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Excellence of scripture.
Lystra; what persecutions I endured: but out 12 of all the Lord delivered me. Yea, and all that desire to live piously in Christ Jesus, 13 will suffer persecution: And evil men and seducers will grow worse and worse, de1 ceiving, and being deceived. But continue thou in the things which thou hast learned, - and hast been assured of, knowing of whom 15 thou hast learned them; And that from a child thou hast known the holy scriptures, which are able to make thee wise unto salva16 tion by faith in Christ Jesus. All scripture is given by inspiration of God, and is profitable for teaching, for reproof, for correction, for instruction in righteousness, That the man 17 of God may be perfectly fitted for every good -work.
A. D. 68. Paul exhorteth Timothy to a diligent discharge of his duty; informs him of the nearness of his own death; desires him to come to him and bring Murk, and other things that are mentioned.
II TIMOTHY IV.
1 I CHARGE thee, therefore, before God, and
the Lord Jesus Christ, who shall judge the
Charge to Timothy.
living and the dead, at his appearance and his kingdom; Preach the word; be instant in 2 season, out of season; confute, rebuke, exhort with all long-suffering and teaching. For a 3 time will come when they will not endure sound teaching; but will heap to themselves teachers, according to their own desires, haying itching ears; And will turn away their 4 ears from the truth, and will be turned unto fables. But watch thou in all things, endure 5 hardship, do the work of an evangelist, fulfil thy ministry.
For I am now ready to be poured out, and 6. the time of my departure is at hand. I have 7 fought a good fight, I have finished my course, I have kept the faith. Henceforth there is 8 laid up for me a crown of righteousness, which the Lord, the righteous judge, will give to me at that great day and not to me only, but unto all those also that love his appearance. Endeavour to come unto me speedily. 9 For Demas hath forsaken me, having loved 10 this present world, and is departed to Thes
bering from whom, or from what persons thou hast learned them; and espécially consider, that from a child, &c.—Able to make, yc. As they foretell the doctrine, miracles, sufferings, and death, the resurrection and ascension of Christ, in whom faith is to be exercised for salvation.
16, 17. All scripture is, &c. Or every writing contained in the ga ygaμμara, holy scriptures, above-mentioned. Some of the ancient versions, with a few of the fathers, omit na, and join the participle with the preceding noun, "All scripture divinely inspired or given by inspiration of God, &c." so that we are left to find out what scripture or writing the apostle thus denominates. But the preceding verse unquestionably refers us to the "sacred books" of Moses and the prophets, which Timothy had known from a child; and Paul affirms these to be divinely inspired and profitable for teaching divine
REFLECTIONS UPON CHAPTER IIL 1. The prediction here recorded has been long verified, and teachers of christianity as well as professors of it, have been guilty of the grossest vices and crimes. Have not self-love, pride, ingratitude, treachery, and intemperance, greatly prevailed in the christian world; and do they not now prevail? Are there not many, who are "lovers of pleasures more than lovers of God," yea, more than lovers of their own families! And it may be ustly added, more than lovers of themselves. To pleasure and indulgence, peace, comfort, and health, are often sacrificed; and yet these men retain and observe the form of godliness. How vain, how hateful to God the form, where the power of it is thus denied! O what a reproach is it for any professed teachers of the holy gospel, to be guilty of such sins.
2. In the worst of times there are men who maintain their integ. May we love and imbibe the spirit of the scriptures!
rity; and ministers who like Paul can appeal to the conseiences of men
truths, for reproving errors, for correcting morals, and instructing in every branch of righteousness, that the man of God, &c.
CHAP. IV. 1,2. Appearance and his kingdom. When his kingdom shall be perfected, and all his subjects gathered in and made glorious for ever. Preach the word. The pure gospel, whether in season or out of season as to thyself; con fute errors; rebuke evil-doers, exhort all with patience and teaching. 3-5. Sound teaching. The teaching of sound and edifying truth, but will heap, &c. They will choose teachers, who will flatter them and amuse them with dreams and fables.- -But watch thou, &c. As a watchman in || Zion, and do the work of thy office as an evangelist. Eph. iv. 11. -Fulfil thy, &c. Fully perform the duties of it.
