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2 Timothy 1

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Introduction to and first chapter study of 2 Timothy.

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Introduction**

This first letter to Timothy was not written after 2 Thessalonians - 1 Corinthians was.

1 Corinthians was.

Nor was the 2nd letter to Timothy written after the first.

The letter to Titus was written in between.

As I have explained before, the order of the books in the New Testament are not arranged by the date written.

They are also not in alphabetical order.

They are also not OUT OF ORDER.

I believe that God has arranged the books of the NT just as He intends for them to be.
They are in the logical order of salvation followed by good works that come out of salvation.
The 4 Gospels deal with God’s provision of the Messiah, Jesus and the salvation of the sinner.
The Gospels are followed by the Acts of the Apostles, which deals with what the Apostles did with the gospel.
But God doesn’t save us and send us without preparing us.
And so every book of the New Testament holds something very important for our continued growth in Christ:
Romans - Being built up in knowledge and faith.
1 Corinthians - Wrong attitudes and conduct.
2 Corinthians - The need for discipleship.
Galatians - Standing fast without compromising freedom.
Ephesians - Maturing in Christ.
Philippians - Follow Jesus.
Colossians - The sufficiency of Christ in all things.
1 Thessalonians - Comfort through the sanctification process.
2 Thessalonians - Looking up rather than out.
1 Timothy - Living as examples.
2 Timothy - Endurance in ministry
Titus - Maintaining
Philemon - From bondage to brotherhood
Hebrews - Christ alone without adding anything.
James - The characteristics of true faith.
1 Peter - Dealing with suffering.
2 Peter - Sticking with the truth.
1 John - Keeping in fellowship with God.
2 John - Not straying from the gospel.
3 John - Fellowship with one another.
Jude - Stand firm and contend for the faith.
Revelation - What is to come.

They serve their purpose very well in the order that they are in.

Now, how did they get in the order they are in?

The manner in which the books were conglomerated into the New Testament after the Gospels was according to author, then according to length.
Of course, not every book in the NT was written by Paul, but many of them were.
Of the 27 books of the New Testament, Paul wrote 13 (possibly 14).

The others were written by Matthew, Mark (Possibly Peter’s account with John Mark writing as scribe), Luke, John, Peter, James, and Jude.

The earliest letter of the New Testament was James, written in 44 AD and the latest is The Revelation of Jesus Christ, written in 94 AD.

This is followed by The Acts of the Apostles.
And then we have Paul’s letters, with Romans, the longest letter, through to Philemon, the shortest of Paul’s letters.
The letter to the Hebrews is a bit of a strange bird as the authorship is not certain, but might be Paul or maybe even Barnabas.
Then after Hebrews the rest of the letters, James, 1-2 Peter, 1-3 John, and Jude follow that same pattern ... Author then longest to shortest … except for Revelation, the last letter of the New Testament.
So, that’s the order of the New Testament, but the earliest letter of the New Testament was James, written in 44 AD and the latest is The Revelation of Jesus Christ, written in 94 AD.
But right now we are interested in the letters which were written by Paul.
If we were going to order Paul’s letters sequentially, it would look like this:
WRITTEN DURING ACTS
Galatians: 50AD ()
1 Thessalonians: 51AD ()
2 Thessalonians: 52 AD ()
1 Corinthians: 57AD ()
2 Corinthians: 57AD ()
Romans: 58AD ()
THEN ACTS ENDS
Colossians: 63AD
Ephesians: 63AD
Philemon: 63AD
Philippians: 63AD
1 Timothy: 65AD
Titus: 65AD
2 Timothy: 67AD
Of course, this is a very different order than we find in the New Testament of our Bible.
And that is because of the reasons I just explained.
Understanding this “out of order-ness” helps us in our study of each individual letter, because each one was written at a particular point in time and into a certain context.
So, as I always like us to do, let’s look at what was going on in Israel and the Roman Empire when this letter was written.
(We’ll talk even more about what was going on in the Ephesian church, and with Timothy as we actually get into the letter.)
Great Fire of Rome Slide
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1 Timothy was written in 65 AD.

Great Fire of Rome Slide

As the name implies, it was written to Timothy, Paul’s faithful companion in ministering the Gospel.

In 65 AD, Jewish Christians were leaving Israel, knowing that the Romans would soon go from repressing Israel to crushing the nation because of uprisings.
Many of those refugees were joining Gentile churches raised by Paul.

A great fire devastated Rome in 64 AD but suspiciously left the estates of Nero and his friend Tigellinus unburned.

Many of the residents of Rome suspected Nero was the source of the fire and began to point fingers at him.

