Southern Christian University

The Pastoral Epistles  #2

Titus and II Timothy

James A. Turner


Please read all the references. They will help in a better understanding.


During the time between the first Roman imprisonment and the second Roman imprisonment Paul and Titus evidently did missionary work on the island of Crete. If you ask how do you know that? There is no mention of any missionary work being done there in the book of Acts, and further the fact that Paul had left Titus there to “set in order the things that were wanting, and appoint elders in every city (Titus 1:5).”Now on the day of Pentecost, there were people present from Crete (Acts 2:11).  And it is possible, that the church had its beginning back there. Some Cretans may have obeyed the gospel during that early period, and thus the beginning of the church on the Island of Crete, but from what is said, here in these first few verses, that does not appear to be the case. To say the least, Paul and Titus had just done work there, and none of the churches in all cities were fully organized with elders.


Paul and Titus must have just recently done missionary work in every city, because Titus was to “appoint elders in every city.” So Paul had left Titus to further that proper organization of the church, and to reprove those Cretan brethren sharply because they were in such a bad environment, and the brethren had not made much spiritual progress. The Cretans, in general, were big liars and idol gluttons.  So the people through out all the cities were, a lazy, gluttonous and lying people. In some communities today, that is the pattern, but the power of the gospel can change the conduct of those who believe, but when people are converted out of such an environment, they are going to need a little different treatment than those who have been reared in an environment, where the people are good workers, honest, and have some good moral standards.   And I am guessing that Paul made a wise decision when he did evangelistic work with Titus.  I get the idea that Titus was a fellow that could get as sharp as he needed to with such people.  Timothy was probably quite different, and Titus must have been the best choice for the needs of those new converts from such a bad environment.  But Timothy probably did better work in Ephesus than Titus would have done.  You can observe that some preachers fit better at one place than they do at another place.  Now some preachers who do excellent work in rural areas may not be able to work as effectively in some of the city churches.


"Paul, a servant of God, and an apostle of Jesus Christ, according to the faith of God's elect."  Paul begins all three of the Pastoral Epistles with stress on his apostle ship, and both Timothy and Titus were his converts. Why? The instruction of the epistles was primarily for the benefit of the churches, and I Corinthians 1:2; II Corinthians 1:1; I Thessalonians 5:27; Colossians 4:16; I Peter 1:1; show that the epistles were to circulate from one church to another, and they were to be read in the assemblies of the churches; therefore the apostles needed to stress their authority, that they were stewards of the New Testament (I Corinthians 4:1; II Corinthians 3:6). "And the knowledge of the truth which is according to godliness; in hope of eternal life, which God, who cannot lie, promised before times eternal."  Many people are ready to reason that God can do anything that he wants to do; this reference says that God “cannot lie”.  Is any man supposed to gloat and say, well I can do something that God cannot do-- God cannot lie, but I can!  The reference is stressing the greatness of God, that the holiness and justice will not allow him to do some things. There are a number of things that the Bible teaches that God cannot do, and if we had plenty of time, we would talk about some of those things.  But let me at least mention that he cannot save a rebellious sinner.  His holiness and righteousness and justice will not allow that, just like it will not allow him to lie.  He could not allow the blood of animals to make complete atonement for sin (Hebrews 10:4). He cannot save any man apart from that man applying the blood of Christ, because the blood of Christ is necessary for atonement.  God has made man a free moral agent, and it is necessary for each person to take those steps necessary to apply the power of the cleaning blood to his or her life. 


Verse three, "But in his own seasons, manifested his word in the message, where with I was entrusted according to the commandment of God our savior; to Titus, my true child after a common faith."  So Paul had converted Titus, and Timothy (I Timothy 1:2).  "Grace and peace, from God the Father and from Christ Jesus our savior.  Please note again that Paul uses both the Greek (grace) and the Jewish (peace) form of greetings in his epistles. For this cause I left thee in Crete."  Paul had to be at Crete with Titus in order to leave him there.  "That thou shouldest set in order the things that were wanting, and appoint elders in every city, as I gave the charge."  That seems to indicate that most of these churches must have been newly established churches.


In verses five through seven he gives the qualifications for elders and when the epistle was read the church would know what men were to be appointed as elders. "If any man is blameless, the husband of one wife, having children that believe who are not accused of riot or unruly."  Notice the reading is a little different here in verse six in the American Standard Version, “having children that believe.”  Somebody will nearly always raise the question about a brother who has only one child. Is he qualified with only one child?  Well consider how we count that in regard to other matters. Say if members of the Masonic Lodge give out an announcement in the community that we want all the parents with children to meet at the Masonic Lodge next Tuesday night, for we want to tell you about some of the great things we are going to do for the children of this community.  If there are parents who have only one son or one daughter, won't they be there?  Children takes care of one child or a plurality of children.  It is strange how some are prone to interpret statements in the Bible, very different from everyday usage, and especially when it comes to choosing elders of the church.  "For the bishop must be blameless, as God's steward; not self-willed."  Please note again that no Christian should be self willed (Matthew 16:24; Galatians 2:20; Philippians 1:21), but a church will be in big trouble if a self-willed man is appointed as an elder, because he will try to have his will, and run rough shot over others, and even in things which turn on human judgment he will be bent on his selfish desires.  "Not soon angry."  Now, it does not say he is not supposed to ever get angry, but “not soon angry.”  Emphasizing the control of his anger.  "No broiler, no striker, not greedy of filthy lucre; but given to hospitality, a lover of good, sober minded, just, holy, self‑control."  All of these things are supposed to be true of all of us as Christians. 


