II Timothy 3

 

1 This know also, that in the last days perilous times shall come.”

 (καιροὶ χαλεποί - kairoi chalepoiperilous times; gievous times).

 Grievous is not a very good rendering. “Perilous,” though in some contexts

it is a right rendering, is a little too  restricted here. “Difficult,” “trying,”

uneasy,” or the like, is nearer the  sense. They are times when a Christian

hardly knows which way to turn or what to do. He has to live under a

 constant sense of hindrance and difficulty of one sort or another.

Whether perilous or grievous, the times that follow are a strange prevalence

of moral evil and its coexistence with Christian forms.

 

 

 

                                    The Perilous Times of the Apostasy (v. 1)

 

The apostle next proceeds to predict a further progress in error, with the

view of putting Timothy on his guard and sharpening his diligence.

 

·         THE PERIOD OF THIS APOSTASY. “This know also, that in the last

days perilous times shall come.”

 

 

Ø      The contextual injunction, from such turn away,” applies to the

present rather that, to a far distant future. The Christian Church has in all

ages shown a condition of things only too closely represented by the moral

picture in the context. The apostle implies that there were “vessels of

dishonour in the “large house” in his own day, such as Hymenaeus and

Philetus, as well as “vessels unto honour.”

 

Ø      The language has a wide latitude, covering the whole space of the

Christian dispensation. The evil had begun to work in the age of Timothy,

but the worst development of anti-Christian apostasy will be in the closing

days of the dispensation. The “days of the Messiah” are often alluded to in

the Hebrew prophets as “in the last days;” literally, “the end of days”

(Isaiah 2:2; Hosea 3:5; Micah 4:1).

 

·         THE DANGEROUS CHARACTER OF THIS APOSTASY. “Perilous

times shall come.”

 

Ø      It will be a time of danger to the faith of God’s people.

Ø      It will be a time of peril to their lives.

Ø      It will be a time of abounding wickedness as well as error.

 

2 “For men shall be lovers of their own selves, covetous, boasters,

proud, blasphemers, disobedient to parents, unthankful, unholy,”

Men (οἱἄνθρωποι - hoi anthropoi – men; humans ); men in general,

the bulk of men in the Church; for he is speaking, not of the world at large, but of

professing Christians.  Lovers of their own selves.  (φίλαυτοιphilautoi

 lovers of self); only here in the New Testament, and not found in the Septuagint;

but used by Aristotle in a striking passage, where he distinguishes those who are

φίλαυτοι in a good sense, and those who are justly blamed for being

φίλαυτοι, i.e. selfish and greedy. The Christian character is exactly the

opposite (see I Corinthians 10:24; 13:5).  Covetous.  (φιλάργυροι -  philarguroi

 lovers of money); elsewhere in the New Testament only in Luke 16:14, though

not uncommon in classical Greek; φιλαργυρίαphilarguriacoveted; fondness

for money - is found in I Timothy 6:10. Boasters. (ἀλάζονεςalazones – boastful;

ostentatious; showy ); as Romans 1:30, and in classical Greek. It the derivation of

the word is ἄληalae -  wandering, we may compare the περιερχόμενοι

perierchomenoi  - wandering - of Acts 19:13, “vagabond Jews.” Such vagabonds

were usually boasters. Hence ἀλαζώνalazon - came to mean “a boaster.”

Proud, blasphemers.. Υπερηφανίαhuperaephaniaproud; haughty and

βλασφημία  blasphaemia -–blasphermers; railers; calumniators are coupled

together in Mark 7:22; and ὑπερηφάνουςhuperaephanousproud and

ἀλάζονας - alazonas - boasters in Romans 1:30. In the New Testament

βλάσφημοςblasphaemos – blasphemer and βλασφημίαblasphaemia

 blasphemy are most commonly used of evil speaking against God and holy things;

but not always (see Ephesians 4:31; Colossians 3:8; I Timothy 6:4). Here

apparently it means generally “evil speakers.”  Disobedient to parents.

(γονεῦσιν ἀπειθεῖς goneusin apeitheisto parents stubborn; unpersuadeable) 

Selfishness is early to show itself in the form of self-will. The young generation are to

show impatience of being ruled by their parents, which is sure to grow into

impatience in respect of all rightful rule. In the grievous times there is to be

a large development of lawlessness, BEGINNING IN THE FAMILY

CIRCLE.  Unthankful. (ἀχάριστοι acharistoi - ungrateful); as Luke 6:35.

Found occasionally in the Septuagint, and common in classical Greek. Those who

are allowed to have their own way in early life are not likely to grow up to

show gratitude to parents for what they have sacrificed for them, nor are

 they likely to show gratitude in the ordinary course of life, nor can we think

of them SHOWING GRATITUDE TO GOD FOR HIS MERCIES!   Ingratitude

 is to be a striking feature of the grievous times.  The ingratitude which they showed to

their parents was a part of their general character. We ought to take special note

of this passive sin — the not being thankful for good received from God

and man. Unholy (ἀνόσιοι anosioi); as I Timothy 1:9 (where see note).

There are certain sanctities which are everlasting, which are anterior to

all law and custom, which belong to THE DIVINE CONSTITUTION

OF THINGS  e.g. the sanctities of the marriage bond. The unholy are

those who have no reverence or love in their hearts for THESE

EVERLASTING SANCTITIES.  In the grievous times the most sacred

bonds are to be disregarded..

 

3 “Without natural affection, trucebreakers, false accusers, incontinent,

fierce, despisers of those that are good,” - Without natural affection

(ἄστοργοιastorgoi); as in Romans 1:31, where in the Textus Receptus it is

coupled with ἄσπονδοιaspondoi - implacable, as here. The verb στέργω

 stergo is “to love,” used primarily of the natural affection of parents to their

children and children to their parents. And στοργή storgae is that natural love.

These persons were without this στοργή, of which Plato says, “A child loves his

parents, and is loved by them;” and so, according to Paul’s judgment in I Timothy 5:8,

were “worse than infidels.” Affection is that which sweetens life. In the grievous

times affection is to die out, even for those for whom nature specially claims affection.

Parents will act unnaturally toward their children Trucebreakers.  (ἄσπονδοι

aspondoi  implacable denotes “without a libation” (, negative, , “a libation”), i.e.,

without a truce,” as a libation accompanied the making of treaties and compacts;

then, “one who cannot be persuaded to enter into a covenant,” – from Vine’s

Expository Dictionary of New Testament Words);  only here according to the

Received Text, not at all in the Septuagint, but  frequent in classical Greek.

Σπονδή spondae was a solemn truce made over a libation which accompanied

the making of treaties and compacts.  'Ασπονδοςaspondos - at first merely

expresses that anything was done, or any person was left, without such a truce. 

But, in a secondary sense, applied to a war, it meant an internecine war (destructive

to both sides in a conflict) admitting of no truce; and thence, as here, applied

to a person, it means “implacable,”  one who will make no truce or treaty with his

enemy. The sense “truce breakers  is not justified  by any example.  The word

implacable supposes a state of variance. In the grievous times men are not to

come to terms with those who have given them offence, but are to pursue

them with all the might of their vengeance.  False accusers.  (διάβολοι – false

 accusers; slanderers; adversaries); as I Timothy 3:11 and Titus 2:3. They are not to

be content with pouring contempt and bitterness on one another in ordinary evil

speaking, but they are to attack one another with falsehoods. (Think of the

change in the media’s way of handling things today – CY -2013)  Thus the

diabolic character is to be developed in the grievous times. The arch-slanderer is

διάβολος - ho diabolos  - the devil,  (κατήγορυς τῶν ἀδελφῶν – ho

 kataegorus ton adelphon -  the accuser of the brethren - Revelation 12:10; see

John 6:70).   Incontinent.  (ἀκρατεῖςakrateis - without self-control;

[sexually]); here only in the New Testament, not in the Septuagint but frequent in

classical Greek, in the sense of intemperate in the pursuit or use of anything, e.g.

money, the tongue, pleasure, the appetite, etc., which are put in the genitive case.

Used absolutely it means generally “without self-control” as here rendered in

the Revised Version.  The Authorized Version “incontinent” (compare I Corinthians

7:5) expresses only one part of the meaning (see ἀκρασίαakrasiaexcess;

Incontinence - Matthew 23:25)  With self-will uncurbed in early life, it is not

to be wondered at that the men of the grievous times are to be men who

have LOST SELF-CONTROL.  Fierce (from ferns, wild, savage);

ἀνήμεροιanaemeroifierce - only here in the New Testament, and not found

in the Septuagint, but frequent in the Greek tragedians and others, of persons,

countries, plants, etc.; e.g. “Beware of the Chalubes, for they are savage (),

and cannot be approached by strangers” (AEschylus, ‘Prom. Vinct.,’ 734,

edit. Scholef.). It corresponds with ἀνελεήμονεςaneleaemones - unmerciful

(Romans 1:31).  In the grievous times there will be loss of self-control, PROCEEDING

TO ACTS OF VIOLENCE.   Despisers of those that are good.  (ἀφιλάγαθοι

 aphilagathoi averse to good;  no lovers of good); only here in the New Testament,

and not at all  in the Septuagint or in classical Greek. But φιλάγαθοςphilagathos

lovers of that which is good; is found in Titus 1:8. The Revised Version seems therefore

to be right in rendering here “no lovers of good,” rather than as the Authorized

Version “despisers of those which are good,” after the Vulgate and the new version

of Sanctes Pagninus.   In keeping with the personal reference before and after, we prefer

to translate, “no lovers of good men.” With evil so active in them, like Cain (I John

3:12) the presence of good men will be burdensome to them. They are therefore

likely to make the times grievous to the good, by unjustly treating them.

 

4 “Traitors, heady, highminded, lovers of pleasures more than lovers

of God;” Traitors (προδόταιprodotai); Luke 6:16; Acts 7:52. It does not

mean traitors to their king or country, but generally betrayers of the persons

who trust in them, and of the cause of the trust committed to them; perhaps specially,

of their brethren in times of persecution. Fidelity is the sacred bond that joins friend to

friend. In the grievous times friend will be often found betraying friend.  

Heady.  (προπετεῖςpropeteis  headstrong); as in Acts 19:36. Neither “heady”

nor “headstrong” gives the exact meaning of προπετήςpropetaes  which is “rash,”

hasty,” “headlong.” “Headstrong” rather denotes obstinacy which will not

 be influenced by wise advice, but προπετής is the person who acts from impulse,

without considering consequences, or weighing principles.  In the grievous times

 headstrong men will go to daring lengths. Highminded. (τετυφωμένοι

 tetuphomenoi - puffed up; conceited); see I Timothy 3:6, note. The explanation

of their daringness is, that they have no right sense of their own position before

 Godtheir insignificance, impotence, and responsibility. Lovers of

pleasures.  (φιλήδονοιphilaedonoifond of own gratification; fond

of pleasure); only here in the New Testament, and not found in the Septuagint,

but occasionally in classical  Greek.  It is used here as an antithesis to lovers of

 God (φιλόθεοι philotheoi), which also occurs only here either in the New

Testament or the Septuagint..  It looks as if the men spoken of claimed to be

φιλόθεοι (lovers of  God).  A somewhat similar paronomasia occurs in

Isaiah 5:7, where מִשְׂפַהis opposed to מִשְׁפָט, and צְעָקָה to צְדָקָה.

“Lovers of pleasure rather than lovers of God.” MEN WILL BE

DARING, especially in SENSUAL GRATIFICATION. Pleasure will      

be preferred to God.

 

 

 

                                    The Love of Pleasure (v. 4)

 

Lovers of pleasure more than lovers of God.” “Pleasure” is a word used in

Scripture to denote, not lawful and wise enjoyment, but a carnal

sensuousness which often leads to sensuality. We see what an absorbing

power pleasure is, and how by degrees:

 

Ø      it destroys the sense of duty and

Ø      ignores the voice of conscience.

 

·         HERE IS A GREAT FORCE. Lovers!” Love will surely be exercised

in some form. Sin is perversion. We are so constituted as to love

something. There is an enthusiasm of evil. Men delight in sin; and so the

forces of the soul abound in weeds.

 

·         HERE IS A WRONG OBJECT. Pleasure instead of GOD. What a

contrast! We find that there is sometimes an aesthetic sensuousness that

finds pleasure in immoral “art” — where God is not, where there is:

 

Ø      no reverence,

Ø      no righteousness,

Ø      no purity,

Ø      no goodness.

