ST. PAULíS Second Epistle
Paul, an apostle of Jesus Christ, by the will of God according to the promise of life, which is by Christ Jesus. To Timotheus my beloved son, grace, mercy, peace, from God the Father, and Christ Jesus our Lord.
I thank God whom I serve from my forefathers with a pure conscience, that I have remembrance of thee in my prayers without ceasing night and day, longing to see thee, being mindful of thy tears, that I may be filled with joy; remembering the unfeigned faith that is in thee, which dwelt first in thy grandmother Lois, and thy mother Eunice; I am persuaded in thee also. Wherefore I remind thee of stirring up the gift of God which is in thee, by the laying on of my hands. For God hath not given us the spirit of fear, but of power, and love, and sobriety. Therefore be not thou ashamed of the testimony of our Lord, nor of me his prisoner: But be thou partaker of the afflictions of the gospel, according to the power of God, who hath saved and called its with a holy calling, not according to our works, but according to his own purpose and grace, which was given us in Christ Jesus before the world began; but is now made manifest by the appearing of our Savior Jesus Christ, who hath abolished death, and hath brought life and immortality to light through the gospel: Whereunto I am appointed a preacher, and an apostle, and a teacher of the Gentiles. For which cause also I suffer these things: Yet I am not ashamed, for I know whom I have trusted, and am persuaded that he is able to keep that which I have committed to him, until that day. Hold fast the pattern of sound words, which thou hast heard from me, in faith and love which is in Christ Jesus. The good thing which is committed to thee keep, through the Holy Spirit, who dwelleth in us. This thou knowest, that all who are in Asia are turned away from me, of whom are Phygellus and Hermogenes. The Lord give mercy to the family of Onesiphorus; for he hath often refreshed me, and hath not been ashamed of my chain: But when he was at Rome, he sought me out very diligently and found me. The Lord grant him to find mercy from the Lord in that day: And in how many things he served me at Ephesus, thou knowest very well.
Thou therefore, my son, be strong through the grace which is in Christ Jesus. And the things which thou hast heard from me before many witnesses, these commit to faithful men, who will be able to teach others also. Thou therefore endure affliction as a good soldier of Jesus Christ. No man that warreth entangleth himself in the affairs of this life, that he may please him who hath enlisted him. And if a man strive, he is not crowned unless he strive lawfully. The husbandman, that laboreth first, must be partaker of the fruit. Consider what I say, and the Lord give thee understanding in all things. Remember Jesus Christ, of the seed of David, raised from the dead according to my gospel; for which I endure affliction even into bonds, as an evil-doer; but the word of God is not bound. Therefore I suffer all things for the electís sake, that they also may obtain the salvation which is through Christ Jesus, with eternal glory. It is a faithful saying; if we are dead with him, we shall also live with him: If we suffer, we shall also reign with him: If we deny him, he will also deny us: If we believe not, he remaineth faithful; he cannot deny himself.
Remind them of these things, charging them before the Lord, not to strive about words to no profit, but to the subverting of the hearers. Be diligent to present thyself unto God approved, a workman that needeth not to be ashamed, rightly dividing the word of truth. But avoid profane, empty babblings; for they will increase to more ungodliness. And their word will eat as a gangrene: Of whom are Hymeneus and Philetus, who have erred concerning the faith, saying, The resurrection is already past, and overthrow the faith of some. But the foundation of God standeth firm, having this seal, The Lord knoweth those that are his: and, Let every one who nameth the name of the Lord depart from iniquity. But in a great house there are not only vessels of gold and silver, but also of wood and of earth; and some to honor, some to dishonor. If a man therefore purge himself from these, he shall be a vessel unto honor, consecrated and fit for the Masterís use, prepared for every good work. Flee also youthful desires; but follow after righteousness, faith, love, peace with them that call upon the Lord, out of a pure heart. But avoid foolish and unlearned questions, knowing that they beget strifes: And a servant of the Lord must not strive, but be gentle toward all men, apt to teach, patient of evil, in meekness instructing those that oppose themselves; if haply God may give them repentance, to the acknowledging of the truth; and they may awake out of the snare of the devil, who are taken captive by him at his will.
But know this, that in the last days grievous times will come. For men will be lovers of themselves, lovers of money, arrogant, proud, evil-speakers, disobedient to parents, ungrateful, unholy, without natural affection, implacable, slanderers, intemperate, fierce, despisers of good men, traitors, rash, puffed up, lovers of pleasure more than lovers of God; having a form of godliness, but denying the power of it. From these also turn away. For of these are they who creep into houses, and captivate silly women, laden with sins, led away by various desires, ever learning, but never able to come to the knowledge of the truth. Now as Jannes and Jambres withstood Moses, so do these also withstand the truth; men of corrupt minds, void of judgment as to the faith. But they shall proceed no farther; for their folly shall be manifest to all men, as theirs also was. But thou hast accurately traced my doctrine, manner of life, intention, faith, long suffering, love, patience, sersecutions, afflictions, which befell me at Antioch, at Iconium, at Lystra; what persecutions I endured; but the Lord delivered me out of all. Yea, and all that are resolved to live godly in Christ Jesus, shall suffer persecution. But evil men and impostors will grow worse and worse, deceiving, and being deceived. But continue thou in the things which thou hast learned, and been fully assured of, knowing of whom thou hast learned them, and that from an infant thou hast known the Holy Scriptures, which are able to make thee wise unto salvation, through faith which is in Christ Jesus. All scripture is inspired of God, and is profitable for doctrine, for reproof, for correction, for instruction in righteousness; that the man of God may be perfect, thoroughly furnished unto every good work.
I charge thee therefore before God and the Lord Jesus Christ, who will judge the living and the dead at his appearing, and his kingdom, Preach the word; be instant in season; convince, rebuke, exhort, with all long-suffering and teaching. For the time will come when they will not endure wholesome doctrine, but will heap up to themselves teachers, according to their own desires, having itching ears. And they will turn away their ears from the truth, and turn aside to fables. But watch thou in all things, endure affliction, do the work of an evangelist, fulfil thy ministry. For I am now ready to be offered up, and the time of my departure is at hand. I have fought the good fight, I have finished the course, I have kept the faith; henceforth there is laid up for me the crown of righteousness, which the Lord the righteous Judge will render me in that day, and not to me only, but to all them likewise that have loved his appearing.
Do thy diligence to come to me shortly, for Demas hath forsaken me, loving the present world, and is gone to Thessalonica, Crescens to Galatia, Titus to Dalmatia. Only Luke is with me. Take Mark and bring him with thee, for he is profitable to me for my ministry. Tychicus I have sent to Ephesus. When thou comest, bring the cloak which I left at Troas with Carpus, and the books, especially the parchments. Alexander the coppersmith did me much evil; the Lord will reward him according to his works. Of whom be thou also aware; for he hath greatly withstood our words. At my first defense no man appeared with me, but all forsook me: May it not be laid to their charge! But the Lord stood by me, and strengthened me, that through me the preaching might be fully known, even that all nations might hear: And I was delivered out of the mouth of the lion. And the Lord will deliver me from every evil work, and preserve me unto his heavenly kingdom; to whom be the glory for ever and ever. Amen. Salute Priscilla, and Aquila, and the family of Onesiphorus. Erastus abode at Corinth; but Trophimus have I left at Miletus sick. Do thy diligence to come before winter. Eubulus saluteth thee, and Pudens, and Linus, and Claudia, and all the brethren. The Lord Jesus Christ be with thy spirit. Grace be with you.