Not Ashamed is a sermon teaching us not to be ashamed of being a Christian because the world needs to hear the testimony of Jesus Christ.
The natural thing to do these days is to shame people about their beliefs and opinions, making them feel bad for what they believe in and that has to do with our sinful nature. They want to discourage people. Divisions creep up among people due to what they believe, teach, or advocate for or against. In sharing the Gospel, many try to discredit and discourage your faith in Jesus. When you’ve shared the Gospel, people try to question you.
Here, we study from II Timothy a prisoner’s point of view who was not ashamed of Christ. We should not be ashamed to share the Gospel of Christ, the world needs it more now than ever before.
Not Being Ashamed
After Paul wrote to Timothy about God’s gifts of power, love, and a sound mind, he tells him of not being ashamed. God has given us the free will to choose, people can choose to accept or reject. To everyone who believes, salvation is for them. Paul tells Timothy the same thing as he tells us today, to not be ashamed of being a Christian. Do not be ashamed of the Gospel of Christ. Stir up that fire and build it and encourage it and do not be ashamed of the testimony of our Lord.
It is possible that Timothy was discouraged not having seen Paul in such a long time. Maybe he felt shame that his mentor was in jail for the Gospel. Paul says there is no shame in telling about Jesus. There are people today who are being arrested and persecuted for their faith. Just as Jesus suffered for His faith, so shall we endure trials and persecution. We may get beaten or shamed, but are you ready for it? We are not to be ashamed of the testimony of Jesus Christ.
Paul acknowledges that he accepts being a prisoner, being put in jail for the cause of Christ. The power of God will aid you during these times of affliction. So what do we have to be ashamed of? Embarrassment, pride? If evil-doers take your life from this world, you would be going to Heaven, to a better place. Who could threaten you with Heaven?
God has saved us and called us with a holy calling. God called us for His own purpose and grace (God’s love and kindness toward us) which was given in Jesus Christ before the world began. God knew redemption was going to be needed and that it would come because man is wicked and needs a savior. We are saved not because of what we’ve done good, we’re saved because of His purpose and grace. We are saved because we trusted that Jesus Christ should be our Savior.
There are arguments that the bible is full of errors, allegations unproven and moreover, everything taught in the bible written over thousands of years is harmonious and relevant then and still is now. Jesus took that shame from us and made death useless. We still have physical death but he abolished spiritual death. We will leave our sinful body and have a glorified body if you trust Jesus Christ as your Savior. There is no salvation through works but through grace alone. Jesus brings light and eternity through the Gospel. Jesus died on the cross for us according to the scriptures, was buried, and rose again the third day.
Paul writes that he is a preacher, a heralder of divine truth, an apostle. Paul was a delegate, an ambassador for God. He was trained by God for three years, saw Jesus’s resurrected body, and he was a teacher to gentiles. He went out and reached people like you and me and we are grateful for Paul’s ministry. If Paul did not journey to spread the Gospel, we would be the most miserable of people. Paul tells us not to be ashamed and it’s not the first time he mentions it. Paul was trying to tell Timothy to not be ashamed.
How Paul Endures for the Lord
Paul experienced many sufferings and persecutions during his ministry. But he said none of that bothered him because he had done it all for Jesus. Before Paul was saved, he inflicted the exact same thing to Christians. But then he saw the light, got saved, and he, himself was beaten for the Lord. Even though he endured persecutions, he says he is not ashamed because he knows who he believed in and that is Jesus Christ. Jesus will keep His word, that if you trust Him to be your Savior, you’re going to be saved when that day of judgment comes, you will be in Heaven with Him. Paul is not ashamed because he knows he’s going to be in Heaven. How do you know you’ll be there? Accept Jesus Christ as your Savior and you’ll be there one day. You will have been persuaded and you know Jesus will keep that and deliver us.
