So you have to put
yourself in Timothyís shoes before you read this letter. He was a disciple
living in Galatia and Paul, the chosen Apostle of the Gentiles comes to his
town. Now, that alone would be an honor, but Paul asks Timothy to go out and
preach with him, and establish churches! After that, Paul asks Timothy to
organize the church in Crete, an island in the Mediterranean Sea. Now, heís
not only got communications with Paul that are few and far between, but heís
also out in the middle of the ocean, which probably makes letters and visits
even more rare.
Okay, you can
probably now appreciate how cherished a letter with words of admonition and
encouragement from Paul would be to Timothy. It may have been years between
visits or letters (especially considering that Paul was then in prison), and
with the importance of a strong foundation for Christianity, Paul made
certain that the content of his letters were thorough and effective.
He begins, From
Paul, an Apostle of Jesus Christ by the will of God, according to the
promise of (eternal) life which is in Christ Jesus,
To Timothy, my
dearly beloved son. (Remember in Paulís first letter to Timothy, we
discovered that Paul didnít mean biological son, but spiritually.) Grace,
mercy and peace, from God the Father and Christ Jesus our Lord.
I thank God, whom
I serve, as did my forefathers, with a clear conscience, that I always
remember you in my prayers, night and day, missing you greatly, remembering
your tears, that I may be filled with joy when I remember the genuine Faith
that is in you, which began first in your grandmother Lois, and your mother
Eunice, and Iím convinced that is in you also.
tears ... Sometimes, just knowing that someone cares, makes things easier to
tolerate. Paul wasnít saying that Timothy was a cry baby. But rather that he
was touched by Timothyís compassion for him, because he was in prison.
For this reason, I
remind you to stir up (awaken) the gift of God, which is in you, by the
laying on of my hands.
STRENGTH OF SPIRIT QUOTES LESSON WITH STRENGTH OF SPIRIT QUOTES EXPLANATION
The gift of God
that Paul is talking about is
the Holy Spirit. Paul is telling Timothy to renew his spirit, to remain
exhilarated about spreading the Gospel. He goes on, For God hasnít given us
the spirit of fear, but of power, and of love, and of a sound mind. So donít
be ashamed of the testimony of our Lord, or of me, his prisoner, but be a
partner of the afflictions of the Gospel, being dependent on the power of
In other words,
Paul is saying, Now I want to remind you of something, Timothy. God gives us
the Spirit of power and love and a sound mind, so donít worry about me
(which is the spirit of fear), but instead, keep churning up that spirit of
power that God gave you, which is the Holy Spirit inside of you. Thatís the
power (strength) and love, and sound (healthy, strong) mind.
Maybe Paul sensed
or was informed that Timothyís enthusiasm wasnít 100%, perhaps because of
his concern for Paul. He may have been afraid that he may end up in prison
too, after all, he was following in Paulís footsteps. Or he may have just
been so saddened for his dear friend that his spirit was weakened.
Well, Paul begins
his letter by saying, Ah ah ah ... Donít you be worried about me or shy
about spreading the Gospel for any reason, but by the power of God, stand up
for it. Search for that
that God put inside you and stir things up!
God has saved us and called us with a holy calling, not according to our
works (because of things weíve done) but according to His own purpose and
Grace which was given to us in Christ Jesus before the world began, but is
now manifest (made known) by the appearing of our Savior Jesus Christ who
has abolished death, and has brought life and immortality to light through
the Gospel. And for this purpose (the Gospel) I am appointed a preacher, and
an Apostle, and a teacher of the Gentiles.
This is the reason
also, why I suffer these things (imprisonment, persecution, etc.), nevertheless, Iím not
ashamed, because my faith in Christ is steadfast and I'm persuaded that He is
able to preserve the souls I've brought to Him until their final salvation.
Keep the wisdom
that youíve learned from me, in Faith and Love which is in Christ Jesus.
That good thing that was entrusted to you, keep by the Holy Ghost that lives
This you know,
that all those who are in Asia have turned against me, including Phygellus
and Hermogenes. The Lord give mercy to the house of Onesiphorus, for he was
often kind to me and wasnít ashamed of my chain (imprisonment), but when he
was in Rome, he searched for me eagerly and found me. The Lord grant to him
that he may find mercy of the Lord in that day. As you know very well how
much he helped me in Ephesus.
So, Paul starts
out his letter telling Timothy to be strong in spirit, because God chose him
to serve. Paul considers himself the Lord's prisoner, not in a criminal way,
but as a servant, and you can tell that heís proud of it. He wants Timothy
to understand this.
STRENGTH OF SPIRIT QUOTES INFORMATION WITH STRENGTH OF
SPIRIT QUOTES DISCUSSION