Handling Aright The Word Of Truth



We are considering part 2 of last week’s lesson our text again our text is taken from 2 Timothy 2:15-19.. Tonight,  rightly dividing, or handling aright the word of truth.


15Study to show thyself approved unto God, a workman that needeth not to be ashamed, rightly dividing the word of truth.


A quick review of some things stated last week could be profitable. I called your attention to the fact that there was a time man did not need a command to "study" for God spoke directly to man in order to reveal His will.  We also stated of the days of inspiration, when men were directed by God’s Holy Spirit,  but after these days ceased, Paul gave this instruction to young Timothy and through him likewise to all the rest of us, to study God’s word; It is the approval of God, not the applause or approval of the crowds that we should seek for. 


There are five things you can do with God’s Word: First I can read it.

1 Tim 4:13 

Till I come, give attention to reading, to exhortation, to doctrine.


Second I can Memorize God's Word — Psa. 119:11

“Thy word I have hidden in my heart, That I might not sin against You!

3rd I can  Study It   2Tim 2:15 our text exhorts this very thing

4-  I Can Use It  Psalm 119:105-106     Psalm 19:7-11

5- Or Neglect It        Heb 5:12-14


Our message this evening is titled “Handling Aright The Word of God.” Bible students recognize that as a direct quote from the Scriptures themselves.  This is the words used in the ASV in our text


15Give diligence to present thyself approved unto God, a workman that needeth not to be ashamed, handling aright the word of truth.  ( literally cutting it straight).


The word “study” in the Authorized version being rendered as “15Give diligence  from the Greek word  spoudavzw  to exert one’s self, endeavor, give diligence,  and make haste.


15Study to show thyself approved unto God, a workman that needeth not to be ashamed, rightly dividing the word of truth.


Much confusion that exist  among religious people tonight can certainly be traced to the fact that we fail to understand and heed this admonition regarding improper division. Many of our differences have their origin the lack of the application of this text.  Thus


15Study to show thyself approved unto God, a workman that needeth not to be ashamed, rightly dividing or handling aright the word of truth.


Without arguing the question at  all, I presume that no one denies the fact that the Bible is divided into two great parts,  The Old Testament, consisting of two great covenants or dispensations, The Patriarch, and the Law .  Then there is the  New Testament or Covenant for the two words are from the same Greek word   diaqhkhV


The new covenant came by our Lord John 1:17

17for the law was given by Moses, but grace and truth came by Jesus Christ.


Last week I raised the point that there are subdivisions, and we discover these from the lips of Jesus Himself: Hear it:  Luke 24:44


44And he said unto them, These are the words which I spake unto you, while I was yet with you, that all things must be fulfilled, which were written in the law of Moses, and in the prophets, and in the psalms, concerning me.


Remember then when Jesus said this, the New Testament was not yet written, therefore without doubt He was referring to the Old Testament with its 39 volumes.  Remember as well that the Bible is divided into two great parts,  the Old and the New Testaments.


Well when one begins to read the Bible, where should he turn, and what should he study?  And we understand, that depends upon what we are wanting to know.    


 If someone ask me concerning the creation of things, I would not send him to the  book of Philemon, for while it is a good book, and worthy of our study. It is not the proper place to study the creation. If someone wanted to know about the great Flood of Noah’s day, Romans would not be the best place to study that. His time would better be spent in Genesis 6-8.


Passing still further, may I suggest that the Law of Moses was given unto the people that had come out of bondage in Egypt. Turn with me to Deuteronomy 5:1- 3

1And Moses called all Israel, and said unto them, Hear, O Israel, the statutes and judgments which I speak in your ears this day, that ye may learn them, and keep, and do them.  2The Lord our God made a covenant with us in Horeb. 3The Lord made not this covenant with our fathers, but with us, even us, who are all of us here alive this day.  Hence the law of Moses was given then to Abraham’s seed, the children of Israel, those who went down into Egypt and whom came up under the leadership of Moses and to none other.


And should someone ask,

Brother Cope, what was the purpose of the Law, and how long was the law of Moses supposed to last?”  And the answer is found in

 Galatians 3:19


19Wherefore then serveth the law? It was added because of transgressions, till the seed should come to whom the promise was made;


The law was a temporary vehicle, added to the promise that God made to Abraham (Gen. 12:1-3) until the promised seed should come which seed was Christ. Galatians 3:16-19


Finally what was the Lord’s attitude toward the law?  Jesus did not come to violate nor to destroy it, but to fulfill it. Matthew 5:17.   In Matthew 22:36 we read where a lawyer, (interpreter of the law) came to Jesus with this question—


36Master, which is the great commandment in the law? 37 Jesus said unto him, Thou shalt love the Lord thy God with all thy heart, and with all thy soul, and with all thy mind. 38This is the first and great commandment. 39And the second is like unto it, Thou shalt love thy neighbor as thyself. 40On these two commandments hang all the law and the prophets.


Thus Paul writes in Galatians 5:14

14For all the law is fulfilled in one word, even in this; Thou shalt love thy neighbor as thyself.

Jesus came to fulfill the law, and from the cross speaking of His mission states “it is finished  Thus the law of Moses, a law given  only to the Jews ended at the cross of Christ


If you raise the question as to what became of it, Paul emphatically declared  the law was blotted out nailed to the cross of Christ.  Here it.

Colossians 2:14 

14Blotting out the handwriting of ordinances that was against us, which was contrary to us, and took it out of the way, nailing it to his cross


But someone raises a question after this sort: “Which part of the law was nailed to the cross”?  Do you know,  the Bible does not talk about parts of the law. When you hear such terms as the “judicial part”; the “moral part”,  the “ceremonial part”, just remember that is not in the Bible from front to back. That phraseology came from some man who does not speak as the Bible speaks.


