Be diligent to present yourself approved to God as a workman who does not need to be ashamed, accurately handling the word of truth. 2 Timothy 2:15
Recently I was in a very well known store that is all about tools. In fact it even has the word “tools” in its name. That’s a sure way to get most men to stop and come inside. That’s unfair! Men see that word and become zombies! Tools, tools,tools, all kinds of tools for all kinds of purposes! You know, a man’s version of heaven on earth! You see, for men tools aren’t just tools. They’re toys! We love our tools! You never know when you might need a gas-powered generator, an 18-inch crescent wrench, or a battery-powered screwdriver! I mean, how great is that? And even if you never actually need them, its just kind of cool to know you have them just in case.
When I was standing at the checkout counter (and I must sadly confess I wasn’t buying but returning something that I had gotten some sense about and realized I didn’t really need), I looked up on the wall and staring me in the face was this sign:
There is no shame in a man not having tools….just as there is no shame in him carrying his wife’s purse!
That did it! If there was any doubt in my mind that sign dispelled it. God intended men to have tools not carry purses! I’m just sayin…. Anyway as I walked out of the store to my truck (we have trucks so we won’t need a purse to carry our tools in), I began to think about that statement, and as I try to do with everything, make the spiritual application.
In Jesus’ day for any workman there were three things that were necessary in order to make a living.
1. He had to have tools. In fact each workman had to have his own tools. A craftsman didn’t get hired and show up on the job site without tools. There were none provided for you! If you didn’t have tools you didn’t work. So a workman took great care to have the right tools for his particular craft and he took great care of those tools. They were his very life! Without them he couldn’t earn a living for his family.
2. He had to know how his tools worked. If he showed up on the job with a bag full of tools but didn’t have a clue how to use them, he got found out pretty quickly. He was a fraud trying to weasel his way into a job he didn’t know how to do! He got quickly kicked to the curb so someone who could really use the tools could take his place.
3. He had to be willing to use the tools–Even if he had tools and knew how to use them, if he didn’t have them with him on the jobsite they couldn’t do him any good. Not only that but he might have the tools, be skilled in their use, but if he was a lazy sort and wouldn’t work, the tools were of no value.
That is the imagery of Paul’s words in 2 Timothy 2:15. In essence he says, “There is shame in not having tools, not knowing how they work, and being unwilling to use them when it comes to the Word of God. We are workmen! The work we do is “handling accurately the Word of Truth.”
Sometimes we are ashamed because we don’t have tools. We need God’s direction in a situation and because we have not studied and learned the Word of God we don’t have any idea what God’s Word says about that situation. We are ashamed when an unbeliever asks us a question about Christ, salvation, or Christian living and we can’t answer their question with anything but our own opinion, thought, or best guess. There is shame in not having tools when that tool is the Word of God.
So men don’t be ashamed! Study, memorize, meditate, upon the Word of God so you will be able to “handle accurately the Word of Truth” and have no need to be ashamed!
So men, put down your purse and pick up your tools!