6-8. To be poured out. As a drink-offering. See Phil. ii. 17.- -The time of my, &c. Paul seems to speak of things from his age, his infirmities 395
Paul left alone.
salonica; Crescens to Galatia, Titus to Dalma11 tia. Luke only is with me. Take Mark and bring him with thee: for he is profitable to me 12 for the ministry. Now Tychicus I have sent to 13 Ephesus. The cloke that I left at Troas with Carpus, when thou comest, bring with thee; and the books, but especially the parchments. 14 Alexander the coppersmith hath done me hath done me much evil the Lord will reward him accord15 ing to his works. Of whom be thou aware
also; for he hath greatly withstood our words. 16 At my first defence no one stood by me,
but all forsook me; may it not be laid to 17 their charge. Notwithstanding the Lord stood by me, and strengthened me: that by me the preaching of his gospel might be fully
REFLECTIONS UPON CHAPTER IV. 1. Ministers are particularly interested in the solemn charge given to Timothy. They must stand before the tribunal of Christ, who is appointed to be the judge of the living and the dead. How awful will be his appearance, and how tremendous the consequences of it. O let such as are called by grace to the office of the ministry, and are in providence employed in it, preach the word with zeal and fidelity; and let them embrace every occasion for making known the riches of grace, and be instant in season and out of season. What a bright example of this did the beloved. apostle exhibit. He was ready to depart; his blood would soon be shed; but how firm his confidence and hope. He was conscious that he had fought a good fight, finished his course of duty, kept the faith, and was now ardently looking for the crown of righteousness. His holy mind was unbounded, and his hope was the firm anchor of his soul. In such a frame he waited the will of his Lord; in such a frame may we be found, when the time of our departure is at hand.
2. We learn from the complaints of Paul "that the fear of man
and his present imprisonment, so that he could not expect to continue long. But he could say, "I have fought the good fight, in maintaining the faith; I have run the race of duty as a man, minister, and apostle, and my prospect is glorious, a crown of righteousness is laid up for me, &c."
9-12. To come unto, &c. He stood in need of tried and stedfast friends, as several had forsaken him.-Loved this present, &c. Demas was afraid of his life, and fled to Thessalonica, where he hoped to be more secure; and other friends were absent to promote the comforts of the churches. Only Luke is with me. He never forsook him.Take Mark. Acts xv. 38, &c.
13. The cloke, &c. Some render, case or portmanteau; and if this be the sense, it might contain something valuable. The books, &c. From this we learn that Paul studied and, read. Some think they might be the books of the Old Testament; but it is not probable that Paul should be without these. As to the parchments they might contain copies of his own epistles, or other matters of importance.
14, 15. Alexander, &c. See 1 Tim. i. 20.- -Hath done me, &c. Perhaps stirring, up both the unbelieving Jews and Gentiles against him, as he had withstood or opposed the truths he taught.
16. At my first defence, &c. He calls it his first defence, because his cause was not decided, and he expected to be tried again.- -None stood with
known, and that all the Gentiles might hear: and I was delivered out of the mouth of the lion. And the Lord will deliver me from 18 every evil work, and will preserve me unto his heavenly kingdom; to whom be glory for ever and ever. Amen.
Salute Prisca and Aquilla, and the household 19 of Onesiphorus. Erastus abode at Corinth; 20 but Trophimus I left sick at Miletus. En- 21 deavour to come before winter. Eubulus saluteth thee; and Pudens, and Linus, and Claudia, and all the brethren. brethren, The Lord 22 Jesus Christ be with thy spirit. Grace be with you.
Written from Rome, when Paul was brought before Nero the second time.
bringeth a snare," and often leads sincere persons to desert their friends in time of danger. When he was called to make his defence no one had the courage to appear for him; and how noble is his prayer that this weakness of his brethren might be forgiven. How little con fidence should be placed in man! But when men fail, God is the support of his people. He strengthened Paul, so that by him the gentiles might hear the gospel; and at this time the blessed apostle was delivered. And with what assurance does he add, that the Lord would deliver him from every evil work, not from suffering, but from sinning, and preserve him to his heavenly kingdom. Amidst his dangers and sufferings he sent some of his tried friends to comfort the disciples in various parts, and retained Luke only with himself, From the hint respecting the books and parchments, we may learn that Paul studied and read the works of others; and most probably works on natural science and history. May his concluding prayer be answered for the writer and reader. The Lord Jesus Christ be with thy spirit. Amen.
me. None of my fellow-labourers; but they all forsook me be laid, &c. This shows a truly christian spirit,
-May it not
17. The Lord stood by, &c. The Lord Jesus, according to his promise, (Luke xxi. 15,) that by me the nature and great facts of the gospel might be fully proclaimed, as by it they could not fail to be when Paul defended the christian cause in so public a manner. -The mouth of the lion. At this time. Helius Cæsarianeus was Nero's deputy, and put to death whom he would. Paul might well call him a lion.