The fire had destroyed many of the districts, where, perhaps not so coincidentally, Nero wanted to build a huge palace and park.
A huge fire had destroyed many of the districts, where, perhaps not so coincidentally, Nero wanted to build a huge palace and park.
The senators of Rome were at odds with the Emperor, Nero.
At the same time, financially, Rome was stressed.
So, Nero needed a scapegoat.
So, Nero needed a scapegoat.
Because the fire had not burned a district of Rome that was populated with Christians, adherents to this seemingly strange new belief in a crucified and resurrected Savior fit the bill perfectly.
And persecution against Christians began to ramp up.
Certain charges became so common that they were stereotypical by the second century: Romans viewed Christians as “atheists” (like some philosophers, for rejecting the gods), “cannibals” (for claiming to eat Jesus’ “body” and drink his “blood”), and incestuous (for statements like “I love you, brother,” or “I love you, sister”).
Judaism was a poor target for outright persecution, because its adherents were numerous and it was popular in some circles; further, Nero’s mistress, Poppaea Sabina, was a patron of Jewish causes. By contrast, Christianity was viewed as a form of Judaism whose support was tenuous even in Jewish circles, and therefore it was an appropriate political scapegoat.
According to Tacitus, an early-second-century historian, Nero burned believers alive as torches to light his gardens at night.
He killed other Christians by feeding them to wild animals as the half-time show in the Arena.
In all, he murdered thousands of Rome’s Christians.
And Christians saw Nero as a prototype of the antichrist.
----

So, having cleared out the land he needed for his humongous new palace and grounds, Nero had started bringing workers, soldiers, and slaves into the city.

The people of Rome were growing more and more upset at Nero.

And he was acting more and more crazy.
In a fit of rage, he stomped his wife and her unborn child to death.
At the same time a plot to assassinate Nero was discovered and Nero became even more paranoid.
Nineteen executions and suicides followed, and thirteen banishments.
nineteen executions and suicides followed, and thirteen banishments.
People, including Senators, were executed without any trial or hearing … just on the whim of Nero.
In 66AD, Nero went to participate in the Olympics in Athens … and he didn’t want to watch … he participated!
And he was so feared that he won all the medals … over 1800 of them in one years worth of competition.
He also performed in the theatres of Greece, imagining himself to be a great thespian.
While he was there, he appointed Vespasian Flavius to deal with the Jewish revolt.
Vespasian would pull together the 2nd largest army in the history of Rome … more than 60,000 soldiers would march toward Israel.
This same year, Nero also signed his own death warrant unknowingly by declaring that Greece would no longer have to pay taxes to Rome.
Of course, this with a food shortage and continued executions enraged the Senate back home.
----
People were beginning to reject Nero’s rule.
Paul, who had been free from prison for the past 2 years, was again arrested and imprisoned in Rome.
In 68 AD, the Senate would condemn Nero to be flogged to death.
He would have to wait another 2 years before he could appeal before caesar.
Nero heard of this and committed suicide.
It was at this time in 66AD that, if Barnabas is the author of Hebrews, he wrote it.
Paul was more and more certain that he would be sentenced to death.
His last words were, “What an artist the world loses in me.”
2 Timothy would soon be written.
----

Going back again to 66AD, things in Israel were heating up dramatically.

The governor of Judea, Florus, decided to confiscate the Temple treasury for himself.

And this caused riots, protests, and bloodshed.
But what really ignited things was the slaughter of thousands of Jews in Caesarea.
In rebellion to Rome, Jerusalem was declared the new capital of Jerusalem and a provisional government was established.
Discord ruled among the Jews … There were 5 Jewish factions that were vying for control, and they all declared war on one another.
In fact, over half the population of Israel would be killed by other Jews over the next 2 years.
At the same time, Rome was planning a massive invasion of Israel.
It was at this time that the book of Hebrews was written, possibly by Barnabas or Paul.
Christian Jews had been fleeing Israel en masse and by 67AD there were no more Christians there.
It was at this time in 66AD that, if Barnabas is the author of Hebrews, he wrote it.
----

As we had noted with our study of 1 Timothy, Christian Jews had been fleeing Israel and by 67AD there were no more Christians there.

Christian Jews had been fleeing Israel en masse and by 67AD there were no more Christians there.

Things in Israel had become truly chaotic.

Israel was turned upside down with violence.
Rome was clamping down and zealots were stirring up trouble.
Most of Israel was overtaken by Vespasian’s army and Jerusalem was surrounded.
The siege of Jerusalem had begun.
Titus Flavius had joined his father, Vespasian and his enormous army.
By 67 AD, most of Israel was overtaken by Rome and Jerusalem was surrounded.
In a few short years Jerusalem would be taken and the Temple destroyed.
----

Paul, who had been free from prison for the past 2 years, was again arrested and imprisoned in Rome … either in 66 or 67AD.

He would have to wait another 2 years before he could appeal before caesar.

It was at this time in 66AD that, if Barnabas is the author of Hebrews, he wrote it.
And Paul was growing more and more certain that he would be sentenced to death.
2 Timothy would soon be written.
----
Keener, C. S. (1993). The IVP Bible background commentary: New Testament (1 Pe). Downers Grove, IL: InterVarsity Press.
When Paul wrote the letter we know as 2 Timothy, his situation had changed drastically. He was now a prisoner in Rome and was facing certain death (). For one reason or another, almost all of Paul’s associates in the ministry were gone and only Luke was at the apostle’s side to assist him (). It was a dark hour indeed.
It was a dark hour indeed.

