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Bible Commentaries

John Dummelow's Commentary on the Bible
2 Timothy 3

 

 

Verses 1-17


Warnings and Exhortations Regarding the Last Days

1-9. In the days immediately preceding the Second Coming, the Lord had taught that iniquity would abound. St. Paul reminds Timothy of this truth as a warning to him, for when those days would come neither he nor any one on earth knew; they might be close at hand, and the existing wickedness might be the commencement of the final iniquity. The depravity then would be terrible, and already in its degree it existed, and must be resisted.

1. In the last days] 'But of that day and that hour knoweth no man' (Mark 13:32), not a St. Paul, not a St. John (1 John 2:18). 5. A form of godliness] an outside appearance of it. Denying the power thereof] the outward form of piety not having power to influence their lives for good.

6. Creep into houses] the constant habit of proselytisers to evil, who do not shrink from crooked and base means of accomplishing their purpose. Lead captive] having lost all freedom of will, like prisoners taken in war.

7. Ever learning, and never able to come to the knowledge of the truth] an exquisite description of that restlessness of mind, which leads to excessive curiosity upon religious subjects, but does not minister to genuine knowledge or faith.

8. These] the teachers who are leading men and women on to this depravity and weakness.

Jannes and Jambres] the names of the Egyptian magicians in Exodus 7:11-22, according to Jewish tradition.

9. They shall proceed no further] they shall not be able to continue to resist Timothy with success, any more than the magicians were capable of finally resisting Moses (Exodus 8:18; Exodus 9:11).

10-17. Exhortation. Timothy was well instructed in the OT. and in the gospel preached by St. Paul, and he must 'abide in the things that he had learnt and been assured of.'

10. Hast fully known] RV 'didst follow.'

11. Timothy was well acquainted with all that happened to St. Paul at Antioch of Pisidia, Iconium, and Lystra in his First Missionary Journey, when he was himself converted to Christianity (Acts 13:50; Acts 16:1).

14. Of whom thou hast learned them] From Eunice and Lois.

15. The holy scriptures] RV 'the sacred writings,' i.e. the OT., which, when read in the light of the faith of Christ Jesus and with trust in Him, gave sufficient instruction for his salvation.

16. All scripture] RV 'every scripture.' The AV is right, because St. Paul is here contemplating the OT. not as a work made up of many writings, but as one book. So in Ephesians 3:15; 'the whole family in heaven' (AV) is right, not 'every family' (RV); Ephesians 2:21, 'all the building groweth' (AV), not 'each several building' (RV); Acts 2:36, 'Let all the house of Israel know' (AV and RV); Acts 7:22, 'all the wisdom of the Egyptians' (AV and RV), because contemplated as one subject; Matthew 2:3, 'all Jerusalem' (AV and RV). All scripture] In this passage the 'scripture' denoted is the OT. only, but when the expressionis afterwards applied to the NT. (2 Pet 316), it implies that the same characteristics will be found in the NT. as are here enumerated in reference to the OT. Scripture is given by inspiration of God, and is profitable] RV 'scripture inspired of God is also profitable.' There is nothing whatever to show which of these renderings is the better. The profitableness of Scripture consists in its teaching, convicting, correcting, training. It is profitable both for faith and piety.

The assurance which St. Paul has of Timothy's piety leads up to his final appeal in the next chapter.

 


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Bibliography Information
Dummelow, John. "Commentary on 2 Timothy 3:4". "John Dummelow's Commentary on the Bible". https://www.studylight.org/commentaries/dcb/2-timothy-3.html. 1909.

Lectionary Calendar
Friday, November 15th, 2019
the Week of Proper 27 / Ordinary 32
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