 

And men worship before the shrine of pleasure till they become idolaters,

worshipping:

 

Ø      worldly applause,

Ø      fleshly satisfaction, and

Ø      carnal joy.

 

There is a pleasure that is lawful and healthful; without it brain and body,

mind and heart, suffer; but it must ever be subordinated to an earnest life

and a godly devotion, or we become “lovers of pleasure more than

            lovers of God.”

 

5 “Having a form of godliness, but denying the power thereof: from

such turn away.”  Having a form (μόρφωσινmorphosin form). It should

be the form; i.e. “the outward semblance,” i.q. μόρφωμαmorphoma  - form,

shape, figure, here in contrast with δύναμιςdunamis – power - the reality.

In Romans 2:20, the only other place in the New Testament where

μόρφωσιςmorphosis  (form) occurs, there is no contrast, and so it has the sense

of a “true sketch” or “delineation.”  Denying. (ἠρνημένοιaernaemenoi

having denied); possibly more correct than the Authorized Version “denying,”

though the difference, if any, is very slight. The meaning is that by their life and

character and conversation THEY GAVE THE LIE TO THEIR

CHRISTIAN PROFESSION.  Christianity with them was an outward form,

not an inward living power of godliness. “Holding a form of godliness, but

having denied the power thereof.” The remarkable thing is that the men who

have been described (we do not need to think of the characteristics being all

combined) should hold a form of godliness. The relation of the form of

godliness to the men who make the grievous times, is that it CONCEALS

THEIR TRUE CHARACTER!   It is self throughout, in a more or less

hateful form, and therefore the real power of godliness is denied. But it does

not appear so nakedly and hatefully to be self where there is a form of

acknowledging God. The relation of the form of godliness to the grievous times 

is, that it allows evil to work more insidiously. It is not so difficult to meet

pure heathenism as it is to meet a Christianity that has become heathenish.

From such does not give the sense at all clearly. The Authorized Version does,

though it omits the καὶ - kaiand – which is not wanted in English. In the Greek

it marks an additional circumstance in the case of those of whom he is speaking, viz.

that they are to be turned away from as hopeless. Turn away (ἀποτρέπου

apotrepou turn away; be you shunning); only here in the New Testament, or,

at least in the middle voice, in the Septuagint; but frequent in classical Greek in

different senses.  Paul uses ἐκτρέπομενοςektrepomenosavoiding; turning

 aside - in the same sense in I Timothy 6:20. This command shows that the apostle

treats the symptoms of the last times as in some respects present.  With this

catena of epithets compare Romans 1:29-31. 

 

 

The Hypocrite’s Garb (v. 5)

 

“Having a form of godliness, but denying the power thereof.” There may

be conscious and unconscious hypocrisy. Either way godliness is “feigned.”

There is no pulsing heart of life in it. Its appearance is only like phosphorus

on the face of the dead; its activity is only the galvanized motion of a corpse.

 

  • WE MAY DISCOVER THE SIGNS OF MERE FORMALISM.

What are they? See vs. 2-4, in which men who are “covetous, and

lovers of their own selves,” are associated with blasphemers and false

accusers, unthankful and unholy. All alike find their hypocrisy is

detected BY THE DIVINE INSIGHT.   We may well search and

examine ourselves (II Corinthians 13:5); for do not men think lightly

sometimes of covetousness and selfishness, or of being unthankful or

high minded? Often, indeed, we look to great vices only as our destroyers,

and we forget that hypocrisy may be seen in masked ingratitude. Yet

here it is discovered, not under the cloak which hides evil enormities,

but under the veil which hides from our eyes the presence of the more

respectable sins.

 

  • WE MAY STUDY THE SECRET OF THIS FORMALISM.

 

Ø      Prayerless habit which leaves the spirit UNSUPPLIED

WITH THE NUTRIMENT OF COMMUNION WITH

GOD!

 

Ø      Consciousness of the fact that in the world appearances are

enough, and that religion is so respected and so respectable

that it will not do to live without its appearance.

 

Ø      Fellowship with the world, which denudes us of all earnest

endeavors after the Divine life.

 

6 “For of this sort are they which creep into houses, and lead captive

silly women laden with sins, led away with divers lusts,”  Creep into

(ἐνδύνοντεςendunontes – creep into; ones slipping in); here only in the New

Testament. It has the sense of “sneaking into,” “insinuating themselves

Into.”   Lead captive.  (αἰχμαλωτεύοντες - aichmaloteuontes - take captive;

capturing); as in Ephesians 4:3. The other form, αἰχμαλωτίζοντες

 aichmalotizontescaptivity -  which is that of the Received Text is in Luke 21:24;

Romans 7:23; II Corinthians 10:5. The word well describes the BLIND

SURRENDER OF THE WILL AND CONSCIENCE to such CRAFTY

TEACHERS.  Silly women (τὰ γυναικάριαta gunaikariasilly

women; little women - diminutive of γυνή gunae - woman); nowhere else

in the New Testament or Septuagint, but is used by some late Greek authors.

It is a term of contempt — he will not call them γυναῖκαςgunaikas

female; woman — they are only γυναικάρια (silly women).  In the

passages quoted by Alford from Irenaeus and Epiphanius, the women

made use of by the later Gnostics are called γυναικάρια. See, too, the

striking quotation in the same note from Jerome, specifying by name the

women whom Nicolas of Antioch, Marcion, Montanus, and others employed

as their instruments in spreading their abominable heresies (Since the word

heresy means choice, I cannot help but think of all the use and abuse of

women in promoting PRO-CHOICE. 

 

The Greek word for heresy is αἵρεσις - hah’ee-res-is; - a choosing,

                choice then that which is chosen, and hence an opinion, especially

                a self-willed opinion, which is substituted for submission to the power

                of truth and leads to division, the formation of sects and finally,

                APOSTASY FROM GOD!  (Think of the origins, influences and

                roles of  PRO-CHOICE and the AMERICAN CIVIL LIBERTIES

                UNION in the United States of America’s CULTURAL DEMISE  (IT                                  

ALL BEGAN WITH A CHOICE – a la – HERESY – CY -2009)          

                Such a man is a living lie against the truth.

So true is Paul’s forecast in the text. Laden with sins (σεσωρευμένα ἁμαρτίαις

sesoreumena amartiais); elsewhere only in Romans 12:20, “heap coals of fire.”

It occurs in Aristotle and other Greek writers in the sense of heaping one thing

upon another, and heaping up anything with something else. The last is the

sense in which it is here used. It seems to convey the idea of PASSIVE

HELPLESSNESS!  Led away (ἀγόμενα  agomena); with a strong intimation

of UNRESISTING WEAKNESS (compare I Corinthians 12:2; Acts 8:32;

Luke 23:32). Lusts (ἐπιθυμίαιςepithumiais); all kinds of CARNAL and

SELFISH DESIRES  (see John 8:44; Romans 1:24; 6:12; 7:7-8; Galatians

5:24;  Ephesians 2:3; 4:22; Colossians 3:5; I Timothy 6:9; ch. 2:22; 4:3;  

Titus 2:12; 3:3; I Peter 1:14-16; II Peter 2:18; I John 2:16-17).

 

7 “Ever learning, and never able to come to the knowledge of the

truth.”  Ever learning, etc. This is the crowning feature of this

powerful sketch of those “silly women,” whose thoughts are busied about

religion without their affections being reached or their principles being

influenced by it. They are always beating about the bush, but they never get

possession of the blessed and saving truth of the gospel of God. Their

own selfish inclinations, and not the grace of God, continue to be the motive

power with them.

 

 

 

                        The Insidiously Proselytizing Habits of These Apostates

                                                (vs. 6-7)

 

 

·         THE ARTS OF THE SEDUCERS. “For of this sort are they who creep

into houses, and lead captive silly women.”

 

Ø      They were of a most proselytizing spirit. Like the Pharisees, they would

compass sea and land to make one proselyte (Matthew 23:15)

 

Ø      They practiced unworthy arts. They wormed their way insidiously into

the confidence of families. There was a deceitful and tricky method of

gaining access to their victims.

 

Ø      They used their stratagems to snare women rather than men. They

knew that women, as the weaker vessels, were more accessible to soft

blandishments and specious pretences of piety. They counted upon an

accession of female converts as, above all things, most contributing to

the success of their propaganda.

 

·         THE CHARACTER OF THEIR VICTIMS. “Silly women laden with

sins, led away by divers lusts, ever learning, and never able to come to the

knowledge of the truth.” These victims of their specious arts were morally

and intellectually prepared for them.

 

Ø      They were, morally, under the sway of evil passions and desires, full, no

doubt, of “the lust of the flesh, the lust of the eye, and the pride of life.”

(I John 2:16)  Such women would welcome a short cut to peace, or any

reconciliation between religion and worldliness that could be devised

by the arts of apostasy. The words seem to point to the weight of former

sins burdening the conscience, from which they hoped to be released

under easier conditions than those prescribed by the gospel.

 

Ø      They were incapable, through their sinful life, of attaining a true

knowledge of THE TRUTH!  They were “silly women,” with light,

frivolous, unbalanced judgments; “ever learning” — with a morbid

love of novelties in religion, an insatiable curiosity for the mysteries

promised by their false guides, and a constant craving for an adaptation

of doctrinal views to their evil desires — “and never able to come to

the knowledge of the truth.”  Because their hearts had become

hardened through an evil life, and so made inaccessible to

THE TRUTH!  (Hard in more ways than one – CY - “....the way of

the transgressors  is hard.”  (Proverbs 13:15)

                                                   

8 “Now as Jannes and Jambres withstood Moses, so do these also

resist the truth: men of corrupt minds, reprobate concerning the

faith.”  Jannes and Jambres; the traditional names of the magicians who

opposed Moses; and, if Origen can be trusted, there was an apocryphal

book called by their names. But Theodoret ascribes their names to an unwritten

Jewish tradition. Their names are found in the Targum of Jonathan on Exodus

7:11, 22;  and are also mentioned, in conjunction with Moses, with some

variation in the name of Jambres, by Pliny (‘Hist. Nat.,’ 31:2), who

probably got his information from a work of Sergius Paulus on magic, of

which the materials were furnished by Elymas the sorcerer (Acts 13:6-

8). Withstood (ἀντέστησανantestaesan); the same word as is used of Elymas

in Acts 13:8 (so ch. 4:15 and elsewhere). (κατεφθαρμένα τὸν νοῦν

katephtharmena ton noun  - of being depraved minds; corrupted in mind);

elsewhere only in II Peter 2:12, in the sense of  “perishing,” being “utterly

destroyed,” which is the proper meaning of καταφθείρομαι kataphtheiromai.

 Here in a moral sense κατεφθαρμένοι τὸν νοῦν katephtharmenoi ton noun

means men whose understanding is gone, and perished, as διεφθαρμένος τὴν

ἀκοήν diephtharmenos taen akoaen means one whose hearing has

perished — who is deaf. In I Timothy 6:5 Paul uses the more common

διεφθαρμένων. diephtharmenondeprived; corrupt. . Reprobate (ajdo>kima

 adokima); as Titus 1:16, and elsewhere frequently in Paul’s Epistles. It is just

the contrary δόκιμοςdokimos – approved; qualified; ch. 2:15, note).

 

Moses succeeded in getting the children of Israel out of Egypt; and

Hebrew tradition tells that Jannes and Jambres perished in the Red Sea.

THIS IS THE HISTORY OF ALL FALSE TEACHING AND OF

ALL SPIRITUAL TRICKERY!   It may succeed for a time, but its very

success often works its ruin. The time comes when its impostures are found out,

and IT CAN PROCEED NO FURTHER.   So we can believe that the great

development of evil in the last days will end in complete exposure, and in the

brilliant triumph of good.

 

 

 

                                    Corruption Within (v. 8)

 

“Men of corrupt minds.” It is here that evil begins, though it does not end here.

“As a man thinketh in his heart, so is he.” (Proverbs 23:7) but he does not
show in himself the development of evil at once.
The hour of revelation, however,

will surely come; for “they that be otherwise [than good] cannot be hid.”

(I Timothy 5:25)

 

·         THEY RESIST THE TRUTH. For this reason the truth will not let them

alone. It is an active searching power. It is “a discerner of the thoughts and

intents of the heart” (Hebrews 4:12), and men resent the intrusion of this

all-discovering, all-judging power. Impurity hates purity. Falsehood hates

truth. Worldly minds resist the claim of God’s Word to supremacy over

their hearts and lives. They resist its right to reign, and its claim to dominate

thought and action too.