For one reason or another, almost all of Paul’s associates in the ministry were gone and only Luke was at the apostle’s side to assist him ().

2 Timothy 4:11 NKJV
Only Luke is with me. Get Mark and bring him with you, for he is useful to me for ministry.

But Paul’s great concern was not for himself; it was for Timothy and the success of the Gospel ministry.

In this letter, Paul looks back over his own life with a sense of satisfaction.
He has fought the good fight, … he has finished the race … he has kept the faith.
looks back over his own life with a sense of deep satisfaction. He has kept the faith and he looks forward to the rewards he is sure to claim. But Paul also has final words of exhortation and warning for Timothy. He must remain totally committed. And he must be ready for mounting difficulties, as new challenges to the faith develop from within.
AND he looks forward to the rewards he is sure to claim.
But Paul also has final words of exhortation and warning for Timothy.
He must remain totally committed.
And he must be ready for mounting difficulties, as new challenges to the faith develop from within.
As in his First Letter to Timothy, Paul encouraged his beloved colleague to hang in there and be faithful to his calling.
looks back over his own life with a sense of deep satisfaction. He has kept the faith and he looks forward to the rewards he is sure to claim. But Paul also has final words of exhortation and warning for Timothy. He must remain totally committed. And he must be ready for mounting difficulties, as new challenges to the faith develop from within.
For those of us who are fascinated by “famous last words,” this letter of the Apostle Paul should hold a special attraction. These are his last words, words of wisdom and guidance, as applicable for us today as they were when first read by Timothy, a leader in the emerging church. The values and commitments that Paul shares here with young Timothy are those we can readily adopt and which will surely enrich our lives.
As we have learned, Timothy was timid, suffered from physical ailments, and was tempted to let other people take advantage of him and not assert his authority as a pastor.
As we have learned, Timothy was timid, suffered from physical ailments, and was tempted to let other people take advantage of him and not assert his authority as a pastor.
As we have learned, Timothy was timid, suffered from physical ailments, and was tempted to let other people take advantage of him and not assert his authority as a pastor.
As in his First Letter to Timothy, Paul encouraged his beloved colleague to hang in there and be faithful to his calling.
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In this letter, Paul explains to Timothy that he has sent Tychicus to replace him at Ephesus so that Timothy might join Paul at Rome (, ).

He wanted Timothy to come to Rome before the winter of 68AD.

Paul sent Tychicus to replace Timothy at Ephesus so that Timothy might join Paul at Rome (, ).
He also asked for a cloak, parchment … and surprise, surprise … for John Mark.
You might remember that Paul wanted nothing to do with John Mark after he had deserted he and Barnabas during their first missionary journey.
After that, Barnabas wanted John Mark to join them again, but Paul would have nothing to do with it.
It caused Paul and Barnabas to divide.
Barnabas took Mark to Cyprus and Paul took Silas through Syria and Cilicia.
However, Paul later wrote in Colossians that Mark was with him during his first imprisonment.
So, there must have been reconciliation.
What was Paul’s use for John Mark now?
Some have speculated that he wanted him to come to Rome to aid in translating the Gospel of Mark from Greek to Latin.
This would mean that the Gospel was in fact first written in Greek and later translated to Latin.
But of course we don’t know for sure why Paul needed Mark on this occasion … there is no text that says.
----

While these things are going on, Timothy is overseeing the church at Ephesus.

There, as we saw in Paul’s first letter to him, Timothy is dealing with:

An influx of Jewish believers fleeing the violence in Israel.
Congregants who are saying he is too young and inexperienced.
His own timidness and self doubts.
False Teachers who are twisting scripture and teaching false doctrines.
Congregants who are believing and following after the false teachers, and bringing these things into the church.
A lack of helpful leadership in the church.
Congregants who had a problem with pastors receiving a living wage.
People taking advantage of the church’s benevolence.
People using church to make themselves rich.
And, as was the case in Thessalonica, many in the population at large were not welcoming of Christianity.
In fact, even though Paul had a great ministry in Ephesus, many people did not like the idea that people were abandoning their false gods for the True and Living God.
So, Timothy was dealing with pressures inside the church and outside the church.
AND as we will see, many of these problems which Paul addressed in his first letter to Timothy remained problems 2 years later.
----

This 2nd letter to Timothy was probably sent out in the late summer or early fall of the year 67.

It was, of course, written from prison.

God would soon move Paul off the scene, and Timothy would take his place and continue to give spiritual leadership to the churches.
It would not be an easy task, but Timothy could succeed with the Lord’s help.
For those of us who are fascinated by “famous last words,” this letter of the Apostle Paul should hold a special attraction.
Those are courageous enthusiasm, shameless suffering, and spiritual loyalty.

These are his last words.

