discuss points of morals, or theology, if he will do it with a proper spirit; he may “contend earnestly for the faith once delivered to the saints” Jude 1:3; but he may not do that which is here mentioned as strife. The Greek word commonly denotes, “to fight, to make war, to contend.” In John 6:52; Acts 7:26; 2 Timothy 2:24;, it is rendered “strove,” and “strive;” in James 4:2, “fight.” It is not elsewhere used in the New Testament. The meaning is, that the servant of Christ should be a man of peace. He should not indulge in the feelings which commonly give rise to contention, and which commonly characterize it. He should not struggle for mere victory, even when endeavoring to maintain truth; but should do this, in all cases, with a kind spirit, and a mild temper; with entire candor; with nothing designed to provoke and irritate an adversary; and so that, whatever may be the result of the discussion, “the bond of peace” may, if possible, be preserved.
We would do well and must remember, kind words never blister the tongue or lips, and we never hear of any mental trouble arising from this quarter. Though they do not cost much, yet they accomplish much. They help one’s own good nature and good will. A Christian reform cannot be caused or aided by a spirit which the law of Christ expressly and utterly condemns–let our speech be seasoned with salt that it may minister grace to the hearers. let us also remember harsh words Divide, Kind Words unite!
Have a great and godly day!