ADORNING HIS TEACHINGS
Ti.2: 9 Exhort servants to be obedient unto their own masters, and to please them well in all things; not answering again;10 Not purloining, but shewing all good fidelity; that they may adorn the doctrine of God our Saviour in all things.
This is not an endorsement of slavery but it is an exhortation to servants and slaves to live Christ before their masters. The testimony of Christ is greater than their personal freedom. But notice that phrase “that they may adorn the doctrine of God our Savior in all things”. How do you brighten a diamond, or make more red the rubies, or increase the spectacular nature of the stars? How can we adorn the truth of Christ? This can only be done through the mystery of the Spirit and it is none of us. How the Spirit can take our lives and illuminate Christ must always be understood through the grace of God and the power of the Holy Spirit.
We so loosely toss around believing the Bible, but only through obedience can the faith be seen and substantiated. But Paul goes further in this set of verses. We are exhorted to adorn the teachings of Jesus through our lives. Now thing about seeing the Taj Mahal and just how would you enhance its beauty? Look at beauty of the planet Saturn and tell me how you go about adorning that celestial beauty. And that is the colossal task to which the Spirit calls us. We are called to adorn the teachings of Jesus through the inward and outward expressions of our lives. Wow. Talk about climbing Mt. Everest!
But here is where utilitarian Christianity fails miserably. The ministry of the Holy Spirit has for so many evangelicals all but been ignored. Now I do not speak about those who dwell on the Holy Spirit at the expense of dwelling upon the Lord Jesus, nor do I speak of the dog and pony shows that claim to be the gifts of the Spirit. What I am suggesting is that we have woefully underestimated and even have become ambivalent to the ministry and power of the Holy Spirit in the lives of believers. Because the Spirit has been reduced in some evangelical quarters to the spectacular and the sensational, His profound and life changing power has all but been ignored.
And when that happens it triggers something else much more sinister. When the power of the Spirit working within a believer’s heart and life is minimized or ignored it opens the door for self righteousness and the spoken and sometimes unspoken assertion that we have changed and are serving Christ in our own power. And when that becomes the norm then that opens the door to all kinds of craftiness through which people are manipulated by man rather than drawn by the Spirit.
But make no mistake. It is the Spirit of God which empowers us to serve Christ and it is that same Spirit which can take our humble service to Christ and allow it to adorn His truth and magnify His Person. That, my friends, is a spectacular miracle will not raise much money but will redound to the glory of God throughout eternity! Oh halleluiah! Where is boasting when it is the Spirit which both empowers us and lifts up our Master? Even the smallest act of spiritual service must be done in the Spirit and the moment we take a molecule of credit it withers and dies.
What a privilege it is for a redeemed sinner to minister to and serve the Living Christ! This is no small thing. Would you allow Charles Manson to serve you? Of course not, and yet the Holy One allows and even empowers us to serve Him. And this service, completely accomplished within the grace of God, is presented as a living sacrifice and in a miracle and a mystery the Spirit adorns Christ’s eternal truth with our surrendered service. Can there be any greater miracle than that, my friends? Even when we sincerely desire to lift up Jesus, and even when we deny ourselves, and even when we fully commit our labor to Him, it is still the power of the Spirit which is necessary to have our lives glorify Christ and adorn His truth, which by His own words IS Him.
Websters: Adorn - to make (someone or something) more attractive by adding something beautiful.
Do we wish we painful sacrifice to make the teachings of Jesus more attractive to those who only know of Him? Amidst all the redundant ecclesiastical practices and the hollow political wranglings there is a sacred path available to any and all who have redeemed by His blood. How many believers dwell exclusively in the courtyard? How many dare to proceed into the Holy Place? And how many actually humbly and with brokenness seek to walk and live inside the Holy of Holies? You think those are just poetic metaphors and have no place in this post modern world? If you do then you are in the majority because most of the church world would not even understand what I am talking about much less set their hearts and minds to seek such a sacred path.
But walking in His presence and by the power of His Spirit is the life to which we are called. Millions grope in the cloud of ecclesiastical confusion and have pitched their tents in the wilderness of an earthly structure which has long since forgotten the grapes of Eschol and which has no stomach for battling the true giants. So the wilderness must replace the land of Canaan and redundant religious practices must replace the mystery of His face. Regurgitate your statement of faith and you will be recognized as a faithful church member and a “mature” believer. And as the church has constructed such a religious system it has rejected that which is sacred, and hallowed, and priceless!
We barely know, much less obey, and much, much less adorn the teachings of our Master. We are nourished by the pottage of this temporal world and all its cotton candy nothingness. And slowly but surely we have set up our lives on the very eastern banks of the Red Sea. In fact, the younger generations know absolutely nothing of the Jordan River and nothing of that which is called Canaan. In fact the situation is even more detestable than that. The church has not only set up tents on the eastern bank of the Red Sea, but it also has set up tents on the western bank as well. That constitutes a situation with eternal consequences.
But you who name His name must not be bound by the present ecclesiastical crisis. You have ears to hear and you must respond to the calling of the Spirit. Words can never fully explain the exquisite privilege of being called to adorn His teachings. But if you feel a sense of hunger and thirst; and if you feel there is more than just an outward church practice; and if you know you feel a holy discontent with your own situation; then God is more than willing to take your surrender and self denial and adorn the teachings of His Risen Son. A miracle you say? A mystery you suggest? Oh, my dear friends, it goes much deeper and much further than that. It soars above anything we can ask or think, and it is all to His glory and His glory alone!
To believe on the Lord Jesus Christ and be saved is an eternal miracle! To follow Him and obey His teachings is a sacred calling. But to have the Holy Spirit take your life and adorn the teachings of the Redeemer is something that will redound to His glory forever!