The Lord gave him the chance to make his last words count.
And in this letter, Paul gives words of wisdom and guidance, as applicable for us today as they were when first read by Timothy.
The values and commitments that Paul shares here with young Timothy, we can readily adopt and they will enrich our lives.
Prayer: Lord, this morning we open up Your word desiring to hear from You ... not man's word or wisdom, but Your Words and Wisdom. Please soften our hearts to receive from You. Teach us about Your love for us so that we may also love one another. In Jesus' Name. Amen.

v1

v1

Let’s take a moment to break this verse up a little … hopefully not over-analyze it, but there are a few important things to recognize here.
In fact, courageous enthusiasm is essential for success in any kind of work. Paul compared this attitude to stirring up a fire into full flame (). We must not conclude that Timothy was backslidden or lacked spiritual fire. Rather, Paul was encouraging his associate to keep the fire burning brightly so that it might generate spiritual power in his life. Paul gave Timothy four encouragements.
The ministry of the Gospel is no place for a “timid soul” who lacks enthusiasm. In fact, courageous enthusiasm is essential for success in any kind of work. Paul compared this attitude to stirring up a fire into full flame (). We must not conclude that Timothy was backslidden or lacked spiritual fire. Rather, Paul was encouraging his associate to keep the fire burning brightly so that it might generate spiritual power in his life. Paul gave Timothy four encouragements.
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The first is that Paul was an Apostle by the will of God.
Paul as Apostle by the will of God.
Paul as Apostle by the will of God.
In other words, his own authority as an Apostle came from Jesus Christ, who appointed him an Apostle.
Romans 1:1 NKJV
Paul, a bondservant of Jesus Christ, called to be an apostle, separated to the gospel of God

He used similar introductions in many of his letters.

For one thing to identify himself as the one writing the letter.
Secondly, he wanted people to understand that he has authority to give instruction from God.
A good example is the introduction to Galatians.
That’s a letter where Paul takes a pretty authoritative and tough tone, exhorting a church that was straying into legalism to stay grounded in grace.
In the introduction to Galatians, Paul said:
Galatians 1:1 NKJV
Paul, an apostle (not from men nor through man, but through Jesus Christ and God the Father who raised Him from the dead),
Paul was like the general receiving orders from the commander in chief and passing those orders down to the lower ranks.
If your commanding officer gives you orders, you had better follow them because they are as if they came down from the top.
Now, Timothy, whom Paul was writing to, was a friend.
In fact, he was a dear friend.
But Paul was not writing this letter as just a friendly “hello” to Timothy.
He has some very serious matters to bring to Timothy’s attention as the Pastor of the church in Ephesus.
This note of authority is often lacking in the church today.
That is mainly because the Bible is no longer given its proper and effective place in the pulpit.
This note of authority is often lacking in the church today, mainly because—in many instances—the Bible is no longer given its proper and effective use in the pulpit.
But also because many Christians are in rebellion against the Word of God, rejecting it for their own or someone else’s opinions.
----
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There is a third reason that Paul writes this.

And we will glean this more as we get deeper into the letter.

But the gist of it, is that Paul was given a role in the church and Timothy was given a role in the church.
Paul wanted to encourage Timothy in things appropriate to his calling.
Pastor David Guzik takes this idea from this introduction and makes it personal toward you and me.
He says, “Paul had a role to play in God's plan for reaching the world for Jesus Christ, and his role was apostle - a unique ambassador from God to the world. Just as Paul had his role to play, we all have our role to play.
Then Pastor Guzik asks the question, “What's your role to play?”

That role might be different from your calling.

It might be filling in a hole in a ministry where you are needed, even though it’s not what you are good at or what you feel called to do.
You do it because you feel a certain responsibility for serving God in the church.
Many times making ourselves available opens doors for us to live out our calling.
Paul had a role to play in God's plan for reaching the world for Jesus Christ, and his role was apostle - a unique ambassador from God to the world. Just as Paul had his role to play, we all have our role to play - what's yours?
It’s a good question for us to consider because we all do have our role to play, and God wants us to walk in it!
We all have our role to play, and God wants us to walk in it!
We are stewards of the spiritual gifts that God has given us.
It is our responsibility to guard the deposit and then invest it in the lives of others.
We may not always get to do what we want to do, but many times making ourselves available opens doors for us to live out our calling.
BULKSUPP
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The next phrase is “According to the promise of life which is in Jesus Christ.”

What is remarkable about this, is it was because of this gospel that Paul is facing death in that Roman prison.

Yet, he has the assurance in his heart that the very same gospel promises him life in Christ.
That same prison can still be visited in Rome … at least tradition says it’s the same.
I’ve never been to Rome, but descriptions of this dungeon sound a lot like another dungeon that I have seen.
That is the dungeon that was under the High Priest, Caiaphus’ house.
The remarkable thing is that it is because of this gospel that he is facing death in his Roman prison, and yet he has the assurance in his heart that the same gospel promises him life in Christ.
It’s 15’x15’ and 20’ deep and the way in is through a small hole in the ceiling, where prisoners would either be thrown down or lowered down into the pit.
It’s dark, damp, and cold.
This is where Jesus would have spent His last night before His crucifixion, while outside in the courtyard, Peter was denying Him.
Joseph, an Old Testament archetype of Jesus, probably felt this way in the pit where his brothers put him before they handed him over to the Gentiles.
And the feeling of being abandoned in a pit is described in :
Psalm 88:6–7 NKJV
You have laid me in the lowest pit, In darkness, in the depths. Your wrath lies heavy upon me, And You have afflicted me with all Your waves. Selah
Psalm 88:

The dungeon pit under the palace of the High Priest was just a part of Jesus’ suffering, which would end in death on the cross.

