Sunday, April 26, 2015

Paul's Letters to Timothy - Session 11 - Now It's Your Turn

The Church of Divine Guidance (CDG) Sunday morning adult bible study group is studying Paul's pastoral Epistles (Letters) to his protege, Timothy. These posts are my notes for each session. Please study with us. You can participate by asking your questions or making comments in the comments below. We welcome your thoughts and prayers


The story is told of the umpire who called a strike on Babe Ruth. The Babe turned around and angrily shouted, "Hey, meathead! Me and 40,000 people here know that pitch was a ball!" The umpire replied, "Yeah, and mine is the only opinion that matters."

Review


Last week we talked about how in the last days people would get worse and worse.

2 Timothy 3:1 (HCSB)But know this: Difficult times will come in the last days.

In the last days, perilous times will come.

2 Timothy 3:2-5 (HCSB)2 For people will be lovers of self, lovers of money, boastful, proud, blasphemers, disobedient to parents, ungrateful, unholy,3 unloving, irreconcilable, slanderers, without self-control, brutal, without love for what is good,4 traitors, reckless, conceited, lovers of pleasure rather than lovers of God,5 holding to the form of godliness but denying its power. Avoid these people!

They will be selfish and only think about themselves. Their aim in life is to get as much money as they can for their own benefit. Paul says have nothing to do with these folk.

False teachers may seem to succeed. But that success will not last long. The truth will win in the end.

In light of this Paul still expects Timothy to obey what he has been taught .

2 Timothy 3:14-15 (HCSB)14 But as for you, continue in what you have learned and firmly believed. You know those who taught you,15 and you know that from childhood you have known the sacred Scriptures, which are able to give you wisdom for salvation through faith in Christ Jesus.

The gospel is not popular. As he gears up for ministry, Timothy needs to know that only God's opinion matters. In this chapter, which are the last written words of Paul we have, Paul instructs Timothy to think of eternity.

Today's Study 2 Timothy Chapter 4

Before we read chapter 4 I have a question.

1. How do you respond when you see friends turning away from the faith?

2. What is the significance of the way in which Paul describes God ?

2 Timothy 4:1-2 (HCSB) 1 I solemnly charge you before God and Christ Jesus, who is going to judge the living and the dead, and because of His appearing and His kingdom: 2 Proclaim the message; persist in it whether convenient or not; rebuke, correct, and encourage with great patience and teaching.

He describes God and Jesus Christ as witnesses to the charge or command he is giving Timothy. He also says that Jesus is the one who will judge those who are living as well as all those who have died before His second coming. This includes believers and nonbelievers.


 Believers at the judgement seat of Christ


Romans 14:10 (HCSB) But you, why do you criticize your brother? Or you, why do you look down on your brother? For we will all stand before the tribunal of God.

This has nothing to do with salvation but for rewards because we are saved by grace through faith.

Ephesians 2:8-10 (HCSB) 8 For you are saved by grace through faith, and this is not from yourselves; it is God’s gift— 9 not from works, so that no one can boast. 10 For we are His creation, created in Christ Jesus for good works, which God prepared ahead of time so that we should walk in them.

Non-believers at the Great White Throne Judgment


Revelation 20:11-15 (HCSB) 11 Then I saw a great white throne and One seated on it. Earth and heaven fled from His presence, and no place was found for them. 12 I also saw the dead, the great and the small, standing before the throne, and books were opened. Another book was opened, which is the book of life, and the dead were judged according to their works by what was written in the books. 13 Then the sea gave up its dead, and Death and Hades gave up their dead; all were judged according to their works. 14 Death and Hades were thrown into the lake of fire. This is the second death, the lake of fire. 15 And anyone not found written in the book of life was thrown into the lake of fire.

This judgment does not determine salvation, either. Everyone at the Great White Throne is an unbeliever who has rejected Christ in life and is therefore already doomed to the lake of fire.

For Paul to charge Timothy wasn't unique in Scriptu


Moses charged Joshua

Deuteronomy 31:7 (HCSB) Moses then summoned Joshua and said to him in the sight of all Israel, “Be strong and courageous, for you will go with this people into the land the LORD swore to give to their fathers. You will enable them to take possession of it.

David charged Solomon

1 Kings 2:1-4 (HCSB)1 As the time approached for David to die, he instructed his son Solomon,
2 “As for me, I am going the way of all of the earth. Be strong and be ⌊courageous⌋ like a man,
3 and keep your obligation to the LORD your God to walk in His ways and to keep His statutes, commands, ordinances, and decrees. This is written in the law of Moses, so that you will have success in everything you do and wherever you turn,4 and so that the LORD will carry out His promise that He made to me: ‘If your sons are careful to walk faithfully before Me with their whole mind and heart, you will never fail to have a man on the throne of Israel.’

Jesus charged the apostles

John 13:34 (HCSB) “I give you a new command: Love one another. Just as I have loved you, you must also love one another.

Paul charged Timothy to Preach the gospel. 

 What is the gospel he's to preach?

1 Corinthians 15:1-4(HCSB)
1 Now brothers, I want to clarify for you the gospel I proclaimed to you; you received it and have taken your stand on it. 2 You are also saved by it, if you hold to the message I proclaimed to you—unless you believed for no purpose. 3 For I passed on to you as most important what I also received: that Christ died for our sins according to the Scriptures, 4 that He was buried, that He was raised on the third day

Be instant (persistent) in preaching it .

Be ready, be at hand, both when it is convenient and when it is not.

Reprove (rebuke, correct)

Exhort (encourage)

The Greek word used is parakaleō (par-ak-al-eh'-o) it is often translated comfort or beseech. Sounds close to paraklētos which is the Greek word for Comforter doesn't it. That comforter we know as the Holy Spirit. Comforter, is a different form of the same word used to encourage.

John 14:16 (KJV) And I will pray the Father, and he shall give you another Comforter, that he may abide with you for ever;

The preaching of the gospel is to be done with patience.

Remember what he told Timothy about dealing with those who argue about words and quibble over unimportant things.

2 Timothy 2:24-25 (HCSB) 24 The Lord’s slave must not quarrel, but must be gentle to everyone, able to teach, and patient, 25 instructing his opponents with gentleness. Perhaps God will grant them repentance leading ⌊them⌋ to the knowledge of the truth.

3. What charge was Timothy to keep?

2 Timothy 4:3-5 (HCSB) 3 For the time will come when they will not tolerate sound doctrine, but according to their own desires, will multiply teachers for themselves because they have an itch to hear something new. 4 They will turn away from hearing the truth and will turn aside to myths. 5 But as for you, be serious about everything, endure hardship, do the work of an evangelist, fulfill your ministry.