 

·         THEY BECOME REPRORATE.* Reprobation is no hard decree of

God’s; it is man’s own act and deed, and it is the result of the “corrupt

mind.” This breeding corruption spreads. The seeds of evil are scattered

here and there till the soul is like a wilderness, and the mind which was

made to be a garden of holiness becomes a graveyard of sin. Moral death

ensues, and with death always comes corruption.

 

      *reprobate - ἀδόκιμοςadokimos - signifying “not standing the test,

      rejected” – was primarily applied to metals (compare Isaiah 1:22); it is

      used always in the New Testament in a passive sense,

 

(a)    of things, Hebrews 6:8, “rejected,” of land that bears thorns

and thistles;

(b)   of persons, Romans 1:28, of a “reprobate mind,” a mind of

which God cannot approve, and which must be rejected by

Him, the effect of refusing “to have God in  knowledge

 

·         THEY BECOME REVEALED. “Their folly shall be made manifest”

(v. 9). The secret sin becomes a public shame. The thought incarnates

itself in deed, and retribution takes the form of disgrace.

 

9 “But they shall proceed no further: for their folly shall be manifest

unto all men, as their’s also was.” Shall proceed (προκόψουσιν prokopsousin

they shall be progessing); as ch. 2:16 (where see note) and v. 13. The

apostle’s meaning here is, as explained by the example of the magicians,

that heresies SHALL NOT PREVAIL AGAINST  the truth. Απὶ πλεῖον

epi pleion means beyond the point indicated in his description of their future

progressive evil. They would “proceed further in ungodliness,” as he said

in ch. 2:16, but not up to the point of destroying the gospel, as history has

shown. The various forms of Gnosticism have perished. The gospel remains.

As theirs also was.   (Exodus 8:18-19).

 

 

 

                                   

                        The Character and Aims of the Fake teachers (vs. 8-9)

 

The apostle vividly depicts their attitude toward the truth.

 

·         THEY HAVE THEIR HISTORICAL PROTOTYPES. “As Jannes and

Jambres withstood Moses, so do these also withstand the truth.”

 

Ø      These were two Egyptian magicians, called wise men and sorcerers

(Exodus 7:11-22), who appeared at the court of Pharaoh to resist the

wonder working power of Moses. Their names do not occur in the Old

Testament, but they are found in the Targum of Jonathan, and are also

quoted by heathen writers. What was more natural than that the apostle

should quote to Timothy one of the two traditions of his country?

 

Ø      These magicians, reported to have been sons of Balaam, were thwarted

in their arts by the superior power that worked through Moses. The

parallel was therefore in a double sense apt.

 

·         THE FALSE TEACHERS DIRECTLY WITHSTOOD THE TRUTH

OF THE GOSPEL.

 

Ø      They may have used occult arts like their Egyptian prototypes to attract

disciples; for the word “seducers,” applied to them in the context (v. 13),

has this signification. The claim to possess such powers was not unusual

in that day (Acts 8:9-24; 13:6-12; 19:18-20).

 

Ø      But, like Elymas, they withstood the truth of the gospel, by representing

themselves as possessing as much authority as the apostle himself , and

thus neutralizing its exclusive claims. They subverted the hopes of the

gospel.

 

·         THE EXPLANATION OF THEIR ANTI-CHRISTIAN ATTITUDE.

“Men of corrupt minds, reprobate concerning the faith.”

 

Ø      Corrupt affections depraved their mental judgments. Even that, mind,

which is the medium through which the Holy Spirit makes his

communications to man, had become darkened.  “A corrupt head,

a corrupt heart, and a vicious life, usually accompany each other.”

 

Ø      The doctrines of these teachers had been tested and discovered to be

worthless, like silver which was to be rejected by man. They had nothing

but the name in common with the Christian faith.

 

·         THE CHECK THAT WOULD BE GIVEN TO THEIR PROGRESS.

“But they shall proceed no further; for their folly shall be evident to all

men, as theirs also came to be.” This passage seems opposed to ch. 2:16,

where it is said that “they shall advance to more ungodliness;” but in that

place:

 

Ø      the apostle is speaking of an immediate diffusion of error, in this of its

ultimate extinction;

 

Ø      in that place the advance toward ungodliness is asserted, here there is a

denial of its successful advance without exposure. The evil would

advance, but only to a certain point, and the true character of its

promoters“their folly” — would be made as manifest as was

that of the Egyptian magicians.

 

10 “But thou hast fully known my doctrine, manner of life, purpose,

faith, longsuffering, charity, patience,”  Hast fully known.

(παρηκολούθησαςparaekolouthaesas – have fully followed; didst follow

which is the Received Text for παρηκολούθηκας, in the perfect, which is

the Textus Receptus). The evidence for the two readings is nicely balanced.

But Paul uses the perfect in I Timothy 4:6 (where see note), and it seems highly

improbable that he here used the aorist in order to convey a rebuff to Timothy

by insinuating that he had once followed, but that he was doing so no longer.

The sentence, “thou didst follow,” etc., is singularly insipid. The Authorized

Version “thou hast fully known” gives the sense fully and clearly. Timothy had

fully known Paul’s whole career, partly from what he had heard, and partly from

what he had been an eyewitness of. My doctrine.  My teaching. How different

from that of those impostors!  Manner of life. (ἀγωγῇagogae – conduct;

bringing up; manner of life); here only in the New Testament, but found in the

Septuagtint in Esther 2:20 (τὴν ἀγωγὴν αὐτῆςtaen agogaen autaes  -

her manner of  life — her behaviour towards Mordecai, where there is nothing to

answer to it in the Hebrew text); The Authorized Version “manner of life” is a very

good rendering.  Purpose (προθέσιν prothesin); that which a person sets before

him as the end to be attained (Acts 11:23; 27:13; II Maccabees 3:8; and in Aristotle,

Polybius, and others). Used often of GOD’S ETERNAL PURPOSE as e.g. ch. 1:9;

Ephesians 1:11.  In enumerating these and the following, “faith, long suffering,

charity, and patience,” Paul doubtless had in view, not self-glorification,

which was wholly alien to his earnest, self-denying character, but the

mention of those qualities which he saw were most needed by Timothy.

Long suffering (τῇ μακροθυμίᾳ - tae makrothumia – the far feeling

patience ); as I Timothy 1:16, of the long suffering of Jesus Christ towards

himself, and elsewhere frequently of human patience and forbearance towards

others. Patience (τῇ ὑπομονῇ – tae hupomonae – patience; the endurance).

This is exercised in the patient endurance of afflictions for Christ’s sake. It

is coupled, as here, with μακροθυμία makrothumia - long suffering, in

Colossians 1:11.

 

11 “Persecutions, afflictions, which came unto me at Antioch, at

Iconium, at Lystra; what persecutions I endured: but out of them all

the Lord delivered me.”  Persecutions (διωγμοῖςdiogmois ); as

Matthew 13:21; Acts 8:1; 13:50; II Corinthians 12:10, etc.

Afflictions (τοῖς παθήμασινtois pathaemasin the sufferings); usually so

rendered in the Authorized Version (Romans 8:18; II Corinthians 1:5;

Colossians 1:24. etc.); rendered “afflictions” in Hebrews 10:32; I Peter 5:9.

At Antioch; in Pisidia (Acts 13:14). For an account of the persecutions

encountered by Paul at Antioch, Iconium, and Lystra, see chapters 13 and

14 of Acts.  It was at Paul’s second, or rather third, visit to Lystra that he

chose Timothy for his companion (Acts 16:1-3). I endured (ὑπενεγκα

 hupenegka – I endured; I undergo); not simply “suffered,” but “underwent,”

willingly and firmly suffered (see I Peter. 2:19). As regards the construction,

the antecedent to οῖαhoiathe which - is παθήμασινpathaemasin

afflictions; suffering -  and the difference between – a and οῖα is that

would limit the reference to the actual παθήματα pathaemata – afflictions

at Antioch, Iconium, and Lystra, but οῖα extends the reference to all similar

sufferings. The proper English rendering is “such as befell me.” But the clause

at the end of the sentence should be rendered “what great persecutions I

endured.” The sentence, οἵους διώγμους ὑπένεγκαhoious diogmous

hupenegka – what persecutions I endured is an amplification of the preceding

διώγμοις: “Thou hast fully known my persecutions…viz. what great

persecutions I endured.” Out of them all, etc. This is added for

Timothy’s encouragement, that he might stand fast in the face of

persecutions and sufferings. Delivered me (με ἐῥῤύσατο - me errusato

rescued me; delivered me). Had the apostle in his mind the clause in the Lord’s

Prayer, “Deliver us from evil” (Matthew 6:13)? Compare ch. 4:18, where the

resemblance is still more striking. Observe the testimony to Christ’s omnipotence

in this ascription to Him, in both passages, of Paul’s deliverance (compare

Acts 18:10).

 

12 “Yea, and all that will live godly in Christ Jesus shall suffer

persecution.” Yea and all (καὶ πάντες δὲ - kai pantes de – and all

yet). As though he had said. “Mine is not a solitary example of a servant of

God being persecuted; it is the common lot of all who will live godly in Christ

Jesus” (compare John 15:20 and I Peter 4:1, 12-13).  To live godly is to take

the rule of our life from God. This can only be carried out in communion with

Christ Jesus. Were all living according to the Divine rule around us, we should be

abundantly encouraged. But seeing we live in the midst of so many who

hate goodness and do not like to be reminded of God, we must expect to

suffer persecution, i.e. to be misjudged, to be opposed, to be assailed, if

our godliness is active and aggressive against evil, as it should be. We must

have a mind to LIVE GODLY whatever consequences it entails. It was

because he lived according to the Divine rule that Paul was stoned. As the

principle involved was universal, Timothy, in proportion, to the vitality of

his godliness, must expect to suffer persecution.

 

 

 

                        The Career of the Apostle Commended as

                            an Example to His Youthful Disciple

                                                (vs. 10-12)

 

The apostle recalls to Timothy’s mind the facts of his own checkered

career. partly to mark the contrast between his life and that of the false

teachers, partly to stimulate Timothy to like faithfulness and endurance.

 

·         IT IS GOOD FOR YOUNG MINISTERS TO OBSERVE AND

FOLLOW THE WAYS OF THEIR ELDER BRETHREN. “But thou didst

follow my teaching, conduct, purpose, faith.”

 

Ø      They will thus be stimulated to greater effort.

Ø      They will be guided by wiser counsels.

Ø      They will be guarded against many mistakes.

Ø      They will be better able to endure persecutions and trials.

 

·         IT IS ALLOWABLE FOR A CHRISTIAN MINISTER TO SPEAK

OF WHAT GOD’S GRACE HAS ENABLED HIM TO DO AND TO

SUFFER FOR THE GOSPEL.

 

Ø      It glorifies Gods grace. The apostle always made this grace the

supreme factor in his success. “By, the grace of God I am what I am; Yet

not I, but the grace of God which was in me” (I Corinthians 15:10).

 

Ø      It is an encouragement to other ministers to labor with equal self-denial.

 

·         THE METHOD OF THE APOSTLE’S MINISTRY AND LIFE. “My

teaching,” in allusion less to his doctrine than to his manner of giving

instruction; “conduct,” or manner of life, in allusion to “my ways which be

in Christ” (I Corinthians 4:17); “purpose,” for he remained true to the

spiritual objects of his life, and, above all, to his mission to the Gentiles;

faith,” in allusion to his belief in the fundamental doctrines of the gospel,

linked with “long suffering” toward his bitter adversaries, whom he longed

to lead into truth — “the faith and the patience” being necessary to the

inheritance of the promises (Hebrews 6:12); “love,” which seemed

never to fail, “believing all things, bearing all things, hoping all things;”

linked with “endurance,” as before (I Timothy 6:11; Titus 2:2),

because it is the sustaining element of this endurance; “persecutions,

afflictions, which came to me at Antioch,” in Pisidia, whence he was

expelled by the Jews; “at Iconium,” where both Jews and Gentiles made an

assault upon him; “at Lystra,” where he was stoned and left for dead — the

three cities being named because of Timothy’s intimate acquaintance with

them, the apostle’s sufferings there being the earliest in his missionary life.

He gratefully records his deliverance out of all his persecutions by the good

hand of the Lord.

 

·         THE ATTITUDE OF THE WORLD TOWARD GODLINESS. “Yea,

and all that would live godly in Christ Jesus shall suffer persecution.”

 

Ø      The persons thus described.

