John Stott:

The gospel is good news of salvation. It was promised from eternity, was secured and purchased by Jesus Christ, and is now offered to friends.

First, we must communicate it faithfully, we shall undoubtedly suffer for it.

And when we suffer for it, we shall be tempted to trim it and to eliminate the elements that provoke opposition.

So then, third, and above all, we must guard it against every possible corruption, keeping it pure whatever the cost.

Guard it faithfully, spread it actively, suffer for it bravely—that is our threefold duty.

You can read below transcripts of Stott’s expositions of each chapter of 2 Timothy along these lines, first delivered over 40 years ago:

  1. Guard the Gospel
  2. Suffer for the Gospel
  3. Continue in the Gospel
  4. Preach the Gospel

In his final message Stott summarizes the exhortations of 2 Timothy as follows:

Guard it—the gospel is a treasure;
Suffer for it—the gospel is an offense to the people;
Be willing to suffer for it—the gospel is profitable;
Continue in it—proclaim it, for the gospel is good news.