Verse nine, "Holding to the faithful word which is according to the teaching." This is a parallel to “apt to teach” in I Timothy three, but here emphasis is on to what extent he is to be able to teach.  "That he may be able both to exhort in sound doctrine and to convict the gainsayers."  So an elder is to not only know when false doctrine is being taught, but he is to have enough know and conviction that will cause him to “convict the gainsayers,” those who are teaching contrary to the Bible. They of the circumcision were willful false teachers who were still trying to bind circumcision and keeping certain other things from the law upon the Gentile Christians, and you can see how they could have a hay day in all of those churches of Crete, because they did not have elders to convict them. So Paul is saying that all of these churches need qualified elders who can, and will convict them and show the people how that they are false teachers. We have already talked about the bad reputation of the Cretan people and how that Titus must have been the kind of preacher that the brethren needed. Paul tells Titus to “reprove them sharply” There are a few brethren who think that there is no proper places for negative preaching that a good preacher can handle all negative problems in a positive way. Well, such men do not want men like Paul and Titus as their preacher. So Titus is commanded to go the negative route.  "For which cause reprove them sharply, that they may be sound in the faith."  And in II Timothy 4:2, Paul told Timothy to “reprove, rebuke, and exhort with all longsuffering and teaching.”  Two negatives and one positive, but that does not mean that is always the proper balance; but it does mean that faithful preachers will be ready to deal with the negatives and the positives like Paul did in Ephesians 4:22-32 and Colossians 3:5-16.     "Not giving heed to Jewish fables, and commandments of men, who turn away from the truth.  To the pure all things are pure."  Righteous people are looking for the things that are good and right rather than for the evil, and they rejoice in the way of truth (I Corinthians 13:6).   "But to them that are defiled and unbelieving nothing is pure; but both their mind and their conscience are defiled."  Such men cannot look on a beautiful woman without having to lust after her.  But a man with a pure mind can appreciate her beauty without lusting after her.  "They profess that they know God; but by their works they deny him, being abominable, and disobedient, and unto every good work reprobate."  So hypocrites are abominable to the Lord. 


Chapter Two

"But speak thou the things which befit the sound doctrine:  That aged men be temperate, grave, sober minded, sound in the faith, in love, in patience.  That aged women likewise, be reverent in demeanor; not slanderers or enslaved to much wine, teachers of that which is good."  Do you recall how that in recent months there have been two tragic bus accidents, when senior citizen women were on their way to or from a gambling casino? In to regard the last one they had joined together on Mother's Day and were on their way, they thought, to a casino to gamble.  Verse four, "That they may train the young women to love their husbands to love their children, to be sober minded, chaste, workers at the home, kind, being in subjection to their own husbands, that the word of God be not blasphemed."  This teaching should begin in the home, with the mother teaching her daughters with good Bible teaching, and by being a good example and role model for them to follow. But there are some young women in the church that did not have the right kind of mothers, and thus the aged women in the church should give them instruction and example that they may “train the younger women to love their husbands, to love their children.  And I like to see a church where all the young people, and especially young ladies in the church, want to see and hold all of the new babies and pay a lot of attention to all of the little boys and girls in the church, because that is a good indication that they are getting some good training at home.  "Be sober minded, chaste, workers at home."  What is one of the things wrong in our society today?  There are mothers out of the home, when they need to be at home with those little children teaching, and correcting and encouraging them in those things that are good.  The heavy tax burden is one thing that has contributed to this bad situation! Has it not been said that it takes four months work per year in some income groups just to pay their taxes, and sometimes it looks like a family can hardly exist without both the husband and the wife having public jobs; but Matthew 6:33 still reads, “seek ye first the kingdom of God and his righteousness, and all these things (food, clothing and shelter) shall be added unto you”.  It might be that things might work out just as well if the wife would stay at home when she thinks she has to go to work.  I am not saying that working outside the home is sinful, but when it comes to a mother ‑‑ and especially with those children at home ‑‑ they need some help.  They need much help and guidance from a mother at home when the children are at home.  " Workers at home,” and that is the place where a woman is best suited to do her best work.  "Kind, being in subjection to their own husbands."  That parallels what we read in Ephesians five.  "That the word of God be not blasphemed."  When wives are in subjection to their own husbands, and are faithful and loyal to them, they leave no room for the devil's camp to be speaking against them.  "The younger men likewise exhort to be sober minded in all things showing thyself an example of good works."  Remember he exhorted Timothy to be a good example to all believers (I Timothy 4:12).  "In thy doctrine shewing uncorruptness, gravity, sound speech, that cannot be condemned; that he that is the contrary part may be ashamed, having no evil thing say of us."  Sometimes a preacher can make a joke, not meaning anything bad, and sometimes a brother, who enjoyed the joke when it was told, may later get disgruntled, and use it against him.  So Paul says, use sound speech that cannot be condemned, or do not come with anything where people can use it against you.  "That he that is to the contrary part may be ashamed, having no evil thing to say of us."  Meaning that a man who wants to find fault is left without a good opportunity, and he still tries to accuse him, it will bounce back on him.


