Principles of Service
2 Timothy 2
2 Timothy 2
2 Timothy 2.
Be Strong in Grace (2:1)
1 Thou therefore, my child, be strong in the grace which is in Christ Jesus. v.1 When have an appreciation for the grace of God, it gives us the right attitude and perspective. Timothy could see the decline around him. There can be a tendency to be strong in something else, be it the law, or large personalities around us, when we see things morally slipping. But we need to “be strong in the grace which is in Christ Jesus”.
Passing on the Truth (2:2)
2 And the things thou hast heard of me in the presence of many witnesses, these entrust to faithful men, such as shall be competent to instruct others also.
Willingness to Suffer for Christ (2:3-13)
3 Take thy share in suffering as a good soldier of Jesus Christ. 4 No one going as a soldier entangles himself with the affairs of life, that he may please him who has enlisted him as a soldier. 5 And if also any one contend in the games, he is not crowned unless he contend lawfully. 6 The husbandman must labour before partaking of the fruits. 7 Think of what I say, for the Lord will give thee understanding in all things.
8 Remember Jesus Christ raised from among the dead, of the seed of David, according to my glad tidings, 9 in which I suffer even unto bonds as an evil-doer: but the word of God is not bound. 10 For this cause I endure all things for the sake of the elect, that “they” also may obtain the salvation which is in Christ Jesus with eternal glory.
11 The word is faithful; for if we have died together with him, we shall also live together; 12 if we endure, we shall also reign together; if we deny, “he” also will deny us; 13 if we are unfaithful, “he” abides faithful, for he cannot deny himself. vv.11-13 The apostle now speaks of reward. The overarching principle in these verses is that God is faithful concerning His Son! God has been so glorified by His Son, that he takes note of everything we do with regard to Christ, and will see to it that all is answered for. This works both positively and negatively. Only an unbeliever could “deny Him” in the ultimate sense, in which case they would be “denied by Him” at the great white throne. However, the context of “we” and “us” in this pastoral epistle is true believers; 2 Tim. 1:14 says the Holy Spirit dwells in “us”, a fact only true of believers. If we deny Christ when those opportunities arise to speak for Him, then at the judgment seat Christ, He also will deny us a reward in that day. We have a similar thought in Matt. 10:32-33.
Handling Doctrine and the Word of God (2:14-15)
14 Of these things put in remembrance, testifying earnestly before the Lord not to have disputes of words, profitable for nothing, to the subversion of the hearers. 15 Strive diligently to present thyself approved to God, a workman that has not to be ashamed, cutting in a straight line the word of truth.
The Principles of Sanctification (2:16-23)
16 But profane, vain babblings shun, for they will advance to greater impiety, 17 and their word will spread as a gangrene; of whom is Hymenaeus and Philetus; 18 men who as to the truth have gone astray, saying that the resurrection has taken place already; and overthrow the faith of some. 19 Yet the firm foundation of God stands, having this seal, The Lord knows those that are his; and, Let every one who names the name of the Lord withdraw from iniquity. 20 But in a great house there are not only gold and silver vessels, but also wooden and earthen; and some to honour, and some to dishonour. v.20 “Vessels to dishonour” are evidently men like Hymenus and Philetus, who taught doctrines which were destructive to the Christian faith.
21 If therefore one shall have purified himself from these, in separating himself from them, he shall be a vessel to honour, sanctified, serviceable to the Master, prepared for every good work. v.21 Clearly by the way the term “vessels” is used it must be talking about persons, not merely doctrines and practices.
22 But youthful lusts flee, and pursue righteousness, faith, love, peace, with those that call upon the Lord out of a pure heart. 23 But foolish and senseless questionings avoid, knowing that they beget contentions.
A Gentle and Gracious Attitude (2:24-26)
24 And a bondman of the Lord ought not to contend, but be gentle towards all; apt to teach; forbearing; 25 in meekness setting right those who oppose, if God perhaps may sometime give them repentance to acknowledgment of the truth, 26 and that they may awake up out of the snare of the devil, who are taken by him, for “his” will.