“Here is a trustworthy saying: If we died with him, we will also live with him; if we endure, we will also reign with him. If we disown him, he will also disown us;” 2 Timothy 2:11-12
After telling Timothy to endure suffering and the ministry like a good soldier, Paul now gives some encouraging words. He starts with saying that this is something that can be trusted in.
The first is about dying and living with Jesus. Many believers have gone through water baptism. This is a symbol of dying with Jesus. It is a dying to the old sinful self and only living for Jesus.
Although many go through the water baptism, many do not want to die. They will hold on to their past ways. Yet, if you die to your self, you will live with Jesus. Give up living for your own ways and follow Jesus. Your life will then be eternal and not just temporary.
Next is to endure. Every believer must endure hardship and struggles. Living a life following Jesus will bring about many challenges. It is described as a race that must be run. In order to win, you must keep going, to endure. You must not give up. If you don’t give up, in the end you will reign with Jesus for eternity.
The last one for today’s verses is if you disown Jesus, He will disown you. Disowning is turning away from, rejecting, not wanting a part of Him. Many believers have chosen to turn away from Jesus. Something bad happens in their life and they feel God is not real and walk away. Others continue to claim Jesus, but live a life that is completely against Him. Others refuse to talk to other people about Jesus.
If you choose to disown Him and have nothing to do with Him, He will allow you to make that choice. The consequence of that choice is that He will also disown you. You will no longer live with Him, nor will you ever reign with Him.
Do you want to live and reign with Jesus? Be willing to die to self with Him. Stay strong and true and endure the struggles with Jesus. Never, ever disown Him.
I pray today that you will die to your old self and sin; that you will endure all that God brings you to and through; that you will never disown Jesus in any way; and that Jesus will make Himself more real to you each day.
“Those who live according to the flesh have their minds set on what the flesh desires: but those who live in accordance with the Spirit have their minds set on what the Spirit desires.” Romans 8:5
How a person lives is a visual showing of what his mind is focused upon. What the mind is focused upon is a sign of what is important to a person.
In the business world, successful business people always talk about having a vision and a plan to meet that vision. With those things it will happen. If a person has his mind on having fun and relaxing, that is all that will happen and will not get any work accomplished.
Paul talks about living to the flesh or to the Spirit. Both show where the mind is focused.
Living for the flesh is the living for the here and now. It is focused on immediate pleasure. This is what the world is doing. They want pleasure and they want it right now. They will say do not put of pleasure till tomorrow. This is sinful selfishness and does not look at what God wants.
Those who live according to the Spirit are seeking what God wants in their lives. They are not seeking to please themselves but to please God. Their focus is on how to live for God. It is focused on serving God and reaching others for Jesus.
When your mind is focused on Jesus, you will not be focused on doing anything sinful. You will be able to resist the temptations that come your way. When Jesus was in the desert fasting He was able to easily resist the devil since He had been focused on God and His Word, not on the hunger and thirst He was feeling, the flesh.
How are you living today? Are you living to get your own pleasure or even someone else’s pleasure? Or are you living to please God?
What is your mind focused on? Is it focused on your own physical desires? Or is it focused on the desires of God for you and others? Be led by the Holy Spirit in everything you do.
I pray today that you will live according to the Holy Spirit; that you will know the direction the Holy Spirit is leading you; that you will not seek sinful desires of the flesh; and that your heart and mind will follow God.