Paul finishes his final letter before martyrdom. He has finished his ministry. He is longing for his heavenly home. May we all be as faithful and steadfast in our faith, and we can with God’s grace. Some of his assistants left him, but most remained. Luke is present with Paul, yet Paul requests Timothy’s presence. May all Christians be willing to help each other if at all possible. Paul also mentions some enemies of the Gospel and warns Timothy to beware of them.

My translation and notes on 2 Timothy 4:9-22

Final Greetings

Come Help Me

9 Be diligent to come to me quickly,
10 For Demas—having loved this present world—has forsaken me and is gone to Thessalonica. Crescens [left] for Galatia [and] Titus to Dalmatia.
[Demas did three things—love this world instead of heaven and the Kingdom of God, deserted Paul in the hour of need, and left town for another location. Compare Luke 8:14. In 2 Timothy 4:8, there is a reward for those who love His (Jesus’s) appearing, but Demas loved this world. Crescens and Titus left on missions for the Apostle. Some teach that they also deserted Paul when compared with 1 Timothy 4:12, but this seems unreasonable].
11 Only Luke is with me. Take Mark and bring him with yous, because he is useful to me for the ministry.
[A turnabout for Mark, who was rejected, but now has proven himself. It is helpful to see Paul reconcile with him. This is the writer of the Gospel of Mark as guided and approved by Peter. John Mark is mentioned in Acts 12:12, Acts 12:25, Acts 15:37-39, Colossians 4:10, 2 Timothy 4:11, Philemon 1:24, and 1 Peter 5:13. Bill Crowder in OUR DAILY BREAD (17 Aug 22) notes: Learning is one of the most important aspects of living—even for great thinkers and leaders like the apostle Paul. We see this learning in process when we consider his attitude toward John Mark in Acts 15 compared to his attitude in 2 Timothy 4. In Acts 15:38, when Paul and Barnabas agreed to visit the churches they’d planted, Paul refused to allow John Mark to accompany them because on the previous trip the young man had “deserted” them. In 2 Timothy 4:10–16, Paul wrote that when he needed support from his friends, they also had “deserted” him. Here, however, instead of throwing them away for their desertion (as he had John Mark), he pleaded that this not be held against them. An astonishing change of attitude—which is reinforced by Paul’s words of respect and appreciation for Mark in 2 Timothy 4:11].
12 I have sent Tychicus to Ephesus.
[Tychicus is mentioned in Acts 20:4, Acts 21:29, 2 Timothy 4:20, and many believe one of the two brethren mentioned in 2 Corinthians 8:16-24].
13 Regarding the traveling coat that I left at Troas with Carpus, when yous come, bring [it] and the books, especially the parchments.
[ISBE has this note:
A name but once mentioned in the New Testament (2Ti_4:13), “the cloak that I left at Troas with Carpus.” These words were written from the dungeons, where Paul was confined during his second imprisonment. The name, common enough in Paul’s day, signifies “fruit” (Young) or “wrist” (Davis). The words indicate that Paul must have been very well acquainted with the family of Carpus. He was presumably one of his converts; and the apostle must have lodged with him and also have had considerable confidence in him, since he committed to his care not only the comparatively valueless “cloak,” but especially the priceless “books and parchments.” It is idle to attempt to find out the identity of Carpus, but one cannot help wondering what were the contents of these books and parchments for which the apostle longed in his bitter second imprisonment].
14 Alexander the coppersmith did me much harm. May the Lord reward him according to his works.
[This Alexander is not known elsewhere. There are other men with the same name, but if the same person is not sure. Nevertheless, we are to avoid people that harm us. Abusers and slanderers seek to stop the preaching of the Gospel. Evidently, according to v15, he was skilled in reason and gave many philosophical arguments trying to discredit Paul, the message God gave Paul, and the assistants of Paul].
15 Yous beware of him also, for he has greatly withstood our words.
16 At my first defense nobody came to help me, instead all forsook me. May it not be counted against them.
[The timing of this is not sure, for Paul had many examinations from religious and government authorities. Even if people do desert us, God is faithfully standing with us, strengthening us, and enabling us. See Matthew 10:19-20].
17 Nevertheless, the Lord stood with me and strengthened me, so that the message through me might be carried out to its fullest and that the Gentiles might hear. I was rescued out of the mouth of the lion,
18 And the Lord will rescue me from every wicked work and will keep me for his heavenly kingdom. To him be glory forever and ever. Amen.
[The enemies of Christ may kill our body, but our soul is safe with God and will be eternally safe in heaven after death. See Matthew 10:28].
Final Greetings
19 Greet Prisca and Aquila and Onesiphorus’ family.
20 Erastus stayed at Corinth, but I left Trophimus at Miletus sick.
21 Do yours very best to come before winter. Eubulus greets yous as well as Pudens, Linus, Claudia, and all the brothers.
The seas were closed down to traffic in winter; shipping was completely closed down from around November 10 to as late as March 10, but the periods from about September 15 to November 10 and March 11 to May 26 were risky periods as well. Timothy thus could not sail from Ephesus in winter, but even if he took the overland route north of Greece, as Paul seems to expect (2 Timothy 4:13), he would still need to sail across the Adriatic, which was also closed. If Timothy delayed, he would not be able to come until spring—and Paul might not still be alive then. Paul may have sent this letter by Tychicus in summer, leaving Timothy little time to set matters in order and come to him].
22 May the Lord Jesus Christ be with yours spirit. May grace be with youp all. Amen.

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