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 (Thessalonians, Timothy, and Titus)
22. Faithfulness in Perilous Times (2Tim 3:1-17)
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22: Faithfulness in Perilous Times (2Tim 3:1-17)

I.       The Basics

A.     Setting

Following his encouragement to Timothy to be a good worker of Christ Jesus, Paul warns Timothy of the perilous times that will come in the last days, when wickedness and deception will abound. To prepare Timothy and the believers for these dangers ahead, Paul reiterates the necessity to endure affliction and to continue in the sound doctrine.

B.     Key Verse

            “Yes, and all who desire to live godly in Christ Jesus will suffer persecution” (3:12).

C.     Did You Know…?

1. Jannes and Jambres” (3:8): “Neither of these men is mentioned in the OT, but according to Jewish tradition they were the Egyptian court magicians who opposed Moses.”

2. Antioch, Iconium and Lystra” (3:11): “Three cities in the Roman province of Galatia, which Paul visited on his first and second missionary journeys (Acts 13:14-14:23; 16:1-6). Since Timothy was from Lystra, he would have known firsthand of Paul’s suffering in that region.”

3. “From childhood you have known the Holy Scriptures” (3:15): “A Jewish boy formally began to study the OT when he was five years old. Timothy was taught at home by his mother and grandmother even before he reached this age”

4. “All scripture is given by inspiration of God” (3:16) “translates one Greek word, theopneustia, meaning, literally, “God-breathed.”

II.    Observation

A.     Outline







B.     Key Words/Phrases

III. General Analysis

1. Do you notice an alternating structure in this passage? Take note of the repetition of “but you…” (10,14), which marks a sharp contrast between two paragraphs. Account for this structure.

IV.  Segment Analysis

A.     3:1-9

1. Why are the times in the last days called “perilous times”?

2a. Record the descriptions about the people in the last days. Think about each of these descriptions and give examples, where relevant, to real incidents you have witnessed.

2b. What purpose does it serve for believers to know the perilous times and the wickedness of man in the last days?

3. “Lovers of pleasure rather than lovers of God” (4). What kind of lifestyle is this descriptive of? What reminder does this serve in your own life?

4. What does Paul mean by “having a form of godliness but denying its power” (5)? What should true godliness be?

5. What are the works of these evildoers (6-8)?

6. What is the meaning and cause of the serious symptom of “always learning and never able to come to the knowledge of the truth” (7)? How can we guard ourselves from falling into such a state?

B.     3:10-12

7. Through what ways has Timothy learned from Paul (10-11)? Elaborate on each aspect.

8. Based on what Timothy has learned from Paul, what are the various ways through which we should nurture younger workers today?

9. What is the cost of living godly lives? Are you ready to pay the cost?

C.     13-17

10. What does Paul ask Timothy to anticipate? What should Timothy do in response?

11. What is the origin of the Scriptures?

12. What are the purposes of the Scriptures? How do the Scriptures accomplish these purposes?

13. Why does Paul write about the Holy Scriptures in this context? What can we learn from this about the importance of learning and living by the Scriptures?

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