We don’t get saved one day, and wake up the next godly. We must train ourselves for godliness. But how? Maybe you are new to this. Maybe you aren’t a seasoned gym rat who knows exactly what exercises to do and how to do them. But you see the value of growing in godliness and you are willing to put in effort. Maybe that’s you. And you are sitting their wondering, how do I do this? Where do I start? Let’s spend a few minutes talking about that.
How Do We Train Ourselves for Godliness?
(1) We shouldn’t waste our time on godless myths, old wives tales, and conspiracy theories
Writing to Timothy Paul says,
“Have nothing to do with irreverent, silly myths. Rather train yourself for godliness;” (1 Ti 4:7)
There are a lot of things out there that are promoted as spiritual. Think about:
- Ouija Boards
All these claim to have a connection to the spiritual world. But God is not in them. It’s Satan who’s behind these things. Knowing that, we as Christians, shouldn’t mess with or explore them.
Another thing we shouldn’t get caught up in is things like the Bible code. If you haven’t heard anything about the Bible code, it basically deals with a made up numbering system that’s supposed to reveal to us hidden knowledge in the Bible. I say made up because there is no hidden knowledge in Bible. God has plainly revealed everything that we need to know. So we shouldn’t waste our time with ideas like that. It doesn’t promote godliness.
Another thing we shouldn’t spend a lot time with is End Times speculations. I know that it is popular to try to figure out dates and ordering of events. When or if Israel is going to build a Temple. Or even if they have all the stuff to do it. But if we are honest with ourselves, none of that stuff really helps us to grow in godliness. It’s all speculation and a big waste of time, a distraction.
We know the end is coming. We have a general idea of what is going to happen. That’s really all we need. So instead of focusing on speculative theories, we need to focus on those things that can be known now. They are what’s going to help us grow, so they need to be our focus.
One last thing I’ll mention that we shouldn’t focus on is conspiracy theories. They are abundant, can pull us in, and even divide us from those we are supposed to love. If we want to grow in godliness, we need to avoid conspiracy theories.
You see, as Christians, we can’t allow godless, idle chatter to take up the majority of our time. We only have so much of it. And if you think about it, the Bible itself is a huge book with enough content to keep us busy for a lifetime. So instead of focusing on this other stuff that has no value for promoting growth in godliness, we should focus on God’s Word. It is what is going to grow us in our Christian life, which is what we as Christians should be after.
That’s not just coming from me. That is what God is telling us through His Word. That is what verse 7 is all about.
So instead of wasting our time with godless myths, old wives tales, and conspiracy theories,
(2) We should constantly feed on the Word of God
Paul tells Timothy to do just that in verse 6, when he says,
“If you put these things before the brothers, you will be a good servant of Christ Jesus, being trained in the words of the faith and of the good doctrine that you have followed.” (1 Ti 4:6)
To me the NASB gets across the point of the phrase “being trained in the words of the faith” better when it translates it as “constantly nourished on the words of the faith.” That tells us, then, that Paul is telling Timothy that he must consistently feed or nourish himself with the truths of the gospel and God’s Word in order to sustain his faith, his commitment to Christ, and his spiritual energy and enthusiasm.
You see, these godless silly myths won’t do that for us. Only God’s Word will sustain and grow us. They are Satan’s tools of distraction. Instead we must feed on the Word.
The idea of feeding on the gospel and God’s Word should resonate with us. In order for us to survive and go about our daily tasks, we have to constantly feed our bodies. If we don’t eat, we won’t have any energy. Eventually, we will waste away and die.
Just as our physical life must be sustained by food, our spiritual life must be sustained by the food of God’s Word. We have to constantly feed on it in order to provide ourselves with the spiritual nourishment necessary to sustain and grow our spiritual life.
So if we are getting in to things that are taking us away from God’s Word or are just dealing with speculative theories that no one can really know is true or not, we need to forsake those things. And return to the meat of God’s Word, so that we will be nourished and can continue to grow in godliness. We must be a people who constantly feed on the Word of God. It must be a consistent part of our daily diet.
Next time, I will provide some practical ways we can consistently feed on God’s Word.
Question for Reflection?
- What are some other ways we can train ourselves for godliness?
Post adapted from my sermon: How Can We Train Ourselves for Godliness?