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  • Chad Werkhoven

2 Timothy 3:12-17 - Breathed Out

The Bible's absolute, authoritative truth is exactly what you need in this deceptive world.


2 Timothy 3:12–17 CONTEXT: The letters to Timothy and Titus are part of the Pastoral epistles; that is, letters Paul wrote in his old age to these two young pastors. 2nd Timothy is likely the last letter Paul ever wrote, and as he begins to close it out, he encourages Timothy to stay rooted in scripture.

12 In fact, everyone who wants to live a godly life in Christ Jesus will be persecuted, 13 while evildoers and impostors will go from bad to worse, deceiving and being deceived. 14 But as for you, continue in what you have learned and have become convinced of, because you know those from whom you learned it, 15 and how from infancy you have known the Holy Scriptures, which are able to make you wise for salvation through faith in Christ Jesus. 16 All Scripture is God-breathed and is useful for teaching, rebuking, correcting and training in righteousness, 17 so that the man of God may be thoroughly equipped for every good work.


Listen to passage & devotional:


 

Belgic Confession of Faith, Article 3: The Written Word of God


We confess that this Word of God

was not sent nor delivered by the will of men,

but that holy men of God spoke,

being moved by the Holy Spirit,

as Peter says.


Afterwards our God—

because of the special care he has

for us and our salvation—

commanded his servants,

the prophets and apostles,

to commit this revealed Word to writing.

He himself wrote

with his own finger

the two tables of the law.

Therefore we call such writings

holy and divine Scriptures.

 

Summary

You've likely be told dozens, if not hundreds or even thousands of times that you need to read your Bible and stay rooted in scripture. It's not unfair to ask why, though. Why is it that reading a bunch of ancient words, written by men who lived in vastly different cultures with really weird customs, why should this be a central part of your daily routine? Paul tells you exactly why in this short passage.


The primary purpose of Scripture is to "make you wise for salvation through faith in Christ Jesus." Certainly God's self-revelation - both His book of creation, and the clearer and fuller revelation in His written Word - teach us all sorts of things about Him and how to best navigate this world He's created, but the primary purpose of it all is so that you might understand how it is you are saved through Christ alone.


These words that are to be the mainstay of your life are not ordinary words. Millions of pages have been written over the course of history, some better than others. But the words of Scripture stand alone in that they are the very words of God, breathed out by the Holy Spirit through ordinary men comprised of vastly different cultures and personalities. Because its divine origin makes Scripture so much different than anything else ever written, it is the world's only source of authoritative, objective truth.


Certainly God's Word brings you grace, mercy and peace, but it also uncomfortably prods you at times. It's designed to teach, rebuke and correct you. Most of us don't like experiencing rebuke and correction, or even being taught for that matter. But this "training in righteousness" is exactly what you need as the Spirit sanctifies you into the righteous person God has declared you to be.



Dig Deeper


We're entering a phase of history that will likely be far more hostile to Christianity than it's been for several generations. Although you and I probably won't be risking our lives to profess Christ like our brothers and sisters in some parts of the world, verse 13 accurately describes our society: "Evildoers and imposters will go from bad to worse, deceiving and being deceived."


Today's opening verse seems like something that applies to Christians in far off countries more so than it does to us, but as our society devloves, it will become much easier to personally understand that "everyone who wants to live a godly life in Christ Jesus will be persecuted (v12)." You need to prepare yourself to stand firm in the midst of this persecution.


The key to doing so is "continuing in what you have learned and become convinced of..." Do this by staying rooted in the Holy Scriptures, which, like Timothy, many of us have known from infancy (v13-14).


Understand that you must know scripture well not just so that you can survive in a world that's hostile to Christianity, but so that you can thrive in it! Let the Bible teach, rebuke, correct and train you so that "you may be thoroughly equipped for every good work (v17)."



  • ACKNOWLEDGE WHO GOD IS: Our Father in heaven, who breathed out the words of Scripture through His Holy Spirit;

  • ALIGN YOUR LIFE WITH GOD'S WILL: Pray for the strength and resolve to "continue in what you have learned and become convinced of" in this increasingly hostile world;

  • ASK GOD FOR WHAT YOU NEED:

 

Read the New Testament in a year! Today: Acts 4

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