NASHVILLE (BP) — This weekly Bible study appears in Baptist Press in a partnership with LifeWay Christian Resources of the Southern Baptist Convention. Through its Leadership and Adult Publishing team, LifeWay publishes Sunday School curricula and additional resources for all age groups.
This week’s Bible study is adapted from the Explore the Bible curriculum.
Bible Passage: 2 Timothy 2:14-26
— How would you define the relationship between studying the Bible and a person’s character? How does the study of the Bible impact how a person lives?
— What makes so difficult approaching in a loving way people with whom you disagree?
Food for thought:
People demonstrate diligence in the level of attention and care given to a task. We usually think of diligence in terms of the person who stays late at work double-checking all the details, or people so focused on the details they become oblivious to conversations around them. Diligent people tend to plan every detail, adding deadlines for each action and sticking by their plan. Nothing seems too big of an obstacle for this person to address when completing the task.
Diligent people find a way to get it done. Their diligence is seen in the final product of their work.
Paul directed Timothy to study the Bible with diligence (2:15). Timothy was to focus on the details and give God’s Word his undivided attention. The noise of the false teachers would drown away as Timothy focused on the truth of God’s Word. As Timothy studied the Bible, he would grow and change in his character. He would not only understand the truth, but live it. Not only would he be prepared to expose the false teachings of others but would be able to do so with godly character, gently correcting others (v. 25). His gentleness would be a demonstration of his diligence in studying God’s Word.
Many times, we find believers berating those with whom they disagree or who hold to a teaching contrary to Scripture. We should clearly proclaim the truth, but how we do it says more about us than it does about their false belief.
Failing to demonstrate God’s character in interactions with others and failing to treat others as if they too are made in our Creator’s image indicates our lack of diligence as students of God’s Word. We are not only called to share the truth, we are also called to share it with humility and compassion.
Explore the Bible
Explore the Bible is an ongoing Bible study curriculum that helps groups dig into the key truths of each Bible book, while keeping the group on pace to study through the Bible books in a systematic way. More information can be found at LifeWay.com/ExploreTheBible.