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Instruments for Special Purposes

Image of an open Bible on a rock with the words "Instruments for Special Purposes, October 6, 2022, 2 Timothy 2:21"

October 6, 2022

2 Timothy 2:21 - Those who cleanse themselves from the latter will be instruments for special purposes, made holy, useful to the Master and prepared to do any good work.


This letter to Timothy from Paul is thought to be the last one written in Rome before his death. Paul is telling Timothy that he is trusting him to teach the others all that he taught him. He wants Timothy to be the most useful vessel that he can be for the kingdom and warns of avoiding temptations and pitfalls that could cause his message to be ineffective. 

The verse right before this one says, “In a large house, there are articles not only of gold and silver, but also of wood and clay; some are for special purposes and some are for common use.” Then our verse goes on to tell us that the people that cleanse themselves from common use instruments will be used for special purposes and made holy and useful to God for doing good works.  

He’s telling us that not all Christians are useful in the same way. Some Christians were quarreling and turning away from the truth. And that was leading others away from Christ. Those Christians were not fit to be useful in the kingdom because they were distracted by the wrong things. But Paul was encouraging them to cleanse themselves so that they could be set apart, useful, and holy, ready for any good work, and be instruments for special purposes. 

To me, it’s comforting that God wants to use each and every one of us in a unique and special way for His purpose.  We all have gifts and talents that look different… but they are all still useful.  As Christians, it is our job to walk faithfully with God as our guide so that He can point other to Christ using these gifts and become a vessel for His use.

There are going to be temptations to walk away from God by believing the lies of the world.  But I encourage you to spend time with God and ask him to reveal any area of your life that is not honoring Him, and go after the things that will honor Him. And this is possible because of the Holy Spirit, and with the help of other believers who can encourage us and help us recognize our talents and gifts that we can use to honor God. 

What kind of vessel will you be?

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