The Profitability of Scripture
2nd Timothy 3
The Apostle Paul was literally hours away from death. In the last moments of his life, he recognized that a time of difficulty was approaching for the Church. The apostle was not so concerned about the prospects of persecution. His own experience had convinced him that persecution caused faith to blossom. No matter how terrible the testing of the first 300 years, the Church adapted and grew. No outside influence can long hinder the Church.
What concerned Paul most was a spirit of apathy. Satan’s original effort to hinder the Church backfired. For every saint martyred it seemed three would take his place. The greatest threat to Christian service then and now is an unwillingness to teach, believe, and live the Scriptures!
There is no way we can live for God apart from His word. The media and main-line denominations often express wonder at Baptists over the question of inerrancy. Why is it so important that we believe the Bible to be the perfect word and will of God? Why is it not enough simply to accept the philosophy of Jesus, do good works, and go along to get along? Paul answers both questions in vs.16, “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, thoroughly furnished unto all good works. An imperfect revelation cannot be trusted and can never enable us to know and do God’s will!
Without the Word’s authority, there is no salvation, no righteousness of God, and no chance of pardon and forgiveness.
I. Believers Must Live the Scriptures (vs. 14)*
A. Not enough to read it
B. Not enough to believe it
C. We must know it, abide and dwell in it. It must be the reason for life
II. Scripture Has A Purpose
A. It is profitable for doctrine
1. Explaining God, man, the beginning and the end
2. Explaining the universe, heaven, hell, etc.
B. It is profitable for reproof
1. We must be convicted that sin is an abomination
2. We must understand what is at stake – death, hell, everlasting torment
C. It is profitable for correction
1. Showing the way to forgiveness
2. Enabling us to please God
D. It perfects the believer and furnishes him unto every good work – vs. 17
III. Scripture Has An Applied Use
A. It is a tool for preaching
1. Its authority empowers us
2. It is the foundation for truth
3. It alone can produce results when spoken
B. Without Scripture we cannot minister
We are tried in the fire of tribulation and poured into the crucible of the Scriptures! It is the Word of God that sets us apart from the world. The Word is the only environment in which Christians can grow.