Reading the Bible together – 2 Timothy
– The book we are reading this month is Paul’s second letter to Timothy, which is the 16th book of the New Testament.
This will be the 38th book of the Bible we will have read, since commencing this initiative, three years ago in October 2015. (We have actually read Matthew and Joshua twice!)
We will review this month’s book at our Bible Study and Prayer Meeting on Thursday 1st February 2018.
Introduction to Paul’s Second Letter to Timothy
“All scripture is given by inspiration of God, and is profitable for doctrine, for reproof, for correction, for instruction in righteousness: That the man of God may be perfect, throughly furnished unto all good works” 2 Timothy 3:16-17
Paul writes his final letter to his faithful companion Timothy. He ends by saying that his death is at hand, that he fought the good fight, that he finished the course, that he has kept the faith, and there is awaiting for him a crown of righteousness. 2 Timothy was the last of Paul’s recorded writings and according tradition he was soon beheaded.
- Chapter 1 – Faithfulness
- Chapter 2 – Devotion and Conflict
- Chapter 3 – Apostasy and the Word of God
- Chapter 4 – God Will be Faithful
Summary of the book of 2 Timothy
Timothy – Timothy became a new convert of Paul the apostle on his first missionary journey (1 Timothy 1:2, 18, Acts 14:6-23), and Timothy became a devoted traveling companion of Paul’s. Timothy was a native of Lystra, and he was with Paul when he was imprisoned Rome. Paul mentions that Timothy made the journey from Rome to Philippi (Philippians 2:19-23). Sometime later became the minister of the church at Ephesus, and Paul the apostle addresses his epistle to Timothy as a minister at Ephesus.
Content – Paul clearly longed for his companion Timothy. He wanted to further instruct his disciple in his battle against false doctrine. Paul also mentions his need for his cloak, his books, and his parchment which he left at Troas. Paul ends his letter to Timothy with a statement that would powerfully speak to anyone suffering for the Lord, “For I am now ready to be offered, and the time of my departure is at hand. I have fought a good fight, I have finished my course, I have kept the faith: Henceforth there is laid up for me a crown of righteousness, which the Lord, the righteous judge, shall give me at that day: and not to me only, but unto all them also that love his appearing” (2 Timothy 4:6-8 ).
Historical Background – Paul’s second letter to Timothy was written while Paul was in prison. This is his second imprisonment in Rome, and he is under strict custody. There appears to be no hope of release, and it seems that his death is imminent. Paul in his old age longs for his young companion and co-worker in the ministry of Christ, his friend Timothy.
The Pastoral Epistles – 1 and 2 Timothy, and Titus are referred to as the Pastoral Epistles. Most scholars believe they were written between Paul’s first and second imprisonments, sometime between 64 and 67 AD.
The Last of Paul’s Letters – this was the Paul’s last letter in recorded history. Soon after, according to tradition, he was led out on the Ostran Way where he was beheaded.
Date – Paul’s second imprisonment in Rome came during the persecution by the Emperor Nero, and this would place the date of the epistle to 2 Timothy to be around the beginning of 68 AD. The book was written in Rome, Timothy had left Ephesus (2 Timothy 4:12) and was on his way to Rome. Timothy may have been in Macedonia at the time that this book was written.
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