We must speak the truth. Sometimes to speak the truth can be hurtful to people. If people are told they are a sinner that must be saved through grace, some may find that objectionable because they don’t want to be told that they are wrong. Stay faithful to the teachings and the Word of God in faith and love which is in Christ Jesus. We are to talk in truth, faithfully, and lovingly. When you talk to people about Jesus, be caring to them. The Holy Spirit is here to guide us. Sometimes we shut out the Holy Spirit, but Paul is telling us to allow the Holy Spirit to do His work, working in your life. There will be people who will turn away from you, even best friends. People turned away from Paul. He is at the end of his life and he feels alone and no one is there for him. Paul implores us to stay faithful and true. There will be people who will turn away and say things against you. But be faithful in the Word of God and be not ashamed of the Gospel.
At least one tried to reach out for Paul while in Rome, Onesiphorus. He sought for Paul diligently. Sometimes when someone’s in a bind, we shut people out and turn the other way. Onesiphorus searched for Paul until he found him. Onesiphorus was influenced greatly by Paul, yet we know very little of him, but he is a man who stayed faithful, unlike two other people who forsook him. And Paul felt very lonely as people abandoned him because of what he preached for the Gospel and was arrested for it.
We should not be ashamed of Jesus. Persecution will come, don’t run away from it. Do not forsake others when they are in a trial. God wants us to support and build each other up. Three times Paul said, “I am not ashamed.” He reiterated that he was not ashamed of Christ. Our challenge is that we ought not to be ashamed of the Gospel of God. We ought not to wonder what’s going to happen, but we should stay faithful. We should stay sincere to the Word of God. We should be real and not just do fake Christianity and then doing as we feel. Being a Christian is continual.
Will people abandon you along the way because of your faith? Expect it. Don’t be ashamed for there is the power of God for everyone that believes. Be not ashamed of the testimony of God. The book of II Timothy is a practical guide especially for today where people will contest your faith. Paul is telling us to be sincere, be genuine in your faith. Don’t be ashamed because God is still going to be there for you and don’t give up. No matter what stage of life you are in, don’t give up until the day when you give your last breath and God brings you home. Don’t be discouraged, don’t be ashamed because God is still with us.
Not Ashamed sermon starts with verses from II Timothy 1:8-18:
8 Be not thou therefore ashamed of the testimony of our Lord, nor of me his prisoner: but be thou partaker of the afflictions of the gospel according to the power of God;
9 Who hath saved us, and called us with an holy calling, not according to our works, but according to his own purpose and grace, which was given us in Christ Jesus before the world began,
10 But is now made manifest by the appearing of our Saviour Jesus Christ, who hath abolished death, and hath brought life and immortality to light through the gospel:
11 Whereunto I am appointed a preacher, and an apostle, and a teacher of the Gentiles.
12 For the which cause I also suffer these things: nevertheless I am not ashamed: for I know whom I have believed, and am persuaded that he is able to keep that which I have committed unto him against that day.
13 Hold fast the form of sound words, which thou hast heard of me, in faith and love which is in Christ Jesus.
14 That good thing which was committed unto thee keep by the Holy Ghost which dwelleth in us.
15 This thou knowest, that all they which are in Asia be turned away from me; of whom are Phygellus and Hermogenes.
16 The Lord give mercy unto the house of Onesiphorus; for he oft refreshed me, and was not ashamed of my chain:
17 But, when he was in Rome, he sought me out very diligently, and found me.
18 The Lord grant unto him that he may find mercy of the Lord in that day: and in how many things he ministered unto me at Ephesus, thou knowest very well.
16 For I am not ashamed of the gospel of Christ: for it is the power of God unto salvation to every one that believeth; to the Jew first, and also to the Greek.
13 I can do all things through Christ which strengtheneth me.
8 For by grace are ye saved through faith; and that not of yourselves: it is the gift of God:
9 Not of works, lest any man should boast.
28 And we know that all things work together for good to them that love God, to them who are the called according to his purpose.
29 For whom he did foreknow, he also did predestinate to be conformed to the image of his Son, that he might be the firstborn among many brethren.
30 Moreover whom he did predestinate, them he also called: and whom he called, them he also justified: and whom he justified, them he also glorified.
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