The Subject of the Charge
2 Preach the word . . . .
The Word Defined. The subject to preach is the Word. The noun, “word” (Gk. logos), denotes “‘the expression of thought,” or “a saying or statement” by God or Christ. The Word then is “the message of the Lord, delivered with His authority and made effective by His power (cf. Acts 10:36).”151
Timothy is to proclaim not just a word, but “the word, God’s word which God has spoken.”152 Paul here is referring to the Gospel. The Gospel is “the promise of life in Christ Jesus” (2 Tim. 1:1). It brings “light, life and incorruption” (2 Tim. 1:10). For this Gospel, he “was appointed a preacher, and an apostle, and a teacher of the nations” (2 Tim. 1:9-10). It is “the pattern of sound words” (2 Tim. 1:13) and “the good deposit” (2 Tim. 1:14). It concerns the message of Jesus as the Christ (Acts 17:11; 18:5; 1 Thess. 1:6; Col. 4:3-4; 2 Tim. 1:8-11). This Gospel speaks about “the truth which is according to godliness, in hope of eternal life” (Titus 1:2-3). It is the good news of the “cross, reconciliation, grace, life, and truth.”153
Paul was also pointing to “the word of truth,” which Timothy is to handle accurately (2 Tim. 2:15). It is the Word that Timothy had “learned and were assured of” since childhood (2 Tim. 3:14). Paul called it “the holy scriptures” (2 Tim. 3:14), “All Scripture” (2 Tim. 3:16), “sound doctrine” (2 Tim. 4:3), “the truth” (2 Tim. 4:4), and “the faith” (2 Tim. 4:7).
Churches that claim the name of Christ must preach this same Word. The apostle is not charging us to preach a word from any other source, such as an audible voice, new prophecy, or dreams and visions. Rather, he is commanding us to preach the Word, God’s completed revelation in the Scriptures.
Timothy is responsible, not just to hear this Word (2 Tim. 1:13), but also to know (2
Tim. 3:15), believe, and obey it (2 Tim. 3:10). He is not just to guard it (2 Tim. 1:14), but also to suffer for it (2 Tim. 1:8). The young leader is to continue in it (2 Tim. 3:14). He is to commit it to faithful men (2 Tim. 2:2). In addition, he is called, not just to accurately interpret it (2 Tim. 2:15), but now also, to proclaim it to others (2 Tim. 4:2).154
The Word Described. What is it about the Word? Paul states that God is the Author of the Scriptures. It is adequate for salvation and spiritual living. The Inspired Writings are also authoritative for faith and practice.
Authored By God. Paul affirms “All Scripture” as “God-breathed” (2 Tim. 3:16) or “inspired by God” (NASB). The word “inspired” denotes “God’s creative work as used in Gen. 2:7.” God breathed His life into man. So, too, God breathed divine life through the words of the writers of Scripture; so that all Scripture, every word of it, is God-breathed.155 Barnes notes that the “Scriptures are as much the production of God, or as much to be traced to him, as life is.”156
Select writers wrote from previous knowledge or from an immediate revelation from heaven. They used their own style, individual character, experiences, and circumstances. Yet they wrote “under the unerring guidance of the Holy Ghost.”157 They expressed “exactly what God intended them to express as a revelation of his mind and will.”158 As they wrote, they were “borne along by the Holy Spirit” (2 Pet. 1:21). Isidro notes that their “personalities were not suspended, but they were uniquely carried along as the waves carry the ship, by the Holy Spirit.”159 In this sense, God superintended the writers of scripture “so that what they wrote was simultaneously their own words as well as the Word of God himself.”160 The words they wrote were words “taught by the Spirit” (1 Cor. 2:13). Every word (verbal) and every part (plenary) of Scripture were inspired. No less than God authored the Sacred Writings. Though there were many writers, there was only one Author.
Thus, the Bible writers wrote both the facts and theology of their writings accurately.161 “The judgments of the LORD are true” (Ps. 19:9, NASB). Being true to fact, Scripture is therefore inerrant (John 3:33; 17:3; Rom. 3:4). It is free from and incapable of error162 or contradiction in every word, statement, and affirmation in its original autographs.163 The Bible “speaks with precise accuracy and reliability (John 17:17; John 10:35; Luke 24:44).”164
Since Scripture is truthful, it is therefore trustworthy in every word and statement. “The statutes of the LORD are trustworthy” (Ps. 19:7, NIV; cf. 93:5; 111:7). Jesus said, “Scripture cannot be broken” (John 10:35), “undone”165 or “annulled” (WNT, MNT). Olshausen wrote, “The Scripture, as the expressed will of the unchangeable God, is itself unchangeable and indissoluble.”166 What Scripture says is right, is indeed right. What it says is wrong, is definitely wrong. What the Bible predicts will happen, will really happen, and it cannot be altered.167 The Word of God is infallible and, therefore, entirely reliable.
151 Vine, Vine’s Complete, 683.
152 Stott, 2 Timothy,106.
153 Theological Dictionary, s. v. “lego, logos, rhema, laleo” by Gerhard Kittell. Kittel wrote, “Tit. 1:2-3 plainly states the content of the Pauline logos.” Ibid.
154 Stott, 2 Timothy,106.
155 Isidro, Annotated, 387.
156 Barnes, Barnes’ Commentary in Power Bible CD.
157 TATSD in Power Bible CD.
158 EBD in Power Bible CD.
159 Isidro, Annotated, 462.
160 Greg Herrick, “Bibliology: The Bible.” Cited __ Online: http://www.bible.org/page.asp? page_id=724.
161 Isidro, Annotated, 387.
162 E. J. Young, Thy Word is Truth (Grand Rapids: Eerdmans, 1957), 113; in Keathley, “Bibliology.” Cited __ Online: http://www.bible.org/page.asp?page_id=695.
163 Herrick, “Bibliology,” http://www.bible.org/page.asp?page_id=724.
164 Art Kohl, “Bibliology: The Doctrine of Word of God.” Cited __ Online: http://www.fbbc.com/pdf/doctrine/ Bibliology.pdf>
165 The Fourfold Gospel in Power Bible CD.
166 Jamieson, Fausset, Brown, JFBC in Power Bible CD.
167 Parker, ed., Bibliology, 52.