All born-again Christians are called to be more Christ-like. There are many facets of Christ-likeness which we can glean from the Bible for us to model, follow and understand. Let us look at one facet of Jesus’ life on earth which came to Mary spontaneously at the empty tomb of Jesus just after He had risen. “Then Jesus said to her, “Mary!” She turned and said to him, “Rabboni.” The Aramaic word “Rabboni” means “Teacher”” (John 20:16). Teaching was fundamental to the ministry of Jesus, for it was through His teachings he educated His disciples, taking them from the ways of the flesh to the ways of the Kingdom.
Fathers are responsible and have been given authority by God, in the Old Testament, the New Testament and today, for the education of the children. As Ephesians 4:6 tells us “parents, don’t be hard on your children. Raise them properly. Teach them and instruct them about the Lord.”
But in our striving for Christ-likeness, we are all called to teach, to be teachers. Throughout his Pastoral Epistles to Timothy and Titus, the Apostle Paul exhorts them and all Christians, to teach:
“Remind them to be submissive to rulers and authorities, to be obedient, to be ready for every good work,” (Titus 3:1)
“Declare these things; exhort and rebuke with all authority. Let no one disregard you.” (Titus 2:15)
“Show yourself in all respects to be a model of good works, and in your teaching show integrity, dignity, and sound speech that cannot be condemned, so that an opponent may be put to shame, having nothing evil to say about us.” (Titus 2:7-8)
“But as for you, teach what accords with sound doctrine.” (Titus 2:1)
“preach the word; be ready in season and out of season; reprove, rebuke, and exhort, with complete patience and teaching. For the time is coming when people will not endure sound teaching, but having itching ears they will accumulate for themselves teachers to suit their own passions” (Second Timothy 4:2-3)
“And the Lord’s servant must not be quarrelsome but kind to everyone, able to teach, patiently enduring evil, correcting his opponents with gentleness.” (Second Timothy 2:24-25)
“Remind them of these things, and charge them before God not to quarrel about words, which does no good, but only ruins the hearers. Do your best to present yourself to God as one approved, a worker who has no need to be ashamed, rightly handling the word of truth.” (Second Timothy 2:14-15)
“ and what you have heard from me in the presence of many witnesses entrust to faithful men who will be able to teach others also.” (Second Timothy 2:2)
“Follow the pattern of the sound words that you have heard from me, in the faith and love that are in Christ Jesus. By the Holy Spirit who dwells within us, guard the good deposit entrusted to you.” (Second Timothy 1:13-14)
“O Timothy, guard the deposit entrusted to you.” (First Timothy 6:20)
“Those who have believing masters must not be disrespectful on the ground that they are brothers; rather they must serve all the better since those who benefit by their good service are believers and beloved. Teach and urge these things. If anyone teaches a different doctrine and does not agree with the sound words of our Lord Jesus Christ and the teaching that accords with godliness, he is puffed up with conceit and understands nothing.” (First Timothy 6:2-4)
“Be careful about the way you live and about what you teach. Keep on doing this, and you will save not only yourself, but the people who hear you.” (First Timothy 4:16)
“Until I arrive, be sure to keep on reading the Scriptures in worship, and don’t stop preaching and teaching.” (First Timothy 4:13)
“Teach these things and tell everyone to do what you say.” (First Timothy 4:11)
“If you teach these things to other followers, you will be a good servant of Christ Jesus. You will show that you have grown up on the teachings about our faith and on the good instructions you have obeyed.” (First Timothy 4:6)
“When I was leaving for Macedonia, I asked you to stay on in Ephesus and warn certain people there to stop spreading their false teachings. You needed to warn them to stop wasting their time on senseless stories and endless lists of ancestors. Such things only cause arguments. They don’t help anyone to do God’s work that can only be done by faith.” (First Timothy 1:3-4)
We see clearly here that without any doubt, the Bible establishes the need, indeed the imperative, for all Christians to be life-long learners and life-long teachers. To be Christ-like, Christians require a heart to learn and teach; to pass on that which they have received from their elders, to the next generation.
Thank You that before creation You knew us and we were already Your children. In Your word, You have exhorted us to be like Your son Jesus, the master teacher above all teachers. I pray, Father, that You will anoint me to be both a life-long learner and teacher of Your Word. Help me cast off the bondage of my fleshy thoughts and actions, and instead to turn to Your Word at all times for guidance, instruction, knowledge, wisdom and decision making. Please give me a heart to study Your Word before all other things and a heart to teach fellow Christians and children; that Your Holy Word may pass from generation to generation. I lay down my will before You and ask You to lead me on the paths which You have chosen that I should walk, such that Your destiny for me will be fulfilled to Your perfection and to Your timing.
In the name of my Saviour, the Lord Jesus Christ I pray. Amen and Amen.