 

o       Those who aim at a godly life — who “wish to live godly.”

      This is the highest aim of man in a world with many lofty ideals.

 

o       They are not merely godly, but live in all the outward amenities

      of gospel godliness. “As ye have received Christ Jesus the Lord,

      so walk ye in him.”

 

o       This life of godliness finds its source and spring in Jesus Christ.

      It is “in Christ Jesus.”

 

Ø      Their lot in this life. “Shall suffer persecution.”

 

o       This was Christ’s prediction. “If they persecuted me, they will

      also persecute you” (John 15:20).

 

o       The world is essentially at war with the kingdom of God.

      “Because ye are not of the world, therefore the world hateth

      you(ibid. v. 19).

 

o       Better to suffer as Christians than as evil doers.

 

13 “But evil men and seducers shall wax worse and worse, deceiving,

and being deceived.”  Evil men (πονηροί - ponaeroievil; wicked). In ch.4:18

it is παντὸς ἕργου πονηροῦpantos hergou ponaerou – every evil work.

The adjective is applied indifferently to persons and things — evil men,

evil servants, evil persons, evil generation, evil spirits, etc., and evil deeds,

evil fruits, evil eye, evil works, etc. SATAN, THE EMBODIMENT OF

EVIL  is πονηρός – ho ponaeros. Seducers. (γόντεςgontes – seducers;

swindlers; impostor); only here in the New Testament. In classical Greek

γόης goaes is a juggler, a cheat, an enchanter. Paul still had the Egyptian

magicians in his mind. Shall wax worse and worse (προκόψουσιν ἐπὶ τὸ χεῖρον

prokopsousin epi to cheiron – shall be progressing on the worse);

see above, v. 9, note.

 

 

 

            The Coming Apostasy (vs. 1-13)

 

(ἀποστασία apostasia - an apostasy or falling away from the Christian

Faith.  The language has a wide latitude, covering the whole space of the Christian

dispensation.  The evil had begun to work in the age of Timothy, but the worst

development of  anti-Christian apostasy will be in the closing days of the

dispensation. The “days of the Messiah” are often alluded to in the Hebrew

prophets as “in the last days;” literally, the end of days”  (Isaiah 2:2;

Hosea 3:5; Micah 4:1).

 

  • THE DANGEROUS CHARACTER OF THIS APOSTASY.

“Perilous times shall come.”  (v.1)

 

Ø      It will be a time of DANGER TO THE FAITH of God’s people.

Ø      It will be a time of PERIL TO THEIR LIVES.

Ø      It will be A TIME OF ABOUNDING WICKEDNESS  as well

as ERROR!

 

  • THE CHARACTERISTICS OF THE APOSTASY.  The doctrinal

degeneracy is marked by a widespread moral decay. The apostle,

after his usual manner, groups the characters into classes for more

distinct consideration.

 

Ø      THE SELFISH CLASS. “For men shall be lovers of self, lovers

of money”  (v.2).  Selfishness heads the dreary list. It is regarded by

many theologians as the root principle of all sin.. Selfishness is a

hard represser of love. The “love of money” has been called

“the daughter of selfishness.”  (Shylock in The Merchant of

Venice).  (When Jesus was asked when the end of the world

would come, He said “Because iniquity [anarchy] will abound,

the love of many shall wax cold.” – Matthew 24:12)

 

Ø      THE CLASS OF ARROGANT BOASTERS. “Boasters, arrogant,

railers  (v. 2).  The first are ostentatious in speech; the second, full of

pride and contempt for others; the third are full of insults to men.

 

Ø      THE CLASS WHICH IS DEFIANTLY REGARDLESS OF

HUMAN RELATIONSHIPS. “Disobedient to parents,

unthankful, unholy, without natural affection, implacable”  (vs.

2-3).  He who is regardless of filial duty will he ungrateful to others,

and he that is ungrateful will have no regard for holiness of character;

for he will keep covenant with no one, whether parent or benefactor.

 

Ø      THE CLASS DISTINGUISHED BY RECKLESS AND

PASSIONATE DEFIANCE OF GOOD. “Slanderers, without

self-control, fierce, no lovers of good, traitors”  (v. 3). 

 

o       The first term points to the disposition to bring the good

down to the level of the base;

o       the second, to the absence of all restraint from law,

(In the 21st century, they have gone a step further and seek to

change laws concering the family; homosexuality; controlled

substances, etc. – CY – 2013) human or Divine.  (See

Daniel 7:25 which speaks of such a time apostasy as we

are discussing.  – CY – 2013)

o       the third, to the savage temper that delights in cruelty;

o       the fourth, to the spirit that “loves darkness rather

than light;”

o       the fifth, to the class of men who could betray their

Christian brethren to their persecutors, or behave

falsely in any of their existing relationships.

 

Ø      THE CLASS OF HEADY AND CONCEITED ACTORS.

“Headstrong, puffed up”  (v. 4).  Rashness and conceit are

often allied.

 

Ø      THE CLASS OF PLEASURE SEEKERS. “Lovers of pleasure

rather than lovers of God.” It represents a dissipated class under

a Christian profession, who have no serious pursuits, and prefer

the friendship of the world to the friendship of God.  (We know

that “friendship of the world is enmity against God.”

(James 4:4)

 

  • APOSTASY WILL BEGIN UNDER A FORM OF CHRISTIAN

PROFESSION.   “Having a form of godliness.”  (v. 5).  Thus the

antichrist  looks like a lamb but speaks like a “dragon” (Revelation 13:11).

The picture is that of a CHRISTIANIZED PAGANISM  in the church.

 There was to be a scrupulous regard for all ritualistic regularity; an outward

show of devoutness under strict forms, and the mask of godliness over all

to cover A HEART IN SECRET ENSLAVED BY SIN!

 

  • THERE WILL BE A REPUDIATION OF REAL GODLINESS. “But

denying the power thereof.” (v. 5)

 

Ø      The power of godliness consists in love to God and love to our

neighbor. These were both repudiated. The class referred to were

strangers to experimental religion, which they dishonored by saying

one thing with their lips and another thing with their lives.

 

Ø      Such a repudiation involves graver sin and deeper condemnation

than if they had never known the truth or heard of the way of life.

 

Ø      THE DUTY OF BELIEVERS IN THE APOSTASY. “From such

turn away.” We ought to withdraw from their fellowship, avoid all

familiarity with them, hold no terms with the enemies of Christ and His

kingdom.

 

  • THE EXPLANATION OF THE WORLD’S ANTI-CHRISTIAN

ATTITUDE.  They are men of corrupt minds and reprobate

concerning  the faith.”  (v.8)

 

Ø      Corrupt affections depraved their mental judgments.  Their

      minds had become darkened. Romans 1:20-32 describes this

      crowd.   “Their foolish heart was darkened.”  They are

      further described in II  Peter 2:10-22).  A corrupt head, a

      corrupt  heart, and a vicious life, USUALLY ACCOMPANY

EACH OTHER.

 

Ø      The doctrines of these teachers had been tested and discovered to

be worthless.  (Time will tell what role Global Warming, Global

Economy, a false teaching of Separation of Church and State,

the exporting of homosexuality, abortion on demand, prolific

use of mind-altering drugs, and their exponents, have and

will have on THE SECOND COMING OF JESUS CHRIST!

Revelation 11:18 describes such as HASTENING TO BRING

ABOUT THE DESTRUCTION OF THE EARTH!  - CY –

2013)

 

  • THE DEGENERATE COURSE OF MANKIND PRIOR TO

FINAL APOSTASY.  “Deceiving and being deceived.” (In the

late 1960’s, the late Marion Duncan, preached a series of sermons

on the traits mentioned in vs. 2-5.  He did them one sermon at a

time and began by reading Revelation 20:1-8, where Satan was

loosed on the world, and he knowing that he has a short time

(Revelation 12:12), immediately sets out to DECEIVE THE

FOUR CORNERS OF THE WORLD and this my friends,

I submit to you is going on.  Compare 1970 with 2013.  A lot

has happened in America to where change has changed our face

to where we would be hard to be recognized!  The only way

to escape this situation is to take heed to Peter’s message on

the Day of Pentecost, “Save yourselves from this untoward

generation”  - Acts 2:40 – and the advice of John the Baptist

“flee the wrath to come” – Matthew 3:7 – I recommend

How to be Saved - # 5 – this web site – CY – 2013)

 

Ø      The method of mental and moral debasement. Let men

repeat falsities with sufficient frequency and deliberateness,

and they will come by and by to believe them themselves.

(Is this not the state of affairs in The Western Media today?

CY – 2013).  They begin by deceiving others. They cannot

deceive God nor the elect, but by their good words and fair speeches,

their lying wonders and their specious arts, they may seduce the

simple into error (the modern term coined for these are “low-

information people.” – CY – 2013)

 

Ø      The retribution that follows upon deception is Self-Deception.

(Thirty years ago, someone said at Training Union, that he thought

homosexuality was a judgment of God by allowing men to become

such.  Now I wonder if that is really what is going on in America

and the rest of the world!!!!!!   Jesus said, “this is the condemnation,

that light is come into the world, and MEN LOVE DARKNESS,

rather than light, because their deeds were evil.”  - John 3:19 –

CY – 2013)  Such deceivers have become sincere in their error,

because they have blinded their spiritual eyesight; but now they see

truth as error, and ERROR AS TRUTH!  (Isaiah 5:20 says

“Woe unto them that call evil good, and good evil; that put

darkness for light, and light for darkness; that put bitter

for sweet and sweet for bitter.”)

 

  • THE CHECK OF THE APOSTASY AND WORLD REBELLION

WILL BE THE WORK OF GOD.  “But they shall proceed no further;

for their folly shall be evident to all men”  (v. 9).   In ch. 2:16, it is said that

“they shall advance to more ungodliness;” but there Paul is speaking of

an immediate diffusion of error, but here of ITS ULTIMATE AND

FINAL EXTINCTION!  The evil would advance, but only to a certain point,

and the true character of ITS PROMOTERS  “their folly” — would

be made as manifest as was that of the Egyptian magicians, Jannes and Jambres.

(v. 8)

 

Thus, the long catalogue of moral enormity developed by the apostasy began with

“THE LOVE OF SELF”  and ends with “THE LOVE OF PLEASURE  

to the utter exclusion, first  and last, OF THE LOVE OF GOD!

 

 

 

                                    The Downward Course of Seducers (v. 13)

 

The apostle connects the persecution with the ways of evil men, while he warns

Timothy against them.

 

·         THEIR DEGENERATE COURSE. “But evil men and seducers shall

wax worse and worse.”

 

Ø      The persons here described.

     

o       Evil men.  

§         They are those in contrast with the men who “would

      live godly in Christ Jesus.”

§         They are not simply sinners as all men are by nature

      and practice, but rather wicked men who wear a

      mask of godliness, yet are full of malice against the

      saints of God.

 

o       Seducers, literally magicians, in allusion to those of Egypt;

      men who are full of sorceries to captivate and betray the

      unwary into error.

 

Ø      They shall go from bad to worse — both in principle and in practice, in

the use of their seductive arts and in the gradual depravation of their

character. There is nothing to arrest their downward course; there is no

grace in the heart; the principles of evil will work with unchecked

energy in their natures.

 

·         THE EXPLANATION OF THIS DEGENERACY. “Deceiving and

being deceived.”

 

Ø      The method of mental and moral debasement. Let men repeat falsities

with sufficient frequency and deliberateness, and they will come by and

by to believe them themselves. They begin by deceiving others. They

cannot deceive God nor the elect, but by their good words and fair

speeches, their lying wonders and their specious arts, they may seduce

the simple into error.

 

Ø      The retribution that follows upon deception is self-deception. Such

deceivers have become sincere in their error, because they have blinded

                        their spiritual eyesight; but now they see truth as error, and error as truth.

