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Tuesday, April 1, 2014
Steeple surrounded by a cloud covered blue sky and bright sunbeams at Faith Community Church in Easton PA where my brother Pat is the pastor.
Photo taken by Barbara Davis.
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"But as for you, continue in what you have learned and have become convinced of, because you know those from whom you learned it, and how from infancy you have known the holy Scriptures, which are able to make you wise for salvation through faith in Christ Jesus" (2 Timothy 3:14,15).
For the past few writings we've been gleaning truth from several verses in 2 Timothy 3. Today let us focus on a point that Paul made regarding Timothy's earliest childhood education. He is urging Timothy to "continue in what you have learned and have become convinced of, because you know those from whom you learned it." Now he makes a point that is rich with meaning as he reminds Timothy that "from infancy you have known the holy Scriptures, which are able to make you wise for salvation through faith in Christ Jesus." Today let us just consider the words, "from infancy".
Infancy is a part of our childhood and many Bible versions translate "from childhood" in this verse. But there is a special significance in understanding the word more precisely as infancy, which we normally consider the period from birth to two years old. By that age we usually refer to them as toddlers (I suppose that's because we toddle a lot at that age!).
Yesterday we shared a story that took place in our church on Sunday. It included Adoreé and I happened to find a photo of her laughing as an infant when we were in a home Bible study years ago. Children sure grow up quickly (she's now in kindergarten)!
There's a powerful truth related to this in our daily verse. Notice the phrase, "from infancy you have known the holy Scriptures." Timothy had a godly mother and grandmother (2 Timothy 1:5). They apparently had taught the Holy Scriptures to Timothy even as an infant.
The word "infancy" is brephos, a very interesting Greek word. This same word is used in Luke 1:44 to describe John while he was in his mother's womb. When John's mother saw Mary she said, "For behold, when the sound of your greeting came to my ears, the baby (brephos) in my womb leaped for joy." Thus in Scripture, infancy (brephos) includes preborn life as well as the period shortly after our birth till we begin to toddle.
How rich in this regard is the Psalmist's statement in Psalm 139, "For you formed my inward parts; you knitted me together in my mother's womb. I praise you, for I am fearfully and wonderfully made."
There is such a devaluing of prenatal life which extends to all life. Several years ago "Consumer Reports" had an article dealing with birth control, which also touched on the subject of abortion. Abortion was identified as a procedure to remove "uterine contents." Is that a new low in Orwellian doublespeak or what!
John was not "uterine contents" but a tiny developing baby, who grew up to make a mighty impact in fulfilling the purpose for which God had made him. Paul acknowledged that Timothy was impacted by the Holy Scriptures from infancy, which I certainly believe is prenatal development as well. Even many in the world recognize the intricate development that takes place in the womb, not only physically, but in many other ways as well.
Consider today the awesome power of God's Word, the Holy Scriptures. Some of you, like John and Timothy, have known Biblical instruction from infancy, having a godly heritage. Others have come into this knowledge later and are the first generation in your line to have godly faith. Regardless, hold on to the divine truth that "you have known the holy Scriptures which are able to make you wise for salvation through faith in Christ Jesus." (We will study this phrase over the next couple of days).
Be encouraged today,
Stephen & Brooksyne Weber
Daily prayer: Father, there is incredible blessing in the miracle of new birth and along with this gift of life comes extraordinary, lifetime responsibility for the parents. May we as parents realize the impact of imparting Scriptural teaching by instruction as well as example from the time of their conception. We're grateful for our family, other Christian brothers and sisters, our church and Christian ministries that also inspire our children to live for You. We cannot force our children to walk in Your ways, but we can certainly show them the way to life everlasting and equip them with the Scriptural knowledge that will make them wise for salvation. May this always be our highest priority. In the name of Jesus, we pray. Amen.
Today's Suggested Music and Supplemental Resources
"Let the Little Children Come" Video Steve Green
Seven Reasons To Serve In The Church Nursery
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Scripture references are from The Holy Bible: New International Version. © 1984 by International Bible Society; NEW AMERICAN STANDARD BIBLE®, Copyright © 1995 by The Lockman Foundation, New King James Version (NKJV) Copyright © 1982 by Thomas Nelson, Inc. and the King James Version.
Personal Mission Statement: "I am created by God to bring Him glory. Through God's Son Jesus Christ I have been redeemed and I make it my life's goal to please the Lord. My mission in life is to honor God through my faith and obedience and to prepare myself and all whom I may influence for eternity."
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