09 October 2015
by Philip Layton

Folded graveclothes

Paul emphasises the importance of sound doctrine

Click here to read 2 Timothy 4

Discussion Question

  • Once again Paul implies that the judgement of the dead will be a future event (v 1). What can we learn from this?

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Going Deeper From 'Words of Life'

The Toronto Zoo in Canada hadn’t been doing all that well, losing money while trying to care for all its animals. But things changed quickly with the arrival in 2013 of two little pandas from China – on loan for five years! Suddenly they became the main attraction, and are expected to bring in an extra 300,000 visitors annually. The zoo now has a renewed and bright future!

Paul closes his second letter to Timothy with commands or imperatives, if there was to be a renewal and better future for the church in Ephesus. They are as follows:

Preach the Word. Yes, the command was for Timothy. But it’s also for us.

For all Christians. We are to point others to Christ: his truth, his Word. For the message of the gospel is foundational for everything else.

Be prepared in season and out of season. We are to be always on the alert.Things can distract us. But we’re to take every opportunity to reach out to other people, witnessing to the saving grace of God – even when it’s not always convenient.

Correct. Most of us don’t like correcting others. We don’t like confrontation. But if it’s necessary, we act in a spirit of love.

Rebuke. We don’t like this one either! But when the consequences of someone’s sin affect everyone else, we must take action – in a Christlike manner.

Encourage. Perhaps it’s safe to say that we don’t do enough of this. It is our responsibility, as believers, to encourage and help others and to live in a way that’s upright, pure, godly, holy.

We don’t need cute little panda bears, or anything similar, to attract people to Jesus. We simply need people who are obedient to Christ, and faithful to him. Then we will be able to say with the apostle Paul:

I have fought the good fight, I have finished the race, I have kept the faith (v 7).

Beverly Ivany

Tags: 2 Timothy