Three Dimensions of the Missional Church
2 Timothy 2:1-7
Intro: Gospel defines the church, but many times instead the church confines the gospel.
According to Paul, there was a PATTERN (1:13) of sound teaching that he passed on to Timothy (4 Generation Vision) what you heard me say (PATTERN) I-You-Faithful Men- Others also.
What is the biblical pattern for being a healthy, intentionally missional church?
Paul told Timothy this PATTERN was like a soldier who plans to war, like an athlete who plays to win, and like a farmer who plants to reap. Each one of these metaphors were to explain how Timothy was to be "GRACE STRONG" in his missional discipleship:
I. A Soldier Strategist Who Plans to War (vs. 3-4)
Planning to War: Missions IS Spiritual Warfare
Greek Word for Soldier (strategomenos): title of honor; descriptive of planning, involves endurance over evil emotions.
EXP. Paul could have used ½ dozen other words for soldier:
1. Hoplite: spearman
2. Phalanx- rectangular mass of soldiers in formation
3. Akonstitei- stone throwers
4. Toxotai- archers
5. Peltai- shield bearers
6. Gymnetes- unarmed fighters
But he said “strategists”
Planning the strategy of missions: local, regional, international
Soul Winning, Disciple Maker, Missionary (specific plans for engagement
cf. Eph 6:10-18; 2 Cor 2:11
Warning against Civilian Distraction!
II. An Athlete Competitor Who Plays to Win (vs. 5)
Playing to Win: Missions IS Spiritual Victory
Rules for Greek Athletes (Athle): Born Greek, 10 month training, no shortcuts to completion
Marathon vs. 100 meter dash: Some churches are trying to run too fast on their own strength; reserve power is Holy Spirit’s alone!
Warning against cheating!
Taking a shortcut by giving in to the world, flesh or devil is cheating (1 Jn 2:16).
Lust of flesh, lust of eyes, or pride of life is our competition.
When another church becomes your competition, you’ve crossed over into satanic sides.
cf. 1 Cor 9:26-27; Heb 12:1-2; Phil 3:13
III. A Georgia Farmer Who Plants to Reap (vs. 6)
Planting to Reap: Missions IS Spiritual Harvest
(Georgon) Farmer is a land actor who labors.
Harrow (distressing the ground),
Plow (cutting the ground),
Plant (seeding the ground),
Irrigate (water the ground),
Weed (remove obstacles to growth),
Reap (take the fruit to the Glory of God!)
Warning against losing desire to taste the fruit!
ILL. Leading a disciple to win souls.
Conclusion: Do we want the desire to taste the fruit of soul-winning again? Are we fighting the good fight or fighting God? Are we running the race or running from God? Are we planting good seed expecting a harvest, or are we planting seeds of complacency?