 

 14 “But continue thou in the things which thou hast learned and hast

been assured of, knowing of whom thou hast learned them;”

Continue thou, etc. Be not like these juggling heretics, blown about by

every wind of doctrine, and always seeking some new thing, but abide in

 THE OLD TRUTHS which thou hast learnt from thy childhood. Hast been

assured of (ἐπιστώθηςepistothaesyou were entrusted); only here in the

New Testament, but found in II Maccabees 7:24 and I Kings 1:36. In

classical Greek it has the same sense as here (among others), “to be made

sure of a thing.” Of whom thou hast learned them (παρὰ τίνος ἔμαθες

para tinos emathes), or, according to another reading of nearly

equal authority, παρὰ τίνωνpara tinon – beside whom). If τίνος is the

right reading, it must refer either to God or to Paul. In favor of its referring

to God is the expression in the Prophet Isaiah commented upon by our Lord

in John 6:45, where παρὰ τοῦ Πατρὸς para tou Patros – beside the

Father  answers to παρὰ τίνος; the promise concerning the Comforter,

“He shall teach you all things” (John 14:26, etc.); and the very similar

reasoning of John, when he is exhorting his “little children” to stand fast

in the faith, in spite of those that seduced them: “Let that therefore abide in

you which ye have heard from the beginning;” for “the anointing which ye

have received of Him, abideth in you, and ye need not that any man teach

you: but as the same anointing teacheth you of all things,…and even as it

hath taught you, abide in Him” (I John 2:24-28); and other similar

passages. There would obviously be great force in reminding Timothy that

he had received the gospel under the immediate teaching of THE HOLY

SPIRIT and that it would be a shameful thing for him to turn aside under

the influence of those impostors. If τίνων does not refer to God, it must refer

to Paul. If, on the other hand, τίνων is the true reading (which is less

probable), it must refer to Lois and Eunice, which seems rather feeble.

 

15 “And that from a child thou hast known the holy scriptures, which

are able to make thee wise unto salvation through faith which is in

Christ Jesus.”  And that from a child; and that from a babe, etc. Another

consideration urged as a reason for standing fast. He was no novice in the

Scriptures. His mother and grandmother had been careful to imbue him

with that sacred literature which should make him wise unto salvation

through faith in Jesus Christ, from his very earliest years. Surely he would

not throw away such a precious advantage.  The holy scriptures.

 (τὰ ἱερὰ γράμματα  - ta hiera grammata - the sacred writings; the

holy scriptures); literally, the holy letters, or learning. An ordinarily

educated child learns γράμματαgrammataletters; writings -

(John 7:15), in contradistinction to the uneducated, who are

ἀγράμματοι agrammatoi (Acts 4:13). But Timothy had learnt τὰ ἱερὰ γράμματα 

(the Holy Scriptures)  whose excellence is described in the next

verse.  We are instructed in the Word of God to "Train up a child in the way

that he should go and when he is old he shall not depart from it"  (Proverbs

22:6).  We are to exert ourselves in doing it.  (Deuteronomy 6:7).   Those

who erroneously who consider a religious upbringing an interference with

free development of the child and systematically kept all religious

ideas out of his mind till  the child is considered able to form an independent

and unbiassed judgment upon the subject of religion, NOT ONLY IS

DISOBEDIENCE TO GOD AND A SIN AGAINST THE CHILD, BUT

IS A VIRTUAL SELLING OF THE CHILD TO THE DEVIL!   If God and

truth are not presented to the mind till a matured judgment can be formed, it is

not as though there had not been experience, but THE MIND IS ALREADY

WARPED and religion is placed at a fearful disadvantage. Eunice proceeded

on the right principle when she seized the earliest opportunity of influencing the mind

of Timothy in favor of religion.  THE BIBLE IS AS TRULY A CHILD’S BOOK

AS A MAN’S BOOK!  Dwight Moody once said, “This book will KEEP YOU

FROM SIN  or sin will KEEP YOU FROM THIS BOOK!

 

The Scriptures are able to make one wise unto salvation, but they may not; for

there are some who make themselves wiser than God’s Word, and think they know

better about things than God does, and so perish by being wise in their own

conceits and refusing to be guided.   The efficiency of Scripture is  limitied

to  “Through faith which is in Christ Jesus.” The Scriptures cannot do more

than make us wise unto salvation; THEY ARE NOT TO BE PUT IN THE

PLACE OF CHRIST  and only do their work when they bring us up to Christ,

and also induce in us that state of mind which is here called faith, which instrumentally

 appropriates the salvation which is in HIM!

 

 

 

            An Admonition to Timothy to Abide in the Ways of Truth

                                                (vs. 14-15)

 

Amidst all the seductions of the false teachers, the apostle urges Timothy

to bold fast the doctrines which he had received in his early training.

 

·         THE DUTY AND NECESSITY OF HOLDING FAST BY THE

DIVINE VERITIES. “But do thou continue in the things which thou hast

learned and hast been assured of.”

 

Ø      The strength and comfort of an undoubting persuasion. Timothy was

not to be moved away from the doctrines of the gospel either by

persecutions or seductive arts. He found his strength and peace in them.

 

Ø      He had really learned them, unlike those ever learning and never able

to come to the knowledge of the truth; for he had an experimental

knowledge of them. He was, besides, fully assured of them, with “the full

assurance of understanding.” It is a very unbecoming attitude for a

teacher of others to be skeptical in his opinions. He ought to affirm with

certainty, and if he is fully assured, he has no right to surrender the truth.

 

·         THE GROUNDS OF HIS CERTAINTY AND ASSURANCE.

“Knowing of whom thou hast learned them; and that from a babe thou bast

known the Holy Scriptures, which are able to make thee wise to salvation

through faith which is in Christ Jesus.”

 

Ø      He had been taught sound doctrine by Lois and Eunice. It is, therefore,

proper for parents to instruct children in doctrine from their earliest days.

 

Ø      He had been trained from his very infancy in the Holy Scriptures. It

was, therefore, a right thing for him to be instructed in the Old Testament,

since it was all the Scripture he could have had in his childhood.

 

Ø      The Scripture he studied was sufficient to lead him to Christ.

      “Through faith which is in Christ Jesus.”

 

o       This marks the means by which the salvation can be attained;

      for Christ is “the end of the Law for righteousness to every

      one that believeth”  (Romans 10:4).

o       The effect of the salvation is not merely to instruct, but to make

      wise in the highest sense — giving spiritual wisdom and

      understanding in the knowledge of God’s will; for men are

      naturally without spiritual discernment.

o       The salvation cannot be enjoyed without faith, resting upon

      the person of the Redeemer.

 

16 “All scripture is given by inspiration of God, and is profitable for

doctrine, for reproof, for correction, for instruction in righteousness:”

All scripture.   Every Scripture, etc. There are two ways of construing this

important passage:

 

  1. As in the Authorized Version, in which θεόπνευστος - theopneustos

inspiration of God; God inspired - is part of the predicate coupled by

καὶ - kai – and - with the following ὠφέλιμοςophelimos

profitable; beneficial.;

 

B.   As in the Revised Version, where θεόπνευστος (inspiration of God)

is part of the subject (as πᾶ῀ν ἔργον ἀγαθόν – pan ergon agathon -

every good work, II Corinthians 9:8, and elsewhere); and the following

καὶ (and) is ascensive, and to be rendered “is also.” Commentators

are pretty equally divided, though the older ones (as Origen, Jerome

(Vulgate), the versions) mostly adopt (B). In favor of A), however,

it may be said:

 

1)      that such a sentence as that which arises from (B) necessarily

implies that there are some γραφαὶ - graphaiwritings - which

are not θεόπνευστοι (God inspired) just as Πᾶν ἔργον ἀγαθόν

(every good work)  some works which are not good;

πᾶσα εὐλογία πνευματική pasa eulogia pneumatikae

all spiritual blessings (Ephesians 1:3), that there are some

blessings which are not spiritual; πᾶν ἔργον πονηρόν

pan ergon ponaeron - every evil work (ch.4:18), that there

are some works which are not evil; and so on. But as

γραφή graphae  is invariably used in the New Testament

for “Scripture,” and not for any profane writing: it is not in

accordance with biblical language to say, “every inspired

Scripture,” because EVERY SCRIPTURE IS INSPIRED!

 

2)      The sentence, taken according to (B), is an extremely

awkward and harsh construction, not supported in its

entirety by one single parallel usage in the whole

New Testament.

 

3)      The sentence, taken according to (A), is a perfectly simple one,

and is exactly parallel with I Timothy 4:4, Πᾶν κτίσμα Θεοῦ

καλόν καὶ οὐδὲν ἀπόβλητον,  - Pan ktisma Theou kalon kai

aouden apoblaeton  - Every creature of God is good, and

nothing to be refused.”

 

4)      It is in perfect harmony with the context. Having in the preceding

verse stated the excellence of the sacred writings, he accounts for that

excellence by referring to their ORIGIN  and SOURCE.. They are

INSPIRED OF GOD and hence their wide use and great power.

 

5)      With regard to the rendering of πᾶσα γραφή - pasa graphae (all

 Scripture) no doubt, strict grammar, in the absence of

the article, favors the rendering in the Revised Version, “every Scripture,”

rather than that of the Authorized Version, “all Scripture.” But Alford’s

remark on Matthew 1:20 applies with full force here: “When a word or an

expression came to bear a technical conventional meaning, it was also

common to use it without the article, as if it were a proper name, e.g.

 Θεός νόμος υἱὸς ΘεοῦTheos nomos huios Theou” etc.

Therefore, just as πᾶσα Ἱεροσόλυμα pasa Iierousoluma

 all Jerusalem (Matthew 2:3) means “all Jerusalem,” not “every

Jerusalem,” so here πᾶσα γραφή  means “all Scripture.”  What

follows of the various uses of Holy Scripture is not true of

“every Scripture.” One Scripture is profitable for doctrine, another for

reproof, and so on. Examples of γραφή (Scripture) without the article

are II Peter 1:20 and  Romans 1:2; and of πᾶς (all) not followed by the

article, and yet meaning “all,” are in Ephesians 2:21 and 3:15.

 

 Inspired of God, etc. (θεόπνευστος Theopneustos); here only in the

New Testament or Septuagint, but occasionally in classical Greek, as

Plutarch. For doctrine; for teaching, etc. The particular uses for which

Scripture is said to be profitable present no difficulty. Teaching, of which

HOLY SCRIPTURE IS THE ONLY INFALLIBLE SOURCE!

Reproof  (ἔλεγχον elegmonreproof; conviction; proof); only here

and Hebrews 11:1; but in classical Greek it means “a proof,” specially for

the purpose of “refutation” of a false statement or argument. Here in

the same sense for the “conviction” or “refutation” of false teachers

(compare Titus 1:9,13), but probably including errors in living (compare

in the ‘Ordering of Priests,’ That there be no place left among you,

either for error in religion or for viciousness in life). Correction

 (ἐπανόρθωσινepanorthosin); only here in the New Testament,

 but occasionally in the Septuagint, and frequently in classical Greek,

as Aristotle, Plato, etc., in the sense of “correction,” i.e. setting a

person or thing straight, “revisal,” “improvement,” “amendment,”

or the like. It may be applied equally to opinions and to morals, or way

of life. Instruction in righteousness  exactly expresses the meaning.

The Greek, τὴν ἐν δικαιοσύνηtaen en dikaiosunaethe in

righteousness merely limits the παιδείαpaideiainstruction -

to the sphere of righteousness or Christian virtue. By the use of

Holy Scripture the Christian is being continually more perfectly

instructed in holy living.

 

There is a revealing power in the Bible. It teaches us much that we could not

otherwise have known. It supplies us with what is necessary not only for a correct,

 but A LOFTY CONCEPTION OF GOD. It acquaints us with our fallen

state, and with God’s dealings with us for our salvation.

 

The reproving power of the Bible results from ITS GREAT REVEALING

POWER along with the state in which it finds us. The light it sheds is not for

Our justification, but for our being convicted of departures both from truth and

righteousness. (The Bible thus acts like “a mirror”  to where we can see ourselves.

CY – 2013). 

 

The corrective power of the Bible starts from our being convicted as out

of the straight path. By proper directions, admonitions, warnings, encouragements,

it brings us back into the straight path. “For instruction which is in righteousness.”

 

The disciplinary power of the Bible is specified as being within the sphere of

righteousness.  In the lofty demands it makes — the loftier the further we

advance — it gives us the spiritual drill which makes for right habits.

 

Completeness aimed at. “That the man of God may be complete,

furnished completely unto every good work.” The man of God is man

according to the Divine idea. Many excellences go to make the complete

man, intellectual, emotional, practical. God desires to see the complete

man; and he has given the Bible for that end. The completeness thought of

is that of man as a worker, producing good thoughts, good words, good

actions. God desires to see the completely furnished worker, and He has

given the Bible for that end. It is true that we come very far short of the

Divine ideal of our humanity; the reason will be found to be that we neglect

the help provided for us. We do not consult God, but our own prejudiced

thoughts. Let us go back to the Bible, to be convicted of our error, and

corrected, and severely exercised toward the complete man.

