What judgment do Christians face and when?
How is a pastor to preach to the believers in church?
What is the warning in verses 3-4 that we must avoid?
How are we supposed to think and act among other believers?
My translation and notes on 2 Timothy 4:1-5
Preach Regardless of Opposition
1 I earnestly urge yous before God and the Lord Jesus Christ, who will judge the living and the dead at his appearing and kingdom,
[The judge is Jesus Christ and the standard is the Scriptures. All decisions are done in love, truth, holiness, and wisdom. This letter is written to a pastor for ministry in the church (believers). The judge is the Bema Seat judgment, which is not for salvation but for rewards (1 Corinthians 3:9-17, Romans 14:10, and 2 Corinthians 5:9-10). If we are like the believers in verses 3-4, they will be saved but have little or no reward. The time of this judgment is shortly after the Rapture which for us is His appearing and kingdom. We must press on doing God’s ministry for us].
2 Preach the word, be instantly ready [whether] the time [is] suitable or not, admonish, rebuke, and urge them on with all longsuffering and teaching.
[The Greek word for ‘admonish’ is ἐλέγχω elénchō (G1651). It means here to correct someone by verbal means (in our passage this is to preach). Compare Matthew 18:15. We are to point out our errors and other people’s errors when preaching. When doing this we don’t need to mention their name, just the error. The Greek word for ‘rebuke’ is ἐπιτιμάω epitimáō (G2008). This is a stronger sense of pointing out error. Compare Luke 23:41. The Greek word for ‘urge’ is παρακαλέω parakaléō (G3870). It means here to encourage, urge, and entreat others to do and believe what is right and true. Compare Matthew 8:5, Mark 5:23, Acts 2:40, and Acts 14:22. Preaching is to strive for godly change, commitment, and encouragement to believe and do what the Scriptures teach. Teaching is to inform].
3 For the time will come when they will not put up with sound teaching but according to their own sinful desires—[and] having tickling ears—will multiply for themselves teachers.
[The Greek word for ‘put up with’ or ‘endure’ is ἀνέχομαι anéchomai (G430). Compare Mark 9:19. The Greek word for ‘sound’ is ὑγιαίνω hugiainō (G5198). It means healthy, uncorrupted, teaching. It is teaching the Scriptures in its plain, normal sense, defining words in their plain, normal sense, and making applications in its plain, normal sense. We are not to teach to please people, to make them feel good, to satisfy them, etc. We are to teach the truth in God’s worldview, lifestyle, beliefs (doctrine), rules, actions, etc. These people, the church in the future (perhaps it is here today), do not want doctrine, facts, reality, instead, they want to feel good, comfort, soothing words. Christianity has that, but we are to be alert, chastened, corrected, informed, and living in reality, not popularity. Compare Revelation 2-3. Jesus rebukes and corrects the believers. Compare Psalm 50].
4 They will turn away their ears from the truth, turning instead to myths.
[The Greek word for ‘myths’ is μῦθος mŷthos (G3454). This is a type of lie. TDNTa has this entry: [I]t also stands in antithesis to lógos, which is more closely associated with truth (alḗtheia). As distinct from lógos, mýthos is a. the fairy story in contrast to credible history, b. the mythical form of an idea in contrast to its dialectical presentation, or c. popular myth in contrast to the kernel of truth that it contains. It is hard to believe that some Christians get to the point of rejecting truth (reality). Then, they replace truth with myths, fables, invented scenarios, philosophies, theologies, science, experts, etc. that supplant and usurp truth. Let us beware of anything that claims the highest authority for our lives that does not meet the standard of Scripture. Scripture is the only source of 100% truth].
5 Instead, yous need to clear-headed in everything, endure troubles, and do the work of an evangelist. Make full proof of yours ministry,
[Paul tells Timothy four things that Timothy is to do—be clear-headed, endure troubles, do the work of an evangelist, and make full proof of his ministry. The Greek word for ‘clear-headed’ is νήφω nḗphō (G3525). It means to be sober (not drunk). Figuratively, it means to be clear-headed not reactionary or impulsive. Compare 1 Peter 5:8. Endurance breeds steadfastness. God allows troubles to confront us often, battling for our faith, and seeking to destroy us. Compare Romans 5:3-5, and 2 Corinthians 4:17, and Luke 22:31. Christians have the assisting grace of God to strengthen us. Compare Hebrews 4:16].