18. Deliver me from, &c. Not from every danger, nor it may be from death; but from every evil work; and will preserve, &c.
19-22. Prisca and Aquilla, &c, See Rom.xvi. 3.– -The household, &c, Either he was at Rome, or might have to go to some other place before he returned to Rome Ch.1.16, 17-Erastus. He was the chamberlain of Co. rinth. Rom. xvi. 23, and Acts xix. 22.- -Trophimus. He was a native of Ephesus. Acts xxi. 29. Miletus. Not Miletus, in Asia, not far from Ephesus, but one in Crete, where Paul had been before he went to Rome, and where he left Titus. Ch, i. 2, -Before winter. Paul did not expect to die before then-Eubulus, &c. These were members of the christian church at Rome; and it should seem they nobly visited him in prison.
THE EPISTLE OF PAUL THE APOSTLE
TITUS was a Gentile, and whether a native of Antioch in Syria, or of some other place, he was early converted to the christian faith; and having distinguished himself by his piety and zeal, he was chosen by the church at Antioch, to go with Paul to the apostles and elders at Jeru salem, to consult them respecting the circumcision of the converted Gentiles. Gal. ii. 1, 2 From this time he was the fellow-labourer of the apostle, 2 Cor. viii. 23. We find nothing said respecting him until Paul left him in Crete; but this implies that he went there with Paul; and it is most probable that he attended Paul to Rome, on his appeal to Cæsar. The design of the Epistle is similar to the first to Timothy.
ing, and appoint elders in every city, as I
bishops or pastors; evil teachers must be opposed; what kind of men they are.
A. D. 66. For what end Titus was left in Crete; the qualifications of directed thee: If any one be blameless, the 6 husband of one wife, having believing children, not accused of riotous living, or unruli1. PAUL, a servant of God, and an apostle of ness. For an overseer must be blameless, 7 Jesus Christ, in respect to the faith of God's as the steward of God; not self-willed, not elect, and the acknowledgment of the truth soon angry, not given to wine, no striker, not 2 which is according to godliness; In hope of greedy of filthy lucre; But a lover of hos- 8 eternal life, which God, that cannot lie, pro- pitality, a lover of good men, prudent, just, 3 mised before the world began; And hath holy, temperate; Holding fast the faithful 9 in due time manifested his word through that word as he hath been taught, that he may be preaching, which is committed to me, accord-able by sound teaching, both to exhort and to
4 ing to the command of God our Saviour; To
confute gainsayers. For there are
CHAP I. 1–4. de to the faith. Sent to bring them to the faith, and to the acknowledgment of the truth, which is eminently calculated to promote godliness, as it contains the promise, and inspires the hope of eternal life, which God, &c. See 2 Tim. i. 9-11.—And hath in due, &c. In the time which he had before appointed, he hath manifested his word of promise through that preaching, &c.— -To Titus, mine own, &c. My convert to the christian faith, &c. 5. The things that are, &c. What things these were is noticed in what follows, the appointment of elders in every city, where there were a sufficient number of christian converts. He uses the plural, elders, because it was usual to have more than one in a church. He was to appoint or constitute, but not without the consent or concurrence of the people, and probably of other elders.
6-9. Be blameless, &c. 1 Tim.iii. 2, &c.- -For an overseer, &c. The same persons are called elders in the 5th verse, and here one of these is described as to his qualifications; and the reason assigned is, "For a bishop or overseer must be blameless, &c." If a bishop was superior to an elder, of another order, how can this be a reason why elders should be blameless? The truth is, a bishop or overseer here is only described by what is a part of his duty, overseeing the affairs of the church. Elders must be blameless: for men, whose duty it is to oversee others, must themselves be blameless, or examples. See 1 Tim. iii, 3, &c.
10, 11. Of the circumcision, &c. There were many of the Jews, who embraced some truths of the gospel, but who held the obligatious of the law, and taught the necessity of observing the rites and customs thereof, and thus subverted Gentile converts. These must be opposed.
Depravity of the Cretans.
