Verse of the Day Devotion: 2 Timothy 1:8 Therefore do not be ashamed of the testimony of our Lord or of me His prisoner but join with me in suffering for the gospel according to the power of God.
This is Paul’s second letter to Timothy, his companion and partner along with Silas. In this part of the letter, Paul is encouraging his disciple Timothy to stand strong for the gospel of Christ. He starts by telling Timothy that he is reminded of his mother and grandmother. “For I am mindful of the sincere faith within you, which first dwelt in your grandmother Lois and your mother Eunice, and I am sure that it is in you as well.” 2 Timothy 1:5. They were strong women of faith that set the foundation for Timothy. And because of them, he had the opportunity to work with Timothy regarding Christ. “For this reason I remind you to kindle afresh the gift of God which is in you through the laying on of my hands.” 2 Timothy 1:6. Paul here is using the analogy of a fire as representing the gift God gave him. The idea here is that if this gift is not frequently stirred up and fresh fuel added, it will go out.
He goes on to tell Timothy God has given him a gift of boldness. “For God has not given us a spirit of timidity, but of power and love and discipline.” 2 Timothy 1:7. The idea here is that the spirit which He gave us, was not the spirit of timidity or cowardice, which is weakness, but of power exhibited in a fearless testimony for Christ. And this power comes through the gift of the Holy Spirit. “And behold, I am sending forth the promise of My Father upon you; but you are to stay in the city until you are clothed with power from on high.” Luke 24:49.
Paul then tells Timothy to let his boldness shine forth. In our focus verse we see, “Therefore do not be ashamed of the testimony of our Lord or of me His prisoner but join with me in suffering for the gospel according to the power of God,” 2 Timothy 1:8. He is encouraging Timothy to join him in his suffering which is a result of his sharing the truth regarding the gospel according the power of God.
And this gospel is from God “who has saved us and called us with a holy calling, not according to our works, but according to His own purpose and grace which was granted us in Christ Jesus from all eternity, but now has been revealed by the appearing of our Savior Christ Jesus, who abolished death and brought life and immortality to light through the gospel, for which I was appointed a preacher and an apostle and a teacher.” 2 Timothy 1:9-11. And it is because of this gospel, which is absolute truth, he has suffered. “For this reason I also suffer these things, but I am not ashamed; for I know whom I have believed and I am convinced that He is able to guard what I have entrusted to Him until that day.” 2 Timothy 1:12.
And we should be encouraged by this as well. Many in this world are turning away from belief in Jesus Christ and the salvation He brings our way, and ridicule us who continue to declare the truth of the gospel as a way to save us from our sins which will result in eternal life with God. If we truly believe this, we should never be ashamed to share this truth to all so that many can believe and be saved as well. The definition of ashamed is a feeling of shame, guilt or disgrace for something you have done. We should never feel shame, guilt or disgrace because we have shared the gospel or stood firmly for the truth. If we do feel shame, then we need to look at ourselves and see where we are and then pray that God will help us, knowing that the gospel is truth, to live like it is truth. If we show timidity it may hinder others from seeing the truth in us.
Let us always be proud and determined to declare and live the truth of the gospel of Christ. We should forget the ways of the world and do the work God has called us to. “Be diligent to present yourself approved to God as a workman who does not need to be ashamed, accurately handling the word of truth.” 2 Timothy 2:15.