The people would rather hear what pleases them. They will find teachers that will tell them what r ears away from the truth so that they cannot hear it. They will prefer that which is new or strange. They will believe false ideas and refuse the word of God.
Don't want to hear the gospel
they
want to hear. These teachers, much like the false teachers were doing in Ephesus would, amuse them, or interest them in something new, a new revelation. But the bottom line is that they will not change. They will turn thei
Despite the fact that the people will not listen to the truth.  Paul still told charged Timothy to;

  • Watch
The Greek word nēphō (nay-fo_) literally means, abstain from intoxicating drinks, but in all NT 
occurrences the idea of watchfulness and alertness is stressed.

  • Endure afflictions
As he lives for the truth, he may well have to suffer what other people will do against hi

  • Do the work of an evangelist
Timothy's life had included a lot of evangelism, along with pastoral and teaching work. In our study of spiritual gifts we defined an evangelist as a person with the divine enablement to effectively communicate the message of Christ to unbelievers who respond in faith and discipleship. This term literally means "messenger of good news". They have a strong desire to communicate the message of salvation to a lost world. A person with this gift often looks and prays for opportunities to work Christ into the conversation.
  • Make full proof of thy ministry 
Complete, fulfill  his ministry

Here's the way Paul says he wants to fulfill his ministry.

Acts 20:22-24 (HCSB) 22 “And now I am on my way to Jerusalem, bound in my spirit, not knowing what I will encounter there, 23 except that in town after town the Holy Spirit testifies to me that chains and afflictions are waiting for me. 24 But I count my life of no value to myself, so that I may finish my course and the ministry I received from the Lord Jesus, to testify to the gospel of God’s grace.

4. The gospel made a big impact in Ephesus, but Paul foresees a major drift of people out of the faith. How does he tell Timothy to handle it?

2 Timothy 4:5 (HCSB)  But as for you, be serious about everything, endure hardship, do the work of an evangelist, fulfill your ministry.

A lot happened in Ephesus most of it recorded in Acts 19. It ended with a riot.

Acts 19:23-29 (HCSB) 23 During that time there was a major disturbance about the Way.24 For a person named Demetrius, a silversmith who made silver shrines of Artemis, provided a great deal of business for the craftsmen. 25 When he had assembled them, as well as the workers engaged in this type of business, he said: “Men, you know that our prosperity is derived from this business.26 You both see and hear that not only in Ephesus, but in almost all of Asia, this man Paul has persuaded and misled a considerable number of people by saying that gods made by hand are not gods! 27 So not only do we run a risk that our business may be discredited, but also that the temple of the great goddess Artemis may be despised and her magnificence come to the verge of ruin—the very one all of Asia and the world adore.” 28 When they had heard this, they were filled with rage and began to cry out, “Great is Artemis of the Ephesians!” 29 So the city was filled with confusion, and they rushed all together into the amphitheater, dragging along Gaius and Aristarchus, Macedonians who were Paul’s traveling companions.

5. Paul is seeing a big part of what he labored so hard to build under God's power dissolve. How can he still feel such satisfaction about his life?

2 Timothy 4:6-8 (HCSB) 6 For I am already being poured out as a drink offering, and the time for my departure is close. 7 I have fought the good fight, I have finished the race, I have kept the faith.8 There is reserved for me in the future the crown of righteousness, which the Lord, the righteous Judge, will give me on that day, and not only to me, but to all those who have loved His appearing.

Paul had to watch a backlash against his apostleship, the incursion of false teaching and rival leaders into his key churches, and desertion by many former associates.

The Lord had called Paul to have faith in Him; this he has done. He had no control over the rest of the situation. Neither do we. He grieved, but did not blame himself. Many Christians go through similar things. If satisfaction in life is based on success, we're in trouble.

6. What life tasks do you need to finish in order to share Paul's satisfaction?

My ministry other than to support those in leadership is to cause the body of Christ to take responsibility for our own actions. To stop blaming Satan and demonic influences for things that we do ourselves or don't do ourselves. To blame and not work out our salvation. Faith is an action word not a sit down and do nothing word expecting God to do things that He Himself has told us to do. Having preached that I am satisfied that I have done what I have been called to do. It's frustrating when you don't see growth or change but like Paul I'm frustrated and grieved for them but I don't blame myself because I have done what I believe God has called me to do.

7. What does 2 Tim. 4:9-13 reveal about Paul's situation?

2 Timothy 4:9-13 (HCSB) 9 Make every effort to come to me soon, 10 for Demas has deserted me, because he loved this present world, and has gone to Thessalonica. Crescens has gone to Galatia, Titus to Dalmatia. 11 Only Luke is with me. Bring Mark with you, for he is useful to me in the ministry. 12 I have sent Tychicus to Ephesus. 13 When you come, bring the cloak I left in Troas with Carpus, as well as the scrolls, especially the parchments.

Paul's aloneness, Paul had just said in verses 6-8 essentially that he was going to die soon. So he
Paul in Prison Oil Painting by Rembrandt - 1627
really wanted to see Timothy. So, he urges Timothy to come as quickly as he can.

His rejection by a former associate who Timothy would have known, Demas had been a friend whom Paul trusted. The first time Paul was in prison in Rome, Demas supported him well.

Philemon 1:23-24 (HCSB) 23 Epaphras, my fellow prisoner in Christ Jesus, greets you, and so do24 Mark, Aristarchus, Demas, and Luke, my coworkers.

But now Demas had gone. Perhaps he wanted an easier life. Perhaps a desire for money caused him to leave Paul. Whatever the reason, he did leave Paul and went to Thessalonica.

Still he continued to send others out in dispatching others like Titus and Tychicus to various jobs,Luke had stayed with Paul. Luke had travelled much with him. Luke was a doctor.

Colossians 4:14 (HCSB) Luke, the dearly loved physician, and Demas greet you.

Notice that Demas was there also when Paul wrote the letter to the Colossian church. Colossians, like Ephesians, Philippians, and Philemon, was written from prison and was delivered with the Epistle to Philemon and (possibly) Ephesians by Tychicus and Onesimus

Luke was also the writer of the Gospel of Luke and of the Acts.

Paul asks Timothy, when he comes, to bring Mark with him. There is some evidence that this is the same person who wrote the gospel of Mark and who was very close to Peter. He was Barnabas' cousin and Paul Barnabas took Mark to Antioch on their first journey missionary journey from Antioch. For some reason he left them and returned home Mark, who at first failed, later proved his worth. While Paul was in prison the first time, Mark was a great help to him.

Colossians 4:10 (HCSB)  Aristarchus, my fellow prisoner, greets you, as does Mark, Barnabas’s cousin (concerning whom you have received instructions: if he comes to you, welcome him),

Since that early failure, Mark had served the Lord and Paul in the spread of the gospel. Now Paul is eager for Mark to come and help him again.