He endured it so that you and I (and Paul) could have the promise of life.
So Paul, also in a dungeon … is reminded that he is promised true life in Christ.
He says: “According to the promise of life which is in Christ Jesus.”
The New King James Version. (1982). (). Nashville: Thomas Nelson.
Paul knew he would soon be condemned and executed in Rome at the command of Nero.
Paul sensed this ahead of time, and wrote this.
will be condemned and executed in Rome at the command of Nero shortly. Paul senses this ahead of time
Paul was not speaking of life in this world … (he would soon be leaving this world.)

The promise of life is eternal life, which we have only through Jesus Christ.

How precious this promise of life must have been to Paul as he faced his execution.
He also wrote to Titus while in this same dungeon … saying:
Titus 1:2 NKJV
in hope of eternal life which God, who cannot lie, promised before time began,
Titus 1:1–2 NKJV
Paul, a bondservant of God and an apostle of Jesus Christ, according to the faith of God’s elect and the acknowledgment of the truth which accords with godliness, in hope of eternal life which God, who cannot lie, promised before time began,
It’s a very different outlook than that which someone who rejects the LORD can have.
Titus 1
Someone who rejects the LORD Jesus might look to the sunny side of things or have a good outlook, but they have no promise.
But whatever happens to the Christian, we are in the hands of God, and we cannot be snatched away from Him.

Christ has defeated death.

In verse 10, Paul will speak of, “Our Savior Jesus Christ, who has abolished death and brought life and immortality to light through the gospel.”
our Savior Jesus Christ, who has abolished death and brought life and immortality to light through the gospel,
Do not read below:
2 Timothy 1:10 NKJV
but has now been revealed by the appearing of our Savior Jesus Christ, who has abolished death and brought life and immortality to light through the gospel,
Paul was not in a place of fearfulness, but was in a place of peace, even though his circumstances were terrible.
And so Paul is able to extend to Timothy, “Grace, mercy, and peace.”

v2

Timothy was “a beloved son.”

He was not Paul’s son by blood, yet he was … by the blood of Christ.

We are all brothers and sisters in Christ … Paul was fond of using the word Adelphos “brethren” when referring to other believers.
But Paul had mentored Timothy and so he was like a son to him.
The word for “beloved” here is ἀγαπητός Agapētos … from Agape.
“Timothy, my dearly beloved son” is much stronger than “Timothy, my own son in the faith” (). It is not that Paul loved Timothy less when he wrote that first letter, but that Paul was now expressing it more. As Paul’s life drew to a close, he realized in a deeper way how dear Timothy was to him.
Perhaps as Paul’s life here was drawing to a close, he realized in a deeper way how dear Timothy was to him.
Paul’s own circumstances were difficult, and yet he was greatly encouraged.
He was firmly in the hands of God and he had the promise of life in Jesus Christ.
As was the case with 1 Timothy, this letter was written to Timothy, Paul’s disciple.
As was the case with 1 Timothy, this letter was written to Timothy, Paul’s disciple.
Because of this he was able to encourage others.
And writing to Timothy (and this is God’s Word to us as well) Paul is able to extend encouragement even from the dungeon pit he was being kept in.
He writes, “Grace, mercy, and peace from God the Father and Christ Jesus our Lord.”
2 Timothy 1:2 NKJV
To Timothy, a beloved son: Grace, mercy, and peace from God the Father and Christ Jesus our Lord.
2 Timothy
Grace: Is the free, unmerited love of God toward the unworthy.
It is extended to us in several ways … common grace, keeping grace, and saving grace.
You may have only heard anyone ever teach of saving grace, but there is also the grace of God that all people, believers and unbelievers alike depend on.
Common grace is God’s providential care out of His love to all mankind.
Jesus put it like this: “He makes His sun rise on the evil and on the good, and sends rain on the just and on the unjust.”
Don’t read below:
Matthew 5:45 NKJV
that you may be sons of your Father in heaven; for He makes His sun rise on the evil and on the good, and sends rain on the just and on the unjust.
That kind of love is not dependent on anything in man himself.
It is free to all, and totally unmerited.
Saving grace is the forgiveness of sins and the promise of eternal life through faith in Christ.
We cannot save ourselves, nor can we earn our salvation.
We can only receive it as the free unmerited gift of God.
As says:
Ephesians 2:8–9 NKJV
For by grace you have been saved through faith, and that not of yourselves; it is the gift of God, not of works, lest anyone should boast.
But, once we are saved, there is another grace that is incredibly important!
Keeping grace is the fresh supply of God’s love and power to see us through the circumstances of each day.
Keeping grace is the fresh supply of God’s love and power to see us through the circumstances of each day.
Paul was quite obviously rejoicing in God’s keeping grace as he was imprisoned.
Keeping Grace is very well expressed in John Newton’s Amazing Grace where it says:
“Through many dangers, toils and snares
I have already come;
’Tis grace has brought me safe thus far,
And grace will lead me home.”
Or, better yet, scripture says: ‘From the fullness of his grace we have all received one blessing after another’ ().
As John says, ‘From the fullness of his grace we have all received one blessing after another’ ().
John 1:16 NIV84
From the fullness of his grace we have all received one blessing after another.
John 1:16 NKJV
And of His fullness we have all received, and grace for grace.
Many Christians never understand that the grace that “saves” them, also has the power to “keep” them.
As much as grace is the one method through which God saves a sinner, it is also the one method through which God keeps us saved.
Many never understand that the grace that “saves” them, also has the power to “keep” them. As surely as grace is the one method through which God can save a wretched sinner, it is also the one method through which God keeps us saved. Human ability can no more maintain a relationship with God than it can attain such a relationship.

