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2 Timothy 4:1-18

Rev. John F. Wurst

The Lutheran Church of Christ the King  
Duluth, Minnesota

Play MP3 of this sermon

Fri, Feb 1, 2013 

"For I determined not to know anything among you except Jesus Christ and Him crucified." (1 Cor. 2:2)

In the Name of the Father and + of the Son and of the Holy Ghost. Amen.

St. Paul writes this epistle to young Timothy as words of encouragement as he serves The Lord in the preaching office. You, who are listening today, may be pastors who might expect a specific preaching of this text. The laity listening may wonder what's in this pastoral epistle for you. The message is the same.

You are sinners. Before God, you are lost on your own merits. You are condemned because of your sins. You don't deserve any mercy from God because of your good works. You only deserve the Father's wrath, punishment and judgment against your sins. You only deserve an eternal death.

St. Paul warns young Timothy that people, just like you, will not endure the sound doctrine of Law and Gospel preaching. You will want your preacher to tell you everything is going to be alright. You just have to work harder. Live a better life. Give more money to the Church. Help your neighbor. Sounds great. However, apart from faith, it is all futile.

Stop seeking your own glory. Stop persecuting your preacher because his personality doesn't match your expectations. Stop killing the servant and start loving him, supporting, him, praying for him. Encourage him. The writer to the Hebrews writes, "Obey your leaders and submit to them, for they are keeping watch over your souls, as those who will have to give an account. Let them do this with joy and not with groaning, for that would be of no advantage to you." (Heb. 13:17)

You are the reason The Lord Jesus sent men like the Apostles and St. Paul, St. Timothy, and others to go and teach all that He commanded them. You sinners need the preaching of the Word to save your souls from eternal damnation. You need the preachers to tell you about Jesus Christ, your Lord and Savior, who suffered and died on the cross to atone for your sins and the sins of the world. In His final sacrifice on the cross, Jesus redeemed you from sin, death, and the power of the devil. He brought you, who believe on His Name, back into communion with His Father who is in heaven.

You need your preacher to tell you when you are sinning. You won't like it but you need it. You need your preacher to hear your confession of sins to receive the forgiveness of your sins. You need your preacher to preach and teach the Word of God to nourish your soul. You need your preacher to put into your mouth the Body of Christ and to pour the Blood of salvation down your throat for the forgiveness of sins, life, and salvation.

Your preacher is sent by Jesus to stand in His place and preach. Preach the Word in season and out of season. Your preacher preaches Jesus. He preaches the forgiveness of sins. He gives you Jesus. You need your preacher because the Word he preaches is the power of salvation to all who believe on the Name of Jesus.

Go to your preacher. Confess your sins. Receive the absolution of the crucified and risen Christ. Ask your preacher to pray for you. Ask him to teach you all about Jesus and all that He has done for you in your place to give you everlasting life. Finally, give thanks to The Lord for His mercy toward you in sending you a preacher to preach the Word of God that saves your soul.

In the Name of the Father and + of the Son and of the Holy Ghost. Amen.

The peace of God which surpasses all understanding guard your hearts and minds through Christ Jesus. Amen.

+ SDG +

(C) Rev. John F. Wurst

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