Tychicus had been with Paul on his last visit to Jerusalem

Acts 20:4 (HCSB) He was accompanied by Sopater son of Pyrrhus from Berea, Aristarchus and Secundus from Thessalonica, Gaius from Derbe, Timothy, and Tychicus and Trophimus from Asia.

Paul calls him a brother whom he loved. And he calls him a man who served the Lord. Paul had sent him with his letters to Ephesus and to the Colossians. Paul has now sent him with this letter to Timothy in Ephesus. Perhaps Paul sent Tychicus to replace Timothy while he came to Rome.

8. Read Acts 15:37-40 to discover what breach in Paul's life that had been healed by this time. What effect do unhealed relationships have on you?

Acts 15:37-40 (HCSB) 37 Barnabas wanted to take along John Mark. 38 But Paul did not think it appropriate to take along this man who had deserted them in Pamphylia and had not gone on with them to the work. 39 There was such a sharp disagreement that they parted company, and Barnabas took Mark with him and sailed off to Cyprus.40 Then Paul chose Silas and departed, after being commended to the grace of the Lord by the brothers.

9. What materials does Paul want, with his time running out? What does this request say about him?

2 Timothy 4:13 (HCSB) When you come, bring the cloak I left in Troas with Carpus, as well as the scrolls, especially the parchments.

Paul wanted scrolls and parchments. The scrolls were likely the Old Testament Scriptures. Paul may have wanted them both for his own spiritual nourishment and for preparation for his trial.

10. What things would be most important to you if you only had a few months to live? Why?

Pictures, the word, keepsakes, friends and family.

11. Rome had a big Christian community, but they shunned Paul when he came to trial, see also. Paul could have chosen to burn with resentment. What clues in the passage show why he was not bitter?

2 Timothy 4:16-18 (HCSB)16 At my first defense, no one stood by me, but everyone deserted me. May it not be counted against them.17 But the Lord stood with me and strengthened me, so that the proclamation might be fully made through me and all the Gentiles might hear. So I was rescued from the lion’s mouth.18 The Lord will rescue me from every evil work and will bring me safely into His heavenly kingdom. To Him be the glory forever and ever! Amen.

2 Timothy 1:8 (HCSB) So don’t be ashamed of the testimony about our Lord, or of me His prisoner. Instead, share in suffering for the gospel, relying on the power of God.

2 Timothy 1:12 (HCSB) and that is why I suffer these things. But I am not ashamed, because I know the One I have believed in and am persuaded that He is able to guard what has been entrusted to me until that day.

2 Timothy 1:16-18 (HCSB) 16 May the Lord grant mercy to the household of Onesiphorus, because he often refreshed me and was not ashamed of my chains. 17 On the contrary, when he was in Rome, he diligently searched for me and found me. 18 May the Lord grant that he obtain mercy from Him on that day. And you know very well how much he ministered at Ephesus.

These verses contain a reminiscence of the earlier trial at Rome alluded to in Philippians.

Philippians 1:12-14 (HCSB)12 Now I want you to know, brothers, that what has happened to me has actually resulted in the advance of the gospel,13 so that it has become known throughout the whole imperial guard, and to everyone else, that my imprisonment is in ⌊the cause of⌋ Christ.14 Most of the brothers in the Lord have gained confidence from my imprisonment and dare even more to speak the message fearlessly.

Paul was delivered out of the mouth of the lion and resumed his work, so that the preaching might be fully known. Now, however, in the face of imminent death, Paul was confident of ultimate victory—not that he would escape death, but that God would keep him faithful unto his heavenly kingdom. 

Amen means so let it be. After ascribing glory to God, the seal of sincerity and fervency follows; it serves as a characteristic mark of Paul's whole life: the sincere and wholehearted devotion to the will of God. - The Wycliffe Bible Commentary.

Paul didn't hide his disappointment with the fact that everybody had deserted him but his focus was on God and the fact that that he strengthened him.. Paul says, "The Lord stood at my side and gave me strength." This provides comfort in the face of bitterness.

12. The names in 2 Tim. 4:19-20 denote men, women, Romans, Greeks, nobles and commoners. What comfort would that fact give both Paul and Timothy?

2 Timothy 4:19-20 (HCSB) 19 Greet Prisca and Aquila, and the household of Onesiphorus.20 Erastus has remained at Corinth; I left Trophimus sick at Miletus.

Right up to the end Paul is carrying out his mission . If God could use the present circumstances to propel the gospel forward, there was no need to worry for the future if Timothy and others would be faithful.

13. What are Paul's last words?

2 Timothy 4:21-22 (HCSB) 21 Make every effort to come before winter. Eubulus greets you, as do Pudens, Linus, Claudia, and all the brothers. 22 The Lord be with your spirit. Grace be with you.

Soon it will be winter and cold. He needs that coat which he had asked Timothy to bring. So, he urges him to try as hard as he can to come before winter. To wait for spring could be too late. By then, Paul may have been to the court for the final time. The result of that would probably be his death.

Paul sends greetings from four members of the church at Rome. The rest of the church there also sends greetings.

Paul gives a blessing to Timothy first and then to all the Christians in the church at Ephesus. He prays that the Lord will be with Timothy. Then he ends as he prays for the grace of the Lord to be with them all. all of Paul's readers, the Christians at Ephesus.

Next week we will start our study of Paul's letter to Titus





Sunday, April 19, 2015

Paul's Letters to Timothy - Session 10 - Godlessness In the Last Days/How To Recognize God's Voice

The Church of Divine Guidance (CDG) Sunday morning adult bible study group is studying Paul's pastoral Epistles (Letters) to his protege, Timothy. These posts are my notes for each session. Please study with us. You can participate by asking your questions or making comments in the comments below. We welcome your thoughts and prayers

Review

Last week the title of our study was A Workman Approved By God. What we learned was that the a workman approved by God was one who was able to teach the truth and try to correct those who oppose the truth. They should be patient with them even when they do wrong. The goal is to correct what is false and it is to help these people know and accept the truth. Maybe this will cause them to repent and if so God will forgive them.

2 Timothy 2:23-25 (HCSB)23 But reject foolish and ignorant disputes, knowing that they breed quarrels.24 The Lord’s slave must not quarrel, but must be gentle to everyone, able to teach, and patient,25 instructing his opponents with gentleness. Perhaps God will grant them repentance leading ⌊them⌋ to the knowledge of the truth.

To do that he or she couldn't get caught up in quarreling or even engaging conversation about stuff that isn't important to the gospel or the teaching of it. Quarreling or quibbling ruins those who listen and those who quarrel. It wears people out and chips away at the faith.

2 Timothy 2:14 (HCSB) Remind them of these things, charging them before God not to fight about words; this is in no way profitable and leads to the ruin of the hearers.

