LESSON 1, VERSE 9:
The Paragraph we
are about to study is so very personal. One almost feels like
he's "prying" into Paul's affairs.
diligence to come shortly unto me: for Demas hath forsaken me,
having loved this present world, and is departed unto
Thessalonica; Crescens to Galatia, Titus unto Dalmatia. Only
Luke is with me. Take Mark, and bring him with thee: for he is
profitable to me for the ministry. And Tychicus have I sent to
Ephesus. The cloke that I left at Troas with Carpus, when thou
comest, bring with thee, and the books, but
especially the parchments." 2nd Timnothy 4:9-13
This pericope of Scripture
expresses Paul's last wish, as far as we know. Well, to it must
be added verse 21, "Come before winter."
One can easily see Paul's
priorities here. He loves people. Many articles have been
written on the subject of the "personalities" around Paul. And
then obviously Paul loved books! Particularly the scrolls, no
doubt containing the Word of God. "Parchments" he called them
But most of all, He loved the
Lord! It was for His Lord that Paul was about to die, a martyr
indeed. He boasts on Jesus until the very end, too!
"At my first answer (court appearance) no
man stood with me, but all men forsook me: I pray God
that it may not be laid to their charge. Notwithstanding the
Lord stood with me." Yes, 2nd Timothy 4:16-17
But today we need to begin with
the first verse in our passage, 2nd Timothy 4:9. Paul to
Timothy: "Do thy diligence to come shortly
Paul loved Timothy. He had
known him since the lad's boyhood. Paul knew Timothy's Mother
and Grandmother, too. "When I call to
remembrance the unfeigned faith that is in thee, which dwelt
first in thy grandmother Lois, and thy mother Eunice; and I am
persuaded that in thee also." Written to Timothy in 2nd
Likely Timothy was "nurtured"
or "matured" under Paul's preaching. Here's the first Biblical
mention of the young man. "Then came he
(Paul) to Derbe and Lystra: and, behold, a certain disciple was
there, named Timotheus, the son of a certain woman, which was a
Jewess, and believed; but his father was a Greek. Which
was well reported of by the brethren that were at Lystra and
Iconium." Acts 16:1-2
Here's what Paul tenderly
called Timothy, "my own son in the
faith." 1st Timothy 1:2
Again our verse today, Paul to
Timothy: "Do thy diligence to come shortly
Paul was nearly alone.
He needed the young
The verb "do diligence" is "spoudazo,"
meaning "to make haste, to endeavor, to do one's very best."
Paul even expresses the verb in the imperative mood! It's an
Timothy would have sensed that
"To come" to Paul, "erchomai"
in Greek, would have not been easy or safe in
those days. Friends of prisoners were sometimes implicated as
"Shortly," the adverb "tacheos,"
means "at once." Or "quickly, swiftly." Even "soon" will do.
This is urgent.
And, truthfully, we don't know
if Timothy got there in time or not.
I sure hope he did!
For Paul to "ask" for something
was quite unusual. It means he really needed it!
This is the Preacher who often
would take nothing for preaching the Gospel, not money, not
I wound not mind spending the
rest of my life "helping" the Men of God. Trying to uplift them
and encourage them and support them any way possible. God
blesses such work, surely.
Elisha served Elijah.
Elisha the son of Shaphat, which poured water on the hands of
Elijah." 2nd Kings 3:11
Jonathan served David.
"And Jonathan stripped himself of the robe that was upon
him, and gave it to David, and his garments, even to his sword,
and to his bow, and to his girdle." 1st Samuel 18:4
Baruch served Jeremiah.
"Then Jeremiah called Baruch the son of Neriah: and Baruch wrote
from the mouth of Jeremiah all the words of the LORD, which he
had spoken unto him, upon a roll of a book." Jeremiah
Now Paul needs someone to serve him,
"Do thy diligence to come shortly unto
me." 2nd Timothy 4:9
--- Dr. Mike Bagwell
If I were you all, readers today, I would
discerning "look" at my Pastor, seeing if there was anything he
seemed to need. Or for which he had expressed a desire. And, if
so, I would help meet that need! "And how
shall they preach, except they be sent? as it is written, How
beautiful are the feet of them that preach the gospel of peace,
and bring glad tidings of good things!" Romans 10:15
LESSON 2, VERSE 10:
Today's verse reads like a
Paul is updating Timothy on the
"personnel" issue. "For
Demas hath forsaken me, having loved this present world, and is
departed unto Thessalonica; Crescens to Galatia, Titus unto
Dalmatia." 2nd Timothy 4:10
Three men, desperately needed by Paul, gone!
