We start a new book today on the podcast and this one is a little special. Paul wrote this letter in 66-67 AD. He was imprisoned again under Emperor Nero and this is likely his final letter. This time, Paul was chained in a cold dungeon like a common criminal, unlike his first prison sentence when he lived in a rented house. He even intimates in the fourth chapter that his work here is done and his life is coming to an end.
Paul ached to see Timothy again and asks him to come. Of course, Paul being Paul, he has final instructions for Timothy as a young pastor. He is also very concerned for the churches under the severe and cruel persecution of Nero.
It feels like it takes a tremendous amount of energy for Paul to write this letter. And yet, the Holy Spirit speaks passionately through Paul, leaving us with some of his most memorable verses. It leaves me just a little sad, to think of this incredibly intelligent, unstoppable, and faithful man being just a short time away from his beheading. It doesn’t seem right.
But it leaves us with a soberness about following Christ. We will receive crowns and rewards in heaven, not here. There are joys in serving to be sure. But we are also called to endure suffering. Paul was a tremendous example for us in that. I’m looking forward to sharing your thoughts as we read this little letter together. You can find me at Lifting Her Voice, Facebook, Instagram or Twitter.
Now, remember. The Bible is not laid out chronologically. We will actually read two more letters written by Paul – Titus and Philemon. We’ll talk more about those two letters in the intro for each of them.