It would be silly and a waste of time to argue with them. You can't convince them to change their minds anyway.

2 Timothy 2:16-18 (HCSB)16 But avoid irreverent, empty speech, for this will produce an even greater measure of godlessness.17 And their word will spread like gangrene; Hymenaeus and Philetus are among them.18 They have deviated from the truth, saying that the resurrection has already taken place, and are overturning the faith of some.

The example that Paul used to demonstrate the kind of false teaching that he should avoid was that of The example was Hymenaeus and Philetus who were teaching that the resurrection had already happened.

2 Timothy 2:16-18 (HCSB)
16 But avoid irreverent, empty speech, for this will produce an even greater measure of godlessness.17 And their word will spread like gangrene; Hymenaeus and Philetus are among them.18 They have deviated from the truth, saying that the resurrection has already taken place, and are overturning the faith of some.

They taught that when you believed you came to life again or were resurrected. They said that this was the resurrection. They didn't believe that God would raise people from the dead physically. They thought that the body would remain in the grave. But the Bible teaches that the resurrection is still in the future. Jesus will come again and everybody would be resurrected physically, believers to be with Jesus and unbelievers for judgement.

Mark 13:26-27 (HCSB) Then they will see the Son of Man coming in clouds with great power and glory.27 He will send out the angels and gather His elect from the four winds, from the end of the earth to the end of the sky.

1 Thessalonians 4:13-18 (HCSB)13 We do not want you to be uninformed, brothers, concerning those who are asleep, so that you will not grieve like the rest, who have no hope.14 Since we believe that Jesus died and rose again, in the same way God will bring with Him those who have fallen asleep through Jesus. 15 For we say this to you by a revelation from the Lord: We who are still alive at the Lord’s coming will certainly have no advantage over those who have fallen asleep. 16 For the Lord Himself will descend from heaven with a shout, with the archangel’s voice, and with the trumpet of God, and the dead in Christ will rise first.17 Then we who are still alive will be caught up together with them in the clouds to meet the Lord in the air and so we will always be with the Lord.18 Therefore encourage one another with these words.


Introduction

2 Timothy 3:1-17


Paul ended chapter 2 by telling Timothy that he must be able to teach the truth and try to correct those who oppose the truth. The people that Paul was talking about at that point about are people who may  have a resistance or some problem with some aspect of the gospel, like immersion vs. sprinkling, tongues or no tongues, Saturday worship or Sunday. Paul says be gentle and kind to these folk because they may repent. The goal is to correct what is false and help these people know and accept the truth. Maybe this will cause them to repent and if so God will forgive them.

In chapter 3 however he is talking about false teachers who have a different motive. Their motive is what? Money.  It can also be pride or notoriety.
What Motivates False Teachers 


1 Timothy 6:3-5 (HCSB)3 If anyone teaches other doctrine and does not agree with the sound teaching of our Lord Jesus Christ and with the teaching that promotes godliness,4 he is conceited, understanding nothing, but has a sick interest in disputes and arguments over words. From these come envy, quarreling, slander, evil suspicions,5 and constant disagreement among people whose minds are depraved and deprived of the truth, who imagine that godliness is a way to material gain.

Most of us go through stages in our lives where we are vulnerable to false teachers. Life crises, a serious illness, financial issues, divorce or breakup of a relationship, death, are all doors to change—for good or bad. In addition, guilt, greed and other lusts often distort judgment and give false teachers their opportunity.

Philetus and Hymanaeus, who we talked about last week and just a minute ago are examples.  This is something Timothy fought against and something that we need to recognize and fight also.  We can expect the same kind of struggle that Timothy and Paul had but in spite of the appeal of false teaching  and teachers Paul had confidence in both Scripture and those who live by it. In this chapter he encourages Timothy to have confidence in these things.

What we want to do today is set out some standards for distinguishing truth from false teaching and teachers.

1. What factors do you think would make a person particularly susceptible to heresy?

I just gave you a few a serious illness, financial crises, divorce or breakup of a relationship, death of a loved one. Can you think of others?

2.  What did Paul call to our attention? 

2 Timothy 3:1 (HCSB) But know this: Difficult times will come in the last days.

In the last days, perilous times will come. The word translated as perilous is chlepos which means harsh, difficult, painful, dangerous, fierce, grievous, hard to deal with. It describes a society that has no virtue.

The next few verses list the bad attitudes and the evils that are to come.

2 Timothy 3:2-5 (HCSB)2 For people will be lovers of self, lovers of money, boastful, proud, blasphemers, disobedient to parents, ungrateful, unholy,3 unloving, irreconcilable, slanderers, without self-control, brutal, without love for what is good, 4 traitors, reckless, conceited, lovers of pleasure rather than lovers of God, 5 holding to the form of godliness but denying its power. Avoid these people!

  • They are selfish and only think about themselves. Their aim in life is to get as much money as they can for their own benefit.
  • They are proud. They try to convince people of how much better they are. 
  • They will say evil things. They will not respect other people in how they speak. They will be insulting and not polite. They will not obey or show respect for their own parents.
  • They are not at all grateful for what they are or have. They do not give thanks to God for all that he has given. 
  • They do not have natural feelings and they do not show love. They never forgive people if they think that they have done wrong things to them.
  • They will wrongly accuse people and speak bad things about them. They are not able to control their own actions. They are fierce and wild. They hate everything good because they are evil.
  • You cannot depend on them because they will not be loyal. They will not do what they have promised. They do things without thinking. And they do not care what the effects might be. They will do anything to get what they want.
  • They see themselves as important and they are proud of it. Their one aim is to satisfy their own desires. They love to please themselves. They have no room for God in their lives. They do not love or know him.
We can see them all already in the world. But they will spread wider and get far worse in the last days.

These people Paul is talking about are leaders

3.  What kind of "godliness" will people have in the last days? and What should we do with the kind of people Paul described?

They have a "form of godliness" but "deny its power."   These people wicked persons say that they have some kind of religion. Some will even claim to be Christians. A true belief in God will have the power to change us. And it will change how we live. The attitudes of these people show that they do not have a real belief in God. How they live denies the power of their religion. And so it shows that their religion is false. They keep the God of creation in some box in the heavens where He can accomplish nothing in His own creation. They claim to be people of faith but the only faith they display is in humanistic works

Paul tells Timothy to avoid these people and so should we.

This is the way that it is today in religions of the world. Islam claims to know God but they think that they have to conquer the world for Him and they deny His Son. Jews claim to know God but Israel makes decisions contrary to their own God given scriptures and they still deny His Son. Eastern religious and new age religions claim to know of God or gods but they think that they will exist on earth until, by their own efforts, they become one with the higher powers of the universe. Most in religion today have a form of godliness but they live as if God does nothing supernatural. They live as if God can do nothing outside of the efforts of man. Their God is no God at all.