Duty of the aged and the young. selves, a poet of their own, said, "The Cretans || sound doctrine: That the aged men be sober, 2 are alway liars, evil beasts, slothful gluttons.' 13 This testimony is true. Wherefore rebuke Wherefore rebuke them sharply, that they may be sound in 14 the faith; Not giving heed to Jewish fables, heed to Jewish fables, and commandments of men, who turn away 15 from the truth. To the pure all things are
pure but to those that are defiled and unbelieving nothing is pure; but even their mind 16 and conscience are defiled. They profess to know God; but in their works they deny him, being abominable, and disobedient, and as to every good work reprobate.
grave, prudent, sound in faith, in love, in
A. D. 66.
Directions to Titus both as to his doctrine and life; the duty of
servants and all christians.
BUT speak thou the things which become
REFLECTIONS UPON CHAPTER 1. 1. We are taught what is the faith of God's elect; that it is the acknowledgment of the truth which is according to godliness. The truth; contained in the gospel is the doctrine of faith; and the cordial reception and ac knowledgment of this, is the grace of faith, end in the exercise of this faith in humble worship godliness consists. How delightful is it to enjoy the hope of the gospel! How important and interesting is its object, "eternal life ;" and how firm and sure the ground of it, thẻ promise of that God, who cannot lie? O let us cherish this blessed hope, and never give it up for any thing which the world may present or promise. To induce men to believe, and through believing, to attain this exalted hope, is the design of the christian ministry; and it should be matter of thankfulness, that good men, men of wisdom, piety, and zeal, have been raised up to preach the unsearchable riches of Christ. May many such be still raised up, who shall be able by their doctrine to instruct, by their reasoning to convince; and by their meekness, gentleness, love, kindness and compassion, to comfort and edify the flocks over which they are placed. "...
12. One of themselves, &c. Epimenides, in his book concerning oracles. -Evil beasts. Cruel and savage, as well as gluttonous.
13, 14. Rebuke them, &c. Tell them plainly of the sins to which they are most exposed; and to be on their guard against Jews, who, for the sake of gain, renounce the faith of the gospel.
15. To the pure, &c. All kinds of food are pure; but to those defiled by intemperance, and unbelieving as it respects the freedom of the gospel, nothing is pure, as even their own minds, &c.
16. They profess to know, &c. The Jews did so. See Rom. ii. 17-21. -Disapproved. And condemned, when tried by their own law, yet are they so ready to disapprove and condemn others.
CHAP. II. 1, 2. Sound doctrine. Which is agreeable to what I have taught, and tends to promote the interests of purity and holiness.-Aged men, &c. Some think that the apostle means elders or bishops, as the same qualifications are mentioned, 1 Tim. iii, 2, 8.
2. We should learn to detest the character of those of the cir cumcision, as well as of the Cretans. The former being instructed in the law, pretended to have attained the highest degree of divine knowledge, and opposed the gospel with the greatest zeal. Yet were they wholly destitute of piety; and in their spirit and practice were unruly, vain talkers, an deceivers. How necessary is it that such teachers be exposed, and their mouths stopped by a forcible statement of truth, to prevent the evils which they might occasion. What can be more disgraceful than lying, cruelty, and gluttony; and when these vices are generally among a people, they surely ought to be sharply rebuked. While guilty of these sins, it will avail nothing to abstain from certain kinds of food, and to pretend to outward purity; for the mind and the conscience are defiled. What will professing that we know God signify, if by our works we clearly show, that we reject his authority over us, and that we do not regard his holy will? All that do this are abominable, because disobedient; and as they are reprobate as to every good work, without repentance they must speedily perish. O that such may consider and repent.
3-5. Aged women, &c. Those employed by the church, as deaconesses to teach and instruct the younger, and probably children. 1 Tim. iii. 11.—— To love their. &c. As unfaithfulness among married persons was a common sin; and as the rites of heathen worship tended to corrupt the female character, these precepts were necessary; and especially to prevent any reproach being cast on the gospel.
6. Self-governed. Macknight renders, "to govern their passions.” They are to be humble and chaste, and not to give the reins to their pride and Justs.
Believers live soberly, &c.
them well in all things; not contradicting; 10 Not purloining, but showing the utmost fidelity; that they may adorn the doctrine of God our Saviour in all things.
11 For the grace of God, which bringeth salva12 tion, hath appeared to all men, Teaching us that we should deny ungodliness and worldly desires, and live soberly, righteously, and 13 piously, in this present world; Looking for that blessed hope, even the glorious appearance of our great God and Saviour Jesus 14 Christ; Who gave himself for us, that he might redeem us from all iniquity, and purify unto himself a peculiar people, zealous of good 15 works. These things speak, and exhort, and rebuke with all authority. Let no man despise thee.