 

Take an athletic man, the most perfect specimen of athletic training,

                    bone flesh and sinew, if that is all,

he is but one-third of a man and useless to society!

 

Send him to the schools and cram his mind full,

                    He is but two-thirds of man

and now he is dangerous as well as useless!

 

Put Christ in his heart to control and urge his purpose

    an ideal man – all three-thirds – A COMPLETE  MAN!

 

17 “That the man of God may be perfect, throughly furnished unto all

good works.”  Perfect.  (ἄρτιος - artios complete; fitted; perfect of its

kind); only here  in the New Testament, but common in classical Greek.

Throughly furnished.  (ἐξηρτισμένοςexaertismenos  - furnished completely

containing the same root as ἄρτιος); elsewhere in the New Testament only in

Acts 21:5 in the sense of “completing” a term of days. It is nearly synonymous with

καταρτίζωkatartizo  - perfected; you tuned; (Matthew 21:16; Luke 6:40;

II Corinthians 13:11; Hebrews 13:21; I Peter 5:10). In late classical Greek ἐξαρτίζω

 exartizo means, as here, “to equip fully.” As regards the question whether the man

of God is restricted in its meaning to the minister of Christ, or comprehends all

Christians, two things seem to decide in favor of the former: the one that

“the man of God” is in the Old Testament invariably applied to prophets in the

immediate service of God (I Timothy 6:11, note); the other that it undoubtedly

refers to Timothy in his character of chief pastor of the Church, and that here too

the whole force of the description of the uses and excellence of Holy

Scripture is brought to bear upon the exhortations in v. 14, “Continue

thou in the things which thou hast heard,” addressed to Timothy as the

Bishop of the Ephesian Church (see, too, ch. 4:1-5, where it is abundantly

clear that all that precedes was intended to bear directly upon Timothy’s

faithful and vigorous discharge of his office as an evangelist.)

 

 

 

 

                        The Authority and Utility of the Scriptures (vs. 16-17)

 

The apostle is led to emphasize the value of the Scriptures generally for the purposes

of spiritual life.

 

·         THE AUTHORITY OF SCRIPTURE. “Every Scripture inspired of God

is also profitable.”

 

Ø      This does not signify that there may be Scripture not divinely inspired,

but merely asserts that the Scripture being thus inspired is profitable.

 

Ø      The words inspired by Godpoint to the entire agency of God in

producing that Divine element which makes the Bible differ from every

other book. The inspired person was the organ of God in what he said, so

that his words were the words of God.

 

Ø      Scripture says nothing concerning the mode of inspiration. The process

is supernatural, and it cannot be explained. It is not with the mode but

with the result we are concerned.

 

Ø      Inspiration differs from revelation — this being that through which

apostles and prophets came into possession of Divine information,

inspiration being that through which they were able infallibly to

communicate it to others.

 

Ø      There is nothing in the doctrine of inspiration inconsistent with the idea

that the inspired penmen used their own peculiarities of verbal expression

or personal idiosyncrasies.

 

Ø      The inspiration extends to words as well as thoughts — to the form as

well as the substance of Scripture. So far as the record is inspired at all,

infallible thought must be definite thought, and definite thought implies

words. The apostle claimed that the Holy Spirit guaranteed his words as

well as his thoughts (I Corinthians 2:13, “Not in the didactic words of

man’s wisdom, but in the didactic words of the Holy Ghost”). Besides,

Christ and the apostles argue from the very words of Scripture

(Matthew 22:45; Galatians 3:16).

 

Ø      The term “every Scripture” in the text seems to include the Old

Testament and the New Testament so far as it had been written; else

there would have been no necessity for a different term from that used

in the fifteenth verse, “Holy Scriptures.”

 

·         THE UTILITY OF THE SCRIPTURE “Is also profitable for teaching,

for reproof, for correction, for discipline in righteousness.”

 

Ø      It is useful for teaching — as a medium for communicating instruction,

that we may know and believe what is necessary to salvation.

 

Ø      It is useful for reproof — for the refutation of error, for convincing a

man of his error.

 

Ø      It is useful for correction as to what is practically wrong in life.

 

Ø      It is useful for discipline in righteousness — righteousness being the

element in which this discipline is to take effect, through the agency of

Scripture.

 

·         THE RESULT OR DESIGN OF THE SCRIPTURE. “That the man

of God may be complete, furnished completely unto every good work.”

 

Ø      The design is the perfection of the believer in life and service. The

description supplies the man of God with all due appliances for this end.

They help to make us perfect in knowledge, faith, and holiness, as well

as to furnish us with wisdom and guidance in all holy service.

 

Ø      Inference to be drawn from the design of Scripture. It is a perfect, a

plain, a sufficient rule of faith and life.   If it can make wise to salvation,

perfect the man of God, and furnish him  for all holy work, then there

is no need for tradition to supplement its imaginary defects as some

teach.

 

 

 

            The Design of the Scriptures (v. 17)

 

“That the man of God may be complete, furnished completely unto every

good work.”

 

  • The design is the perfection of the believer in life and service. The

description supplies the man of God with all due appliances for this end.

They help to make us perfect in knowledge, faith, and holiness, as well as

to furnish us with wisdom and guidance in all holy service.

 

  • Inference to be drawn from the design of Scripture. It is a perfect,

plain, and sufficient rule of faith and life. If it can make wise to salvation,

perfect the man of God, and furnish him for all holy work, then there is

no need for tradition to supplement its imaginary defects.

 

The law of the LORD is perfect,

converting the soul: the testimony

of the LORD is sure, making wise

the simple. The statutes of the LORD

are right, rejoicing the heart: the

commandment of the LORD is pure,

 enlightening the eyes. The fear of the LORD

 is clean, enduring for ever: the judgments of

the LORD are true and righteous altogether.

More to be desired are they than gold, yea,

than much fine gold: sweeter also than honey

 and the honeycomb.  Moreover by them is thy

servant warned: and in keeping of them there is

great reward.   (Psalm 19:7-11)

 

 

Holy Scripture the Strength of the Man of God (vs. 1-17)

 

There is marvelous force in the application to the Christian bishop and

evangelist of the title THE MAN OF God When we remember the course

of faithful and untiring labor, and patient unflinching suffering, which was

run by those to whom alone this title was given in the Old Testament —

Moses and Samuel and Elijah, and other prophets of God — we feel at

once that the application of this title to the ministers of Christ under the

New Testament teaches them with incisive power that the like spirit must

be found in them if they are worthy to be classed with the men of God.

Evidently the “man of God”

 

  • must not be afraid of a man that shall die,
  • or a son of man which shall be made as grass;
  • he must not shrink from bearing witness for God before an unbelieving

and gainsaying world;

  • he must not be a lover of ease or pleasure, or
  • of the praise of men;
  • he must not be greedy of gain or covetous of reward;
  • he must not be a man of strife and brawls, but a man of love

and peace;

  • he must be zealous for God’s honor and glory;
  • he must be a staunch upholder of God’s truth against errors and

false doctrines; and

he must be a man of prayer, and very devout towards God;

 

for otherwise how shall he be called a “man of God”? But how shall

this unearthly character be maintained? When those perilous times are at

their height in which all the natural affections of men seem to be blighted,

and all the natural safeguards against the growth of evil seem to be

overborne by the floods of ungodliness, when a proud boasting spirit, as

empty as it is pretentious, carries men into all kinds of unseemly action, and

when religion itself, far from guiding men in holy paths, degenerates into

hypocrisy and faction and opposition to that which is good, how shall the

man of God:

 

·         maintain his integrity,

·         abide in the true doctrine of God, and

·         hold his own against the teachers of lies, and the seducers of weak

 and silly souls?

 

God has provided him with an all-sufficient weapon of attack and of

defense. IN THOSE HOLY SCRIPTURES  which were given by

 inspiration of God, the man of God finds a spiritual furniture suitable

for every need. By the study of it he acquires fresh wisdom for his task, and

 by its spirit his own spirit is nourished and refreshed. IN THE BRIGHT

LIGHT OF ITS TRUTH:

 

·         the pernicious errors of seducers are exposed;

·         by its counsels waverers are established,

·         the weak are strengthened,

·         the crooked are set straight again.

 

Conversant with its heavenly doctrine, the man of God is never at a loss for

a word of rebuke, of comfort, or exhortation. And while, on the one hand,

he is able to refute every new heresy that arises, by reference to the

unchanging Word of God, on the other he daily acquires some new insight

into the depths of revelation for his own edification and that of others.

He finds that the manifold and many-sided wisdom of the Scriptures is as able

to cope with the intellectual difficulties of the twenty-first century as it was

with the Gnosticism of the East in the first centuries of Christianity. And

so, while some turn away their ears from the truth, and turn aside unto

fables, the man of God finds his faith daily strengthening and increased,

 and looks forward fearlessly to the time when THE FOLLY OF THE

SKEPTIC SHALL BE EVIDENT TO ALL MEN and THE TRUTH

OF GOD’S WORD SHALL BE VINDICATED BEFORE ALL

 CREATION at the appearing of JESUS CHRIST IN THE GLORY

OF HIS KINGDOM!

 

 

                                    Grievous Times (vs. 1-17)

 

“But know this, that in the last days grievous times shall come.” They were

in the first days of the Christian era; the times foretold were to be in the

last days of that era. There is an intended indefiniteness about the days;

nothing is said about their commencement, or about the period over which

they are to extend. They are to embrace distinct times, but all characterized

by grievousness. From what follows we may infer that the grievousness of

the times will consist in the prevalence of moral evil, and in the strange

coexistence of moral evil with Christian forms. There will be difficulty in

knowing how to act, and also in acting according to knowledge in the face

of strong, quasi-Christian solidarities of evil. From a source of revelation

open to him, the apostle was able to write with certainty regarding the

coming of grievous times in the last days. There is not excluded the

ultimate triumph of religion in this world which is taught elsewhere.

 

·         CHARACTERISTICS OF THE MEN IN THE GRIEVOUS TIMES.

 

Ø      For men shall be lovers of self.”  Such men as the apostle here describes

there have been at all times, and the apostle does not say that they will be

then such for the first time, nor that all men without exception shall be

such, but he describes the moral spiritual physiognomy (the supposed art

of judging character from facial characteristics) of the times which

he beholds approaching.” We are not to include in this first part of the

description all who are influenced by self-love; for it is only right before

God that we should be influenced by an intelligent regard to our personal

interest.  The persons intended are the selfish — a word which was only

brought in by the Puritan divines toward the middle of the seventeenth century.

They are those who exclude God from the central place to which He is entitled

in their life. They are those who exclude others from the place of interest to

which they are entitled. They thus put self in a false position — make it the

beginning and end of all their thoughts and actions. They properly take the

place of pre-eminence in the apostle’s list; for all classes of sinners are after

the selfish type, i.e. put forward self in some way or other that does not

accord with eternal truth. In the grievous times will be large developments

of selfishness.

 

Ø      “Covetous” - Lovers of money. From similarity of composition in the

Greek words, the apostle passes on from lovers of self to lovers of money.

Under this head are not to be included all seekers of money; for it is right

to seek money for good ends. Neither are there to be included all who seek

money for selfish ends. But we are to think rather of the avaricious, i.e.

those who seek to retain money in a selfish way. They look upon it as that

which will make them self-sufficient in the future; and therefore they

grudge to spend it even on present necessity. The times will be grievous

when the avaricious increase.

 

Ø      “Boastful.”Boasters - Derived from a word signifying

a wandering about,” this word designated first the:

 

o        vagabond mountebanks -  persons who deceives others, especially

      in order to trick them out of their money; a charlatan.

o        conjuorsmagicians, illusionists.

o        quacksalver - a person who pretends, professionally or publicly,

      to have skill, knowledge, qualification or credentials he or she

      does not possess; a charlatan or snake oil salesman". The term

      quack is a clipped form of the archaic term quacksalver.

o        exorcist - a person who is believed to be able to cast out

      the devil or other demons.

 

These people are full of empty and boastful professions of cures and other

feats which they could accomplish.  Men do not need to go about crying up,

advertising, that which is of great value. What men generally boast of is some

external advantage which is of little consequence in comparison with the

moral worth which should be associated with it. The times will be grievous

when the gift is exalted above the moral use to which it is put.

