Wednesday, November 2, 2016

Reflection - Preparing for the End

Source (book): "Faithful to the end", Chapter 11, Question 4, Page 161.
By Robert M. Solomon, Bishop of the Methodist Church in Singapore from 2000 - 2012


What can we do to be ready for our time of departure?
PHOTO: What can we do to be ready for our time of departure?
Paul did not deny his impending death as some are wont (habit) to do; he knew that his earthly ministry was being concluded and that it was time to go to his Lord in heaven. Paul knew that he would probably be executed on some trumped up charges. As Paul awaited a final hearing, he knew that it would result in his death as a martyr for Christ. He  made three wonderful declarations - statements that deeply inspire (2 Timothy 4:7). A profound sense of gratitude and thanksgiving to God for His grace and power that had worked in and through his life and ministry. " I have fought the good fight, I have finished the race, I have kept the faith." Paul had done the will of God and was ready for departure.
God’s Five Step Plan to prepare us for the end:
Hear (Romans 10:17), Believe (John 3:16), Repent (Acts 17:30), Confess (Romans 10:10),  Be Baptized (Mark 16:15; Acts 2:38).
Picture posted by suggest-keywords.com - Revelation 22:16-17
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What can we do to be ready for our time of departure? What would an unprepared state look like? How do we know if one is ready for departure?

What can we do to be ready for our time of departure?

Preparing for the End [1]
Paul knew that his end had come. He wrote: "For I am already being poured out like a drink offering, and the time has come for my departure" (2 Timothy 4:6). In the Greek (analysis, literally "unloosing"), the image is that of "breaking up of camp or the loosing of a ship from its moorings." [1a] Paul did not deny his impending death as some are wont (habit) to do; he knew that his earthly ministry was being concluded and that it was time to go to his Lord in heaven.



Paul knew that his end had come.
PHOTO: Paul knew that his end had come. He wrote: "For I am already being poured out like a drink offering, and the time has come for my departure" (2 Timothy 4:6). He did not deny his impending death as some are wont (habit) to do; he knew that his earthly ministry was being concluded and that it was time to go to his Lord in heaven.
Painting by masterizer, Digital Art / Drawings & Paintings / People / Portraits, ©2011-2016 masterizer - 2 Timothy 4:6-8 

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http://img05.deviantart.net/8905/i/2011/108/4/6/2_timothy_4_6_8_by_masterizer-d3ea0x6.jpg
http://masterizer.deviantart.com/art/2-Timothy-4-6-8-205380906



Paul saw himself as a drink offering. There are two possible sources for this metaphor. Firstly, a drink offering in the Old Testament is a sacrifice offered to the Lord. Jacob poured out a drink offering to the Lord as a sacrifice in Bethel (Genesis 35:14). And in the Mosaic law, drink offering were a part of the sacrifices to the Lord (Exodus 29:40-41; Leviticus 23:13).

Secondly, Roman custom had a parallel practice, though with different theological ideas and motives. After a meal in Roman households, it was common for a small cup with wine to be poured out as an offering to the gods.



Jacob poured out a drink offering to the Lord as a sacrifice in Bethel.
PHOTO: Jacob poured out a drink offering to the Lord as a sacrifice in Bethel (Genesis 35:14).
Paul saw himself as a drink offering. A drink offering in the Old Testament is a sacrifice offered to the Lord. It was common in Roman households for a small cup with wine to be poured out as an offering to the gods.
Picture posted by Beyond Reach Film Works on Friday, 15 April 2016 at 10:12 AM
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http://www.beyondreachfilmworks.com/blog/2016/04/15/Gods-Unselfish-Love-PT-82.aspx



Paul knew that he would probably be executed on some trumped up charges. The first hearing in the Roman court did not go very well and was a harbinger (forewarning) of what was to follow. As Paul awaited a final hearing, he knew that it would result in his death as a martyr for Christ. Whether his impending execution was going to be a sacrificial offering to God or to mark the "end of the meal", Paul knew that his days were numbered.



