2 Timothy 2:1
You therefore, my son, be strong in the grace that is in Christ Jesus.
I. MULTIPLICITY OF ARGUMENTS SHOULD PROVOKE TO OBEDIENCE. "Thou, therefore."
II. MEN REGARD THOSE MOST WHO ARE THE LIKEST MINDED TO THEMSELVES. "My son."
III. STRENGTH OF GRACE IS NECESSARY FOR A CHRISTIAN.
1. Comeliness pleads for it. For is not Christ the root, we the branches? He the foundation, we the building? Our head, and we His members? And betwixt these ought there not to be an analogy, a just proportion, otherwise, would it not be unseemly? Should one finger stand still, would we not repute it a blemish? and shall we not do the same in this mystical body?
2. Necessity requires it. We must fast, watch, and pray, fight with principalities, powers, and spiritual enemies, which are in high places. And will not crosses come, thick and threefold — temptations, desertions, sickness, and death, too? What can or will do these, suffer these things, anything but strength of grace, spiritual power? What manner of men ought ministers to be, thundering in preaching, fervent in prayer, shining in life, burning in spirit? And what is necessary for a preacher is required of every Christian, strength of grace. Strength is tried —
(1) In prosperity: art thou humble in thine own eyes? Is thy heart, with the remembrance of the Lord's mercies, made hot? and is it thy greatest care, how to promote his glory? When the rain falls, the waters swell: the sun shines, the sweetest flowers smell the spring approacheth, all creatures revive. So when grace grows, our joy is full; our mouths are trumpets sounding aloud, and every member of the body is an active instrument, a never-wearied agent to fight the battles, and finish the great works of our Lord and Master. A willow bows with a small blast: an oak endures, stands upright in a storm.
(2) In adversity: art thou patient? etc. The horse neighs at the trumpet; the leviathan laughs at the spear: so a strong man in grace, slights crosses, etc.Helps to grow strong in grace.
1. Hast thou, in thy apprehension some seed of sanctification? then seriously think of it, highly esteem of it, and bless thou the Lord for it.
2. Resolve with thyself the highest period of grace, whereof a created nature is capable. Scholars aim at the highest degree; citizens, at the most honourable office; and all tradesmen, at the increase of goods: so should weak Christians to be rich in the grace of God: strong in the Lord.
3. Add to these two, practice: exercise thy talent; put it forth, for Thy own, and thy Master's advantage. Is it not written that many acts produce an habit, and to him that hath shall be given?
4. Neglect no means whereby grace is begun, or increased.
IV. ALL GRACE IS FROM CHRIST JESUS. Whether we consider the beginning, kinds, or degrees; all grace is in Him, and by Him. Is it not written, that Christ ascended on high; gave gifts unto men? Of His fulness, are we not said to receive grace for grace? that is of all the kinds which are in the Head, the same be derived to His members.
(J. Barlow, D. D.)
Parallel VersesKJV: Thou therefore, my son, be strong in the grace that is in Christ Jesus.