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Bible Commentaries

Arthur Peake's Commentary on the Bible
2 Timothy 4

 

 

Verses 1-8

(c) 2 Timothy 4:1-8. Timothy's Duty in the Crisis.—Threatened with such opposition (2 Timothy 3:1-9) and strengthened by such safeguards (2 Timothy 3:10-17), Timothy must persistently teach the positive truth. He should be ready to reprove error and proclaim the gospel, whether the occasion seem propitious or not (2 Timothy 4:2). For Church members as well as false teachers will cause trouble. Anxious for novelty and "piling up" congenial instructors, they will turn to the familiar myths of the errorists (1 Timothy 1:3-11*). Timothy, on the contrary, must act with moderation, accept the suffering involved, preach the positive gospel and accomplish all the functions (not as AV) of his ministry. All this Paul urges more earnestly because he himself can no longer act. The final sacrifice has begun (2 Timothy 4:6 a): his death is near. He has waged the good contest (1 Timothy 6:11-16*) to the end, and the victor's garland—the reward for righteousness—awaits him. For the truth committed to him has been kept inviolate.

2 Timothy 4:1. and by: not as AV.

2 Timothy 4:5. evangelist: in NT. (elsewhere only Acts 21:8, Ephesians 4:11) denotes a function. The separate order of "evangelists" is much later.

2 Timothy 4:6. being offered: contrast Philippians 1:25. This altered outlook marks a later situation. AV mistranslates. For the metaphor of a drink-offering cf. Philippians 2:17.


Verses 9-22

2 Timothy 4:9-22. Personal Requests and Personal News.

Timothy's summons to Rome seems inconsistent with the discharge of the duties just enforced. If the letter is a unity, its main instructions may concern his conduct after, as well as before, his visit to Rome and Paul's death (Ramsay). For the significance of the historical allusions that follow, see Introduction, at end of § 1. Others being absent on different missions, only Luke, of Paul's immediate circle, is now with him (2 Timothy 4:21 names merely local acquaintances). Let Timothy bring Mark, reconciled to Paul since Acts 15:38 (Colossians 4:10), and able, in Tychicus' absence, to render needed personal service (contrast AV); and also Paul's travelling-cloak, with certain papyrus and vellum documents, left, perhaps at his sudden arrest, in Troas. The identity of Alexander (1 Timothy 1:20*) and the nature and occasion of his opposition are alike unknown. At the first hearing of Paul's case, the prima actio—the allusion is not to his first Roman trial—no fellow-Christian appeared in the court to support him. Luke and Tychicus were probably prevented, not being Roman citizens (Ramsay), but all local Christians failed him. Howbeit Christ supported him: hence, through his self-defence, since he who addresses Rome addresses the world, the gospel proclamation reached its consummation (not as AV). On this occasion, then, he secured a remand, though he only narrowly escaped death (2 Timothy 4:17 b); and, while he cannot expect to gain the final verdict (2 Timothy 4:6 ff.), of eternal deliverance he is assured. The circumstances underlying 2 Timothy 4:20 are unknown. 2 Timothy 4:21 mentions prominent Roman Christians.

2 Timothy 4:10. Demas: would a forger invent the contrast with Philemon 1:24, Colossians 4:14?—Galatia: might mean either Asiatic Galatia or Gaul.

2 Timothy 4:11. ministry: for a different interpretation cf. Zahn, INT, ii. 430.

2 Timothy 4:12. Tychicus: Acts 20:4, Colossians 4:7, Ephesians 6:21.

2 Timothy 4:13. Troas: clearly later than Acts 20:6.

2 Timothy 4:14. will render: AV is based on a mistaken text.

2 Timothy 4:16. took my part: as above, not "as my advocate." Paul's language indicates not indifference on the part of strange pleaders, but the desertion of friends.

2 Timothy 4:21. Irenus (c. 190) says Linus became the first Bishop of Rome after the apostle's death.

 


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Bibliography Information
Peake, Arthur. "Commentary on 2 Timothy 4:4". "Arthur Peake's Commentary on the Bible ". https://www.studylight.org/commentaries/pfc/2-timothy-4.html. 1919.

Lectionary Calendar
Saturday, December 14th, 2019
the Second Week of Advent
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