Perhaps some left for good reasons, perhaps
not. One is certainly wrong in his move, for sure!
"Demas," by name, means "popular." It is no
doubt a shortened form of some name, like Demetrius perhaps.
We meet Demas three times in Paul's letters.
In the Epistle of Philemon he is referenced as Paul's "fellowlabourer,"
in Greek "sunergos." Philemon's 24th verse.
"Marcus, Aristarchus, Demas, Lucas, my
fellowlabourers." And in Colossians 4:14 he is merely
"Demas," no longer called the "worker" in any way. Has he become
lukewarm already? "Luke, the beloved
physician, and Demas, greet you." Then by our Text, he
has forsaken Paul altogether.
That's a downward progression!
A spiral into failure.
Christian friend, try to spot any "cooling
off" tendencies that might be happening in your life.
And stay busy for Jesus!
Demas hath forsaken me, having loved this present world,"
lamented the Apostle Paul. Or maybe Paul was just reporting the
fact. Who needs an unwilling worker?
The verb "forsaken" is "egkataleipo," which
is a powerful word! It has two prefixes in front of it! Can a
word have two prefixes? Well, two prepositions anyway! "En"
means "by, with or in," often indicating a "fixed position."
There's no changing Demas' mind! "Kata" means "down from" or
"through out." He has "thoroughly" left Paul, no coming back!
And "leipo" means "to forsake" someone, to leave and forget
But here, uncharacteristically, Paul tells us
why Demas left! He "loved" the world too much, using "agapao" as
a participle, a verbal adjective. This is a deep love for the
wrong thing! The descriptor "present" is interesting. It's "nun"
in Greek, simply meaning "now." Or "at this time." The world
will have changed by tomorrow anyway, becoming more wicked every
day. And the noun "world" is actually "aion," a block of "time,"
an "age" or "eon." Demas loved that current carnal generation!
As to why he went to Thessalonica, we do not
know for sure. Someone thought that might have been his
hometown. He certainly would not have been compatible with the
saints there, who had rejected the world to follow Jesus! Paul
wrote of them, 1st Thessalonians 1:10,
"How they turned to God from idols to serve the living and true
God." Furthermore, that sanctified crowd sought to
abstain "from the very appearance of evil!" 1st Thessalonians
From Rome to Thessalonica is not a short
journey either. By land or by sea. This sounds a bit like
Jonah's trip to Tarshish! Except we never hear of Demas again!
Talk about riding off into the sunset!
We have two choices. Love for the world or
love for the father, better said this way, the love of the world
or the love of the father! The one will drive out the other!
"Love not the world, neither the things
that are in the world. If any man love the world, the love
of the Father is not in him." 1st John 2:15
For anyone who ever gets a good dose of the
amazing Love of God, the love and allure and magnetism of the
world will be greatly diminished!
Now, to the next name in our verse, "Crescens."
It means "growing or increasing." Also it is of Latin origin, a
Roman by birth? He has gone to "Galatia," not a city but a whole
district. It is thought to be associated with the people called
We are not told why Crescens went, just that
he did. Whatever the reason though, Paul is hurting, back in
that jail. Notice, we are not told that Paul sent him to
to Galatia, Titus unto Dalmatia." If the phrase is
as it appears to be, then some verb, before or after, must
apply. This is the only time in the whole Bible we meet Crescens.
And he's "going," not "coming!"
It's "Titus" I don't understand. By the way,
"Titus" means "nurse," another Latin definition. This is a good
name for a Pastor to have! Especially around worldly, selfish
people! "Dalmatia" is located on the eastern shore of the
Adriatic Sea, quite a bit north of Greece. The shore runs
parallel with Italy's eastern shore as well. Here is the only
time this region is mentioned in Scripture, by this name anyway.
Titus' going to Dalmatia is proof that he had left Crete by now.
"Titus, for this cause left I thee in Crete, that thou shouldest
set in order the things that are wanting, and ordain elders in
every city, as I had appointed thee." Paul in Titus 1:5,
Crete was apparently a difficult place of service!
But again, we are not specifically told that
Paul sent these last two men to these destinations. Unless
we take verse 12, not centrally a part of our Text this week, as
a "hint." There Paul makes clear, "And
Tychicus have I sent to Ephesus." Does this mean that
Crescens and Titus also were so "sent?" If so, good, because
"sent" is "apostello," ordering a person to go somewhere and
"set straight" or "set in order" or "arrange" certain things!
