April 15th, 2007
Many years ago, my friend George convinced me to go doorknocking with him. I’m not sure what persuaded me to go. Maybe I had a morbid curiosity, or maybe I was just persuaded by the way he said it. He was a very persuasive person, and a very gifted conversationalist. He was previously in the car sales business, and he was now in insurance. Anyway, it was interesting to get a perspective on what life must be like for Mormons and Jehovah’s Witnesses. But it seemed that our avoidance of loaded shotguns being discharged in our direction and vicious dogs taking bites out of the seat of our pants was entirely too dependent on George’s fine ability to talk himself out of any tense situation.
Paul’s Second Letter to Timothy — Chapter 1
1:1 From Paul, an apostle of Jesus Christ by the will of God, according to the promise of life which is in Christ Jesus, 1:2 to Timothy, my dear child. Grace, mercy, and peace, from God the Father and Christ Jesus our Lord.
1:3 I thank God, whom I worship with a clear conscience, as my ancestors did, when I remember you unfailingly in my prayers, day and night. 1:4 I long to see you so that I can be filled with joy, and I remember your tears. 1:5 I remember your genuine faith, which lived first in your grandmother Lois and your mother Eunice, and I am sure that it now lives in you also.
1:6 This is why I remind you to stoke the fire of God’s gift which you received when I placed my hands on you. 1:7 God did not give us a spirit of fear. He gave us a spirit of power, love, and self-control. 1:8 Do not be embarrassed to tell people about our Lord, or about me, his prisoner. Join me in suffering hardship for the Good News with the strength which God gives. 1:9 He saved us and called us to a holy mission, not because of what we had done, but because of his own purpose and grace. This was given to us in Christ Jesus before time began, 1:10 but has now been revealed by the appearing of our Saviour, Christ Jesus, who abolished death, and brought life and immortality to light through the Good News. 1:11 I was chosen to be a messenger of this Good News, an apostle, and a teacher. 1:12 This is why I am facing these hardships, but I am not embarrassed, because I know who I believe in, and I am certain that he can look after my concerns until the last day.
1:13 Follow the model of correct teaching which you have heard from me, in the faith and love of Christ Jesus. 1:14 Protect the good thing that has been entrusted to you, with the help of the Holy Spirit who lives in us.
1:15 You know that everyone in Asia has abandoned me, including Phygelus and Hermogenes. 1:16 May the Lord show compassion to the household of Onesiphorus, because he often re-energised me, and was not embarrassed about my imprisonment. 1:17 When he was in Rome, he actively looked for and found me. 1:18 May the Lord let him find the Lord’s compassion on the judgement day. You are well aware of how helpful he was in Ephesus.