Most scholars believe this letter was written right before Paul’s death. In this letter, Paul offers his final thoughts to Timothy as he again is imprisoned in Rome as a result of the persecution under the emporer Nero in about AD 66 or 67. Paul writes to remind Timothy what is truly important and means to encourage him in the faith. This is Paul’s most intimate and moving letter…and his last. He longs to see Timothy and must know his time on earth is nearing an end.
Vs. 5, “I have been reminded of your sincere faith, which first lived in your grandmother Lois and in your mother Eunice and, I am persuaded, now lives in you also.” Even in Paul’s darkest hour, his love & concern for Timothy is shown by his prayers & letter to his dear friend. In this chapter, Paul seems to insinuate that Timothy might have been a bit timid of his faith and scared to stand up in this time of increased persecution from Nero (Vs. 6-7). I love the picture of fanning the flame to make it brighter (Vs. 6). Paul was able to keep that Heavenly perspective of life and was assured that he was going to go to a better place because of Jesus (Vs. 8-11). Paul had some who deserted him (Vs. 15), but one would stand up in courage & faith!
Regarding application…Being A Faithful Friend. Vs. 16, “May the Lord show mercy to the household of Onesiphorus, because he often refreshed me and was not ashamed of my chains.” Question: Why would Paul write about Onesiphorus? To encourage Timothy who was a bit timid, but also praise a friend who stood up for him! Wow…I pray that we all have friends such as Onesiphorus! Not only should we hope to have such a friend as this…but we too should strive to be a faithful friend to the end! Think of those who you consider to be a friend…would you stand up for them? Perhaps some of you are thinking that you don’t have that “Best Friend”…well perhaps you don’t have that “Best Friend” because you are not being a faithful friend to those you consider to be friends. Friendship is so underrated…yet, we see the power of friendship in Paul & Timothy and most touchingly…in David & Jonathan (so tragic & sad). Friendship is one of the dearest gifts God can give to us while on earth. We must treasure that friend or friends and never take for granted that bond. I have been incredibly blessed with such friendships in life and thank God often for the people who have been there & stood up for me!