II Timothy 3 But evil men and seducers shall wax worse and worse, deceiving, and being deceived.
But continue thou in the things which thou hast learned and hast been assured of, knowing of whom thou hast learned them;
And that from a child thou hast known the holy scriptures, which are able to make thee wise unto salvation through faith which is in Christ Jesus.
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.
Do you believe all scripture is inspired by God? This is a starting point. I believe this. Therefore I am careful concerning the way I handle scripture and also careful in really trying to do the instruction in Bible.
If you really believe all scripture is inspired by God, you have a good place to continue from there.
I don't see how those people who believe otherwise can continue to the end in the midst of the evil of this day. Many churches have turned from portions of scripture. Many individuals in church groups consider it unimportant and think little of changing doctrine away from scripture ... the end time falling away where churches fall away from scripture. II Thess 2
But what do you believe?
The following are some of the doctrines presented in Bible for us who believe to live in today for our benefit.
... for instruction in righteousness:
I Tim. 6:5-12 Perverse disputings of men of corrupt minds, and destitute of the truth, supposing that gain is godliness: from such withdraw thyself.
But godliness with contentment is great gain.
For we brought nothing into this world, and it is certain we can carry nothing out.
And having food and raiment let us be therewith content.
But they that will be rich fall into temptation and a snare, and into many foolish and hurtful lusts, which drown men in destruction and perdition.
For the love of money is the root of all evil: which while some coveted after, they have erred from the faith, and pierced themselves through with many sorrows.
But thou, O man of God, flee these things; and follow after righteousness, godliness, faith, love, patience, meekness.
Fight the good fight of faith, lay hold on eternal life, whereunto thou art also called, and hast professed a good profession before many witnesses.
* Perverse disputings of men of corrupt minds, and destitute of the truth, supposing that gain is godliness: from such withdraw thyself.
Many people in today's churches think that gain is a sign of godliness. They delight in telling how many people attend their church groups.
I once attended a dinner at a museum group and was seated next to a man who was wearing around his neck the largest cross I've ever seen. He immediately introduced himself as the former pastor at Indiana Street Baptist Church. He began talking and said, "I don't know what we are going to do. We have so many people attending our church that we can't seat them. We keep adding onto the church building and still have this happening."
I replied: "If you began teaching what Jesus said, 'The man who marries a divorced woman commits adultery,' you would no longer have a seating problem for about 1/2 of the people would get up and leave you."
He was startled.
I got up immediately and left the dinner, not choosing to stay there and eat with this man.
The apostle Paul said for us to "withdraw ourselves" from those who think gain is a sign of godliness.
* For the love of money is the root of all evil: which while some coveted after, they have erred from the faith, and pierced themselves through with many sorrows.
I see this happen all the time. People take jobs that pay more money because of that money. This pursuit of money is unwise. Such people spend many hours each day at a place they hate doing that which they do not like because of money. A love of that money.
All my life, I've worked for a living. But I sought jobs where I had an interest.
My first year out of college, I was teaching 5th-grade. I realized I was very unsuited for this work. And I was very unhappy doing this work. (I was not born again at that time.) I went to the local college to take some tests to see what I was suited to do.
I did find a job teaching something I enjoyed teaching and spent a few years doing that.
I had to have money from work but I didn't have to stay in a job I hated. I could look for work where I had an interest, and that is what I always did do.
But I wasn't pursuing money, though I had to make money to support myself.
It is a terrible thing to spend your life pursuing money.
II Timothy 1:8 Be not thou therefore ashamed of the testimony of our Lord, nor of me his prisoner: but be thou partaker of the afflictions of the gospel according to the power of God;
* Be not ashamed of the testimony of our Lord
Do we hold back the Word of truth when we are with others? They speak. What do we do? Are we ashamed, knowing if we speak they will reject us and what we say? When the door opens, we speak. We don't have to create doors for the subject. But if the door opens, speak.
* be thou partaker of the afflictions of the gospel
Gospel: means "God's story" ... whatever God says about the subject
That which you know to be from God by the Holy Spirit ... that which you believe ... If a scripture, speak that truth when you believe it.
Speak what you believe. Don't try to prove it to them. Just speak when you have God's truth on the subject at hand.
Truth just rises up in me. That is the Holy Spirit that is in me. If you have the Holy Spirit in you and they speak, and the truth rises up in you, speak.
II Timothy 1:9 WHO hath saved us, and called us with an holy calling, not according to our works, but according to HIS own purpose and grace, which was given us in Christ Jesus before the world began,
The purpose of God for each of our lives varies and there is also a time to the purpose.
I was born again when I was approximately 37-years-old. Prior to that I did secular things. There is a call of God on my life similar to the call of God that was on Paul's life. And in God's timing, that happened.
Some of us are appointed to care for the church. I'm not speaking of the church building as most people think of church. I'm speaking of caring for the individuals who are the church.
You may not be called to do that but there is a purpose of God for you as the church.
The only thing that matters for each of us is working in the area assigned to us by God and serving HIM according to the Bible, keeping our flesh under control of the Spirit of God which we do by prayer.
With the various temptations and trials of the flesh at different stages of life, we pray, depending on God, trusting in God, to overcome our own flesh. I've never seen it fail when I turn to God for help.
And God always shows me what to do in the problem area. And all through life there are problem areas in which we overcome. This is our role. To overcome through God.
The flesh tries to overcome in difficult, expensive ways.
God's ways are so simple.
My latest problem is over sound in my bedroom. It begins about 5 pm and usually continues until about 7 pm. It is bass sound from music at the house of my neighbor.
I do not consider my neighbor to be doing wrong. The neighbor is just trying to live.
Do I spend money to rebuild the wall at my bedroom to try to keep the sound out? Who could I get to help me? The disruption from construction would be difficult for me. What can I do?
After talking many times with God concerning this problem, the idea came to me to move to another room at the far corner of my house when the troublesome sound starts and to read in that room as I have been doing in the bedroom.
James 3:17 But the wisdom that is from above is first pure, then peaceable, gentle, and easy to be intreated, full of mercy and good fruits, without partiality, and without hypocrisy.
Your problem may be very different from my problem but in each problem the answer comes from God, not from our own thinking. We learn to pray and wait until we feel we have the answer from God. I have waited for as many as 4-years for answer to specific problem. I just kept praying each time the problem surfaced and I waited. Then one day, all of a sudden, I saw what to do. The answer was very simple not difficult. This is what I have always found with God.
Sometimes answers come quickly after prayer. Other times we have to wait.
When the answer is from the Holy Spirit, I find it is easy to recognize it and I marvel each time over God's wisdom in the problem area.
... pure, peaceable, gentle, easy to be intreated ... full of mercy and good fruits, without partiality, and without hypocrisy.