This passage of Scripture in 2 Timothy 3 begins by painting a vivid picture of the spiritual condition of people (not all people, but probably most) in these last days before the return of Christ:
“For people will be lovers of self, lovers of money, proud, arrogant, abusive, disobedient to their parents, ungrateful, unholy, heartless, unappeasable, slanderous, without self-control, brutal, not loving good, treacherous, reckless, swollen with conceit, lovers of pleasure rather than lovers of God, having the appearance of godliness, but denying its power. Avoid such people” (2 Timothy 3:2-5 ESV).
Then Paul talked about men who oppose the truth, men corrupted in mind and disqualified regarding the faith. And then he went on to say this:
“You, however, have followed my teaching, my conduct, my aim in life, my faith, my patience, my love, my steadfastness, my persecutions and sufferings that happened to me at Antioch, at Iconium, and at Lystra—which persecutions I endured; yet from them all the Lord rescued me. Indeed, all who desire to live a godly life in Christ Jesus will be persecuted, while evil people and impostors will go on from bad to worse, deceiving and being deceived. But as for you, continue in what you have learned and have firmly believed, knowing from whom you learned it and how from childhood you have been acquainted with the sacred writings, which are able to make you wise for salvation through faith in Christ Jesus” (2 Timothy 3:10-15 ESV).
Now, he is speaking specifically to Timothy here, so all his words here don’t apply to everyone professing the name of Jesus. But a lot of what he said to Timothy he said and Jesus said and the other apostles said to all of us who are followers of Jesus Christ. So, we can all learn from this that we ought to be people of God who follow the teachings of Christ and of the New Testament apostles. And we should all learn from the example of Paul’s life what it means to follow Jesus Christ with our lives.
And all of us should have been taught by Jesus and by the New Testament apostles that if we are followers of Jesus Christ who are following him in obedience to his commands, and who are no longer living in sin, but who are now walking according to the Spirit of God, that we will be hated and persecuted for righteousness’ sake. We will even have family members, and others who profess faith in Jesus Christ, and even pastors of what are called “churches” who will not like us and who will turn against us.
And all of us who are followers of Christ should be diligent and committed to following our Lord consistently and continuously until the day that we die, or until the day that Jesus comes to take us home to be with him for eternity. We should all continue in walks of obedience to our Lord, in daily dying with Christ to sin and to self, and daily living holy and righteous lives, pleasing to our Lord, for the glory and praise of God. And we should all be diligent in the study of the Scriptures which are able to make us wise for salvation through God-given faith in Christ Jesus.
And lastly we read this:
“All Scripture is breathed out by God and profitable for teaching, for reproof, for correction, and for training in righteousness, that the man of God may be complete, equipped for every good work” (2 Timothy 3:16-17 ESV).
Now, not all Scripture specifically applies to us who are followers of Christ. Some of it was written to very specific people in particular circumstances at a distinct time in history that has nothing to do with us today. And then there are all the teachings under the Old Covenant. We do not have to obey all those Old Covenant liturgical, ceremonial, sacrificial, purification, and dietary laws and restrictions that the Jews of that time had to obey.
Nonetheless, there are lessons to be learned from all Scripture. For example the story of David and Goliath. We can learn to not fear our enemies. We can learn to put our trust fully in God to help us to fight off the attacks of our enemies, and to seek his counsel in what we are to do about such situations. And we can learn to step out in faith and trust God when it appears as though it could be a hopeless situation. And then we can see the results and what God has done, and we can give all the glory to God.
So, don’t write off all Scriptures that you believe don’t apply to you. There may be a lesson God wants to teach you through them. But we do need to teach the teachings under the Old Covenant in light of the New Covenant. For we don’t live under the Old Covenant. We now live under the New Covenant. But the New Covenant is not lawless. We still have to obey our Lord’s commands under the New Covenant. And we still have to forsake our sins and walk with Jesus in holiness and in righteousness.
[Matt 7:21-23; Matt 24:9-14; Lu 9:23-26; Rom 1:18-32; Rom 2:6-8; Rom 6:1-23; Rom 8:1-14,24; Rom 12:1-2; Rom 13:11; 1 Co 6:9-10,19-20; 2 Co 5:10,15,21; 1 Co 1:18; 1 Co 15:1-2; 2 Tim 1:8-9; Heb 9:28; 1 Pet 1:5; Gal 5:16-21; Gal 6:7-8; Eph 2:8-10; Eph 4:17-32; Eph 5:3-6; Col 1:21-23; Col 3:5-17; 1 Pet 2:24; Tit 2:11-14; 1 Jn 1:5-9; 1 Jn 2:3-6,24-25; 1 Jn 3:4-10; Heb 3:6,14-15; Heb 10:23-31; Heb 12:1-2; Rev 21:8,27; Rev 22:14-15]
I Take Refuge
An Original Work / September 1, 2018
Based off Psalm 71
O, Lord, I take refuge in You,
For You are my God.
Turn Your ear now to me.
Be my Rock and Fortress
To which I do go.
Deliver me, God. You’re my hope.
My lips now give praise to You, God.
I always have hope,
Since You saved me from sin.
My enemies speak evil
‘gainst me, O God.
Oh, help me, O Lord, rescue me.
The path of my life has been hard.
For, I have had troubles
Too many to bear.
But You will increase honor,
Your faithfulness, Lord, comforts me.