Paul seems to be labouring a point here – focusing Timothy’s attention on Paul’s persecution and suffering. No one likes suffering. I try hard to avoid it and I suspect I’m not alone. Paul tells it like it is though, saying “everyone who wants to live a godly life in Christ will suffer” (v12). But we are not without hope. Paul directs Timothy (and us) to three sources of help…
- Mentors. Paul says Timothy can trust those who taught him. Have I sort the help of a Pastor, mentor, or wise friend to help me through times of suffering? These people are placed in our lives by God as a gift to help us. I need to use them.
- Scripture. It’s through reading and mediating of God’s word that we get the wisdom, teaching, correction, preparation and equipping we need to face, not only persecution but resources for “every good work” (v17).
- God Himself. In verse 11 Paul reminds Timothy that God rescued (past tense) him from ALL the persecution, the inference being that God will rescue Timothy also.
These are the things I must remember when facing suffering – God has provided others to help me, He has given me His word and His promises to encourage me and give me hope, and best of all, He is with me Himself and will rescue me from all of it.
Bless you Lord! Thank you for all the help that You have provided – to help me through times of trouble. Help me remember them and use them. And I will see You rescue me every time.
Written by Boudy Van Noppen