Christians and those who claim to be Christians can and often do have a form of godliness and deny it's power.

A few examples are:

  •  Those who claim salvation comes through the good works of man 
  • Those who think man will bring a paradise on the earth through his own efforts 
  • Those who do not believe in the power of prayer to God to change things 
  • Those who are do not believe that the Bible is the word of God sufficiently preserved by God for our faith and practice 
  • Those organizations that use, predatory and misleading fund raising techniques 
  • The leader who preys on those in a life crisis 
I'm sure you can think of other examples.

Paul says have nothing to do with these folk. 


4.  How do godless people exploit others? 

2 Timothy 3:6-9 (HCSB) 6 For among them are those who worm their way into households and capture idle women burdened down with sins, led along by a variety of passions,7 always learning and never able to come to a knowledge of the truth.8 Just as Jannes and Jambres resisted Moses, so these also resist the truth, men who are corrupt in mind, worthless in regard to the faith.9 But they will not make further progress, for their lack of understanding will be clear to all, as theirs was also

The people Paul tells us to avoid are those who want to gain control.   The example that Paul uses is women but it can be anyone who is going through something or who is looking for answers to the issues of life.

They prey on our own weaknesses or unresolved emotions so it’s important that we recognize them so that we can avoid being manipulated. We are prey false teachers and teaching when we have guilt, because we can tend to give them the power to absolve us of that guilt. We are also vulnerable when we have self-worth problems, because we think they can offer us approval. When we are lonely, we are susceptible if they offer us friendship or community. When we have a sense of anxiety, we are vulnerable because we think they are strong and can bring order to us. All of these factors tend to motivate people to doubt their own judgment and relinquish it to a powerful leader

5. How can what Paul wrote to Timothy help us to discern when we are being spiritually manipulated?

When we are convinced we are being over influenced by these kinds of people, we should "have nothing to do with them"—make a clean break. Arguing with them would be pointless.   It can be difficult when we are at a low point in our lives to make the decision to get out of an unhealthy involvement. Often the "false teacher" has convinced, or least confused, the person at an intellectual level. It is the feeling or inadequacy that continues to speak.

6. Who were Jannes and Jambres and why are they mentioned?

2 Timothy 3:8-9 (HCSB)8 Just as Jannes and Jambres resisted Moses, so these also resist the truth, men who are corrupt in mind, worthless in regard to the faith.9 But they will not make further progress, for their lack of understanding will be clear to all, as theirs was also.
Illustration of the rods of Aaron and the magicians becoming snakes.


Jannes and Jambres are traditional names for the magicians who turned their staffs into serpents.
Long-standing Jewish tradition says that Jannes and Jambres were the two chief magicians who withstood Moses and Aaron.

Exodus 7:10-12 (HCSB)10 So Moses and Aaron went in to Pharaoh and did just as the LORD had commanded. Aaron threw down his staff before Pharaoh and his officials, and it became a serpent.11 But then Pharaoh called the wise men and sorcerers—the magicians of Egypt, and they also did the same thing by their occult practices.12 Each one threw down his staff, and it became a serpent. But Aaron’s staff swallowed their staffs.

Exodus 7:20-22 (HCSB)20 Moses and Aaron did just as the LORD had commanded; in the sight of Pharaoh and his officials, he raised the staff and struck the water in the Nile, and all the water in the Nile was turned to blood.21 The fish in the Nile died, and the river smelled so bad the Egyptians could not drink water from it. There was blood throughout the land of Egypt.22 But the magicians of Egypt did the same thing by their occult practices. So Pharaoh’s heart hardened, and he would not listen to them, as the LORD had said.

Exodus 8:5-7 (HCSB)5 The LORD then said to Moses, “Tell Aaron: Stretch out your hand with your staff over the rivers, canals, and ponds, and cause the frogs to come up onto the land of Egypt.”6 When Aaron stretched out his hand over the waters of Egypt, the frogs came up and covered the land of Egypt.7 But the magicians did the same thing by their occult practices and brought frogs up onto the land of Egypt.

Here’s Paul’s point


Exodus 8:18-19 (HCSB)18 The magicians tried to produce gnats using their occult practices, but they could not. The gnats remained on man and beast.19 “This is the finger of God,” the magicians said to Pharaoh. But Pharaoh’s heart hardened, and he would not listen to them, as the LORD had said.

Paul's point  was to use the wickedness of Jannes and Jambres, as presented in the Torah, as an illustration of a widespread, active rejection of the truth in the last days. In that it reaches a certain point and after that point is reached it will then have no effect at all.

False teachers and teaching may seem to succeed. But that success will not last. The truth will win in the end. In due time, all will see the true character of these teachers.

7. Why could Timothy trust Paul's spiritual influence?

2 Timothy 3:10-13 (HCSB)10 But you have followed my teaching, conduct, purpose, faith, patience, love, and endurance,11 along with the persecutions and sufferings that came to me in Antioch, Iconium, and Lystra. What persecutions I endured! Yet the Lord rescued me from them all.12 In fact, all those who want to live a godly life in Christ Jesus will be persecuted.13 Evil people and impostors will become worse, deceiving and being deceived.

These are the things that we should look for in leaders to combat false teaching. Here Paul talks about his credentials in contrast to the false teachers. In contrast to being a deceiver, Paul's life had been an open book to Timothy. Paul's influence on Timothy came more through example not through control. He lived by what he taught and paid the price.

Timothy knew that Paul practiced what he preached because He had traveled and worked with him. He had seen how Paul lived out what he believed. Paul’s aim in life was to please the Lord. His main purpose in life was to preach the gospel of Christ to all people.

He also reminded Timothy that he isn't the only one who has to suffer for being a Christian. All who live out their trust in the Lord Jesus will have persecution. All who want to live like this must be ready to suffer. It should not surprise them when trouble comes because they serve the Lord.

He tells him that it’s going to get worse as time goes on. Those who are wicked will get still more evil. There is so much that is false. And there is so much that will turn people from the truth. Even the false teachers will start to believe what they teach.

8. What does he expect Timothy to do and why?

2 Timothy 3:14-15 (HCSB)14 But as for you, continue in what you have learned and firmly believed. You know those who taught you,15 and you know that from childhood you have known the sacred Scriptures, which are able to give you wisdom for salvation through faith in Christ Jesus.

Paul expects Timothy to obey what he has been taught because (1) those who taught him were trustworthy, and (2) he has personally experienced spiritual life from the Scriptures they introduced him to.

He knew who taught him. He knows what they believed. And he knows how they lived. He can trust them because he knows them. Among those who taught him were his mother Eunice, his grandmother Lois and Paul.

2 Timothy 1:5 (HCSB) clearly recalling your sincere faith that first lived in your grandmother Lois, then in your mother Eunice, and that I am convinced is in you also.

