Work hard so you can present yourself to God and receive his approval. Be a good worker, one who does not need to be ashamed and who correctly explains the word of truth. Avoid worthless, foolish talk that only leads to more godless behavior. This kind of talk spreads like cancer. 2 Timothy 2:15-17
From the text, Paul was admonishing Timothy to fully consider the essentials for being an approved workman. The approved workman doesn’t quarrel. He is competent and not getting bogged down in non-essentials. Instead his focused is on the main task; living out God’s truth in one’s life. He is committed to personal moral values and will not be ashamed to live his life based on biblical principles. The one who deals with the Word is to be one who “correctly explains the word of truth” (2 Timothy 2:15). He will not take side detours with the Word and will not cut corners. He is focused on the goal set by God before him. The idea of cutting straight comes from the farming concept of plowing a field. The farmer would set his eyes on a specific goal and will use that as a guiding point. As long as he kept his eyes on the goal, he could cut a straight trough across the field. Our goal for living our lives daily mindful of God’s direction will help people around us see what it is to be like a follower of Christ. This is not to show that we are smarter and creative than them. We live this way, because we are obedient to God’s Word. Whether there are people watching or not, our concern is that we are honoring God in what we do. This is why it is important that we do not only know what the Word of God says, but also what it means. We are to apply it to our lives today. If our goal is to have people focus on our great knowledge of the Word of God because we can quote passages we have memorized, then we have not handled the Word correctly. If our goal is to cause people to just join us in our group, then we have not handled the Word correctly. But if our goal is to shine the light that God gave us by living out His word in our lives, then He is pleased and glorified. Take heed of what Jesus told His disciples; “Pay close attention to what you hear. The closer you listen, the more understanding you will be given—and you will receive even more. To those who listen to my teaching, more understanding will be given” (Mark 4:24-25).
Noel De Guzman