REFLECTIONS UPON CHAPTER 11. 1. Persons of every rank, age, and condition, need, admonition, and direction. The aged who have nearly finished their course, ought to show a sobriety, gravity, and prudence, which may edify their younger christian brethren; and for their own comfort, they should be sound in faith, love, and patience. And how suitable is it for aged women to conduct themselves as becometh their holy character and profession. Not addicted to the vices usual among heathens, they ought to be examples to younger women of every virtue and grace which can adorn their sex, and commend the gospel. What an honour is it when they are mothers in Israel and teachers of good things; and when through their influence, others are induced to discharge every relative duty. Young men are too frequently inconsiderate, and self-willed. They need to be exhorted to regard prudence. Even servants of the lowest rank, should be faithful and obedient to their own masters; and by such a conduct they may not only adorn the doctrine of God our Saviour, but win them to love and serve him. Whatever be our situation or calling, in that let us ever aim to glorify him, whose we are and whom we profess to serve.
H. Hath appeared, &c. The saving grace of God hath appeared in the gift and work of Christ, and is now preached to all meu, where ever the gospel is sent.
12. Teaching us. That we should deny and renounce ungodliness, idolatry, and vice, and live in a sober, righteous, and pious manner, &c.
13 Of our great God, &c. Hammond and many others had thus rendered the text, long before the ingenious Granville Sharp published his canon respecting the Greek article. That this version is founded on the Greek usage, and that the text can only be applied to one person, the learned reader may see proved from the Greek fathers, in Mr. Wordsworth's letters. This passage stands then as a proof, that he who is our Saviour, is also the great God. 14. Who gave himself, &c. Who appeared in our nature, and as man, gave up himself to pain, sufferings, and death, with the merciful design of redeeming us, &c.
CHAP. III. 1, 2. To be subject. See Róm. xiii. 1, &c.
Duty to magistrates.
A. D. 66. Paul directs Titus what to teach and what to avoid; he must reject heretics; he then desires him to come to him at Nicopolis.
PUT them in mind to be subject to princi- I palities and powers, to obey magistrates, to be ready to every good work, To speak evil 2 of no man, not to be contentious, but gentle, showing all meekness to all men. For we 3 ourselves were also formerly unwise, disobedient, deceived, slaves to many evil desires and pleasures, living in malice and envy, hateful, and hating one another. But when 4 the kindness and love of God our Saviour towards man appeared; He saved us, not 5 | by works of righteousness which we had done, but according to his mercy, by the washing
2. We have the best reasons and the strongest motives to conduct ourselves in the manner recominended. How has the grace of God appeared in the gift of his dear Son! of him who is the great God and Saviour, Jesus Christ! And how has the grace of our Lord appeared in giving himself for us, giving up his life a ransom for the ungodly, for the chief of sinners, that he might redeem them from all iniquity, and through the influence of his Spirit, purify them for him--` self, and make them a peculiar people, zealous of good works! This is the glorious salvation of the gospel; the salvation which it reveals, and which it brings to the soul, when it is believed. For every believer is taught to reject and shun all ungodliness, and worldly desires, and to live in the exercise of sobriety as to himself, righteously and justly in respect to his conduct to others, and piously discharging the duties he owes to God. Living in this present world, in this humble, holy manner, with what joy may they expect the appearance of Christ; either to remove them by death or for judgment. To them this will be a glorious appearance; and it will be the accomplishment of all their hopes. For Jesus comes to destroy all enemies, and to establish his people for ever in heaven.
evil, yc. Not to act as the Jews do, who abuse the Gentiles, who are contentious, &c. but as disciples of Christ, we must be gentle and meek.
3. For we ourselves, &c. In our unconverted state were unwise, disobe. dient, &c.; and for this reason we should pity those who are in a similar state. 4-7. The kindness and love, &c. The love of the Father, from which originated the salvation of sinners, and who, in union with the Son, is the Saviour; when this love appeared, was made manifest by the coming of Jesus, and the preaching of his gospel, he saved us from our heathen ignorance, Jewish pride, &c.; not indeed by works of righteousness, &c. "but according to his mercy, by the washing of regeneration, and the renewing, &c." The Holy Spirit produces in us a radical moral change, purifying our hearts, and renews our minds more and more. Some would apply, "the washing of regeneration" to baptism only; an opinion opposed to that of our Lord. John iii. 3, 6.——————Which he shed, &c. In his gifts and graces, through the prevailing intercession of Jesus our Saviour. By his grace, &c. See Rom iii. 24 -26.- Heirs as to, &c. By being made children of God by faith.