Monday, April 4, 2016

Wisdom, Bitterness and Blessed Hope

As the years go by I've seen apostasy, experienced betrayals, watched people drift away, seen people exposed as something other than what they were thought to be.

It's both sad and startling. People you once thought were so solid turn out to be houses built on sand, seeds sprouting on rocky ground. I've watched others drowned by foolish and hurtful lusts, choked by weeds and many who live by lying to themselves about everything they do and the whole of their motivations.

Wednesday, May 20, 2015

2 Timothy 3.1-9

In the last section Paul identified the source of the false teaching as ultimately demonic. The false teachers which plague the Church are in fact ensnared by the devil. They are captives to do his will. And thus we learn something of Satan's tactics. The danger to the Church is not so much overt paganism or even the secular humanism of our day but the false gospel which looks true but in fact is something else. It builds on speculation, diverts the attention of the flock away from Christ, and perverts and destroys the Christian life. Paul deals with this in his other epistles and Timothy has heard it before as well. This came up in the first epistle with regard to ascetic practices and Christian piety rooted in such exercises.

But now Paul takes it a step further. He's getting ready to depart the scene and wants Timothy to mark well the fact that this demonic activity, this false Christianity is something that will be characteristic of the entire age.

Saturday, May 2, 2015

2 Timothy 2.20-26

Expanding on his illustration regarding the solid foundation established and sealed by God, Paul speaks of a great house. What's he referring to? At first it's not entirely clear and his illustration seems to break down or get side tracked.

Wednesday, March 25, 2015

2 Timothy 2.14-19

Timothy is further exhorted to 'remind them of these things'. Who is Timothy exhorting? This is referring back to the elect in v.10. The elect whom Paul suffers for and he applied to them the faithful saying of vv.11-13. Timothy is commanded to repeat and revisit these ideas concerning our union with Christ and the nature of our profession as well as the danger of denial and apostasy.

Wednesday, March 4, 2015

2 Timothy 2.3-13

Again Paul encourages Timothy to 'endure', to share in the suffering and thus 'war' a good warfare. The non-carnal weapons of the Christian are utter foolishness to the world but as Christians we live our lives on a different level. Like Elisha's servant we have our eyes opened and we see the spiritual realities of the universe.

Friday, February 27, 2015

2 Timothy 2.1-4

Chapter two continues with an exhortation and application of the previous points. Timothy affectionately referred to as Paul's spiritual son is pointed to the previous examples of suffering loyalty and perseverance. He is encouraged to be strong in the grace that is in Christ Jesus.

Saturday, February 14, 2015

2 Timothy 1.13-18

Paul continues to exhort Timothy to hold fast to the pattern of sound words, the doctrine which Paul the Apostle to the Gentiles has conveyed to him. Paul is explicit that the purity of the Gospel and by implication the sound or healthy Christian life is tied to 'words'... to ideas, doctrines and concepts rooted in true reality given to us via revelation. Knowing God through His Word is the route to holiness as opposed to human wisdom or unreliable emotion. This is not to say we do not 'feel'. By no means does it suggest that but the criteria for knowing Truth is through the Word and it is the sound and solid Word which produces sound and solid Christian living.