VS 1 But understand this, that in the last days there will come times of difficulty.
Vs 2 For people will be lovers of self, …
Vs 5 having an appearance of godliness …
Vs 7 always learning and never able to arrive at a knowledge of the truth.
Vs 14 But as for you, continue in what you have learned and have firmly believed,
Vs 16 All Scripture is breathed out by God and profitable for teaching, for reproof, for correction, and for training in righteousness,
VS 17 that the man of God may be competent, equipped for every good work.
Paul is giving Timothy a warning and explanation for the times of difficulty he sees going on around himself.
Paul also gives Timothy an encouragement to continue in faith what He knows to be truth … “salvation through faith in Christ Jesus.”.
In Paul’s long list of treacherous behaviors and troubles, he starts with the key … “people will be lovers of self”.
Strong words, but it’s been the same from the beginning.
Adam and Eve did not want to trust God’s definition and knowledge of good and evil.
They wanted to determine good and evil themself!
And it’s been the same ever since.
So, in what ways am I acting as a “lover of self” that Paul warns against?
There are 2 ways Paul warns me that may “appear” right to others, but in fact just reveal a “love of self”.
First, and to recall so many admonitions of Jesus … (what offended Him perhaps more than anything),
Was to be a “lover of self” while “having an appearance of godliness”!
(A good working definition of “Pharisaical”.)
Second, how am I “always learning” …
(I have access to more “Christian resources” than ever before right at my fingertips.) …
But where am I learning … but not actually coming to the knowledge of truth?
One of these is a public behavior … “appearing godly”.
The other is a private behavior … “always learning”.
So, to have the right outcomes from Paul’s perspective here,
I must begin with the proper “private” action that then leads to the proper “public” action.
But where should I start? … “God breathed profitable Scripture”!
With this and from this, I must accept “teaching, reproof, correction, and training in righteousness”.
So, then the question is? … Do I accept this?!
Where have I accepted teaching, reproof, correction, and training?
When have I admitted I am wrong in something?
How have a displayed a course correction in my actions and thinking?
Then when I do this and accept these “private” things from the Word of God …
It is then that I am ready for the “public” things …
“that the man of God may be competent, equipped for every good work.”
So, where am I “equipped” and “competent” for “every good work”?
(Is there any better description for the man of God than equipped and competent?!)
God will lay good works before me this very day …
They’ve been prepared from the creation of the world …
Will I walk in them?
May I be equipped and competent to do so!
Thank, You, Father for Your Word
May it be “profitable” in me
Help me Holy Spirit to receive correction and training
Give me eyes to see and competence to walk
In the good works you put before me
In Jesus name