Friday in the Twenty-Second Week of Ordinary Time

2 Timothy 2:14-19

The Lord Knows Those Who Are His

Words are marvelous things, the purpose of which is to precisely define and describe what one knows about God, himself, and the world—that is, to speak the truth.  What we know of God comes through revelation, specifically the Bible; what we know of ourselves comes from viewing ourselves through the lens of the Bible—that is, what it tells us about ourselves; and, what we know about the world we learn from discovery through our senses.  We then take what we discover through these means and speak or write what we have learned through the use of words.  In doing so, we advance knowledge of God, ourselves and the world.

Several years ago when I was in college taking philosophy courses, I had to read the works of such “luminaries” as George Berkeley, Immanuel Kant, and several others who taught that one can never know that what one senses with his eyes, ears, nose, tongue, and hands is anything other than what his mind perceives.  In other words, in the realm of what goes by the name of “Modern Philosophy,” there came a radical disconnect between what our senses sense and what our minds perceive such that one only knows what he thinks he knows (which is murky at best) but not the world, himself, and certainly not God, if there even be one. 

Now if this seems laughable to you, that’s because you are reading about it through my description of it.  But if you were to read it from one of these fellows, you would be shocked to discover that they make really good arguments, and if you were to go toe to toe with one of them, you would lose the argument—that is, until you relied on your own common sense to bring you back down to reality. 

So we come now to the passage at hand.  Paul tells Timothy not to waste time with those who misuse and abuse words—indeed, abuse God’s own word by using it against itself and twisting it so as to preach all sorts of falsehoods.  Timothy, and every other pastor, is to “rightly handle the word of truth,” interpreting Scripture with Scripture according to the sense in which the apostles taught us and which the Church has handed down to us down through the ages.  But even such heretics as Paul mentions do not concern him for “God’s firm foundations stands, bearing this seal: ‘The Lord knows those who are His’ and ‘Let everyone who names the name of the Lord depart from iniquity.’”  Those who are His will cherish words—His words above all—and use them rightly.  And God knows exactly who these are.

Author: The Reformed Baptist

My name is Stephen Taylor, ordained Baptist minister of eighteen years pastoral experience with a Ph.D. in Historical Theology from Southwestern Baptist Theological Seminary in Fort Worth, Texas. Better than that, I am married to a godly woman, Karla, who has been very patient with me since 1989. I have two daughters, both of whom I homeschooled for extended periods of time, who became godly young women, and who ran off and married godly young men, all of which is very proper. The oldest daughter has even seen fit to bless me with a grandson and a granddaughter, and my youngest daughter with a grandson, all three of whom are bundles of exceeding joy. As you can see, I am quite blessed. This website is dedicated to helping people grow in the wisdom and knowledge of our Lord Jesus Christ through the gift of writing that the Lord has given to me. It is specifically about helping His people grow in godliness, the theme you see repeated above. I write devotions with this aim and hope that they might be of some help to God’s people. Full disclosure: I am of a Reformed bent, meaning that my understanding of Scripture is primarily informed by the Reformers and their successors of the sixteenth and seventeenth centuries. However, as a student of church history and theology, I strive to remain true to that teaching handed down once for all unto the saints through every age of the Church. I like to think of myself as a “catholic” Christian, as the Reformers thought of themselves. At any rate, feel free to read, pray, and contact me if you wish, or correct me if need be. As you can see, I tend to follow the church year. Of course, I make no special claims about these devotions. I know very well that others have written better and plumbed the depths of God’s word with greater insight. But if my musings help someone draw closer to the Lord, well then, I have my reward. Blessings to you and may the God and Father of our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ speak to you that word which He knows you especially need to hear. Grace & peace, Stephen Taylor

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