2 Timothy 3:14-17
But as for you, continue in what you have learned and have become convinced of, because you know those from whom you learned it, and how from infancy you have known the Holy Scriptures, which are able to make you wise for salvation through faith in Christ Jesus. All Scripture is God-breathed and is useful for teaching, rebuking, correcting and training in righteousness, so that the servant of God may be thoroughly equipped for every good work.
Verse fourteen probably is referencing Timothy’s mother and grandmother. Paul referenced Timothy’s godly heritage back in chapter one. Timothy had godly examples in his mother and grandmother to show him how to live for Christ. Paul is encouraging Timothy to “continue in what you have learned and firmly believed.” My father-in-law used to say, “Don’t forget your raising.” Paul wants Timothy to build on that solid foundation that had been passed on to him from his childhood. This really highlights the importance of godly influence in a young person’s life from the time of birth on.
Then Paul talks about the importance of God’s Word in combatting godlessness. In his commentary on 2 Timothy, J.V. McGee writes, “The only resource and recourse for the child of God is the Word of God.” Paul wants Timothy to continue in all the things his mother, grandmother and he taught him. Paul points out that the Scriptures “are able to make you wise for salvation through faith in Christ Jesus.” Paul is making the point that the Scriptures not only lead us to salvation, but they enable us to experience victory over the power of sin in this evil world. For Timothy to experience victory over the evil of his day, he would have to remain true to the Scriptures. Otherwise, he would be subject to the ever-changing waves of the culture.
Paul then makes a declarative statement concerning the Word of God! In verse sixteen, Paul points out that all scripture is “God-breathed” or “inspired by God.” Because scripture comes from God Himself, it is profitable in many ways, ultimately leading us to righteousness, maturity and service. You probably have heard it said, “The Spirit of God uses the Word of God to transform the child of God.” I once heard it put this way, “The Bible teaches us what is right. The Bible teaches us what is not right. The Bible teaches us how to get right. The Bible teaches us how to stay right.” (Teaching, Rebuking, Correcting, Training)
The goal of our scriptural training is that we “may be thoroughly equipped for every good work.” Basically, Paul is saying that knowing and believing the Scriptures are necessary for our spiritual maturity. When you allow the Word of God into your heart and mind, it has the power to transform you. It seems that Paul is over emphasizing this point because of the false teachings that were infiltrating the church in Ephesus. This is very relevant in the day in which we live in a post-truth culture. So, like Paul encouraging Timothy, I encourage you to “continue in what you have learned and have become convinced of.”
Questions to Ponder
What do we learn from Paul’s description of his own life in verse ten? How do you see these characteristics in the leaders in the early church? In today’s church? Who have been godly influences in your life? How did they influence you? How do you view Scripture? How do you resist the temptation of conforming to the culture?
- Praise God as He is the perfect Shepherd, Father, Husband, Friend and Counselor.
- Thank Him for godly under shepherds, pastors, teachers, friends, fathers and counselors (the church) who allow Your Holy Spirit to work in and through them to bless us.
- Thank Abba right now for those who have influenced your personal walk with the Lord. Thank God for them and shoot them an email or letter saying thank you. Thank God for those who were an influence and are no longer with us in this world.
- Ask the Lord to help you to be a Paul and to have Godly influence in someone’s life. Ask the Lord to allow you to serve together, grow and encourage each other.
I praise You for being our Father who sees, hears and acts on our behalf. I thank You Lord that you use weak and broken people like me to share and show Your love. Thank You Abba that You are close to the broken and contrite heart. I am asking that You use our weakness to demonstrate Your power within us. Cause Your love to overflow in and through us all. Use us as Your instrument for noble purposes, made holy and prepared to do any good work. Help us to flee from evil desires of youth and pursue righteousness, faith, love and peace. I ask in the name of Jesus Christ, amen.