“Demetrius has received a good testimony from everyone, and from the truth itself. We also add our testimony, and you know that our testimony is true.” (3 John 12)
I would like to speak of a man I would say is a Demetrius to me. Tim Senn is a man of God’s word who is “above reproach…sober-minded, self-controlled, respectable, hospitable, able to teach” (1 Tim. 3:2). Tim is a man with a testimony of God’s grace in his conversion and also his sanctification. Tim has been a faithful youth pastor for over a decade. Tim firmly holds to the true gospel that salvation is by grace alone through faith alone in Christ alone. He believes the bible is “profitable for teaching, for reproof, for correction, and for training in righteousness” (2 Tim. 3:16). All the times I have been with him, whether at youth group, care group, counseling, bible study or staying at his house because my car was in a snowy ditch, he lives out the message he proclaims. He is not a “Say one thing and do another thing” type of guy. The gospel has truly transformed his life. Tim is a man with a three-fold testimony (Lance’s term from Sunday that was so helpful):
1. He has received a good testimony from everyone (12a)
Tim is a man with a Christ-centered reputation. If you were to poll the people who know Tim they would not just say he is a good man but rather he is a man who loves Christ. (I would encourage anyone who has been impacted by Tim to encourage him with a thank you.)
2. He has received a good testimony from the gospel itself (12b)
This one is strictly a heart issue but by Scripture we have some ways to measure out the reality that Tim has been changed by the gospel and lives it out. Jesus in Matthew 7 says, “So, every healthy tree bears good fruit, but the diseased tree bears bad fruit. A healthy tree cannot bear bad fruit, nor can a diseased tree bear good fruit” (17-18). “The fruit of the Spirit is love, joy, peace, patience, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, gentleness, self-control” (Gal. 5:22-23). Based on Scripture I would have to say Tim is a man after God’s own heart. I see Tim bearing the good fruit of love, joy, peace, patience, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, gentleness and self-control. The great part about Tim is he wants everyone to see his good deeds so they might bring glory to his Father in heaven.
3. Finally I’d like to add my own testimony (12c)
I know it is not much but Tim you have meant more to me then you could possibly know. Guys are typically not good at expressing the way they feel about somebody but you have to know I cannot think of many other people I would run to for guidance on life. I know for a fact you will give me biblical counsel. Maybe not always what I want to hear but what I need to hear. I love you as friend, mentor, counselor, pastor and brother in Christ. I’m not sure the last one would apply if it was not for your influence. Thanks for living the life you teach. You truly are a man walking in a manner worthy of the gospel.
Grace upon grace,