 

Ø      “Proud.” - Haughty. The haughty are literally, in the Greek ὑπερήφανοι

      huperaephanoi - , those who show themselves above their fellows. In the

glass of their own minds, they behold themselves standing along with others;

and the comparison they make is in their own favor. Their estimate is false in

respect of the importance attached to that in which they pride themselves,

and in respect of the importance attached to that for which they despise

others. Birth is an advantage, but not the only advantage, nor the greatest

advantage, and must be taken along with service and character. In the

grievous times there will be a great amount of pride.

 

Ø      “Blasphemers.” Railers. The word is “blasphemers” but it would be

inconsistent with holding the form of godliness to think of blasphemers in

the usual sense in English. It is better, therefore, to think of those who use

evil words to each other, i.e. words of contempt, or words of bitterness.

There is to be a large development of evil speaking in the grievous times.

 

Ø      “Disobedient to parents.” Selfishness is early to show itself in the form of

      self-will. The young generation are to show impatience of being ruled by

their parents, which is sure to grow into impatience in respect of all rightful

rule. In the grievous times there is to be a large development of lawlessness,

beginning in the family circle.

 

Ø      “Unthankful.” Those who are allowed to have their own way in early life

are not likely to grow up to show gratitude to parents for what they have

sacrificed for them, nor are they likely to show gratitude in the ordinary

association in life, nor can we think of them showing gratitude to God for

His mercies. INGRATITUDE is to be a striking feature of the grievous

times.

 

Ø      “Unholy.” There are certain sanctities which are EVERLASTING which are

anterior to all law and custom, which belong to the Divine constitution of

things, e.g. the sanctities of the marriage bond. The unholy are those who

have no reverence or love in their hearts for these everlasting sanctities.

In the grievous times the most sacred bonds are to be DISREGARDED!

 

Ø      “Without natural affection.” Affection is that which sweetens life. In the

      grievous times affection is to die out, even for those for whom nature

specially claims affection. Parents will act unnaturally toward their children.

(What could be any more unnatural than to kill (abort) their child,

either prior to birth, or NOW AFTER BIRTH????????? – CY – 2019)

 

Ø      “Implacable.” The word supposes a state of variance. In the grievous times

men are not to come to terms with those who have given them offence, but

are to pursue them with all the might of THEIR VENGEANCE!

(Sounds like the Legislative Branches [the House and the Senate] of the

United States Goverment to me.  CY – 2019)

 

Ø      “Slanderers.”  They are not to be content with pouring contempt and bitterness

      on one another in ordinary evil speaking, but they are to attack one another

      with falsehoods.  (Witness yesterday when four freshmen members of

      the House, now known as The Squad, attacked the President who has been

“Tweeting” his analysis of them – CY – this being July 16, 2019)  Thus the

diabolic character is to be developed in the grievous times.

 

Ø      “Without self-control.” Incontinent.  (ἀκρατεῖςakrateis - without

      self-control; [sexually]); With self-will uncurbed in early life, it is not

to be wondered at that the men of the grievous times are to be characterized

as men who have no self-control.   (America is attempting to thrive in

this sexual cesspool of misconduct.  CY – 2019)

 

Ø      “Fierce.” In the grievous times there will be loss of self-control, proceeding

      to deeds of violence.  (Rape, child molestation, after-birth abortion,

      ad nauseum.  CY – 2019)

 

Ø      “No lovers of good.” Despisers of those that are good.  In keeping with the

      personal reference before and after, we prefer to translate,“no lovers of good

      men.” With evil so active in them, the presence of good men will be

      burdensome to them.  (And why, “....because his own works were evil

      and his brother’s righteous.”  I John 3:12 – CY – 2019)  They are therefore

      likely to make the times grievous to the good, by unjustly treating them.

 

Ø      “Traitors.” Fidelity is the sacred bond that joins friend to friend. In the

      grievous times friend will be often found betraying friend.   (“And the

      brother shall deliver up the brother to death, and the father the child:

      and the children shall rise up against their parents, and cause them

      to be put to death.”  (Matthew 10:21)

 

Ø      “Heady.” Headstrong. In the grievous times men will go to daring lengths.

 

Ø      “High minded.” Puffed up. The explanation of their daringness is, that they

      have no right sense of their own position before God — their:

 

Ø      insignificance,

Ø      impotence, and

Ø      responsibility.

 

Ø      “Lovers of pleasure rather than lovers of God.” Men will be daring especially

      in sensual gratification.  (I saw a documentary on cocaine that was going back

      as far as the 1970’s and 1980’s and the connection to sex.  This means that

      the “drug culture” and “sexual revolution” has been entrenched in this

      country for nearly half a century, just one of the reasons that is bringing,

      not only judgment upon the nation and people, but the Second Coming of

      Jesus Christ!  CY – July 17, 2019)  Pleasure will be preferred TO GOD!

 

Ø      “Holding a form of godliness, but having denied the power thereof.”

      The remarkable thing is that the men who have been described (we do

      not need to think of the characteristics being all combined) should hold

      a form of godliness. The relation of the form of godliness to the men who

      make the grievous times, is that it conceals their true character. It is

      SELF throughout, in a more or less hateful form, and therefore the

      real power of godliness is denied. But it does not appear so

nakedly and hatefully to be self where there is a form of acknowledging

God. The relation of the form of godliness to the grievous times is, that it

allows evil to work more insidiously (in a gradual, subtle way, but with

harmful effects). It is not so difficult to meet pure heathenism as it is to

meet a Christianity that has become heathenish.

 

Ø      Advice. “From these also turn away.” Paul would have things put on a

basis of reality. Between Timothy and such men there could be no

sympathy. Why keep up a semblance of fellowship? Both for them and for

him it was better that the line of demarcation should be drawn, and that all

further relationships should proceed on the footing that they did not belong

to the same Christian society.

 

·         THE MEN OF THE GRIEVOUS TIMES ANTICIPATED. “For of

these.” The apostle follows up his description of the men of the evil times

by the advice to turn away from them, as though they were already present.

The explanation he gives is that there were forerunners of them, men of the

same spiritual kith. Characteristics.

 

Ø      Influence with women.

 

o        Manner of their influence. “Are they that creep into houses, and take

captive silly women.” Their converts were among women, which was

not matter of reproach to them. But it was matter of reproach that it was

women so habitually that they sought to influence, and that they did not

go openly about the work of influencing them. They crept into houses,

as though they did not wish to be seen. And that mode of entrance

suggested the employment of other methods than the direct force of

truth. By the methods employed they got the women completely into

their power. It was matter of reproach to the women that they gave

themselves up to such teachers, and therefore they are called

silly women.

 

o        Explanation of their influence. “Laden with sins, led away by divers

lusts, ever learning, and never able to come to the knowledge of the

truth.” They were not women of the right stamp. In relation to their past

they were laden with sins. In relation to their present they were led away

by divers lusts — led away to divers, and even conflicting, sources of

gratification. They needed a salve for their conscience, and yet a salve

that allowed continued gratification. This salve was supplied by the

false teachers. They were always getting some new point from them,

which gave satisfaction for the time, but they never came any nearer

resting in the truth. The reason was that they had not the right moral

conditions. Their object was, not to get such truth (to be found in the

gospel) as would have delivered them from the guilt of their sins and

the power of their lusts, but to have lengthened out to them a mingling

of sensual and intellectual gratification.

 

Ø      Withstanding the truth.

 

o        Type of their opposition. “And like as Jannes and Jambres withstood

Moses, so do these also withstand the truth; men corrupted in mind,

reprobate concerning the faith.” The apostle here makes use of

Hebrew tradition. Jannes and Jambres are not mentioned in the Old

Testament, but Hebrew tradition identifies them with the chief of the

magicians who withstood Moses. Aaron cast down his rod before

Pharaoh, and it became a serpent; and the magicians “they also did in

like manner with their enchantments.”  (Exodus 7:11)  It is also

recorded that they succeeded in imitating the first two plagues. They

thus withstood Moses — stood between him and the effect which his

miracles were intended to produce on Pharaoh. So the false teachers

produced a spurious imitation of the truth, teaching what resembled

the gospel without being the gospel. As the gospel teachers had

also to a late period (Galatians 3:5) the power of working miracles, so

we can understand that these teachers made use of magical arts in

confirmation of their quasi-gospel teaching. They thus withstood the

truth — came between the gospel and the effect it was fitted to

produce. In thus acting they were corrupted in mind; their motives

were not good. Their object was not to advance the truth, or to benefit

those whom they taught, but to advance themselves and to obtain their

own ends with their female converts. They were also reprobate

concerning the faith; they were making it abundantly clear that their

adherence to the faith was a complete failure.

 

o        Type of their defeat. “But they shall proceed no further: for their

      folly shall be evident unto all men, as theirs also came to be.” So

Luther used to say of the priests by whom he was opposed. The

false teachers used secret and spurious methods with success; but,

though they might wax worse and worse themselves (v. 13), the

time of their exposure was come. So was it with Jannes and Jambres.

They were in undisturbed possession of power till Moses appeared

on the scene. They seemed to be succeeding when they turned their

own rods into serpents; but they suffered defeat when Aaron’s rod

swallowed up their rods. They seemed to be recovering their success

when they imitated the first plague (water turned to blood0, and again

when they imitated the second plague (frogs); but they were baffled in

their attempt to imitate the third plague (lice; Exodus 8:18). They were

in connection with another plague shown to be defeated, when they

could not stand before Moses because of the boils (ibid. ch. 9:11).

Moses succeeded in getting the children of Israel out of Egypt; and

Hebrew tradition tells that Jannes and Jambres perished in the

Red Sea.  (For an interesting study I recommend www.arkdiscovery.com

and check out The Red Sea Crossing.  There is a video with archaeological

evidence – CY 2019)  This is the history of all false teaching, of all

spiritual trickery. It may succeed for a time, but its very success

often works its ruin. The time comes when its impostures are found

out, and it can proceed no further. So we can believe that the great

development of evil in the last days will end in COMPLETE

EXPOSURE and in the brilliant TRIUMPH OF GOOD!

 

·         CONTRAST IN TIMOTHY.

 

Ø      Timothy reminded of his conduct at a former period, which was a

following of Paul as his guiding star.

 

o        A leading up to sufferings. “But thou didst follow my teaching,

conduct, purpose, faith, long suffering, love, patience, persecutions,

sufferings.” The period referred to is Timothy’s early ministry. He then

acted as assistant to Paul, and what Paul gratefully calls to mind was his

close following of him as a disciple. He not only followed him so as to

be familiar with details, but followed him so as to direct his course by

what he saw in him. The great lines of his teaching, the great lines of

his conduct, Timothy made his own. The special purpose of his life

(ruling so many details), which was to spread the gospel of Christ, was

also after Paul. So, too, was his disposition towards Christ, viz. faith,

especially in his power to make his gospel to tell upon men. So, too,

was his disposition toward opponents, viz. his long suffering with their

bitter opposition. So, too, was his disposition toward those in whose

interest he labored, viz. love for their souls. So, too, was his disposition

under all the adverse conditions of his ministry, as appointed for him,

viz. patience. This forms a point of transition to past troublous times

when Paul was persecuted, and persecuted so as to be a sufferer in

many ways. Even to the apostle’s persecutions and sufferings Timothy’s

following extended; i.e. he thoroughly appreciated the fidelity which

led to them and brave bearing under them. They may have had to do

with his joining the apostle, and determined his own relation to

persecutions and sufferings.

 

o        Sufferings specified. “What things befell me at Antioch, at Iconium,

      at Lystra; what persecutions I endured.”

 

§         At Antioch he suffered expulsion.

§         At Iconium he had to flee from maltreatment, particularly

            stoning.

§         At Lystra under Jewish instigation, the mob stoned Paul and

dragged him out of the city, supposing that he was dead.

 

Such were the persecutions, the last especially sharp and extreme,

under which Paul bore up, of which Timothy Had a distinct impression,

and which were fitted to embolden him still.

 

o        Comfortable issue of the sufferings. “And out of them all the Lord

delivered me.” He was cared for by the great Head of the Church, to

whom all power in earth had been committed, to whom it belonged

to order the earthly destiny of his servants. The Lord, who had more

work for him to do, delivered him out of all the schemes of his

enemies — gave him up to sorrowing friends when he was left for

dead by his enemies.

 

Ø      Timothy forewarned.

 

o        Regarding persecutions. “Yea, and all that would live godly in Christ

Jesus shall suffer persecution.” To live godly is to take the rule of our

life from God. This can only be carried out in communion with

Christ Jesus.  Were all living according to the Divine rule around us,

we should be abundantly encouraged. But seeing we live in the midst

of so many who hate goodness and do not like to be reminded of God,

we must expect to suffer persecution, i.e. to be misjudged, to be

opposed, to be assailed, if our godliness is active and aggressive

against evil, as it should be. We must have a mind to live godly,

whatever consequences it entails. It was because he lived according

to the Divine rule that Paul was stoned. As the principle involved

was universal, Timothy, in proportion to the vitality of his godliness,

must expect to suffer persecution.