His mother raised him to know the Jewish Scriptures. It was the custom for the Jews to teach their children the law of God from an early age. This law of God is the Old Testament, called here the holy scriptures. God gave these scriptures to prepare the Jews and us for the coming of the Messiah. The scriptures teach us about the  Jesus and about our need of salvation. By the scriptures, we can know the truth because they are the words of God.

9. Where does Scripture come from and what is its power ?


2 Timothy 3:16-17 (HCSB)16 All Scripture is inspired by God and is profitable for teaching, for rebuking, for correcting, for training in righteousness,17 so that the man of God may be complete, equipped for every good work.

Scripture comes from God. It is able to bring about a saving relationship with God and instructs us both inside and out.so that we can live as a "thoroughly equipped" man or woman of God. It is as if he breathed them through the human writers.

2 Peter 1:20-21 (HCSB)20 First of all, you should know this: No prophecy of Scripture comes from one’s own interpretation,21 because no prophecy ever came by the will of man; instead, men spoke from God as they were moved by the Holy Spirit.

  • The scriptures show us what God is like. 
  • They show us how God sees us.
  • They teach us what pleases God. T
  • The scriptures show us what sin is. 
  • The scriptures teach that, as we trust in the Lord Jesus Christ, God can forgive us our sins. If we repent of them and bring them to God, he will remove them from us. 
  • By doing what the scriptures tell us, God can change us. 
  • They teach us how to live, as God wants us to live. 
  • God gave the scriptures was to prepare his people for good works. 
This is why it is essential then that Christians read and study the scriptures.

Monday, April 13, 2015

Paul's Letters to Timothy - Session 9 - A Workman Approved By God



The Church of Divine Guidance (CDG) Sunday morning adult bible study group is studying Paul's pastoral Epistles (Letters) to his protege, Timothy. These posts are my notes for each session. Please study with us. You can participate by asking your questions or making comments in the comments below. We welcome your thoughts and prayers


Review

Paul's Second Letter To Timothy
When we were together last, two weeks ago we started our study in Paul’s second and last letter to Timothy. Paul wrote this letter from prison in Rome and are the last known words of Paul because he
was martyred (executed) by Nero sometime before Nero committed suicide in AD 67. Paul wrote the letter because he wanted to see Timothy and asked him to come visit him. He had been abandoned by everybody but Luke.

2 Timothy 4:11 (HCSB) Only Luke is with me. Bring Mark with you, for he is useful to me in the ministry.

Only one person from Asia and apparently for Emphasis even came to see him and that was Onesiphorus.

2 Timothy 1:15-18 (HCSB) This you know: All those in Asia have turned away from me, including Phygelus and Hermogenes  May the Lord grant mercy to the household of Onesiphorus, because he often refreshed me and was not ashamed of my chains.On the contrary, when he was in Rome, he diligently searched for me and found me.  May the Lord grant that he obtain mercy from Him on that day. And you know very well how much he ministered at Ephesus.

They may have abandoned him because he was in prison and they may have either been afraid, or embarrassed. He tells Timothy that he is in prison because of the gospel, and he wasn't ashamed of that and the told Timothy to not be ashamed of the gospel or him either. Then he encouraged Timothy to keep on using the gift that God gave him for teaching the gospel and to do it in love because the false teaching he had written about is his first letter was still going on in Ephesus.

He told Timothy that he may also go through hard times and difficulties for the gospel but to prepare and stay strong.

2 Timothy 2:3-6 (NKJV) You therefore must endure hardship as a good soldier of Jesus Christ. No one engaged in warfare entangles himself with the affairs of this life, that he may please him who enlisted him as a soldier. And also if anyone competes in athletics, he is not crowned unless he competes according to the rules. The hard-working farmer must be first to partake of the crops.

Paul was willing to suffer all this hardship for the gospel and for those who would receive salvation through his preaching and teaching.

2 Timothy 2:8-10 (HCSB)  Keep your attention on Jesus Christ ⌊as⌋ risen from the dead and descended from David. ⌊This is⌋ according to my gospel.  I suffer for it to the point of being bound like a criminal, but God’s message is not bound.  This is why I endure all things for the elect: so that they also may obtain salvation, which is in Christ Jesus, with eternal glory.

We ended with this hymn or poem that Paul included to encourage Timothy.

2 Timothy 2:11-13 (NKJV)  This is a faithful saying: For if we died with Him, We shall also live with Him. If we endure, We shall also reign with Him. If we deny Him, He also will deny us.  If we are faithless, He remains faithful; He cannot deny Himself.

If we have died with him, we shall also live with him (verse 11)
Death with Christ will result in life with him. Death with Christ is death to sin even as Christ died to sin. It is in the death of Christ that Christians have died with him. The death of Christ has freed them from sin. As they believe in Christ, it is as if God has put their old life into his death.They receive a new life now. Christians should consider that they are dead to *sin. And they should consider that they are alive to God. The *Lord has also promised them that as Christ rose from the dead so they will rise. They will live with Christ and never die again.

If we endure, We shall also reign with Him. (verse 12)
The life of the Christians is not an easy one. They may have to suffer many things. There will always be problems that tempt them to give up. But they must remain loyal to Christ. Those who do remain loyal to Christ will rule with him. This looks forward beyond this present life to the life which is to come. Then those who have not given up will join with Christ as he rules as the king of heaven. There are those who did once claim to be Christians but then say that they are not. Now they refuse to admit that Jesus is the Christ. They did not really believe in the *Lord Jesus and they do not know him. They have turned away from him. The day will come when they will have to stand before God. Then Christ will deny them. He will say that He does not know them. They will not live with him in that day.

If we deny Him, He also will deny us. (verse 12)
The life of the Christians is not an easy one. They may have to suffer many things. There will always be problems that tempt them to give up. But they must remain loyal to Christ. Those who do remain loyal to Christ will rule with him. This looks forward beyond this present life to the life which is to come. Then those who have not given up will join with Christ as he rules as the king of heaven. There are those who did once claim to be Christians but then say that they are not. Now they refuse to admit that Jesus is the Christ. They did not really believe in the *Lord Jesus and they do not know him. They have turned away from him. The day will come when they will have to stand before God. Then Christ will deny them. He will say that He does not know them. They will not live with him in that day.

If we are faithless, He remains faithful; He cannot deny Himself. (verse 13)
There are those who did believe in the *Lord Jesus but have turned away from him. Some Christians fail to trust him. But he will keep his promises to them. He will never turn away from them. He is the *Lord who does not change. He will do what he has promised to do. He is always true to his own nature. He is God. For those who do not trust in the *Lord Jesus at all, this is a serious warning. What God has said about the results of their *sins will happen. But some have believed but are weak. They may fail but this should encourage them. They may not always be true to him but he will always be true to them.

