This week's Bible study is adapted from the Explore the Bible curriculum.
Bible Passage: 2 Timothy 4:1-18
Discussion Question: What motivates you to finish a task? Would you say there is more honor in starting well or finishing well?
Food for Thought:
While under siege, William Barret Travis wrote a simple letter calling for "the People of Texas and All Americans in the World" to come to his aid in the Alamo. In the letter, he vowed to never surrender or retreat. Six days after writing the "victory letter" Travis and the others in the Alamo died in battle. He and the others kept their vow. As a part of the commemoration of that battle this year, the letter was put on display in the Alamo for the first time since it had been written 177 years ago.
The same determination and resolve demonstrated by Travis can be seen in the apostle Paul's words to his young protégé. Paul knew what he was facing and declared victory. Paul was not motivated by the creation of a nation but rather by gaining the crown of righteousness that awaited him in heaven (2 Timothy 4:8). Paul's task was not easy, but that meant there would be great satisfaction in completing the difficult task. Paul's challenge to Timothy was to complete his assigned task just as he had witnessed Paul do.
Paul reminded Timothy that honor awaits those who finish well. Think about the people who start off strong in their spiritual lives only to let the difficulties and distractions of life rob them of finishing well. There are many reasons for failing at the end, but ultimately it comes down to living so as to bring honor to Christ, the One who died for our sin and was resurrected for our salvation.
Explore the Bible is an ongoing Bible study curriculum that helps groups dig into the key truths of each Bible book while maintaining a pace to study through the entire Bible in eight years. The eight-year plan and more information can be found on the Internet at LifeWay.com/ExploreTheBible.
Other ongoing Bible study options for all ages offered by LifeWay can be found at LifeWay.com/SundaySchool.
Dwayne McCrary is a team leader for Explore the Bible and can be followed on twitter @gdwayne.
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