Verse nine,  "Exhort servants to be in subjection to their own masters, and to be well pleasing to them in all things; not gainsaying."  (not argumentative, NASV) "Not purloining."  (not pilfering, NASV) (not steal, NIV) The stealing of little things from their master must have been characteristic of many of the slaves.  And that is somewhat characteristic of some maids today is to steal little things from the homes.  Some employees do the same thing from their employers today. They reason I need these few screws or this little roll of tape, and it really won’t make any difference here. We have more than enough here in the shop. This is done on a wide scale in some state shops. But slaves, employee, and all the rest of us are exhorted "But showing all good fidelity, that they may adorn the doctrine of God our savior in all things."  "For the grace of God hath appeared. Bringing salvation to all men.  Instructing us to the intent that denying ungodliness and worldly lust, we show live soberly and righteously and godly in this present world.”  So the grace of God that saves has come teaching.  What does it teach?  That we are to turn from ungodliness and worldly lust, and live soberly and righteously and godly in this present world.  Now, is the grace of God going to take care of that man who refuses to pay any attention to verses eleven and twelve and goes the way of ungodliness and worldly lust?  If he does not live soberly?  Is the grace of God going to take care of him and give him salvation?  No sir, God's grace will not take care of that person.  "Looking for the blessed hope, and appearing of the glory of the great God and our savior Jesus Christ."  He is speaking of Christ as the great God and our savior that when he comes at his second advent he will come in his glory.  "Who gave himself for us."  And again, Christ is the one.  "Who gave himself for us, that he might redeem us from all iniquity, and purify unto himself a people, of his own possession, zealous of good works."  And again, if a man does not serve God with real zeal, and do the good works that he has commanded us to do then such a person will not be among God’s redeemed people. "These things speak, and exhort, and reprove with all authority.  And again, reprove is a negative. And do it how?  "Let no man despise thee."  One of the things that the multitudes observed about Jesus was that “he spake with authority and not as the scribes (Matthew 7:28-29).”  Gospel preachers need to learn in a detailed way what the Bible teaches on all major subjects of the Bible, and then speak with real authority on those subjects, and such preaching rings with that spirit of authority because the people know that he is speaking from the word of God, and that his conclusions are accurate because they are based on the teaching of the word of God, and the people do not go away wondering what he was saying. 

Chapter Three

"Put them in mind.  To be subject to rulers, to authority, to be obedient to every good work."  And that applies to us today, and every child of God is to be ready unto every good work, and he is violating a plain command if he is not. Some few brethren either hinder or try to stop good works. "To speak evil of no man."  I think I heard my dad say more than once, “if you cannot say something good about a person, keep your mouth shut”.  "To speak evil of no man, not to be contentious."  Contentious is that spirit, contrary to a kind and gentle spirit. It looks like some want to stay in a negative mood, and with a contentious spirit. “Showing all meekness toward all men. For we also once were foolish.  When?  Back there when we were not Christians.  Disobedient, deceived, serving divers lusts and pleasures, living in malice and envy, hateful, and hating one another.  But when the kindness of God our savior and his love toward man appeared, not by works done in righteousness which we ourselves did,  but according to his mercy he saved us."  How?  "Through the washing of regeneration, and renewing of the Holy Spirit."  In other words man does not merit salvation, there is no way that he can do enough good works to earn his salvation. All of us need to remember that we were guilty of many, if not all of those bad things, listed in verse three before we became Christians, and how much progress have we made? Growing up in Christ is a slow process, and we need to encourage new converts by encouraging words and good conduct. What is the rewashing of regeneration?  If it is not baptism and the new birth that Jesus spoke to Nicodemus about in John 3:1‑7?  Nicodemus had rejected the baptism of John, and in doing so he had rejected the counsel of God against himself and he was in a lost condition (Luke 7:30) Jesus moved immediately to talk to him about the new birth.  Except a man be born again, he cannot enter into the kingdom of God.”  To be born again would be the same as regeneration, a spiritual birth and not a fleshly birth.  "Which he poured out upon us richly through Jesus Christ our savior; that being justified by his grace, we might be made heirs according to the hope of eternal life.” No man is going to have salvation apart from the great love, mercy and grace of God, but any time a preacher or teacher comes with grace only, faith only, love only, he is coming with false doctrine.  We are saved by a combination of many different things.  An alien sinner must first hear the facts about the death, burial, and resurrection of Christ, and he must believe these facts and repent of his sins (Luke 13: 3; Acts 17:30) and confess the name of Christ before men (Matthew 10:32-33; I Timothy 6:12), and he must be baptized for the remission of his sins Acts 2:38; Mark 16:15-16; Acts 22:16).


