Verse 1 – I charge you therefore before God and the Lord Jesus Christ, who will judge the living and the dead at His appearing and His kingdom:
Verse 2 – Preach the word! Be ready in season and out of season. Convince, rebuke, exhort, with all longsuffering and teaching.
In season: When it can be conveniently done, when all things are favorable, when there were no obstructions or hindrances.
Out of season: Seek opportunities to preach the gospel, even when it’s not convenient. He will not confine himself to a certain place and time.
Convenience – to use such arguments as to convince people of the truth, and of their own need of it.
Rebuke – to show a person their error of doing wrong and that there will be consequences.
Exhort – always encourage not to give up even when it looks bad.
Verse 3 – For the time will come when they will not endure sound doctrine, but according to their own desires, because they have itching ears, they will heap up for themselves teachers;
Verse 4 – and they will turn their ears away from the truth, and be turned aside to fables.
Paul warned of a time when people would not want to hear sound doctrine. They are more or less seeking something comfortable, and something that satisfies their feelings. They don’t want their feelings offended, carnal desires. There are some that will run after the teachers and preachers that will tell them what they want to hear – “itchy ears.”
Verse 5 – But you be watchful in all things, endure afflictions, do the work of an evangelist, fulfill the ministry.
Paul told Timothy to be vigilant against error and against sin and faithful in telling people the truth.
Verse 6 – For I am already being poured out as a drink offering and the time of my departure is at hand.
Paul had put his life on the line for the sake of the gospel.
Verse 7 – I have fought the good fight, I have finished the race, I have kept the faith.
Often in the Christian life, we find ourselves in a spiritual fight to keep strong in our faith towards God. When the enemy attacks, doubts can swoop in. However, with each battle that is won, don’t ever forget whom goes before us. The battle is not ours. Paul had maintained his faith in all that he had endured, as if he had been in a race.
Verse 8 – Finally, there is laid up for me the crown of righteousness, which the Lord, the righteous Judge, will give to me on the Day, and not to me only but also to all who have loved His appearing.
Paul’s situation in Prison
Verse 9 – Be diligent to come to me quickly;
Verse 10 – for Demas has forsaken me, having loved this present world, and has departed for Thessalonica Crescens for Galatia, Titus for Dalmatia.
Verse 11 – Only Luke is with me. Get Mark and bring him with you, for he is useful to me for ministry.
Verse 12 – And Tychicus I have sent to Ephesus.
Verse 13 – Bring the cloak that I left with Carpus at Troas when you come – and the books, especially the parchments.
So Demas left because he didn’t want to give his life for the sake of the gospel. Luke, the author of the book of Luke, is still with Paul. Paul wanted Timothy to pick up John Mark on the way to him, the nephew of Barnabas.
Verse 14 – Alexander the copper-smith did me much harm. May the Lord repay him according to his works.
This might be the same Alexander mentioned in 1 Timothy 1:20 and Acts 19:33. Perhaps Alexander was a witness against Paul at his trial. As for Paul saying, “May the Lord repay him according to his works,” Paul is not seeking revenge. He’s simply saying that Alexander will get what he deserves by a just God.
Verse 15 – You also must beware of him, for he has greatly resisted our words.
This verse makes it clear that it wasn’t a private wrong that Paul was talking about, but the harm was because Alexander was teaching publicly in error, not according to Scripture.
Verse 16 – At my first defense no one stood with me, but all forsook me. May it not be charged against them.
Paul had many friends in Rome, but it seems no one stood up for him when he was on trial.
Verse 17 – But the Lord stood with me and strengthened me, so that the message might be preached fully through me, and that all the Gentiles might hear. And I was delivered out of the mouth of the lion.
Paul’s trial was before a pagan tribunal. His trial gave him an opportunity of testifying to the truth of Christianity before the Gentile rulers.
Verse 18 – And the Lord will deliver me from every evil work and preserve me for His heavenly kingdom. To Him be glory forever and ever. Amen!
Paul’s Closing Greeting
Verse 19 – Greet Prisca and Aquila, and the household of Onesiphorus.
Verse 20 – Erastus stayed in Corinth, but Trophimus I have left in Miletus sick.
Verse 21 – Do your utmost to come before winter. Eubulus greets you, as well as Pudens, Linus, Claudia,m and all the brethren.
Verse 22 – The Lord Jesus Christ be with your spirit. Grace be with you. Amen.