2 Timothy (Part 26)

vs.14-15. 1. Against the corruption and deception that would define the perilous times, Paul commands Timothy to hold fast to doctrine and Scripture. A. He does not tell Timothy to ignore the potential threat of wicked influences and simply trust that God would not let His people be affected. B. He does not tell Timothy to look for state support to counter these things. C. He does not tell Timothy to educate himself in the wisdom of this world so as to better deal with worldly people. D. He does not tell Timothy to promote new translations of the scriptures in the language of the “new morality” so as to meet the new morality where it's at. E. He does not tell Timothy to customize the church's doctrine and practice to keep pace with the times so as to be relevant and competitive. F. He does not tell Timothy to look for new revelation which will then better direct the church and its minister when the perilous times come. 2. Timothy is to continue (carry on, keep up, maintain, go on with, persist in) the things he has learned. c/w 1TI 4:16; 2TI 2:2. A. He is to basically to be “Holding fast the faithful word as he hath been taught, that he may be able by sound doctrine both to exhort and to convince the gainsayers” (TIT 1:9). B. Timothy differed from the creepy seducers mentioned earlier who are “ever learning, and never able to come to the knowledge of the truth” (v.7). (1) Timothy had learned and been assured of the truth by good teaching and personal familiarity with the scriptures. a. Mind that it is a false notion that one can become fully “learned and assured” with the scripture only. b. God ordained that believers should be instructed by His ministers to perfect their knowledge and save them from deception. ACT 8:30-31; EPH 4:11-15. c. If one takes the position that he needs not God's church which is the pillar and ground of the truth (1TI 3:15) nor the ministry thereof but only a copy of Scripture, that Scripture will condemn him for presuming that teaching by others is unnecessary. (2) That Timothy is to focus on apostolic teaching and the Scripture again argues against the distractions of alternative sources of knowledge by which one may never come to the knowledge of the truth. C. The wording here implies a completed body of knowledge which HAS BEEN delivered and with which Timothy has been acquainted. (1) The apostles delivered a complete body of truth that needed no addition. JOH 15:26-27; 14:26; 16:12-15; 1JO 1:3-4; JUDE 1:3. (2) James speaks of the scripture as the perfect (thoroughly made, formed, done...) law of liberty. JAM 1:25. (3) Hence, Timothy is not to look for nor formulate additional doctrine. 1TI 1:3. (4) If novel revelation and doctrine were to be expected, how could Timothy be sure that someone was a deceiver? D. Believers in general are to continue in the truth they have learned. JOH 8:31; ACT 14:22; COL 1:21-23. E. Note that Timothy had not only learned but been assured of the things that he had learned. (1) It is inadequate to only learn the doctrine; one must be assured of it. (2) This assurance of what is learned comes by proof from the written word of God. PRO 22:20-21; LUK 1:1-4; ACT 17:2-3, 11; 18:28. (3) Believers must be ever cautious to prove all things. 1TH 5:21. 3. Timothy knew of whom he had learned these things. A. He had learned them of an apostle of Jesus Christ whose doctrine had come directly from Christ and whose manner of life accorded with his profession. (1) Paul furthermore had set a good example for Timothy in that he continued in the things he had learned. ACT 26:22. (2) Up to the end, Paul kept the faith. 2TI 4:7. B. He had also been taught by a faithful mother and grandmother. 2TI 1:5. (1) Parents ought to teach the faith to their children. PSA 78:1-7; EPH 6:4. (2) A Sunday School program is an unscriptural substitute for parents! (3) Let the believing parent note: you may be training a future man of God. 4. From a child Timothy had known the holy scriptures. v.15. A. The sacred books of the Old and New Testament are holy scriptures given by a holy God. (1) That they are the holy scriptures sets them apart from the scriptures of other religions (Veda, Quran, etc.). (2) “The scriptures we are to know are the holy scriptures; they come from the holy God, were delivered by holy men, contain holy precepts, treat of holy things, and were designed to make us holy and to lead us in the way of holiness to happiness; being called the holy scriptures, they are by this distinguished from profane writings of all sorts, and from those that only treat morality, and common justice and honesty, but do not meddle with holiness.” (Matthew Henry Commentary) B. Parents should teach their children the Scriptures and facilitate their academic training so that the children can read the Scriptures themselves. C. Promote family Bible study in the home and do not let diversions crowd that out. D. Timothy obviously had the scriptures as a child. (1) He could not have had the original writings of Moses which were housed in the ark of the covenant which was not to be opened and inspected. HEB 9:4; 1SAM 6:19. (2) Are we to believe that (if the original autographs are the only inspired scriptures) the original autographs bounced around in the book of Acts from Berea to Ethiopia? ACT 17:11 c/w 8:32. (3) Nothing less than the inspired word of God will bring genuine conversion (PSA 19:7 c/w 1TH 2:13). Are we to believe that the original autographs were shared by the apostles in their evangelistic outreaches? (4) Timothy must have had copies of the scripture which the Holy Ghost here is calling Scripture. (5) The inspired scripture was meant to be preserved in copies. DEU 17:18-19; JOS 8:32; PRO 25:1. E. From his childhood, by parental teaching and personal acquaintance with the Scriptures, God had been teaching Timothy. c/w PSA 71:17. 5. The Scriptures are able to make one wise unto salvation. A. They are ABLE to make one wise unto salvation; they do not make one so. (1) They do nothing for someone when they are never opened or read. (2) They do nothing for someone when not received in faith. HEB 4:2. (3) They are limited by sin. 1PE 2:1-2. (4) They are limited by pride. JAM 1:21; 4:6. (5) They are limited by not asking. JAM 1:5. B. They are able to make one wise unto salvation through faith which is in Christ Jesus. (1) The Scriptures declare God's plan of salvation through Jesus Christ. 1CO 15:3-4; ROM 3:20-22. a. Mind that Timothy would have been schooled in the Old Testament scriptures. b. As the above verses show, even the Old Testament scriptures declared faith in Christ for salvation, not faith in one's works, the Law, circumcision or Jewishness. ROM 4:1-8 c/w JOH 8:56. (2) One can only learn of this plan by the Scriptures; it is not manifest in nature nor arrived at independently by human wisdom. 2TI 1:10. (3) One can only learn of salvation through faith in Jesus Christ. ROM 1:16. a. The word of God works effectually in believers. 1TH 2:13. b. The word of God profits not if it is not mixed with faith. HEB 4:2. c. Through faith one gains assurance of his own salvation. 1JO 5:13. C. What those seducers and their followers (v.7) could never come to through learning (the knowledge of the truth), Timothy had come to through the wisdom of God in Scripture which declares Christ as Savior. (1) Timothy's wisdom in Christ set their folly in sharp relief. (2) Their folly would be manifest unto all men (v.9); Timothy's wisdom in Christ would be then justified unto all men.
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