Verse eight, “Faithful is the saying, and concerning these things I desire that thou affirm confidently, to the end that they who have believed God may be careful to maintain good works."  And I think he is talking about good works from the standpoint of being good workers.  "These things are good and profitable unto men.  But shun foolish questionings, and genealogies, and strifes, and fightings about the law; for they are unprofitable and vain."  He warned Timothy about those things, and preachers and teachers have much responsibility to stop all discussions, which do not edify and build up.  "A factious man after a first and second admonition refuse."  A footnote says, avoid, meaning do not let him have audience, or pay him any attention.  "Knowing that such a one is perverted, and sinneth, being self condemned.  When I shall send Artemas unto thee, or Tychicus, give diligence to come unto me to Nicopolis."  That shows that Paul was traveling, and he tells Titus   I am going to send you a replacement, and when he comes you come to me at Nicopolis.  For there I have determined the winter. Set forward Zenas the lawyer and Apollos on their journey diligently, that nothing be wanting unto them."  So these two had been helping in the work at Crete, but they were needed elsewhere. Verse fourteen, "Let our people also learn to maintain good works for necessary uses, that they be not unfruitful." That would mean, good workers in making a good living. "All that are with me salute thee.  Salute them that love us in faith.  Grace be with you all.  Amen." 


We have now completed the study of I Timothy and Titus the two epistles, which Paul wrote between the first Roman imprisonment and the second Roman imprisonment.


Introduction To II Timothy

And let us now turn to II Timothy.  When Paul wrote II Timothy, he had been imprisoned again, and this imprisonment was very different from that first imprisonment.  There were not even any real charges against him in that one, but this imprisonment he is counted as a criminal, and he does not expect to be released from this imprisonment.  I get the idea from the reading of chapter four that he had already been given the death sentence, but the time of his execution had not been set.  A man can be condemned today in America, but it will be many years, if ever before it is carried out; but death penalties were quickly carried out by the Roman government at this time. According to at least one tradition, Paul was beheaded in the latter part of Nero's reign in 68 A.D.


So when we think of things like this, and about James the brother of John being killed by Herod with the sword (Acts 12:1-4) we need to be reminded that the Lord has not promised Christians that this life is going to be easy, but to the contrary (II Timothy 3:12; I Peter 4:1, 4:12-14), and we need to be reminded that Romans 8:28 includes eternity when it says, “all things work together for the good to them that love the Lord and them that are called according to his purpose”.  Acts 12:1 reads, “Herod, the king, put forth his hand to afflict certain of the church, and he killed James the brother of John with the sword.”  The sword was used for capital punishment, Herod had the apostle John’s head cut off, and the same thing evidently happened to Paul.  We will let this suffice for a short introduction, and will now begin the reading and study of II Timothy. "Paul, an apostle of Jesus Christ through the will of God, according to the promise of life which is in Christ Jesus, to Timothy, my beloved child: Grace, mercy, peace, from God the Father and Christ Jesus our Lord. I thank God, whom I serve from my forefathers in a pure conscience."  And that is one of the things that made the difference in the Lord having mercy on him.  "How unceasing is my remembrance of thee in my supplications night and day; longing to see thee, remembering thy tears, that I may be filled with joy."  Now, there is no way that we can be definite about, the time that he is talking about when he says.  “Remembering thy tears,” but it may have been when Paul was going into Macedonia and he exhorted Timothy to stay at Ephesus.  It could have well been on that occasion and Timothy wanted to go with Paul, and the separation brought tears to his eyes. "Longing to see thee remembering thy tears, that I may be filled with joy; having been reminded of the unfeigned faith that is in thee, which dwelt first in thy grandmother Lois, and thy mother Eunice; and I am persuaded that in thee also." 


Where does the proper rearing of children begin?  It ought to begin at least with the grandparents. That was part of the proper rearing of Timothy.  Timothy had unfeigned faith, unpretended faith, in part because his grandmother, Lois, had that kind of faith and because his mother, Eunice, had that kind of faith, and by example and by words they had taught him "For which cause I put thee in remembrance that thy stir up the gift of God.  (miraculous gift).  Which is in thee through the laying on of my hands."  We do not have any miraculous gifts today, but we do need to stir up those natural gifts that we do have. We have those natural God given gifts, talents and our abilities to do, and we need to stir them up and keep them busy in the work of the Lord. .  "For God gave us not the spirit of fearfulness; but of power, and of love, and discipline."  So if we are following the Lord, we have no reason to be afraid. 


Verse seven, “For God has not given us the spirit of   fearfulness, but he has given us a spirit of power of love and discipline. Be not ashamed therefore of the testimony of the Lord. Nor of me his prisoner:  But suffer hardship with the gospel according to the power of God; who saved us, and called us with a holy calling, not according to our works, but according to his own purpose and grace, which was given us in Christ Jesus before times eternal."  In Nero’s reign he made Christians the “scape goat,” for his burning of Rome, and the Christian religion became illegal. If the Federal Court System continues to go the way it has been going, how long will it be before the Christian religion will be declared illegal? Do you see the great need for Paul’s admonitions to Timothy? What percentage of Christians will remain faithful and “suffer hardship with the gospel” if Christianity is made illegal by our Federal Court System. Let us continue to pray that there will be some good changes to “in God we trust” during the Bush- Cheney administration. So Paul tells Timothy, do not be ashamed of the testimony of the Lord.  That “holy calling” --- given--- in Christ Jesus had to do with the foreordination and predestination of God, given us before times eternal.  "But hath now been manifested by the appearing of our savior Christ Jesus, who abolished death."  When?  When he died on the cross and then was raised by the power of God.  "And brought life and immortality to light through the gospel:  Whereunto I was appointed a preacher, and an apostle, and a teacher, for which cause I am not ashamed: (Why?) For I know him whom I have believed, and am persuaded that he is able to guard that which I committed unto him against that day."  So Paul is saying that although I am counted a criminal, I'm still not ashamed for I know the Lord is able “to guard that which I committed unto him against that day,” against that great day of judgment. We have a good song based on this reference. 


Verse thirteen, "Hold the pattern of sound words, which thou hast heard from me in faith and love which is in Christ Jesus."  All of us need to be impressed with the fact that our God is a pattern‑giving God.  When God gave the plans for Moses and the people of Israel to build a tabernacle and the holy vessels, he exhorted Moses that he was to do everything according to the pattern.  And when it comes to the New Testament religion, God has given us a pattern.  He has given a pattern for worship on the first day of the week, and He has given a pattern for proper organization of church and many other things.  And we need to give heed to the pattern that God has given.  He has given the pattern of sound words, which has been given by the Holy Spirit, and we are to hold onto the pattern.  "Hold the pattern of sound words."  We have a few in our great brotherhood today that are not holding the pattern of sound words, but they are trying to get some things beyond the pattern in order to stimulate more attraction.  "Hold the pattern of sound words, which thou hast heard from me, in faith and love which is in Christ Jesus that good thing which was committed unto thee guard through the Holy Spirit which dwelleth in us.  This thou knowest, that all that are in Asia turned away from me; of whom are Phygellus and Hermogenes.  The Lord grant mercy unto the house of Onesiphorus; for he oft refreshed me, and was not ashamed of my chain."  When others were ashamed of Paul being prisoner for the Lord, Onesiphorus was not.  What a good commendation he “was not ashamed of my chain.” "But when he was in Rome, he sought me diligently, and found me."  He must have put forth a lot of effort to find where Paul was in prison and how to get in to see him.  "The Lord grant unto him to find mercy of the Lord in that day."  And that day would refer to the Day of Judgment.  "And how many things he ministered at Ephesus, thou knowest very well."  So when Paul was at Ephesus, he had ministered to Paul and his companions there, and Timothy knew about it. 

Chapter Two

"Thou therefore, my child, be strengthened in the grace that is in Christ Jesus.  And the things which thou hast heard from me among many witnesses, the same commit unto faithful men, who shall be able to teach others also."  And again those who have learned and know the law of Christ well, they have responsibility to teach others so that they will be able to teach others, but notice “commit thou unto faithful men.”  That does not mean perfect men, but men who are trying to be faithful to the Lord.  And those who are not putting forth effort to be faithful, we better be careful about them.  They are liable to do more harm than good.  If they were not making real progress, in living the Christian life, and trying to be faithful to the Lord, it would be dangerous to send them out.  "Who shall be able to teach others also, suffer hardships with me, as a good soldier of Christ Jesus."  We are in a warfare, we are soldiers of Christ, and what does a good soldier do?  "No soldier on service entangleth himself in the affairs of this life; that he may please him who enrolled him as a soldier."  That still pretty well holds true, doesn't it?  Those who are on full‑time military duty, cannot be very much entangled with other things and be the kind of soldiers that the government expects them to be, and we are soldiers of Christ and we do not need to be entangled with the affairs of this life to the point that we do not find time to serve the captain of our salvation.  "And if also a man contend in the games, he is not crowned, except he hath contended lawfully."  First we must be lawful contestants, by obedience to the first principles, and then contend by the rules given in the New Testament. Verse six, "The husbandman that laboreth must be the first to partake of the fruits.  Consider what I say, for the Lord shall give thee understanding in all things.  Remember Jesus Christ risen from the dead of the seed of David according to my gospel."  Why remember Jesus Christ raised from the dead? He was raised for our justification (Romans 4:25), and faithfulness to him is the only way of victory (John 14:6), and we need to be faithful, and receive that eternal “Victory in Jesus” when this lie is ended. "Wherein I suffer hardships, unto bonds; as a malefactor.  (a criminal)  But the word of God is not bound."  Of course, Paul had not been a criminal, but he was counted as one.  They had bound the apostle, and governments can imprison Christians today, but it still holds true that the word of God is not bound.  The word of God is going to be with us (Matthew 24:35), God is going to see to that (I Peter 1:25).  "Therefore I endure all things for the elect's sakes, that they also may obtain the salvation which is in Christ Jesus with eternal glory."  The elect's here, may include those that were not Christians, but God's elect in the sense that they are the kind of humble people that if they hear the gospel they will obey it.  Remember when Paul received the vision in the night at Corinth,  Do not be afraid.  No man is going to set on thee to hurt thee, for I am much people in this city,” and also the vision in the night at Troas (Acts 16:8-10). So Paul’s suffering was for those who were already Christians and for humble people, who   when they heard the gospel they would obey.  I believe that is the meaning of verse ten.  "Faithful is the saying:  For if we died with him, we shall also live with him:  If we endure, we shall also reign with him.  If we shall deny him, he also will deny us:  If we are faithless, he abideth faithful:  For he cannot deny himself."  And again that is something that God cannot do, he cannot deny himself.  He said he is going to be faithful, and he is going to be faithful.  So if we get under Elijah’s broom tree, (II Kings 19:4-18; Romans 11:2-5) and think that we are the only faithful person in the church, we still need to remember, “if we are faithless”, God is still going to save the faithful (Revelation 2:10, 3:4, 3:11). "Of these things put them in remembrance, charging them in the sight of the Lord that they strive not about words to no profit, to the subverting of them that hear."  So any kind of striving about unprofitable things, which do not edify and build up are to be stopped immediately. Preachers and teachers have a real responsibility to stop such. It will cause men to be lost if it is not stopped.


