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Monday, June 12, 2017

The Last Brick – Part 2 (Firewall cont.)

The second command that Paul gives his protégé in 2 Timothy 4:5 is “endure hardship”.  This specific word, κακοπαθέω (kakopatheō) shows up only 3 times in the New Testament, and once in the Greek version of the Old Testament, the Septuagint:
The Last Brick – Part 2 (Firewall cont.)

Verse Translation
2 Timothy 2:9 suffer hardship
2 Timothy 4:5 endure hardship
James 5:13 is suffering
Jonah 4:10 you did work (negated by the Greek word for “not” so it reads “you did not work”)

However, there are other instances of a compound word συγκακοπαθέω (synkakopatheō) that appears twice more in 2 Timothy, the only occurrences of the word in the New Testament:

Verse Translation
2 Timothy 1:8 join with me in suffering
2 Timothy 2:3 suffer hardship with

2 Timothy 1:8; 2:3; and 4:5 are all commands, imperatives.

So what?

There is a thread here throughout Paul’s letter to his disciple.  Paul is calling Timothy to work hard at the task of entrusting the truth of the gospel to those to whom he has been sent to serve.  This command is repeated three times in 83 verses.  One could get the impression that Paul is serious.

But doesn’t this only apply to Timothy?  Or shouldn’t it only apply to those who are in leadership in our communities of faith?  Is it not our pastor’s job to work that hard in and for the gospel?

Perhaps.  But, consider:
  • Matthew 6:33
  • Matthew 28:18 – 20
  • John 13:15
  • Philippians 3:17
  • 1 Thessalonians 1:7
  • 2 Thessalonians 3:7, 9
  • 1 Timothy 1:16; 4:12
  • Titus 2:7
  • James 5:10
  • 1 Peter 2:6
It seems like the expectation of the New Testament is that all believers are subject to that imperative, does it not.

Why then, do you think, many do not seem to do so?

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