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By the will of God,
Which is in Christ Jesus;
From God the Father
And Christ Jesus our Lord. I thank God whom I keep serving with a clear conscience and with the thoughts and feelings which I have inherited from my forefathers. you are ever uppermost in my prayers night and day. For I remember your tears and long to see you so that my joy may be complete. I thank God, I say, because I have been reminded of the sincerity of your faith. It is just such as your grandmother Lois first had and your mother Eunice, and I believe is in you as well. It is for this reason I remind you to make use of the gift of God which is in you through the laying on of my hands. For God did not give us the spirit of cowardice, but of power and of love and of selfcontrol.
So do not be ashamed of telling about the Lord, and do not be ashamed of me, the Lord's prisoner. On the contrary, join me in my sufferings for the Good News by virtue of the power of God. For it was he who saved us and called us to a life of devotion to himself. And he did not do this because of what we had done, but because of his own intention and favor which was given to us in Christ Jesus before the beginning of time. But it has now been made plain through the appearing of our Saviour Christ Jesus who did away with death, and brought life and immortality to light through the Good News. And it was of this Good News I was appointed a herald and an Apostle and a teacher. It is for this reason, too, I am enduring these sufferings. But I am not ashamed. For I know in whom I have put my trust.
And I believe he is able to keep the trust I have committed to him till his coming again. Let the wholesome words which you heard from me be your guide in the faith and love which are in Christ Jesus. Keep the noble trust committed to you, and do it by the help of the Holy Spirit who is in you.
You know how all those in Asia deserted me. Among these were Phygelus and Hermogenes. May the Lord bless the family of Onesiphorus. For he often comforted me, and was not ashamed of my imprisonment. On the contrary, he no
2 TIM. 1: 17.
sooner got to Rome than he began to make diligent enquiry for me and found me. May the Lord have mercy on him in the last great day. And how many services he rendered me at Ephesus you know better than I do.
So you, for your part, my child, be inwardly strengthened in the divine favor which is in Christ Jesus, and commit what you heard from me among many witnesses to men who can be relied on and who will be able to teach others also. Suffer hardships with me as a noble soldier of Christ Jesus. No one who is serving as a soldier becomes involved in occupations pertaining to civil life, so that he may please his commander.
And so, too, when any one enters a contest, he does not get the prize unless he fulfils the conditions. The hard- 1201 working farmer has the first right to the product of his toil. Think over these things. Then the Lord will enable you to understand everything.
Keep Jesus Christ, the son of David, in your mind as raised from the dead according to the Good News entrusted to me to make known. In doing this I am suffering hardships to the extent of imprisonment as a criminal. But the word of God is not so confined. For this reason I keep enduring everything for the sake of God's chosen ones, so that they also may obtain the salvation which is in Christ Jesus with the glorious condition of
eternal blessedness. To be relied on is the saying:
“ If, then, we died with him,
We shall also live with him.
We shall also reign with him.
He also will deny us.
He is always to be relied on.
For he cannot deny himself.” Keep putting them in mind of these things, and keep solemnly charging them before the Lord, not to be constantly engaged in useless disputes about words which can only result in harm to the hearers.
Make an effort to show your God that you are a well tested worker, one who has no need of being ashamed and who teaches the truth as it ought to be taught. But avoid irreverent and empty discussions. For those who engage in them will go further and further in their impiety. And their teaching will spread like an eating ulcer. Such men are Hymenæus and Philetus, who, so far as the truth is concerned, have missed their aim. For they say the resurrection is already past and so stop some men from believing. Yet the firm foundation of God stands immovable and has this inscription on it: