2 Timothy, Paul already knows that his time is short, he has ran his race, and knows that he is going home soon. But before he goes he has more to say to his “son in the Spirit” – Timothy. At this point I would like to include Titus as well, for much of the instruction given to Timothy is given in Titus also.
This blog will take all the “R’s” into consideration. the first is found in chapter 1, Retain [1:13] Paul has suffered much because of his unwavering stance on the Gospel. Timothy is instructed to pass on the things he has heard from his mentor to faithful men – so that they can then pass on to other faithful men. Paul begs Timothy not to be ashamed of him or the spectacle that has developed around the persecutions for His faith.
Secondly, is the word Remember [2:8]; The essence of the Gospel, Paul admonishes Timothy not to forget the most important thing of all, which is Jesus Christ – who He is and what He has done. Those things Christ has accomplished cannot be changed, but can be forgotten. It would make sense that we remember even in our day the truths which cannot be changed – for as Paul declares the sufferings and hardships he has faced, we to one day may be called upon to face such things. If we have forgotten our faith and eh “author and finisher of our faith,” we may become bankrupt. Jesus came according to the ordinate plan of God. His life, death, burial, and resurrection were no mere accident or coincidence.
Third, word is Remind [2:14], Timothy has word to do, his testimony and actions reflect his character; but the pressing task is reminding the church of not being pulled into meaningless conversations and battles of words. I have often in my younger days displayed a zeal of argument thinking that I was “witnessing”, when in fact I was pulled into an argument that could not be won. Paul is one who will name names when it is necessary; throughout 2 Timothy, he identifies those who lives have been distracted by the adversary – in this case Hymenaeus and Philetus are mentioned. Paul carries this instruction further in verses 23-26; much is said about not engaging in such talk, I can only think that there were many zealous but maligned believers being pulled into such waste of time.
Fourth is the word Realize [3:1]; the believer must be on alert and have the discernment of the times and seasons. Too many times people are caught unaware of the reality of an event or worse, duped into believing some strange group who promotes “the coming of the Lord” without credence. The coming of the Lord will happen sooner than later; but has been a topic of many these days. The “last days” have been the last days since the resurrection and ascension of Jesus. Many are trying to predict when He is coming back – yet forget the admonition that “no one knows.” Last week we had the “Super-moon, and the eclipse, many still proclaiming the accuracy of the 4-Blood Moons scam. People are looking for the end to occur, yet are not looking for the Savior of the End! I am sure that with the condition of our society and the mass killings and political chaos, the predictions and preaching of the “end is near” will continue. My bible tells me, that “as it was in the days of Noah, so will my coming be” – to me I think when everyone is at peace and happy and least expecting His return, that’s when Jesus will come – catching so many unaware and unprepared!
The fifth and last word is Ready [4:2]; with all that Paul had to tell Timothy before he departed earth, the last thing he wanted to make sure Timothy heard was – Be Ready! Not just ready for the “Day of the Lord” but to be ready always to preach the Good News. Timothy was to be like Jeremiah in the Old Testament – preached when no one would listen; no were converted during the 50 years of Jeremiah’s preaching. Even so, we all must be ready to preach the Gospel, even when they try to squelch us. The clarity and concise gospel must be preached without compromise. We in America are subjected to all kinds of preachers, on TV and the radio. Frankly, I am shocked that anyone comes to church anymore when they can sit at home and listen to four or five preachers! But even though the preachers may say the are the messenger of God, they often put forth a Gospel of “Good Works” or “Name it and Claim it.” [Olsteen comes to mind] Yet people want to hear that all is good, and God wants you to have all the things that make up this world. My Best Life is NOT now, it will be when I am in the presence of my Lord Jesus! Paul closes with some more names of people , some to glory others to shame.
May we all heed the words of Paul as we live and have our being here in America – Difficult days are coming, but they do not have to be disastrous for us.