Introduction to this weeks study, A Workman Approved By God

This week in chapter 2-14-26 we are going to talk about one of the results of false teaching; arguments and quarrels about insignificant things as it regards the gospel, salvation, and our relationship to God and our brothers and sisters and how to deal with or combat these things.

Empty discussions would unsettle those who heard; but Timothy was to proceed according to the Word, avoiding vanities, remembering the marks of the sure foundation, and seeking, by right conduct, to be useful to the Lord. - The Wycliffe Bible Commentary.

1.  What is result of quarreling about words? (2:14)


2 Timothy 2:14 (HCSB) Remind them of these things, charging them before God not to fight about words; this is in no way profitable and leads to the ruin of the hearers.

Paul tells Timothy to charge or command the people to not quibble over words but to seek the truth. Because the result of quarreling or quibbling ruins those who listen and those who quarrel. It wears people out and chips away at the faith.

2.  What are some examples in the bible of disagreement of something that is not essential to the message of the gospel?


Romans 14:5-6 (HCSB) One person considers one day to be above another day. Someone else considers every day to be the same. Each one must be fully convinced in his own mind. Whoever observes the day, observes it for the honor of the Lord. Whoever eats, eats for the Lord, since he gives thanks to God; and whoever does not eat, it is for the Lord that he does not eat ⌊it⌋, yet he thanks God.

Paul is referring to the discussion in the church in Rome of fasting, on one day over another.   You should remember this from our study of Romans.   Some Christians thought that it was still necessary to obey certain food laws. They thought that they must be careful to keep special holy days. Those Christians were ‘weak in the faith’. They had not discovered the real meaning of Christian freedom. They were worried that certain practices were still necessary.  The weaker Christian prefers one day above another. The stronger Christian holds every day in esteem. The apostle does not take sides here but merely insists that each one be fully convinced in his own mind. This tacitly suggests that each one take thought about the basis for his own opinion. Both groups, whether they observe a day or not, whether they eat or not, are giving thanks to God. Hence there is no question of their devotion to the Lord.

Another example is the discussion about food offered to idols in 1 Corinthians chapter 8.
The problems, then, were these: (1) Might a Christian partake of meat offered to a false god in a heathen feast? (2) Might a Christian buy and eat flesh offered to idols? (3) Might a Christian, when invited to the home of a friend, eat flesh which had been offered to idols? - The Wycliffe Bible Commentary.

Paul’s response was;

1 Corinthians 8:8-9 (HCSB) Food will not make us acceptable to God. We are not inferior if we don’t eat, and we are not better if we do eat.  But be careful that this right of yours in no way becomes a stumbling block to the weak.

3.  Rather than argue what did Paul encourage Timothy to do? (2:15)

2 Timothy 2:15 (HCSB) Be diligent to present yourself approved to God, a worker who doesn’t need to be ashamed, correctly teaching the word of truth.

Instead of arguing or quibbling over words Timothy (replace Timothy with us especially those of us who are leaders) should concentrate on doing our best for God by laying out the truth. Don’t add to it or take anything away from it.  As Paul told Timothy in his first letter, teach  what he learned from Paul and the other apostles.  Paul refers to the words of Jesus which is an indication that written Gospel narratives were well known and in circulation.

1 Timothy 6:3-5 (HCSB)  If anyone teaches other doctrine and does not agree with the sound teaching of our Lord Jesus Christ and with the teaching that promotes godliness,   he is conceited, understanding nothing, but has a sick interest in disputes and arguments over words. From these come envy, quarreling, slander, evil suspicions,  and constant disagreement among people whose minds are depraved and deprived of the truth, who imagine that godliness is a way to material gain.

He should be Give diligence to present thyself approved (asv). Rightly dividing. Handling aright (asv), as a master workman would his tool. -The Wycliffe Bible Commentary.

Like a master carpenter with his tools, or a master chef, or a butcher, or a teacher whose tools are books and other documents.

He also told Timothy that he shouldn’t be ashamed of the truth and what he was teaching. A good worker is not ashamed when people test his work. He knows that what he has done is of the right quality. Timothy must be like that. God has given him a job to do.

4.  Why should we avoid godless chatter? (2:16-18)

2 Timothy 2:16-18 (HCSB) But avoid irreverent, empty speech, for this will produce an even greater measure of godlessness. And their word will spread like gangrene; Hymenaeus and Philetus are among them. They have deviated from the truth, saying that the resurrection has already taken place, and are overturning the faith of some.

To argue about words is of no use at all. It is foolish and vain. The only effect that it can have is to draw people away from the Lord. They draw away those who say these things and those who listen to them.  It would be silly and a waist of time to argue with them. You won't convince them to change their minds anyway. So don't not get involved with it, avoid all such talk.

The examples were Hymenaeus and Philetus. We remember Hymenaeus from our study in 1 Timothy that he was one of the false teachers who had a form of godliness but whose faith was shipwrecked.

1 Timothy 1:18-20 (HCSB) Timothy, my son, I am giving you this instruction in keeping with the prophecies previously made about you, so that by them you may strongly engage in battle, having faith and a good conscience. Some have rejected these and have suffered the shipwreck of their faith. Hymenaeus and Alexander are among them, and I have delivered them to Satan, so that they may be taught not to blaspheme.

They were false teachers who were teaching that the resurrection had already happened. 

The Gnostics conceived of resurrection allegorically, as referring to an acquaintance with truth, occurring at baptism. - The Wycliffe Bible Commentary.

They taught that when you believed you came to life again or were resurrected. They said that this was the resurrection. They did not believe that God would raise people from the dead physically. They thought that the body would remain in the grave. But the Bible teaches that it is still in the future. Jesus will come again. Then those who have died as believers in Him will rise from the dead. God will also raise up nonbelievers. All of them will have to come before God who will judge them.An EasyEnglish Commentary (2800 word vocabulary) on Paul’s Second Letter to Timothy Ian Mackervoy 

Mark 13:26-27 (HCSB) Then they will see the Son of Man coming in clouds with great power and glory. He will send out the angels and gather His elect from the four winds, from the end of the earth to the end of the sky.

1 Thessalonians 4:13-18 (HCSB) We do not want you to be uninformed, brothers, concerning those who are asleep, so that you will not grieve like the rest, who have no hope. Since we believe that Jesus died and rose again, in the same way God will bring with Him those who have fallen asleep through Jesus.  For we say this to you by a revelation from the Lord: We who are still alive at the Lord’s coming will certainly have no advantage over those who have fallen asleep.  For the Lord Himself will descend from heaven with a shout, with the archangel’s voice, and with the trumpet of God, and the dead in Christ will rise first. Then we who are still alive will be caught up together with them in the clouds to meet the Lord in the air and so we will always be with the Lord.18 Therefore encourage one another with these words.

