Introduction: 2 Timothy is the second of the “pastoral epistles”, all of which are attributed to Paul but are probably forgeries.
2 Timothy: Do not be ashamed of our Lord, but join me in suffering for the gospel. Hold to the standard of sound teaching that you heard from me. My child Timothy, be strong in teaching the gospel to others. Remember Jesus, raised from the dead, a descendant of David–that is the gospel for which I suffer hardship, to the point of being chained like a criminal. Remind believers to avoid wrangling over words; avoid profane chatter, unlike Hymenaeus and Philetus (who claim the resurrection of the dead has already happened). Shun youthful passions and pursue righteousness, faith, love, and peace; be gentle and kind to opponents. In the last days, people will be narcissistic, arrogant, and greedy. Avoid them! They will make their way into households and captive silly women.
You have observed my teaching, my conduct, my faith, my patience, my persecutions, and my suffering in Antioch, Icnoium, and Lystra. Continue in what you have learned, and let scripture guide you. Proclaim the message; but as for me, I am already being killed as a sacrifice. Do your best to come to me soon, because everybody except Luke has deserted me. Greet Prisca and Aquila and the household of Onesiphorus. Eubulus, Pudens, Linus, and Claudia all send greetings to you.
- According to pseudo-Paul, Timothy knew scripture from an early age (3:15). His mother and grandmother were both Christian before him (1:5), and he is now entrusted to Paul’s ministry (1:6).
- 4:11 claims that “only Luke is with me.” Strangely, 4:21 sends greetings to Timothy from a large number of people, implying they are all with the author.
- Pseudo-Paul’s unfavorable opinion of women continues from 1 Timothy. In 3:6-7, women are “silly”, “overwhelmed by their sins and swayed by all kinds of desires, who are always being instructed and can never arrive at a knowledge of the truth.”