Human ability can no more maintain a relationship with God than it can attain such a relationship.

So, the fact that God keeps those He has saved is very important to us.
God’s Word tells us that for the Christian there is no condemnation, there is no obligation, and there is no merit … it is completely and totally by the LORD.
I have already come;
’Tis grace has brought me safe thus far,
And grace will lead me home.

He will keep us by His power.

He will keep us by His power.
Check out these verses:
Ephesians 3:20 NKJV
Now to Him who is able to do exceedingly abundantly above all that we ask or think, according to the power that works in us,
2 Timothy 1:12 NKJV
For this reason I also suffer these things; nevertheless I am not ashamed, for I know whom I have believed and am persuaded that He is able to keep what I have committed to Him until that Day.
Hebrews 7:25 NKJV
Therefore He is also able to save to the uttermost those who come to God through Him, since He always lives to make intercession for them.
Romans 4:21 NKJV
and being fully convinced that what He had promised He was also able to perform.
Some encouraging stuff, right?
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He was not Paul’s son by blood, yet he was … by the blood of Christ.
But that’s not all because Paul offers a few more encouraging words:
Next up is Mercy:
All who have received the gift of salvation are the recipients of God’s mercy. As Toplady’s hymn says:
The word for “beloved” here is ἀγαπητός Agapētos … from Agape.
A debtor to mercy alone,
All who have received the gift of salvation are the recipients of God’s mercy.
Of covenant mercy I sing;
But it is because we have received God’s mercy that we in turn will show mercy to others.
‘Blessed are the merciful,’ said Jesus ().
Do not read below:
Matthew 5:7 NKJV
Blessed are the merciful, For they shall obtain mercy.

Mercy is active, … it is not passive.

It is not enough to FEEL merciful and compassionate to those who are suffering.
We must deliberately bring our will into play by doing what we can to relieve that misery.
Christ illustrated this in the parable of the Good Samaritan.
The priest and the Levite may have felt pity for the man who was mugged on the Jericho road, but they did nothing about it!
The Samaritan, on the other hand, showed he had experienced God’s mercy by acting in a merciful way ().
But the “mercy” that Paul speaks of here is from God, which is also active.
Mercy in relation to the LORD is God not punishing us as our sins deserve.
mercy is God not punishing us as our sins deserve, and grace is God blessing us despite the fact that we do not deserve it. Mercy is deliverance from judgment. Grace is extending kindness to the unworthy.
This is different from grace, in that grace is God saving us despite the fact that we do not deserve it.
Mercy is deliverance from judgment.
Grace is extending favor to the unworthy … it’s what saves us.
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Mercy
Finally comes what is perhaps the most remarkable encouraging word from Paul given his circumstances.
Peace
Mercy
Peace: Peace is a state of tranquility or quietness of spirit that transcends circumstances.

If God is peace, then to know God is to bask in His peace.

Peace is a state of tranquility or quietness of spirit that transcends circumstances.

The closer we draw to Him, the more of His peace we can enjoy.

If God is peace, then to know God is to bask in His peace. The closer we draw to Him, the more of His peace we can enjoy

God’s peace is a treasure.

These all come from God the Father and Christ Jesus our Lord.

But to have it we must first be reconciled to God.

We must be at peace with Him to have His peace.
Before we are saved, we are in opposition to God … our thoughts and our feelings are opposed to God.
The Bible says:
Romans 8:7–8 NKJV
Because the carnal mind is enmity against God; for it is not subject to the law of God, nor indeed can be. So then, those who are in the flesh cannot please God.
That person’s life, thoughts and feelings are all in opposition to God.

However, through Christ’s death on the cross to bear the judgement of our sin, we can be reconciled to God.

Through Christ’s death on the cross to bear the judgement of our sin, we can be reconciled to God, and when that happens, we immediately begin to experience the gift of peace in our hearts. Our conscience is at rest, our relationship with God is settled, and the thought of judgement no longer disturbs us.
Through Christ’s death on the cross to bear the judgement of our sin, we can be reconciled to God, and when that happens, we immediately begin to experience the gift of peace in our hearts. Our conscience is at rest, our relationship with God is settled, and the thought of judgement no longer disturbs us.

