2 Timothy 2:1 (NIV) 1 You then, my son, be strong in the grace that is in Christ Jesus.
On verse 1: No matter how difficult your situation is today, praise God that there is grace in Jesus Christ so that you can be strong. Regardless of the trial you’re facing, God’s grace is always sufficient for you.
2 Timothy 2:2 (NIV) 2 And the things you have heard me say in the presence of many witnesses entrust to reliable men who will also be qualified to teach others.
On verse 2: Paul had spent so much of his life preaching and teaching others. Now that his life was nearing an end, he tells Timothy to entrust what he has previously preached and taught to trustworthy men who can teach others. Paul was concerned about the next generation. He wanted to make sure that even after he was gone, generations after him would have access to and be blessed by the same life-changing, soul-saving, burden-lifting, peace-giving, freedom-giving truth that is in Jesus.
What can we learn from this? God made you to impact future generations. May you have a heart for the next generation, teaching them and serving them so that, even after you are gone, they will will live for Jesus and teach others to do the same.
2 Timothy 2:3-7 (NIV) 3 Endure hardship with us like a good soldier of Christ Jesus. 4 No one serving as a soldier gets involved in civilian affairs–he wants to please his commanding officer. 5 Similarly, if anyone competes as an athlete, he does not receive the victor’s crown unless he competes according to the rules. 6 The hardworking farmer should be the first to receive a share of the crops. 7 Reflect on what I am saying, for the Lord will give you insight into all this.
On verses 3-7: The good soldier, the prize winning athlete and the hardworking farmer all have two things in common:
1. To be successful, they need to be focused. Whether it’s pleasing their commanding officer, beating the competition or harvesting the crops, they all have a specific goal in mind, a prize they are fighting for.
2. To be successful, they need to work hard and suffer quite a bit. In each case, hard work and self-sacrifice are keys to their success.
Likewise, may you be focused, hard working and not afraid to suffer for Jesus. There’s a prize in heaven waiting for you.
2 Timothy 2:8 (NIV) 8 Remember Jesus Christ, raised from the dead, descended from David. This is my gospel,
On verse 8: Paul summarized his gospel with these 9 words: “Jesus Christ, raised from the dead, descended from David”. Jesus is risen (He is alive) and He is the Messiah, the Saviour we all need.
2 Timothy 2:9 (NIV) 9 for which I am suffering even to the point of being chained like a criminal. But God’s word is not chained.
On verse 9: Paul had suffered greatly for the gospel. But while suffering and facing execution, Paul realized something: while he himself was chained and had finite power, God’s Word was not chained and had infinite power. While Paul’s life was coming to an end, Paul also knew that the power of God’s Word has no end.
2 Timothy 2:10 (NIV) 10 Therefore I endure everything for the sake of the elect, that they too may obtain the salvation that is in Christ Jesus, with eternal glory.
On verse 10: Paul’s aim in life and his willingness to suffer were all for one purpose: so that people everywhere would receive salvation in Jesus Christ.
2 Timothy 2:11-13 (NIV) 11 Here is a trustworthy saying: If we died with him, we will also live with him; 12 if we endure, we will also reign with him. If we disown him, he will also disown us; 13 if we are faithless, he will remain faithful, for he cannot disown himself.
On verses 11-13: Here we learn that for every action we take in light of Jesus, there is a resulting effect:
– If we consider ourselves dead to sin because of Jesus’ death on the cross (“if we died with him”), we will also have eternal life with Jesus and in Jesus (“we will also live with Him”) (v11)
– If we endure hardship and suffering as we follow Jesus, we will also reign with Jesus one day (v12)
– If we willfully reject Jesus or decide “I’m no longer going to follow or believe in Jesus” (“if we disown him”), then when we stand before God in heaven, Jesus will say, “Sorry, I never knew you” (v12; see also Matthew 7:23)
– If we have a moment of weakness in our faith where we don’t permanently close our hearts an reject Jesus but rather fall for a moment (“if we are faithless”), Jesus will remain faithful to us, for he cannot deny his own character as a faithful friend (“he will remain faithful, for he cannot disown himself”).
Lord Jesus, thank You. Because You are alive and raised from the dead, we can be strong in Your grace today. Your grace is sufficient for us. May we work hard and be focused for You today. Thank You that we died with You and now we live with You. Thank You that we can suffer for You now and that we will reign with You forever. Thank You that You will always be faithful, even in moments when I am faithless. Holy Spirit fill me today. Be the prize I run for. In Jesus’ name, AMEN!