2 Timothy 1

2 Timothy 1:1

Paul, an apostle of Christ Jesus by the will of God, according to the promise of life in Christ Jesus,

(a) Paul. The Apostle Paul wrote three pastoral letters. The first two were sent to Timothy and the third was sent to Titus. These letters were probably written from a Roman prison around A.D. 64.

(b) An apostle; see entry for 1 Cor. 1:1.

(c) By the will of God. Paul was called into apostolic ministry by the Holy Spirit (Acts 13:2).

2 Timothy 1:2

To Timothy, my beloved son: Grace, mercy and peace from God the Father and Christ Jesus our Lord.

(a) Timothy. Paul met Timothy on his second visit to Lystra (Acts 16:1). On his first visit to Lystra, Paul had been stoned to death and raised from the dead (Acts 14:19-20). Perhaps the young Timothy had witnessed this and became a believer as a result. By the time Paul returned to Lystra a second time, Timothy had matured into a well-regarded Christian. Paul asked Timothy to join him and Silas on their travels (Acts 16:2-3).

Paul mentored Timothy and the young man took an active role in the planting and strengthening of churches. When Paul left Asia to travel to Macedonia, he left Timothy in charge of the church he had planted at Ephesus (1 Tim. 1:3). Later Paul wrote to him with instructions on how to deal with the sorts of issues that pastors face, such as how to deal with false teachers and appoint church leaders.

(b) My beloved son. Paul was a spiritual father to Timothy (Php. 2:22).

(c) Grace, mercy and peace. The apostle of grace began all of his letters with this gracious salutation. See entry for Rom. 1:7.

(d) Christ Jesus our Lord. Paul introduces the Lord Jesus Christ at the start of all his letters, and he encourages his readers to confess Jesus as Lord (Rom. 10:9, Php. 2:12). True preachers reveal Jesus as Lord of all.

Jesus is not merely a teacher or historical figure. He is the exalted Son of God and his Name is above all names (Php. 2:9). Before the cross, Jesus was known as the Christ or anointed one. But after the cross, Jesus is the Lord or kyrios or “the One who is supreme above all.”

2 Timothy 1:9

who has saved us and called us with a holy calling, not according to our works, but according to His own purpose and grace which was granted us in Christ Jesus from all eternity,

(a) Who has saved us. Elsewhere Paul writes of the hope of salvation (1 Th. 5:8) and the hope of eternal life (Tit. 1:2, 3:7), as though our salvation wasn’t a done deal. But since this hope is based on the unbreakable promises of God, Paul can also speak of our salvation in the past tense, as he does here. If God has saved you, you are well and truly saved.

(b) Not according to our works. Since we are not saved on account of our good works, we cannot be unsaved on account of our bad works.

(c) His own purpose and grace. We stand wholly on the grace of God. Everything we need for life and godliness, including salvation, acceptance, and sanctification, comes freely to us through our knowledge of Christ Jesus (Eph. 1:3, 2 Pet. 1:3). This is why it is essential that we keep our eyes fixed on Jesus, for there is no other name by which we are saved (Acts 4:12).

(d) In Christ Jesus; see entry for 2 Tim. 2:1.

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