Would Paul, this near death, have dispatched
these good men to such distant lands? Might it not have been
better to have them with the great Apostle when he died? Few
events make any stronger statement for the power of the Gospel
than the deaths of its followers! Paul I think never got over
the death of Stephen! That's probably what God used to bring
Paul to Jesus! Paul, at the beginning of his Christian journey,
saw the same Lord that Stephen did at the end of his journey!
Demas hath forsaken me, having loved this present world, and is
departed unto Thessalonica; Crescens to Galatia, Titus unto
Dalmatia." 2nd Timothy 4:10
This verse sort of reminds me of Luke
14:16-20. "Then said Jesus unto him, A
certain man made a great supper, and bade many: and sent his
servant at supper time to say to them that were bidden, Come;
for all things are now ready. And they all with one consent
began to make excuse. The first said unto him, I have bought
a piece of ground,
and I must needs go and see it: I pray thee have me excused. And
another said, I have bought
five yoke of oxen,
and I go to prove them: I pray thee have me excused. And another
said, I have married a
wife, and therefore I cannot come."
Whatever the excuse, a farm or a cow or a
wife, their place at the banquet table was empty!
Some had better reasons than others. Marrying
a wife would have been the most valid of all, had it not been
the Lord Jesus inviting the man to supper. But buying land one
had not seen or purchasing oxen one had not tested is downright
Same with today's verse. The "reason" Demas
used is definitely useless, sinful, bringing shame upon him
forever. The "reasons" Crescens and Titus used have might be
better, much better, but the end result was the same.
Paul was alone, or nearly so!
And very near death, being decapitated at
He is cold and bored and maybe even hungry.
If it had been me, I think right now, there
would have been no way I would have left that godly old
I'm staying by his side.
Until it's all over and he has gone to
Then off to the next preaching mission I go,
Somebody needs to encourage the Men of God in
these last days of apostasy! "Exhort one
another daily, while it is called today; lest any of you be
hardened through the deceitfulness of sin." Hebrews 3:13
Paul, even if you said go to Dalmatia, I
But after I've cared for you, Sir.
--- Dr. Mike Bagwell
LESSON 3, VERSE 11:
Paul was a
He probably would have been one
had he remained just a Jewish rabbi, never knowing Jesus Christ
His very constitution was one
of dominance. His personality, his intellect, his will, all
combined to reveal an impressive human being. A man of influence
and impact and, as I said, leadership!
Watch him lead in today's
verse: "Only Luke is with me. Take Mark,
and bring him with thee: for he is profitable to me for the
ministry." 2nd Timothy 4:11
Always giving orders!
Good ones, the vast majority of
the time, too!
Mark and Timothy know each
The verb "take" spelled "analambano,"
nearly means "pick him up" and "bring" him with you, if
To "bring" him translates
"ago," just meaning "to lead" someone. Of these two preachers,
John Mark and Timothy, no doubt whom Paul considers the "senior"
partner! It's Timothy, although he may be younger.
Paul still remembers Mark's
hesitancy during that first missionary journey! Here's Acts
when they were at Salamis, they preached the word of God in the
synagogues of the Jews: and they had also John to their
minister." And the young man lasted eight whole verses,
the Revival at Cyprus, then: "Now when
Paul and his company loosed from Paphos, they came to Perga in
Pamphylia: and John departing from them returned to Jerusalem."
Paul felt so strongly about this "defection,"
this "unfaithfulness," that he argued with Barnabas over taking
John Mark with them on their second preaching tour.
"And some days after Paul said unto
Barnabas, Let us go again and visit our brethren in every city
where we have preached the word of the Lord, and see how
they do. And Barnabas determined to take with them John, whose
surname was Mark. But Paul thought not good to take him with
them, who departed from them from Pamphylia, and went not with
them to the work. And the contention was so sharp between them,
that they departed asunder one from the other: and so Barnabas
took Mark, and sailed unto Cyprus." From Acts 15:36-39,
if you don't know this history, go back and read these verses.
Too many of you "skipped" them.
Yes, Mark had been a "quitter." That's why
Timothy is clearly the leader of the two. Paul probably would
have had it no other way.
Still, gracefully, Paul calls John Mark
"profitable." The word is "euchrestos," the prefix "eu" meaning
"good" and the root "chrestos" meaning "useful, kind, mild."
It's hard to tell if Paul really needs Mark,
or just desires to finally patch up a past grievance. He did not
use the standard word for "profitable" here, not at all.