As Paul awaited a final hearing, he knew that it would result in his death as a martyr for Christ.
PHOTO: As Paul awaited a final hearing, he knew that it would result in his death as a martyr for Christ. Whether his impending execution was going to be a sacrificial offering to God or to mark the "end of the meal", Paul knew that his days were numbered.
19th Century Photograph by Granger, uploaded on 27 June 2012 (fineartamerica.com) - St. Paul In Chains
https://2.bp.blogspot.com/-KhtDRidfLDM/WBmQbrojrUI/AAAAAAAAlY8/QbUR1Mn_7VQ_9MLq-iNoi_DBtmdRvTYJgCLcB/s1600/st-paul-in-chains-granger.jpg
http://images.fineartamerica.com/images-medium-large/st-paul-in-chains-granger.jpg
http://fineartamerica.com/featured/st-paul-in-chains-granger.html



It was while thinking about his impending martyrdom that Paul made three wonderful declarations - statements that deeply inspire (2 Timothy 4:7). They were not made in a proud and self-glorifying way, but with a profound sense of gratitude and thanksgiving to God for His grace and power that had worked in and through his life and ministry. In 2 Timothy 2, Paul had used three metaphors to indicate the kind of servant who was useful to the Lord: the wholly committed soldier who was absolutely loyal and obedient to his commander; the highly discipline athlete who underwent strict training and competed according to the rules with an aim to win; and a hardworking, diligent farmer who went about doing his duties with great care and thoroughness.



Paul made three wonderful declarations - statements
PHOTO: "I have fought the good fight, I have finished the race, I have kept the faith."
Paul made three wonderful declarations - statements that deeply inspire (
2 Timothy 4:7), with a profound sense of gratitude and thanksgiving to God for His grace and power that had worked in and through his life and ministry.
The daffodils, birds, flowers, grass, clouds and rainbow shows the glory in the city of our God and his holy mountain.
Posted by Digger on 1 September 2014
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http://1.bp.blogspot.com/-UkUj0VH7QN4/VARFDeIUy1I/AAAAAAAAUVM/pfBQlsCiRHA/s1600/ilty.jpg
http://grumpymanwithtoomuchtimeonhishands.blogspot.sg/2014/09/stairways-to-heaven-16.html
http://veryfatoldman.blogspot.sg/2016/10/reflection-glories-of-church-of-christ.html



Though the three declarations may be seen in the context of athletic games, we can also note that Paul's three declarations look back to these three metaphors: soldier, athlete, farmer. [2] In stating them, Paul made it clear that he lived according to what he preached and taught. He was, indeed a useful servant to the Lord.



Paul's three declarations look back to these three metaphors: soldier, athlete, farmer.
PHOTO: Paul's three declarations look back to these three metaphors: soldier, athlete, farmer. He made it clear that he lived according to what he preached and taught. He was, indeed a useful servant to the Lord.
Art by Carlos, heavenstruth.blogspot.com
Picture posted by Principles for Life Ministries on 25 September 2013

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https://principlesforlifeministries.files.wordpress.com/2013/09/streets-of-gold-heaven-mary-k-baxter-heavens-truth.jpg
https://principlesforlifeministries.com/2013/09/25/behold-the-tabernacle-of-god-is-with-men/



What can we do to be ready for our time of departure: [3], [4]

  • Acknowledge that we are all sinners (Romans 3:23) and deserve death (Romans 6:23).
  • Recognize the need for salvation and realize that God has provided for our salvation through Jesus Christ's death on the cross (1 John 2:2).
  • Believe in the Lord Jesus, and we will be saved - we and our household (Acts 16:31).
  • Have faith in Jesus Christ, and willingness to repent from our sins.
  • Confess with our mouth that Jesus is Lord and believe in our heart that God raised him from the dead, we will be saved (Romans 10:9).
  • Does the will of our Father who is in heaven - baptise in the name of Jesus Christ for the forgiveness of our sins. And we will receive the gift of the Holy Spirit (Acts 2:38).
  • Tell someone else about our faith in Jesus Christ.
  • Stay connected with God through prayers and by reading the Bible.
  • Have a profound sense of gratitude and thanksgiving to God for His grace and power.
  • Keep the faith and prove ourselves as a holy instrument who are truly useful to God.

