Hello everyone. Welcome back to Deeper Waters. I do appreciate your continued prayers on my behalf if you’ve been given them. There’s a lot of learning going on, though not necessarily of the academic kind. Still, the continued prayers are both needed and appreciated.
Tonight, we’re going to start our study of 2 Timothy in our Trinitarian Bible Study. We’re going to be emphasizing verses 9-10 of chapter 1 tonight, but to get the full context, I’m going to quote verses 8-12.
8So do not be ashamed to testify about our Lord, or ashamed of me his prisoner. But join with me in suffering for the gospel, by the power of God, 9who has saved us and called us to a holy life—not because of anything we have done but because of his own purpose and grace. This grace was given us in Christ Jesus before the beginning of time, 10but it has now been revealed through the appearing of our Savior, Christ Jesus, who has destroyed death and has brought life and immortality to light through the gospel. 11And of this gospel I was appointed a herald and an apostle and a teacher. 12That is why I am suffering as I am. Yet I am not ashamed, because I know whom I have believed, and am convinced that he is able to guard what I have entrusted to him for that day.
Paul is telling Timothy to not be ashamed of the gospel, a lesson we all need to learn. The gospel is never seen as an accident. The cross of Christ is never described as a “plan B.” It is what was intended all along. Paul speaks of the grace of Jesus given before the beginning of time.
This could then also be a reference to the pre-existent Christ, but not just pre-existent, but existent before there was any time whatsoever. Before anything began, there was the Father, Son, and Holy Spirit together.
The appearing is an interesting concept as this comes as a contrast to the pagan gods. We will see about the appearing of Jesus as savior in Titus, but here, the idea of his appearing as savior refers not to his return but to his incarnation.
Most noteworthy is that Jesus brought life and immortality. This is interesting due to the fact that it is along the lines of first off, what John says in his prologue when John tells us that in Jesus was life. The next point is that Jesus brings immortality, which he has in himself. This is especially relevant in light of the blog post we had yesterday where God is said to be the one who alone possesses immortality. Note also that not only do these belong to Jesus but we are also told of the grace of Jesus, contrast to what we would usually expect to hear concerning the grace of God.
Finally, to bring to light is not an accidental phrase I believe. The Hebrews had a strong emphasis on light in that Jesus, according to Isaiah, was a light to appear to the Gentiles and that the Lord was seen as the light of the Hebrews. The light pointed to the revelation of salvation and there is no difference here. Jesus is the light that brings salvation to all who come. He gives life and immortality for he possesses these fully in himself as the God-man.
We shall continue 2 Timothy tomorrow.