Verse fifteen, "Give diligence to present thyself approved unto God, the workman that needeth not to be ashamed, handling rightly the word of truth."  I believe the Greek means cutting with a straight course.  In other words if you know the word of God well enough, you can go with a straight course in teaching what the Bible teaches on all the major subjects of the Bible, and we are under that obligation today, if we fit in that category of being able to be teachers, we are to study enough that we can go with the straight course to tell the way that this right.  "But shun profane babblings:  For they will proceed further in ungodliness.  And their word will eat as doth a gangrene:  Of whom is Hymenaeus and Philetus; men who concerning the truth have erred, saying that the resurrection has past already; and overthrow the faith of some."  I have met with brethren who reasoned almost to that point, if not to the point, that the resurrection has already gone by in the destruction of Jerusalem in 70 A.D.  "Howbeit the firm foundation of God standeth sure, having this seal, the Lord knoweth them that are his: and, Let every one that nameth the name of the Lord depart from unrighteous.” Some brethren may convince a whole church that they are righteous when they are not, but, “The Lord knoweth them that are his” and if such men do not repent “The tares” will be burned in the furnace of fire (Matthew 13:36-43), and the wicked will be severed, by the angels, “from the righteous” (Matthew 13:49-50).



"In a great house there are not only vessels of gold and of silver, but also of wood and earth; and some unto honor, and some unto dishonor.  If a man therefore purge himself from these things, he shall be a vessel unto honor, sanctified, meet for the master's use, prepared unto every good work."  The great house is the church, and in the church there are two kinds of vessels, those that are very honorable and useful and those that are not honorable and useful.  What does it take to make an honorable vessel out of one that is dishonorable?  Paul gives the answer, “If a man therefore purge himself of these things.” What things? From the ways of the flesh, he will be a vessel of honor, sanctified meet for the master's use.   Verse twenty-two shows "But flee youthful lusts:  So the negative, purge yourself of the ways of the flesh, and the positive, and follow after righteousness, faith, love, peace, with them that call upon the Lord out of a pure heart.  But foolish and ignorant questions refuse, knowing that they gender strife."  In I and II Timothy and Titus, the principles are laid down.  If something will not make for faith, leave it alone.  I think we are doing the wrong thing when we bring up things in regard to what skeptics believe and then do not take adequate time to answer them.  And anything that does not make for faith, the principle is laid down plainly, leave it alone. Anything, which genders strife, is to be stopped.  "And the Lord's servant must not strive; but be gentle toward all, apt to teach, forbearing, in meekness correcting them that oppose themselves; peradventure God may give them repentance unto the knowledge of the truth; and they may recover themselves out of the snare of the devil, having been taken captive by him unto his will.”  Man always has a responsibility in his salvation.  God, Christ and the Holy Spirit have done their part.  But we always have a part.  And notice verse twenty-six, "and they may recover themselves out of the snare of the devil."  Timothy, by proper teaching, could show them the Lord's way.  And if they were willing to follow, then they could recover themselves out of the snare of the devil. 