Believe in the Lord Jesus, and you will be saved - you and your household
PHOTO: Believe in the Lord Jesus, and you will be saved - you and your household” (Acts 16:31).
baptise in the name of Jesus Christ for the forgiveness of our sins. And we will receive the gift of the Holy Spirit (
Acts 2:38).
Picture posted by Diymid.com (Pictures Collection)
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http://freebibleverses.org/bible_verses/image/Acts_2.38-1_Bible_Verse.jpg
http://www.diymid.com/2068758-acts-2-38


  • Become a Useful Servant of God using the three metaphors [1.1]
  1. As a faithful committed soldier who is absolutely loyal and obedient to his commander, and "fight the good fight".
  2. As a discipline athlete who underwent strict training, finish the race without losing and without being disqualified.
  3. As a diligent farmer who went about doing his duties with great care and thoroughness, ensure a rich harvest both in our life and in God's field of ministry.


Become a Useful Servant of God using the three metaphors
PHOTO: Become a Useful Servant of God using the three metaphors
Faithful committed soldier, discipline athlete and diligent farmer.
Picture posted by Pinaagi Sa Intellectual Reserve, Inc. on 14 May 2015
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https://www.lds.org/manual/new-testament-seminary-teacher-manual/introduction-to-the-second-epistle-of-paul-to-timothy/lesson-131-2-timothy-1-2?lang=ceb



What would an unprepared state look like?

  • No sense of gratitude and thanksgiving to God for His grace and power.
  • Have no faith in Jesus Christ
  • Unwillingness to repent from our sins.
  • Not yet baptise in the name of Jesus Christ.
  • Did not connect with God.
  • Have not tell someone else about our faith in Jesus Christ.

Unprepared state
PHOTO: Unprepared state
Picture posted by Jay Gheen

https://2.bp.blogspot.com/-bOfhWk3tCFY/WBmQac1gq9I/AAAAAAAAlYo/1MkU4X3lQWw45AOdBIKh2ghzmW3c8s_OACLcB/s1600/Repentance%2B%25282%2529.jpg
http://4.bp.blogspot.com/-sr0eSkOCXwU/TrdhTzLhcAI/AAAAAAAABY4/m2U1jK4kbYw/s1600/Repentance+%25282%2529.jpg
http://dailyjesusnow.blogspot.sg/2011/11/what-is-true-repentance.html



How do we know if one is ready for departure? [5]
To know whether or not we are going to heaven answer the following test question. This is the ultimate test because our answer will determine whether or not we are ready for departure (to die). There is only one question on this test with no partial credit given so we either score a perfect 100 or a zero.

"If you died in the next 5 seconds, are you 100% sure you would go to heaven?"

If we gave any of the following answers, we are not ready to die yet:

  • No, I am not sure
  • No, I know I am not going to heaven
  • I sure hope I am going to heaven
  • Yes, I think I am going to heaven but I am not 100% sure
  • Yes, I am pretty sure but not 100% sure
  • Yes, I am 99% sure but not 100% sure

There is only one right answer: "Yes, I am 100% sure I am going to heaven." [5]

If we flunked the test, don’t worry because it is not too late for us. As long as we have breath in our body it is not too late. The following will explain how we can become 100% sure we are going to heaven.

HOW TO BE SAVED [5]

  • To enter into heaven we must have faith in our heart.
  • For our faith to work for us we must have deeds to demonstrate our faith is real.
  • The only way to know God and receive eternal life is through Jesus Christ.
The Bible provides all the instructions we will ever need.
Hear (Romans 10:17), Believe (John 3:16), Repent (Acts 17:30), Confess (Romans 10:10),  Be Baptized (Mark 16:15;
Acts 2:38).


Baptism
PHOTO: BaptismThe Bible provides all the instructions we will ever need.
Hear (Romans 10:17), Believe (John 3:16), Repent (Acts 17:30), Confess (Romans 10:10),  Be Baptized (Mark 16:15;
Acts 2:38).
Picture posted by Fahim Promi on Thursday, 24 July 2014 at 1:05 AM
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http://3.bp.blogspot.com/-tQ9GI8CbpP0/U9HSxaJ0qBI/AAAAAAAAAeg/mK7avfec5rQ/s1600/olsen-christ-baptism.jpg
http://scarletpensieve.blogspot.sg/2014_07_01_archive.html



To personally meet the Lord (
Romans 10:9):
  • We must confess from our mouth Jesus as our Lord, not just the Lord of other people but the Lord of our life.
  • We must believe in our heart that God raised Jesus from the dead as evidence that He paid the full price for all of our sins. [5]

