Speaking the Truth in Love
What Must I Do To Be Saved? (The Good Confession)
A. "Confession is good for the soul." The Bible doesn't always agree with many of our sayings, but on this it agrees. Confession is good for the soul because it is a condition of salvation (Romans 10:9-10).
B. There are different kinds of confessions in the Bible, but our text in 1 Timothy 6:12-14) seems to have one specific confession in mind - the Good Confession. Not all confessions are necessarily good. What is the good confession?
II. SOMETHING THAT TIMOTHY HAD SAID IN THE PAST ("You made the good confession." (verse 12)
A. We have no Biblical reference to tell when, or what, Timothy said when he made the good confession, but it can be deduced from the passage before us.
B. Paul is commending and reminding Timothy of what he had said.
1. "Fight the good fight of faith." (It's so easy to get weary, easy to give up.) (verse 12)
2. "Lay hold on eternal life." (verse 12)
a. Making the good confession and fighting the good fight leads to eternal life.
b. Often we need to be reminded of what we have confessed so we will live up to it.
III. SOMETHING SAID BEFORE WITNESSES ("In the presence of many witnesses.") (verse 12)
A. We say and do some things that no one else knows about.
B. But the good confession is not something we are to do in secret.
1. The "many witnesses" probably refers to an assembly of Christians, and that is surely a good place to make the "good confession."
2. But the confession can also be made with only one person present (the Ethiopian, Acts 8:37).
C. But it can also be made before hostile witnesses.
1. Men (Matthew 10:32-33).
2. Pilate (Mark 14:60-62).
IV. THE GOOD CONFESSION WAS SOMETHING PONTIUS PILATE HEARD.
A. Jesus "testified" the good confession before him.
1. Jesus had been brought before Pilate, as we just mentioned, by the Jews because He claimed to be the Son of God, the Christ (John 19:7).
4. Thus, Timothy confessed what was confessed at Jesus' trial: "Jesus is the Christ, the Son of God."
6. What Pilate did not hear: A better felt than told experience or "God for Christ sake has pardoned my sins" or The Apostles Creed.
V. THE GOOD CONFESSION INVOLVES MORE THAN JUST SAYING WORDS.
A. It must be based upon sincere, from the heart, belief (Romans 10:9-10).
1. But "faith alone" is not sufficient. It must be confessed.
2. If we fail to confess with the mouth what we believe in the heart we will be lost (John 12:42-43).
B. It must be followed up with baptism.
1. The same Jesus that made the good confession and demanded confession also demanded baptism after faith (Mark 16:16).
2. The Ethiopian was baptized after he made the good confession (Acts 8:36-38).
C. We must live a life consistent with the confession that we've made (Paul's charge to Timothy).
1. "Flee these things" (1 Timothy 6:11). The desire to be rich, the love of money, etc.
2. "Follow after" (1 Timothy 6:11). Righteous, godliness, faith, etc.
3. "Fight the good fight of faith" (1 Timothy 6:12).
4. "Keep the commandment without stain or reproach" (1 Timothy 6:14). What commandment? The good confession and its follow-up.
D. The good confession and its follow-up continues until the appearing of our Lord Jesus Christ (1 Timothy 6:14).
E. Thus, confessing Christ is not a one-time act.
1. It continues our whole lifetime as manifested by the way we live (Galatians 2:20).
2. We continue to do it as we sing, pray, and engage in other acts of worship (Hebrews 13:15).
3. We confess Him when we make a stand for His truth (Luke 9:26).
F. Confession can lead to trouble.
1. It cost Jesus His life (Luke 22:66-71).
2. Antipas also lost his life, and so did many others (Revelation 2:13).
3. Trouble may come on the job, at school, among friends if I hold fast my confession. Nevertheless, we must hold to it at all cost (Hebrews 4:14; 10:23).
A. Why is it the "good confession?"
1. It confesses faith in the One who died for our sins and reigns in heaven.
2. It's good because it produces good in us when we live by it.
3. It's good because it produces salvation.
B. Does anyone want to make the good confession, and upon that confession be baptized into Christ? Are you ready to live the rest of your life living up to that confession? As a Christian, do you need to re-commit, re-confess your faith, confess your sins and be restored to a right relationship with Jesus the Christ, the Son of the living God? Think about these things. We hope to see you next time on ‘Speaking The Truth In Love” when we hope to continue our series“What Must I Do To Be Saved” (Repent).