Are you ready to preach?
This might seem like a question for preachers and pastors, but I believe it’s for all of us. Often without knowing it, we all proclaim openly with our mouth, that which is hidden in our heart. Many people proclaim harsh words, or even hatred, because of what is stored in their heart. If we have received the good news of the gospel, then we will naturally proclaim that which is in our heart, the good news and this is true for all who believe in God.
Preach the word! Be ready in season and out of season. Convince, rebuke, exhort, with all longsuffering and teaching. 3 For the time will come when they will not endure sound doctrine, but according to their own desires, because they have itching ears, they will heap up for themselves teachers; 4 and they will turn their ears away from the truth, and be turned aside to fables. 5 But you be watchful in all things, endure afflictions, do the work of an evangelist, fulfill your ministry. – 2 Timothy 4:2-5
In season and out of season are times when it’s favourable or not so favourable.
When the gospel is easily accepted and those times when definitely it is not.
We often talk about the field being ready for harvest and the harvesters go and bring it in. This is a wonderful picture of preaching at the right time, being in season. So to be out of season must be when you are found in a place where the harvest is not yet ready and the going is tough, but still we must preach.
Anyone who has tried to preach the word of God will know there are times it seems easy and a joy, but many times it’s tough and the word is not easily received.
Being in a place as a witness, is often about being steadfast and reliable no matter what happens. Those around us may learn who we are through our trials or rejection. Being an effective witness while people are watching and when they are not.
In this letter to Timothy, Paul encourages him to be prepared to preach the word.
The Greek word translated as preach here is κήρυξον. It’s meaning is to herald or ‘to publish, proclaim openly: something which has been done’.
This is an encouragement to all believers to be prepared to speak out when it’s both convenient and inconvenient, popular and unpopular. Our words should bring about correction, instruction and encouragement.
Being gathered together in a church meeting is a convenient time to speak the truth of the gospel. But we should also speak out among those who dismiss the truth of the gospel completely or when we hear people as they try to make the word of God fit an ungodly situation. This can happen in all walks of life and even in our church settings.
These are times we should speak the truth in love so that young or immature Christians don’t fall into error.
that we should no longer be children, tossed to and fro and carried about with every wind of doctrine, by the trickery of men, in the cunning craftiness of deceitful plotting, 15 but, speaking the truth in love, may grow up in all things into Him who is the head—Christ— 16 from whom the whole body, joined and knit together by what every joint supplies, according to the effective working by which every part does its share, causes growth of the body for the edifying of itself in love. – Ephesians 4:14-16
We must be ready to publish the truth and at times, even to rebuke and teach when needed, but all with complete patience and love. Good things can only come out of our heart, if good things are put in, so we must give ourselves to regular personal study of God’s word and Holy Spirit leading.
Today, make sure you are ready at all times to proclaim the good news of the gospel, in doing so you will grow more in the word of God yourself and He will bring opportunities your way in all seasons of life, to bring glory to His name.