Some people believed what these false teachers taught. They too were turning from the truth. The result of this would be that they would no longer trust in the Lord.

Since the writing of 1 Timothy, Hymanaeus' false teaching has progressed from mere speculative irrelevancies to definite heresy. It began with ego-driven "special teachings" and went on to attack basic articles of the faith, in this case the resurrection. The false teachers wandered from the truth and took followers with them. The result was that some had their faith destroyed.  - The Wycliffe Bible Commentary.

The effect of false teachers, whose motive according to Paul is money, is a reality today.

1 Timothy 6:3-5 (HCSB) If anyone teaches other doctrine and does not agree with the sound teaching of our Lord Jesus Christ and with the teaching that promotes godliness he is conceited, understanding nothing, but has a sick interest in disputes and arguments over words. From these come envy, quarreling, slander, evil suspicions, and constant disagreement among people whose minds are depraved and deprived of the truth, who imagine that godliness is a way to material gain.

5.  What must everyone who confesses the name of the Lord do? (2:19)


2 Timothy 2:19 (HCSB) Nevertheless, God’s solid foundation stands firm, having this inscription: The Lord knows those who are His, and Everyone who names the name of the Lord must turn away from unrighteousness.

God’s solid foundation is the church.

1 Timothy 3:15 (HCSB) But if I should be delayed, ⌊I have written⌋ so that you will know how people ought to act in God’s household, which is the church of the living God, the pillar and foundation of the truth. 

Ephesians 2:19-20 (HCSB) So then you are no longer foreigners and strangers, but fellow citizens with the saints, and members of God’s household,  built on the foundation of the apostles and prophets, with Christ Jesus Himself as the cornerstone. 

That quotation “The Lord knows those who are His” is taken from

Numbers 16:5 (HCSB)5 Then he said to Korah and all his followers, “Tomorrow morning the LORD will reveal who belongs to Him, who is set apart, and ⌊the one⌋ He will let come near Him. He will let the one He chooses come near Him.

If you don’t know the story around this verse it is something that happened while Isreal was in the wilderness on the way to the Promised Land. Korah was a Levite meaning he was from the same tribe as Moses and Aaron. Well Korah got together with a couple other guys and 250 leaders and rebelled against Moses. They said essentially that all of us are holy so why do you and Aaron exalt yourselves over us and everybody else. To make a long story short Moses said tomorrow the Lord will show you who he has chosen. He said tomorrow everybody, including Aaron bring your incense burners and light the incense. They all did the next day and while everybody was gathered together the Lord told Moses to tell the people to get away from the tents of all the rebels. In the end the bible says that the earth opened up and swallowed them, their families and all their stuff, showing that the Lord knew those who were His. That entire account is in Numbers chapter 16.

All who say that they are believers must depart from iniquity and separate from evil.

6.  What does it mean that sort of articles are found in a large house,  and how can someone become an instrument used for noble purposes? (2:20-21)

2 Timothy 2:20-21 (HCSB) Now in a large house there are not only gold and silver bowls, but also those of wood and clay, some for honorable use, some for dishonorable. So if anyone purifies himself from anything dishonorable, he will be a special instrument, set apart, useful to the Master, prepared for every good work.

In the house of a rich man, there would be a variety of pots, pans, jars and dishes. Some of these would be gold or silver. Some would be cheaper materials such as wood or baked mud. Each of them would have their uses.  That large house is the church.

In the church, there is a variety of people. They do not all have the same work to do for the Lord. But each of them should be ready to do what the master wants them to do. Some of the tasks seem to be better than other tasks. But the tasks that seem to be less pleasant are just as essential.

In the church there are both good and bad people. Those who want to follow the Lord must not go after the false teachers. They must be clean from all that is evil. Then they will be ready to do good works. They will be fit for the Lord to use in whatever tasks he wants them to do.

7.  What was Timothy encouraged to flee and to pursue? (2:22)

2 Timothy 2:22 (HCSB) Flee from youthful passions, and pursue righteousness, faith, love, and peace, along with those who call on the Lord from a pure heart.

The preceding verse calls for separation from evil company; this verse calls for fellowship with the Lord's people and seeking the graces of the Spirit. - The Wycliffe Bible Commentary.

Paul refers to Timothy as a young man. Timothy must have been between 30 and 40 years old.

Paul does not say what he meant by the wrong desires of youth. They may be such things as selfish ambitions, a lack of patience and the urge for wrong sex. Paul may have known that Timothy had some weak tendencies. So he tells Timothy to run away from these.

Instead of these wrong desires, Timothy must pursue good things. He must be eager to do what is right.   He must want to please God. Timothy must trust God and put his confidence in him. He must love God and try to love other people. He must do all that he can to live in peace with all people.

8.  Now back to the quarrelling that Paul was talking about earlier. What produces quarrels and what must Timothy and us avoid and do? (2:23-25)


2 Timothy 2:23-25 (HCSB) But reject foolish and ignorant disputes, knowing that they breed quarrels. The Lord’s slave must not quarrel, but must be gentle to everyone, able to teach, and patient, instructing his opponents with gentleness. Perhaps God will grant them repentance leading ⌊them⌋ to the knowledge of the truth.

Foolish discussions and quibbling about words produce quarrels. Paul tells Timothy to have nothing to do with them. He must refuse to argue with those who question the truth. These tend to divide the church and so destroy it.

All Christians are servants of the Lord but Paul is talking about leaders that’s why he refers to them as slaves or servants. They shouldn’t be people who quarrel.They should be kind to everybody even those who attack them or are unkind to them.

They must be able to teach the truth and try to correct those who oppose the truth. They should be patient with them even when they do wrong. The goal is to correct what is false and it is to help these people know and accept the truth. Maybe this will cause them to repent and if so God will forgive them.

9.  What did Paul hope would happen to those who opposed those leaders? 26


2 Timothy 2:26 (HCSB) Then they may come to their senses and escape the Devil’s trap, having been captured by him to do his will.

That they would come to their senses. that God will give them repentance, though they are now in Satan's snare. Pride is indicated as the cause of rejection of truth and falling into Satan's snare - The Wycliffe Bible Commentary.


Some things to think about this week.

  • What kinds of things do we get into senseless arguments with other Christians?
  • When are you tempted to engage in godless conversations?
  • How do you need to change in your daily speech to weed out senseless and godless chatter?
  • What false doctrines have destroyed the faith of somebody you know?
  • How do you usually deal with people who oppose you?


Next week chapter 3





Prayer Warrior: Praying Your Way To Victory - Session 5 - Condition Yourself To Be All You Can Be

The Church of Divine Guidance Sunday Morning Adult Bible Study Group is going through Prayer Warrior The Power Of Praying Your Way T...