 

o        Regarding evil men, and especially one class of them. “But evil men

and impostors shall wax worse and worse, deceiving and being

deceived.”  Of the evil men that make persecutions, the worst specimens

had not yet been seen. The rule is that good men wax better and better,

the good men of one generation outstripping the good men of former

generations. This may not apply to particular specimens, for we do

not find any to outstrip Paul. But it is true of good men as a class that,

with better helps, more experience to go by, better education, better

books, better methods, better organization, they are of more value

to the society to which they belong.  We have laymen in our Churches

now whose Christian enlightenment and activity is above what any

previous generation has seen. While the good are better, the bad are

worse. This applies especially to the class specified, who, with

reference to what has before been said, are called impostors, or

tricksters in religion. The original reference of the word is to those who

chanted their spells in a sort of howl. We have worse specimens of

withstanders of the truth than Jannes and Jambres were, or their

successors in the early times of Christianity. Infidels are a worse

class of men now than they were half a century ago. The incantations

used in the free thinking press are of a more dangerous nature than

any potions or howlings that were resorted to by magicians of old.

Our free thinkers ARE DECEIVERS;  they habitually subject

Scripture to the most unfair treatment. And deceiving, THEY ARE

ALSO DECEIVED, conscious of their own trickery, they do

not subject the statements of their friends to examination, but are

known for their amazing gullibility!

 

Ø      Timothy incited to present duty founded on past early training.

 

o        Early teaching. “But abide thou in the things which thou hast

      learned.” Timothy was no longer in the position of the child taught, but

in the position of a teacher of others. To one in that position it might

have been thought that the appropriate thing would have been advice

about his reading — and he does appear to have had books and

parchments from the apostles — but the advice which he gives him

here is to continue in the things which he had learned, i.e. as a child.

And there was really nothing better for him; nothing except this, that

the Messiah whom Lois and Eunice taught him to look forward to was

now come, and that there had been done to Him and by Him all that

the Old Testament Scriptures had said of Him. And so to those who

are grown up, and have power to think and to read and to grasp things

with a firm grasp, there is never anything better than the old story

of Jesus and His love, learned at a mother’s knee.

 

o        Early teaching along with early convictions. “And hast been assured

of.” We should read, “Thou didst learn, and wast assured of.” It is

Timothy’s early convictions that we are to think of. He not only got the

teaching from Lois and Eunice, but it became matter of personal

conviction to him. He could set to his own seal to what he had been

taught. He knew the worth of a mother’s religion in the peace, restraint,

hope, it brought into his own soul. It was a legitimate argument for Paul

to use with Timothy, not to turn his back on his early convictions, to

hold to the God of his childhood.*

 

                        I Have Returned

I have returned to the God of my childhood,
To the same simple faith as a child I once knew;
Like the prodigal son I have longed for my loved ones,
For the comforts of home and the God I outgrew.

I have returned to the God of my childhood,
Bethlehem's Babe, the prophet's Messiah;
He's Jesus to me, Eternal Deity;
Praise His name, I have returned.

I have returned to the God of my mother,
With unfailing faith for the child of her heart;
She said bring them up the way that you want them,
Thank God when they're grown, they'll never depart.

I have returned to the God of my mother,
I learned at her knee He's the lily of the valley;
He's Jesus to me, Eternal Deity;
Praise His name, I have returned.

I have returned to the God of my father,
The most God-like man a child could know;
I just heard a shout from the angels in glory,
Praising the Lord a child has come home.

I have returned to the God of my father,
Creator of heaven and earth, God of the universe;
He's Jesus to me, Eternal Deity;
Praise His name, I have returned.

I have returned to the Yahweh of Judah,
On my knees I did fall where the wall now stands;
This lesson I learned as I've worked my way homeward,
The Saviour of all is a comfort to man.

I have returned to the Father of Abraham,
The shepherd of Moses who called Him the great I am;
He's Jesus to me, Eternal Deity;
Praise His name, I have returned.

                                    *Copied (a song by Marijohn Wilkin)

 

 

 When life was lived according to God’s ideas, such as Timothy’s was,

he was not to be inconsistent and to make the latter part disagree with

the former. “There is but one way of making all our days one, because

one love, one hope, one joy, one aim, binds them all together; and that

is by taking the abiding Christ for ours, and abiding in Him all our

days.  Our true progress consists, not in growing away from Jesus, but

in growing up into Him; not in passing through and leaving behind the

first convictions of Him as Saviour, but in having these verified by the

experience of years, deepened and cleared, unfolded and ordered into a

larger though still incomplete whole.”

 

o        Personal element in teaching. “Knowing of whom [what persons] thou

hast learned them.” “Timothy was supposed to have a complete set of

recollections from his mother woven into his very feeling of the truth

itself. It was more true, because it had been taught by her. There was

even a sense of her loving personality in it, by which it had always

been, and was always to be endeared. On the other hand, it will be

always found that every kind of teaching in religion which adds no

personal interest or attraction to the truth, sheds no light upon it from

a good and beautiful life, is nearly or quite worthless. And here is the

privilege of a genuinely Christian father and mother in their

teaching, that they pass into the heart’s feeling of their child,

side by side with God’s truth, to be forever identified

with it, and to be, themselves, lived on and over with it, in the

dear eternity it gives him.”

 

o        When teaching begins. “And that from a babe thou hast known.”

      Those who carry the idea of individual responsibility through everything

have a difficulty here in the dating of religious instruction from the very

earliest age. James Mill, the author of the ‘History of India,’ taking the

education of his more remarkable son, John Stuart Mill, into his own

hands, proceeded on the principle that a religious upbringing would be

an interference with free development, and systematically kept all

religious ideas out of his mind till he considered him able to form an

independent and unbiased judgment upon the subject of religion. Our

objection to that course is that it is a virtual selling of the child to the

devil. If God and truth are not presented to the mind till a matured

judgment can be formed, it is not as though there had not been

experience, but THE MIND IS ALREADY WARPED  and religion

is placed at a fearful disadvantage. Eunice proceeded on the right

principle when she seized the earliest opportunity of influencing the

mind of Timothy in favor of religion.

 

o        Scriptural teaching.

 

§         Name. “The sacred writings.” The name is suggestive, in the

      first place, of a written revelation, which has the advantage over

oral tradition (the form of revelation which obtained for the first

two or three thousand years) in that it does not lie so open to

the action of prejudice. Men may come with all manner of

prejudices to it, but it is there to witness for itself to every

unprejudiced mind. The name is suggestive, in the second place,

of many writers being employed in the communication of Divine

truth, which is much better than one with his particular

idiosyncrasy entering into his writings, inasmuch as all classes

of minds can be thus suited, and if they are not attracted by

one mode of stating the truth, they may be attracted by another.

The name is suggestive, in the third place, of writings connected

with religion, such as there do not seem to have been in

connection with the religions of Greece and Rome. The Bible

can be employed for the instruction of children, inasmuch as

it is truly a child’s book as well as a man’s book. What is

needed, at the first stage at least, is truth in the concrete form;

and this is to be found in the Bible, which, with some things

hard to be understood, has yet many a simple statement and

story that is fitted to fill the child’s imagination and to touch

the child’s heart. Eunice had only the Old Testament Scriptures

to draw upon: the Christian parent has now an immense

advantage, in the addition of the New Testament, and especially

of the four Gospels, and in the greater facilities which a printed

Bible gives him for getting Bible images and lessons into the

mind of the child.

 

§         Property. “Which are able to make thee wise unto salvation.

They form a directory to salvation, containing all the

information and pleading with the soul which are necessary.

To one inexperienced in the ways of the world it is a great

advantage to have a friend at hand, able on every occasion

to give a sound advice, to expose fallacies, to put forward

weighty considerations. (Grandfathers and grandmothers

can, under the leadership of the Holy Spirit, can play a

great part in this by reinforcing the parent’s teachings! 

CY – 2019)  Inexperienced in the ways of the world we

certainly are, liable to be deceived by appearances, to be

buoyed up with false hopes. In giving us the Scriptures,

God acts the part of a friend, giving us the best advice,

opening our eyes to reality, so that, with all our inexperience,

it is as though we possessed boundless stores of wisdom.

They are able to make WISE UNTO SALVATION but

they may not; for there are some who make themselves

wiser than God’s Word, and think they know better about

things than God does, AND SO PERISH by being wise in

their own conceits and REFUSE TO BE GUIDED!

 

§         Condition of efficiency. “Through faith which is in

      Christ Jesus.” The Scriptures cannot do more than make us

wise unto salvation; they are not to be put in the place of Christ,

whose connection with salvation is more than that of a

directory — is of the most intimate nature, who is really the

efficient Cause of salvation, the Receptacle of salvation; and

they only do their work when they bring us up to Christ,

and also induce in us that state of mind which is here called

faith, which instrumentally appropriates the salvation which

is in Him.

 

·         SUFFICIENCY OF SCRIPTURE.

 

Ø      Ground of sufficiency. “Every Scripture inspired of God.” According to

this translation the inspiration of Scripture is taught, not explicitly but

implicitly. We are to regard it as taken for granted that Scripture is

GOD-BREATHED!  Inspiration extends to every part of Scripture.

This is a doctrine of vital importance to the Church. Its bearing is that there is

not only the absence of error, but the presence of positive perfection (Psalm

19:7) in relation to the whole want of man under the present order of things.

The Divine influence, however operating, is guarantee that in Scripture, in its

manifoldness, we have all fundamentally that needs to be said to man on the

subject of religion, and in the form that is best fitted to have deep and lasting

effect upon his spiritual nature as a whole. The difference is very perceptible in

the post-apostolic literature. “Even where we recognize a lofty flight of the

spirit as in the Ignatian Epistles, the inspiration repeatedly is merely a

religious enthusiasm, a subjective romance, showing itself in an almost

reveling desire for martyrdom, moving and even infectious; so that many

who read an Ignatian Epistle for the first time feel themselves doubtless

more excited and stirred than by a Pauline one; but this very feature proves

that it is not really inspired; for the Spirit who founded the Church does not

tolerate the extolling of one isolated tendency in the soul, and cannot bear

such subjective partiality of view, be it ever so strong, ever so apparently

admirable.”

 

Ø      Fourfold use.

 

o        “Is also profitable.” In reading the Scriptures what we are

to seek above all things is that the truth contained in them

may be brought into contact with our minds for our profit.

 

o        “For teaching.” There is first a revealing power in the Bible.

      It teaches us much that we could not otherwise have known.

It supplies us with what is necessary not only for a correct,

but a lofty, conception of God. It acquaints us with our fallen

state, and with God’s dealings with us for our salvation.

 

o        “For reproof.”  The reproving power of the Bible results from

      its great revealing power, along with the state in which it finds us.

The light it sheds is not for our justification, but for our being

convicted of departures both from truth and righteousness.

 

o        “For correction.” The corrective power of the Bible starts

from our being convicted as out of the straight path. By proper:

 

§         directions,

§         admonitions,

§         warnings,

§         encouragements,

 

it brings us back into the straight path.

 

o        “For instruction which is in righteousness.” The disciplinary power

of the Bible is specified as being within the sphere of righteousness.

In the lofty demands it makes — the loftier the further we advance —

it gives us the spiritual drill which makes for right habits.

 

Ø      Completeness aimed at. “That the man of God may be complete,

furnished completely unto every good work.” The man of God is man

according to the Divine idea. Many excellences go to make the complete

man: 

 

o        intellectual,

o        emotional,

o        practical.

 

God desires to see the complete man; and He has given THE BIBLE

 FOR THAT END!   The completeness thought of is that of man as a

worker, producing:

 

o        good thoughts,

o        good words,

o        good actions.

 

God desires to see the completely furnished worker, and He has

given THE BIBLE FOR THAT END!   It is true that we come VERY

SHORT OF THE DIVINE IDEAL of our humanity; the reason will

be found to be that WE NEGLECT THE HELP PROVIDED FOR US!

 We do not consult God, but our own prejudiced thoughts. LET US

GO BACK TO THE BIBLE to be:

 

o        convicted of our error,

o        corrected in our error, and

o        severely exercised toward THE COMPLETE MAN!

 

 

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