Monday, October 26, 2009

2 Timothy 3

The description of the last days is a diagnosis of the context in which a church exists and in which Christians live. The negativity of this list is more obvious in Greek than in English. The same negative prefix is used 8 different times in this list of bad characteristics. "Having the form of godliness, but denying it's power," is a stinging indictment of formal, empty religion. "Always learning but never able to come to a knowledge of the truth," has the same force against an education system that ignores God.

The darkness of the context makes all the more glorious the light of God's word at the end of the chapter which is able to change the most corrupt person into a man or woman of God. That word of God is breathed by God is profitable.

The contrast between a life of godliness in submission to God's word and the context that is so dark means that all who would live godly in Christ Jesus will suffer.

Paul's mentoring strategy is first, example (2 Tim. 3:10-11), then suffering (2 Tim. 3:12-14), then Bible (2 Tim. 3:15-17). So simple and so elegant and so practical.

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