God’s peace is a treasured possession but to have it we must first be reconciled to God, or be at peace with him instead of being alienated from him. Prior to conversion, a person is the enemy of God, and remains under God’s wrath and judgement. That person’s life, thoughts and feelings are all in opposition to God. ‘The sinful mind is hostile to God. It does not submit to God’s law, nor can it do so. Those controlled by the sinful nature cannot please God’ (Rom. 8:7–8).

Through Christ’s death on the cross to bear the judgement of our sin, we can be reconciled to God, and when that happens, we immediately begin to experience the gift of peace in our hearts. Our conscience is at rest, our relationship with God is settled, and the thought of judgement no longer disturbs us.

When that happens, we immediately begin to experience the gift of peace in our hearts.

Our conscience is at rest, our relationship with God is settled, and the thought of judgement no longer disturbs us.
And that peace grows as we get to know God better, depending on Him, and trusting in Him.
This is the peace that Paul wrote to the Philippians is, “Beyond understanding.”
Philippians 4:6 NKJV
Be anxious for nothing, but in everything by prayer and supplication, with thanksgiving, let your requests be made known to God;
Philippians 4:7 NKJV
and the peace of God, which surpasses all understanding, will guard your hearts and minds through Christ Jesus.
Philippians 4:6–7 NKJV
Be anxious for nothing, but in everything by prayer and supplication, with thanksgiving, let your requests be made known to God; and the peace of God, which surpasses all understanding, will guard your hearts and minds through Christ Jesus.

v3-5

v3

Paul starts out with thanksgiving to God (for Timothy) and letting him know that he is praying for him.

Paul, in prison and about to die, is praying for Timothy, who is free and serving the church in Ephesus.

Ancient letters often included thanksgivings to God (or gods) and prayers on behalf of the recipient, who was often praised in the thanksgiving.
Ancient letters frequently included thanksgivings to God or gods on behalf of the addressee, who was often praised in the thanksgiving.
But those are usually free-person to free-person … not prisoner to free-person.
Ever determined to serve the LORD, Paul is doing everything he can to continue in ministry … praying for Timothy, encouraging believers, and writing instructions to the church.
As a dedicated servant of the LORD, committed to ministry, the gospel, and the church, Paul is doing everything he can despite his circumstances.

He might be constrained physically, but he cannot be constrained from prayer.

And that is an important point for us to recognize.

Prayer is such a powerful gift from God and one that no power of man or of Satan can take from us.

I wonder how often we feel as if we are powerless because of our circumstances, when such a great power is readily available to us?
The situation doesn’t matter … we are never powerless because the power of prayer is not us, the power of prayer is God, Who hears and answers prayer.
Jesus said in :
Luke 1:37 NKJV
For with God nothing will be impossible.”

God hears prayers and He answers prayers.

the power of prayer is, quite simply, the power of God, who hears and answers prayer.
And since God in His Word invites us to pray persistently AND with a heart that is right with Him, I imagine that prayers made when we are enduring trials due to our faith are very effective.
And if you’ve ever been in a situation where people are praying for you and you’ve felt yourself covered in the prayers of others, you can imagine what Timothy must have been feeling.
Desiring to see Timothy, yet bound in chains, this great “Apostle of Jesus Christ by the will of God” is remembering Timothy in his prayers night and day without ceasing.

Paul knew these were some of his last words, which shows how important he felt it was to tell Timothy that he was praying for him.

This must have been a great encouragement to Timothy who was having such a difficult time with the church in Ephesus.
to continue in ministry … praying for Timothy, encouraging believers, and writing instructions to the church.
Letting others know that we are praying for them is a great encouragement that we should not withhold from one another.
We do not know if Timothy’s mother and grandmother were still living; but if they were, they were certainly bearing him up in prayer.
What a blessing it is to have praying friends and family!
What an encouragement it is to pray for others and to help them along in their spiritual lives.
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Paul encouraged Timothy with prayer, but also reminded him of all he had to be thankful for despite the problems he was facing.

And keep in mind that this encouragement to be thankful comes from a man held in chains in a dungeon.