Chapter Three

But know this, that in the last days, (the Christian age) grievous times shall come,” Please note that those days have been in the world for a long time, but they may get worse. “For men shall be lovers of self, lovers of money, boastful, haughty, railers, disobedient to parents, unthankful, unholy, without natural affection, implacable, (irreconcilable, NASV) malicious gossips, with out self-control, brutal, haters of good, treacherous, reckless, conceited, lovers of pleasure rather that lovers of God holding a form of godliness, although they have denied the power; and avoid such men as these (3:1-5)


Compare this list with Romans 1:28-32, and they are very similar, and there he speaks of such things as being in past and present tense. So please remember that all of the Christian age is in the last. When this age is up “the heavens shall pass away with a great noise, and the elements shall be dissolved with fervent heat, and the works that are therein shall be burned up (II Peter 3:10). Isaiah and Micah spoke of the church being established in the last days (Isaiah 2:1-4), and when the apostles were baptized with the Holy Spirit on Pentecost Peter (Acts 1:4-5, 1:8, 2:16-23) spoke of that as the last days.


In regard to verse five, men deny the power of the gospel by pretense. The gospel is the power to save (Romans 1:16), and to keep men saved if they will continue to hear and follow Christ (John 10:27-29; I Corinthians 1:8, 10-13; Romans 14:3-4). Verse six even shows that they were not only pretenders, but also false teachers. “For of these are they that creep into houses, and take captive silly women laden with sins, led away with, led away by divers lust, (different) lusts, ever learning, and never able to come to the knowledge of the truth.” The question has been asked, are there any women who are not “silly women”? Well, we can at least hope so! These women were “silly” because they were “laden with sins” and “divers lust.” They were not able to come “to the knowledge of the truth” because they wanted to continue in those divers lusts. They had “divers disease,” and many today, both men and women, have “divers disease! Do you have this terrible disease? If you do you better start taking the Lord’s treatment to cure it immediately or else you are likely to end up in that terrible place (Matthew 13:49-50; Revelation 20:11-17).


Verse eight, “And even as Jannes and Jambres withstood Moses, so do these also withstand the truth; men corrupted in mind, reprobate concerning the faith. But they shall proceed no further: for their folly shall be evident unto all men, as theirs also come to be.” Paul must be speaking of the magicians who withstood Moses and Aaron by their magical arts as given in Exodus 7:20-24, and 8:1-8, but with the plague of, lice or gnats, they had to confess, “This is the finger of God” (Exodus 8:16-19), and with the plague of “boils and sores” those “magicians could not stand before Moses (Exodus 9:8-12).”


We still have a lot of those people who try to make people think that they have miraculous powers to heal but they are “Jannes and Jambres”! All of the New Testament has been given, confirmed (Hebrews 2:2-4) and recorded, and the miraculous age of the church has ended (I Corinthians 13:8-11; James 1:25; Ephesians 4:8-16; Hebrews 2:2-4). Will you please challenge these “Jannes and Jambres” by saying to them, “Now if you really have miraculous power you can raise the dead for Jesus and his apostles did (John 7:11, 11:17-45; Acts 8:37-43) so want you go with me to the cemetery, and if you can raise one from the dead, I will raise all of the rest of them from the dead.” Do you think any of the “Jannes and Jambres” will accept your challenge? When Jesus said to that “stinking and decaying” Lazarus (John 11:38-44) “Lazarus, come forth” and Jesus said, “Loose him and let him go.” If Jesus had not called him by name all in the cemetery may have come forth. There is a day coming when all the dead are going to be raised by the command of Jesus (John 5:28-29; Daniel 12:1-3; I Corinthians 15:25-26, 15:50-58; Philippians 3:20-21).


Verse ten, “But thou didst follow my teaching conduct, purpose, faith, longsuffering, love, patience, persecutions, sufferings; what things befell me at Antioch, at Iconium, at Lystra; what persecution I endured; and out of them all the Lord delivered me. Yea, and all they that would live godly in Christ Jesus shall suffer persecution.” Paul converted Timothy at Lystra when he and Barnabas were on the first journey as recorded in the thirteenth and fourteenth chapter s of Acts, and Timothy surely knew about all of those things listed in verses ten and eleven. They were cast out of Antioch (Acts 13:50-52), they had to flee from the persecution at Iconium (Acts 14:5-6), and at Lystra they stoned Paul and dragged him out of the city for dead Acts 14: 19-20. Paul on the second journey decided to take Timothy on the journey (Acts 16:1-5), and Timothy was with Paul most of the time from then on; and Timothy knew all about all of those things listed in 3:10-11.


Verse twelve, yes, and all that would live Godly in Christ Jesus shall suffer persecution. Please get at least the substance of this passage and Matthew 5:10-12 and I Peter 4:1, 4:12-14, and Romans 8:16-18 in mind and keep them in mind, and they will help you to endure the trails of this life (Romans 8:28). Verses thirteen to seventeen reads, “But evil men and imposters shall wax worse and worse, deceiving and being deceived. But abide thou in the things which thou hast learned and been assured of, knowing of who thou hast learned them; that from a babe thou hast known the scared writings which are able to make thee wise unto salvation. Every scripture inspired of God is also profitable for teaching, for correction, for instruction, which is in righteousness: that the man of God may be complete, furnished completely unto every good work.