Are you 100% sure you would go to heaven?
PHOTO: Are you 100% sure you would go to heaven?
There is only one right answer: "Yes, I am 100% sure I am going to heaven." [5]
Painting by Greg Olsen - Be not Afraid
Picture posted by Avatar lira lara on Tuesday, 19 January 2016 at 18:49
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http://www.liveinternet.ru/users/lara_rimmer/post382425449/



How we can become 100% sure we are going to heaven. Pray the following prayer.
PHOTO: How we can become 100% sure we are going to heaven. Pray the following prayer. [5]
"Dear Lord, I repent of my sins and I ask you to forgive me for every sin I have ever committed. I confess that Jesus Christ is now the Lord of my life. I believe in my heart that you raised Jesus from the dead as evidence that you paid the full price for all of my sins. I invite you to come into my heart now. I surrender my heart and my life to follow you, to live for you, and to obey you from this day forward for the rest of my life. And now, I have done as your word instructed me to do to be saved. So right now, by faith in your word I confess and I believe I am saved. By faith I now know I am saved and going to heaven when I die. By faith in your word I am now 100% sure of it. Thank you Lord God! In Jesus name I pray. Amen.!" [5]
God’s Five Step Plan:

Hear (Romans 10:17), Believe (John 3:16), Repent (Acts 17:30), Confess (Romans 10:10),  Be Baptized (Mark 16:15; Acts 2:38).
Picture posted by Anjali Herford
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http://slideplayer.com/slide/3580698/


Reflection - Preparing for the End
By Robert M. Solomon, Bishop of the Methodist Church in Singapore from 2000 - 2012



Reference

[1] From "Faithful to the end" A Preacher's Exposition of 2 Timothy, Copyright © 2014 by Robert M. Solomon, ISBN 978-1-62707-241-0, PART FOUR: FAITHFUL TO THE END, Chapter 11 "Preparing For The End" (2 Timothy 4:6-8), Page 152-153.

[1.1] From "Faithful to the end" A Preacher's Exposition of 2 Timothy, Copyright © 2014 by Robert M. Solomon, ISBN 978-1-62707-241-0, PART FOUR: FAITHFUL TO THE END, Chapter 11 "Preparing For The End" (2 Timothy 4:6-8), Page 160.

[1a] Fee, 1 and 2 Timothy, Titus, 289.

[2] Scott, The Message of 2 Timothy, 114.

[3] How To Be Saved, posted by AllAboutGOD.com, http://www.allaboutgod.com/how-to-be-saved.htm

[4] How can I be saved?, posted by Got Questions Ministries, https://gotquestions.org/how-can-I-be-saved.html

[5] How to Know You Are Going to Heaven, James Bailey, Z3news.com, https://z3news.com/w/how-to-know-you-are-going-to-heaven/

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2 Timothy 2 - https://www.biblegateway.com/passage/?search=2+Timothy+2&version=NIV

2 Timothy 4:6 - https://www.biblegateway.com/passage/?search=2+Timothy+4%3A6&version=NIV

2 Timothy 4:7 - https://www.biblegateway.com/passage/?search=2+Timothy+4%3A7&version=NIV

2 Timothy 4:6-8 - https://www.biblegateway.com/passage/?search=2+Timothy+4%3A6-8&version=NIV

Acts 2:38 - https://www.biblegateway.com/passage/?search=Acts+2%3A38&version=NIV

Acts 16:31 - https://www.biblegateway.com/passage/?search=Acts+16%3A31&version=NIV

Acts 17:30 - https://www.biblegateway.com/passage/?search=Acts+17%3A30&version=NIV

Exodus 29:40-41 - https://www.biblegateway.com/passage/?search=Exodus+29%3A40-41&version=NIV

Genesis 35:14 - https://www.biblegateway.com/passage/?search=Genesis+35%3A14&version=NIV

John 3:16 - https://www.biblegateway.com/passage/?search=John+3%3A16&version=NIV

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Mark 16:15 - https://www.biblegateway.com/passage/?search=Mark+16%3A15&version=NIV
Revelation 22:16-17 - https://www.biblegateway.com/passage/?search=Revelation+22%3A16-17&version=NIV

Romans 3:23 - https://www.biblegateway.com/passage/?search=Romans+3%3A23&version=NIV

Romans 6:23 - https://www.biblegateway.com/passage/?search=Romans+6%3A23&version=NIV

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