Paul said “blotting out”. A Greek word that means to wipe it out. Imagine taking a piece of chalk and writing a sentence on a blackboard, then taking an eraser and wiping the slate clean. Jesus wiped out the law, all of it and nailing  it to His cross.


There are many who object to the statement that the 10 commandments have been taken away. And fail to understand how this can be true; and yet we have no trouble in understanding other things parallel.

Let me illustrate with a little bit of Tennessee history, which I studied while back there in school.


The state of Tennessee has had three separate and distinct Constitutions. The first one was back in June 1796. Based upon this constitution, laws were enacted for a number of years. These laws were few and simple, and every good citizen of Tennessee, respected and and had regard for this first constitution.


But  when the state began to grow opportunities widened, the people said:  Our constitution is inadequate to the growth of the state.” In 1834 delegates were selected, and a convention was called and a second constitution was drawn up. How do you think they did this?


The committee read closely the first constitution, and every statement found in it  that useful was brought over into the second. Some were left out.  From 1834 for the next 36 years the people observed the laws based upon the 2nd constitution.  No longer amenable to the first that had been abolished.         


Again in 1870 the people of Tennessee drew up through delegates yet a 3rd constitution. Drawing from the old again and writing new laws. That law is still in effect today. They observe and respect part of the 1st and part of the 2nd, Not because they are still in effect, but because they were made part of the new law.


Just so in the dealing with humanity. Jehovah has Himself had three separate and distinct constitutions. The first one, known as the system of Patriarchy, it lasted for 2500 years and we read of it in entirely in Genesis and Exodus.  From Eden to Sinai.


Then God having brought His people out of bondage and having led them to the foot of Mount Sinai, He there drafted and inaugurated a second constitution.  Many of the things found in the first were brought over, sacrifice and circumcision to name just two, and the Jewish nation observed these principles. Why?  Not because they found them back in the system of Patriarchy, but because they had been made a part of Judaism that lasted for 1500 years. From Sinai to Calvary.


Many of the principles of Judaism can be found in Christ’s new law. Many were omitted. We usually state that 9 of the 10 commandments can be found in the New Testament, in  fact or in principle. There is one of these commandments # 4 to be exact that was not brought over.


Remember the Sabbath Day To Keep It Holy.”


God has given us a day with sweeter memories characterized especially by the triumphant resurrection of our Savior from the dead.


Think about this day the 1st day of the week that we observe.  Jesus’ first appearance after He arose from the dead, were on the 1st day of the week. He made several  appearances on this day. Thomas was absent of the first occasion. But Jesus appears again the next Sunday, with Thomas being present this time.  John chapter 20.


Further, the apostles were baptized with Holy Spirit on  the first day of the week,  Peter preached the first full gospel sermon, and the church came into existence for the first time,  God added to the church those being saved.  Acts chapter


We read also that the early church met on this day to partake of the Lord’s Supper, thus remembering their  Savior Acts 20:7   Paul further instructs the church at Corinth to meet on this day. 1 Cor. 16:1-2


Remember that you and I as Gentiles, were never subjected to the Law of Moses. "It was never applicable unto us". Its promises were never our, neither its threats nor punishments.


Is it not strange, thought 2000 years have passed since it was taken out of the way and nailed to the cross, there are people today never included in it, that are blinded, deceived, and deluded by the  thought that they are amenable to it?


Hence we have a better covenant today founded upon better promises that is applicable. We have a difference system of worship. In the days of the law, worship was regulated by the law.  Today being under the law of “grace and truth given by Christ John 1:17 we worship as He has directed.


Turn to John 4:20-24 as Jesus was conversing with the woman of Samaria as she made this statement to Jesus:


20Our fathers worshipped in this mountain; and ye say, that in Jerusalem is the place where men ought to worship. 21Jesus saith unto her, Woman, believe me, the hour cometh, when ye shall neither in this mountain, nor yet at Jerusalem, worship the Father. 22Ye worship ye know not what: we know what we worship: for salvation is of the Jews. 23But the hour cometh, and now is, when the true worshippers shall worship the Father in spirit and in truth: for the Father seeketh such to worship him. 24God is a Spirit: and they that worship him must worship him in   spirit and in truth 


The new Covenant  knows no special place and asks no sacrifice of animals, and demands no Jewish priest. Jesus is the perfect sacrifice, and the perfect High Priest. And we are all priests and kings today because of what He has done.    Revelations 1:5-6 


Consider this beautiful passage: 1Peter 1:3-5

3Blessed be the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, which according to his abundant mercy hath begotten us again unto a lively hope by the resurrection of Jesus Christ from the dead, 4To an inheritance incorruptible, and undefiled, and that fadeth not away, reserved in heaven for you, 5 Who are kept by the power of God through faith unto salvation ready to be revealed in the last time.


What a blessed promise,  what an inheritance.

I hope these lessons have been beneficial to all.  Paul charged Timothy


15Study to show thyself approved unto God, a workman that needeth not to be ashamed, handling aright the word of truth.


The Old Testament was written as examples for us 1 Corinthians 10:6-11 to the intent that we should not fall as they did.  It was written to give us comfort and hope   Romans 15:4


Jesus tells us the New Testament, the words that He has spoken and given shall judge us one day.  John 12:48 


If we can be of any further help to in your studies of God's word, please call us (678)617-9658  or email me at:  RonCope@chestnutmtchurchofchrist.com