Paul is writing to Timothy not knowing whether he will see him again, and Paul knew that worse days were coming, and he wanted Timothy to be fore prepared for those evil days; and the “scared writings” and every scripture inspired of God would prepare him “completely unto every good work.” This includes the Old Testament scriptures. Romans 15:4 reads, “For whatsoever things were written aforetime were written for our learning, that through patience and comfort of the scriptures we might have hope.” There may be those who think they are well prepare on the basis of their knowledge of the New Testament, but no man is “complete” and “furnished completely” until he has a good overall knowledge of the Old Testament as well as the New Testament.


Chapter Four

Chapter four shows that Paul had already received the death sentence and was waiting the time for his execution.  "I charge thee in the sight of God, and of Christ Jesus, who shall judge the living and the dead by his appearing and his kingdom; preach the word; be urgent in season, and out of season.  Reprove, rebuke, exhort with all longsuffering and teaching.  For the time will come when they will not endure the sound doctrine; but having itching ears will heap to themselves; teachers after their own lusts, and will turn away their ears from the truth, and turn aside unto fables.  But be thou sober in all things, suffer hardships, do the work of an evangelist, fulfill thy ministry.” 


Verse six, “For am I already being offered, and the time of my departure is come."  Paul wanted Timothy to preach when there is an open door, and when there is not an open door, the gospel.  We are living in an age when many think that everything has got to be done in a very positive way, but some things cannot be done in a positive way; and here reprove and rebuke is negative, and exhort positive. I am not trying to say that there are to be two negatives and one positive, but there is a time for negative as well as positive teaching. “Itching ears” is one of the primary reasons why we have so many false teachers, because they teach what the people want to hear.  And Paul said the time is coming when they will not endure the Lord's doctrine, the sound doctrine, but they would have “itching ears” to hear something else.  "I have fought the good fight, I have finished the course, I have kept the faith:  Henceforth there is laid up for me the crown of righteousness, which the Lord, the righteous judge, shall give me at that day:  And not to me only, but also unto all them that have loved his appearance."  So Paul came to the end of the way with the assurance that a crown of righteousness was laid up for him, and Christians today can come to the end of the way with the same kind of assurance.  And he says not to me only, but unto also to all them that have loved his appearing.  "Give diligence to come shortly unto me."  And so Paul wanted Timothy to come to him before his death, he needed Timothy to help him, because he intended to be busy just as long as he is allowed to live, but what a sad statement here about Demas.  "For Demas forsook me.  All the other statements about Demas have been that he was with Paul and assisting Paul.  Having loved this present world, and went to Thessalonica."  I do not think that means that these others have forsaken him, but that they had gone  -- Paul probably sent these others.  "Crescens to Galatia, Titus to Dalmatia.  Only Luke is with me.  Take Mark, and bring him with thee:  For he is useful to me for ministering."  Paul intended to continue to preach the gospel just as long as he could.  "But Tychicus I sent to Ephesus."  Does not the statement about Tychicus either implies that he had sent the other fellow workers or approved of their going? Remember that Paul had told Timothy in that first letter that he was going to send him a replacement, and for Timothy then to come to him, and so Tychicus would be Timothy’s replacement.  "The cloak that I left at Troas with Carpus, bring when thou comest, and the books, and especially the parchments.  Alexander the coppersmith did me much evil:  The Lord will render to him according to his works (eternal damnation) of whom do thou also be ware, for he greatly withstood our words.  At my first defense no one took my part, but all forsook me:  May it not be laid to their account."  I remember hearing a great preacher make the statement that “the longer I live the more I see that we have to make allowances for human weaknesses,” and that is what Paul is doing here.  They were afraid to make a stand for Paul on the basis that it might mean imprisonment or even death to them, and so they forsook Paul.  "But the Lord stood by, and strengthened me; that through me the message might be fully proclaimed, and that all the Gentiles might hear:  And I was delivered out of the mouth of the lion.  The Lord will deliver me from every evil work, and will save me unto his heavenly kingdom."  He has already talked about that he is expecting death, but the Lord can still deliver him, and in death God delivered him.  And he says, "And will save me unto his heavenly kingdom:  To whom be the glory for ever and ever.  Salute Prisca and Aquilla, when Paul wrote Romans Prisca and Aquilla were at Rome (Romans 16:3-5) and now they must be back at Ephesus (Acts 18:18 ff) and the house of Onesiphorus.  Erastus remaineth at Corinth:  But Trophimus I left at Miletus sick.  Give diligence to come before winter."  Notice the two statements, verse nine, “give diligence to come shortly. Verse twenty-one, Give diligence to come before winter.”  Think of the appeal of that statement. If Timothy did not come before winter, sailing would be very dangerous; in fact it would be too late!  I think that verse should ring in our ears and in our hearts.  There are a lot of things that we plan we do, but if we do not do them now, winter may come, so “come before winter”.  Some of those things that we intended to do, to visit a close friend who has been weak for sometime or whatever it may be -- I would guess if all of us think about it, we can see some occasions when we put off things to the point that it was too late.  Give diligence to “come before winter.  "Eubulus saluteth thee, and Pudens, and Linus, and Claudia, and all the brethren.  The Lord be with thy spirit.  Grace be with you."  Sinner friend, will you come to Christ “before winter” comes?