Some of these things may ring true for us as well things that we, like Timothy should heed Paul’s encouragement to be thankful for.
He reminds Timothy of his godly heritage.
Timothy was technically a third generation Christian.
Timothy was a third generation Christian and owed his ‘sincere faith’ to the groundwork done in his life by his mother and grandmother who had taught him the scriptures from infancy (). Throughout the Bible, the role of the family and godly parentage is clearly taught: ‘Honour your father and your mother’ (). ‘Train a child in the way he should go, and when he is old he will not turn from it’ (). ‘Children obey your parents in the Lord, … Fathers, do not exasperate your children; instead, bring them up in the training and instruction of the Lord’ ().
He owed his ‘sincere faith’ to the groundwork done in his life by his mother and grandmother.
As chapter 3 points out, they had taught him the scriptures from infancy.
Throughout the Bible, the role of the family and godly parentage is clearly taught:
‘Honor your father and your mother’ ().
Do not read below:
Exodus 20:12 NKJV
“Honor your father and your mother, that your days may be long upon the land which the Lord your God is giving you.
Exodus 20:12 NKJV
“Honor your father and your mother, that your days may be long upon the land which the Lord your God is giving you.
‘Train a child in the way he should go, and when he is old he will not turn from it’ ().
Do not read below:
Proverbs 22:6 NKJV
Train up a child in the way he should go, And when he is old he will not depart from it.
‘Children obey your parents in the Lord, … Fathers, do not exasperate your children; instead, bring them up in the training and instruction of the Lord’ ().
Do not read below:
Ephesians 6:1–4 NKJV
Children, obey your parents in the Lord, for this is right. “Honor your father and mother,” which is the first commandment with promise: “that it may be well with you and you may live long on the earth.” And you, fathers, do not provoke your children to wrath, but bring them up in the training and admonition of the Lord.
Being a parent in today’s society is difficult to say the least, especially when there is no father to act as a role model as was true in Timothy’s case.
But God gives a special grace for the task.
That is evident from the good job Lois and Eunice did in bringing up Timothy who was to become a powerful advocate of the gospel and the pastor of the church at Ephesus.

Timothy could be thankful for his family … God had hooked him up, so to speak.

Not all believers come from a Christian heritage and many in Timothy’s day as well as today are rejected by their families because of their faith.

God gives grace for people to endure those situations as well.
Paul also reminds Timothy to be thankful for his genuine faith.
By using ἀνυπόκριτος Anypokritos (anee-poh-kreetohs), Paul means not only faith for salvation, but also for daily living and Christian service.
Anypokritos or genuine means “without hypocrisy.”
Which means the same faith that he has in Christ to save him, he has in Christ to sustain him and see him through.
In other words, who he is at church, he is outside of church.
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I wish we could keep going this morning, but there’s just too much here and I don’t want to gloss over anything.
So, let’s close and we’ll jump right into the deep end next week.
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In his introduction, Paul desired to be with Timothy.
But he is comforted knowing of Timothy’s faith and perseverance in serving the LORD.
Timothy’s tears brought joy to Paul, not because Paul was cruel, but because he knew that Timothy was serving well.
But Timothy’s tears brought joy to Paul, not because Paul was cruel, but because he knew that Timothy was serving well.
Paul could have been discouraged.
He was imprisoned because of his faithful obedience to Christ.
And, like Jeremiah in the Old Testament, many of his brethren having turned away from him.
Paul could be discouraged; like Jeremiah in the Old Testament, his life is to end while God’s people are turned away from him, and he will not live to see the fruit of his ministry. His consolation, however, is that he has been faithful to God (4:7–8), and he exhorts Timothy to follow in his paths no matter what the cost.
And he will soon be executed without seeing the fruit of his ministry.
His consolation, however, is that he has been faithful to God, and he is able to exhort Timothy in word and example to follow in his paths no matter what the cost.
“Which dwelt first in your grandmother Lois and your mother Eunice” - faith is handed down.
We’ll pick up with this idea next week.
“Whom I serve with a pure conscience.”
Prayer: Heavenly Father, as we approach Your Word this morning, we ask that You prepare our hearts to receive by faith all that You have to say to us. I pray that this wonderful knowledge we receive from Your Word will lift us up and bring us comfort. Help us to live our lives in such a way that we have a good testimony among one another and before all people, so that You are glorified and that others would desire to come to a saving knowledge of You. In Jesus name. Amen.
“As my forefathers did.”

v4-5

Paul was in prison.
Serving the LORD as a Pastor is not easy and it’s a job that will bring you to tears.
But Timothy’s tears brought joy to Paul, not because Paul was cruel, but because he knew that Timothy was serving well.
“Genuine” is the Greek word ἀνυπόκριτος anypokritos and means “without hypocrisy.”
“Which dwelt first in your grandmother Lois and your mother Eunice” - faith is handed down.

v6

“Stir up” is the Greek word ἀναζωπυρέω Anazōpyreō which means “rekindle” as one might stir glowing coals back into a flame.
“Gift” is the Greek word χάρισμα Charisma and it is from God.
Laying on of Paul’s hands.

v7

Power - δύναμις Dynamis
John 14:27 NKJV
Peace I leave with you, My peace I give to you; not as the world gives do I give to you. Let not your heart be troubled, neither let it be afraid.
Romans 8:15 NKJV
For you did not receive the spirit of bondage again to fear, but you received the Spirit of adoption by whom we cry out, “Abba, Father.”
1 John 4:18 NKJV
There is no fear in love; but perfect love casts out fear, because fear involves torment. But he who fears has not been made perfect in love.

v8

Paul suffered for the gospel.
Timothy suffered for the gospel.
Why do so many Christians think they should be above suffering?
Suffering is “according to the power of God.”
But not according to as in casting blame on the power of God for suffering.
Rather it’s “relying on” the power of God.

v9

To be saved is to be called.

v10-12

v13-14

This looks back to something Paul addressed in his first letter to Timothy, that is “Guarding the Faith.”

v15-18

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