2 Timothy 3:1-9
Godlessness in the Last Days 3 1 But understand this, that y in the last days there will come times of difficulty. 2 For people will be z lovers of self, a lovers of money, b proud, b arrogant, abusive, b disobedient to their parents, ungrateful, unholy, 3 c heartless, unappeasable, slanderous, without self-control, brutal, d not loving good, 4 treacherous, reckless, e swollen with conceit, f lovers of pleasure rather than lovers of God, 5 having the appearance of godliness, but g denying its power. h Avoid such people. 6 For among them are i those who creep into households and capture weak women, burdened with sins and led astray by various passions, 7 always learning and never able to j arrive at a knowledge of the truth. 8 Just as k Jannes and Jambres l opposed Moses, so these men also oppose the truth, m men corrupted in mind and n disqualified regarding the faith. 9 But they will not get very far, for their folly will be plain to all, o as was that of those two men.
2 Timothy 3:1-9
3 1 Τοῦτο δὲ γίνωσκε ὅτι ἐν ἐσχάταις ἡμέραις ἐνστήσονται καιροὶ χαλεποί· 2 ἔσονται γὰρ οἱ ἄνθρωποι φίλαυτοι, φιλάργυροι, ἀλαζόνες, ὑπερήφανοι, βλάσφημοι, γονεῦσιν ἀπειθεῖς, ἀχάριστοι, ἀνόσιοι, 3 ἄστοργοι, ἄσπονδοι, διάβολοι, ἀκρατεῖς, ἀνήμεροι, ἀφιλάγαθοι, 4 προδόται, προπετεῖς, τετυφωμένοι, φιλήδονοι μᾶλλον ἢ φιλόθεοι, 5 ἔχοντες μόρφωσιν εὐσεβείας τὴν δὲ δύναμιν αὐτῆς ἠρνημένοι· καὶ τούτους ἀποτρέπου. 6 ἐκ τούτων γάρ εἰσιν οἱ ἐνδύνοντες εἰς τὰς οἰκίας καὶ ^ αἰχμαλωτίζοντες γυναικάρια σεσωρευμένα ἁμαρτίαις, ἀγόμενα ἐπιθυμίαις ποικίλαις, 7 πάντοτε μανθάνοντα καὶ μηδέποτε εἰς ἐπίγνωσιν ἀληθείας ἐλθεῖν δυνάμενα. 8 ὃν τρόπον δὲ Ἰάννης καὶ Ἰαμβρῆς ἀντέστησαν Μωϋσεῖ, οὕτως καὶ οὗτοι ἀνθίστανται τῇ ἀληθείᾳ, ἄνθρωποι κατεφθαρμένοι τὸν νοῦν, ἀδόκιμοι περὶ τὴν πίστιν. 9 ἀλλ’ οὐ προκόψουσιν ἐπὶ πλεῖον, ἡ γὰρ ἄνοια αὐτῶν ἔκδηλος ἔσται πᾶσιν, ὡς καὶ ἡ ἐκείνων ἐγένετο.
Be prepared for very hard times Intro : What are the 'last days'? The final stage of God's plan; after the resurrection of the Christ and outpouring of the Spirit. Acts 2 quoting Joel 2; also Hebrews 1. Nothing more to happen than the return of our Lord. Hard-pressed times for believers fluctuate in intensity, but are a part of this overlap of the ages. Here is clear guidance for how to live in the last days: live a life of true, not fake godliness. Context: leave foolish ways behind (2.14-26); in relation, Paul will highlight the drivers of the babbling and controversies mentioned in the previous passage - people are lovers of self. 1. People will love self rather than God, while pretending to be godly (v1-5) We can understand this list as 'lovers of self...rather than lovers of God'. Each word and phrase unpacks an aspect of love of self. Disordered love. What's more, it's with the outward appearances of godliness. Denying its power - and remember Paul keeps coming back to this 'power' of God, which is the power to endure. 2. Avoid such people, knowing that they will not get far (v6-9) NB these are people who are apparently Christians. Hence why Timothy has to avoid them. They have the appearance of godliness. We aren't called to avoid the world - there could then be no evangelism ( 1 Corinthians 5.9-13 ). Point of v6 is the cruelty of it. The vulnerable people are and harmed. Rather than give these poor women the truth, they prey on their desire for it. Jannes and Jambres; the outward appearance of spirituality and spiritual power, but shown to be nothing, and not get very far. Jewish tradition names them as the sorcerers who opposed Moses in Exodus 7.11-12. Glory of God : He upholds and underwrites the truth of his gospel. FCF . Disordered love; love for self rather than God. Self-enthronement. H1. We can easily think of ways that culture represents this list. But the point is, this is confessing Christians too; when self-love is seen for what it is. H2. Outward forms of godliness but inner love for self rather than God. If honestly assessed, found to be disqualified (v8). Person of Jesus. He shows true godliness; love for God in human flesh. He himself reveals the love of God and calls us to love God. Work of Jesus . He represents us in v2-5; he carries our sin and sin nature on himself in his death. His opponents did not get very far. Seeing his glory shown in his self-giving death stirs our true love for God. Rather than self-enthronement, he is enthroned upon a cross of self-giving. Union with Jesus. We have died and been raised in him; our old selves have been put to death with their self-love, so we no longer live in love for self. We are alive to God and love him. Invitation . Come and live as a lover of God and neighbour. Confrontation . Stop faking love for God. Instead, look to Jesus and learn the love of God. Stop denying the power of true godliness. We have a Spirit of power (1.7), and by him we can endure (1.8)! Consolation . Let us not be discouraged. Instead, let us be assured that the enemies 'in the camp' will not get very far. Wrap up Be prepared for very hard times. How to live in the last days? Live a life of true, not fake, godliness.