by Rev Joel Yong
2 Timothy 4:2-5
Be ready to spread the word whether or not the time is right. Point out errors, warn people, and encourage them. Be very patient when you teach. A time will come when people will not listen to accurate teachings. Instead, they will follow their own desires and surround themselves with teachers who tell them what they want to hear. People will refuse to listen to the truth and turn to myths. But you must keep a clear head in everything. Endure suffering. Do the work of a missionary. Devote yourself completely to your work.
Not everyone will welcome the spread of the gospel.
Not everyone will receive the gospel.
Too often we have misunderstood this and dogged work until a person accepts and is persuaded.
Our task is to be faithful messengers. It’s not our duty to ensure that people accept the message. God already knew that many would not.
He told Ezekiel the same thing.
“Son of man, I have made you a watchman over the people of Israel. Listen to what I say, and warn them for me. Suppose I tell you that wicked people will surely die, but you don’t warn them or speak out so that they can change their wicked ways in order to save their lives. Then these wicked people will die because of their sin, but I will hold you responsible for their deaths. But suppose you warn the wicked people, and they don’t turn from their wicked ways. Then they will die because of their sin, but you will save yourself. If righteous people turn from living the right way and do wrong, I will make them stumble, and they will die. If you don’t warn them, they will die because of their sin, and the right things they did will not be remembered. I will hold you responsible for their deaths. But if you warn righteous people not to sin, and they don’t sin, they will certainly live because they listened to the warning. You will save yourself.”
Ezekiel’s duty and ours are both clear.
Share the message that God has for the world. The outcome is beyond our control.
The duty we have is to be a faithful messenger- that’s what we ought to do.