Still, to John Mark's credit, he has settled
down and served the Lord, even writing the Gospel that bears his
name! That alone is an eternal contribution to the Cause of
Years of "probation," for having gone home
too soon from a dangerous missionary journey! What would Paul
have done to a fellow preacher who committed adultery or denied
Somehow the word "restoration" does not come
And even still, when Paul uses the word
"ministry," he employs "diakonia," possibly only referring to
menial jobs like serving meals or running errands!
But who wouldn't have enjoyed being Paul's
"helper?" Whatever that might have involved.
So, Timothy, on your way to see me, writes
Mark, and bring him with thee: for he is profitable to me for
But we've missed part of our verse, the first
part. "Only Luke is
with me. Take Mark, and bring him with thee: for
he is profitable to me for the ministry." 2nd Timothy
The loyalty of Luke is amazing! He seems to
have been with Paul in earlier imprisonments as well. From jail,
earlier in Rome, maybe years earlier, Paul sends greeting to the
Colossians, greetings from him and Luke!
"Luke, the beloved physician, and Demas,
greet you." Colossians 4:14
Look what the Holy Spirit has done here.
Two servants of the Lord, side by side, have
been mentioned. They are Luke and Mark. Both will be helpful to
Paul, particularly in his last months on earth, maybe his last
week or days even.
They are alike in some ways, good ways.
But they are different, too. As different as
day and night! Luke never quit! Mark did! And Paul obviously
recognizes that fact. Mark is still under the watchful eye of a
seasoned veteran, Timothy! Luke is not supervised, no need! He
has proved himself faithful again and again!
Thank God for steady believers!
Always on the job!
They are Paul's kind!
"Therefore, my beloved
brethren, be ye stedfast, unmoveable, always abounding in the
work of the Lord, forasmuch as ye know that your labour is not
in vain in the Lord." 1st Corinthians 15:58
Folks, in these dark days, don't quit!
And if you have, repent, forsake those sins,
and get back on the job! At least to the extent you can.
Unquestioned loyalty, Luke!
Remedial loyalty, Mark!
Let's allow both these lives to "preach" to
our hearts today!
Do not fail your Lord!
--- Dr. Mike Bagwell
LESSON 4, VERSE 12:
Christian work, for every Demas there will be a
Paul wrote Timothy, informing
him: "And Tychicus have I sent to
Ephesus." 2nd Timothy 4:12, faithful and loyal and
sincere Tychicus! This is today's verse.
We know so little of Tychicus,
that fact not being the Bible's fault either! This servant of
the Lord is mentioned several different times in Scripture.
Here's the first time.
"And there accompanied Paul into Asia
Sopater of Berea; and of the Thessalonians, Aristarchus and
Secundus; and Gaius of Derbe, and Timotheus; and of Asia,
Tychicus and Trophimus." Tychicus here is one of Paul's
travel companions. Acts 20:4 also mentions that he is from
He was clearly with Paul during
the Apostle's first Roman imprisonment, too.
"But that ye also may know my affairs,
and how I do, Tychicus, a beloved brother and faithful
minister in the Lord, shall make known to you all things."
Ephesians 6:21 presents Tychicus as a trusted messenger.
Tychicus knows the Colossians
as well. "All my state shall Tychicus
declare unto you, who is a beloved brother, and a
faithful minister and fellowservant in the Lord."
Colossians 4:7, still an errand-runner for Paul.
Tychicus interacted smoothly
with Titus, too. "When I shall send
Artemas unto thee, or Tychicus, be diligent to come unto me to
Nicopolis: for I have determined there to winter." Titus
The name "Tychicus" is derived
from a verb, "tugchano." It means "to hit the target!" It was
literally used by archers and javelin throwers too!
Tychicus never did, or seldom
"On target" Tychicus, he
could have been nicknamed.
There's even a "hint" of irony
in Paul sending Tychicus to Ephesus. Paul's last sustained
paragraph that he wrote to the Ephesian Church concerned the
"whole armour of God!"
Tychicus' name suggests
A "fight the good fight of
faith" kind of thing!
Take the sword of the Spirit
and hit the target!
A faithful preacher, what a
And why would Paul specifically
mention "Ephesus" as Tychicus' destination? Because we believe
that's where Timothy was, pastoring the Church there.
"As I besought thee to abide still at
Ephesus, when I went into Macedonia, that thou mightest charge
some that they teach no other doctrine." 1st Timothy 1:3
Timothy was at Ephesus.
Paul needed Timothy in Rome.
Tychicus would then take
Timothy's place for a while.
This fact alone shows us what
quality of preacher Tychicus likely was. In Paul's estimation
A verse of Scripture just can't
get any more practical than this one. "And
Tychicus have I sent to Ephesus."
The verb "sent" pictures
authority and purpose. Tychicus is on an official mission! It's
"apostello." A going forth to set some things in order, having
been dispatched by the leader.
Sadly, some Christians lack
Others are in the middle,
"lukewarm" in their dependability.
While, thank God, a few are
On the mark!
The Book of Proverbs mentions
such faithful messengers. "As the cold of
snow in the time of harvest, so is a faithful messenger
to them that send him: for he refresheth the soul of his
masters." Proverbs 25:13
Like cool air-conditioning on a
blistering hot day, so is a faithful servant! Especially to His
faithful ambassador is health." Proverbs 13:17
Do you know a Tychicus?
His "type" I mean?
Tychicus replacing Timothy, at
Ephesus, important Ephesus. And, as we all know, "kind" replaces
Better said, "like kind"
replaces "like kind."
Take the time to read it now.
Here's Paul's evaluation of Timothy. Tychicus' report card is
similar. "But I trust in the Lord Jesus to
send Timotheus shortly unto you, that I also may be of good
comfort, when I know your state. For I have no man likeminded,
who will naturally care for your state. For all seek their own,
not the things which are Jesus Christ's. But ye know the proof
of him, that, as a son with the father, he hath served with me
in the gospel. Him therefore I hope to send presently, so soon
as I shall see how it will go with me." Philippians
Maybe for Paul they dispelled
the bitter taste Demas had left!
No one I've ever met has made
Tychicus his or her role model. But he's not a bad one, not bad
At least Paul thought so.
--- Dr. Mike Bagwell
Be ashamed over your
Over your lack of seriousness
serving the Lord!
Over your lack of diligence!
Oh, one more definition for "Tychicus,"
the name itself, "fateful." Even this ties into that "hitting
the mark" picture. One Text also defined the name as "chance."
Still, when applying this meaning, Tychicus will be faithful
"whatever comes" his way!
Sounds like a Habakkuk kind of
man. "Although the fig tree shall not
blossom, neither shall fruit be in the vines; the
labour of the olive shall fail, and the fields shall yield no
meat; the flock shall be cut off from the fold, and there
shall be no herd in the stalls: yet I will rejoice in the
LORD, I will joy in the God of my salvation." Habakkuk
LESSON 5, VERSE 13, THE
Paul was cold.
He was in Rome, in prison. This
time though he was not in his own "hired" house. Not like is
described in Acts 28:30.
The Apostle may have even been
in a dungeon!
He, quite near his death, asks
Timothy for a few things. This is one of the most personal
verses in all God's Word. "The cloke that
I left at Troas with Carpus, when thou comest, bring with
thee, and the books, but especially the parchments."
2nd Timothy 4:13
Today we glance at the first
half of the Text, the "cloak" part.
The noun for this "coat" is "phelones,"
and it apparently indicates something like an over-coat.
Normally it would have been used during extreme weather, when
one was traveling and the skies were storming, for example.
"Phelones" may have been
derived from "phos," the Greek root word for "light," something
that "shines." That's because this "cloak" was the most visible
part of one's clothing when it's being worn.
The implication here surely is
that Paul was cold!
In verse 21, outside the scope
our Text, but still not very far away, Paul deliberately uses
the word "winter." Writing to Timothy, "Do
thy diligence to come before winter." Put the "cloak" and
"winter" together, associate them. Paul is an older man now,
especially by ancient standards. His body is growing frail.
Older people are not as easily warmed, once they get exceedingly
"Pathos" just oozes from this
"The cloke that I left at Troas
with Carpus, when thou comest, bring with thee."
2nd Timothy 4:13
This is the only time "Carpus" is mentioned
in all Paul's writings. The name means "fruit," what a name for
a Believer to have, Mr. Fruitful! Or Brother Fruitful!
We know only his home town, specifically.
"Troas" is basically the ancient city of Troy, of Trojan horse
fame! If Timothy is in Ephesus, as we think, based on 1st
Timothy 1:3, it's a journey of approximately 175-200 miles north
to Troas! Paul wants, needs, these items pretty intensely!
Paul never asks for personal favors!
This must be urgent!
By the way, just to show us how dependable
Carpus must have been, this Brother may have been caring for
Paul's library too! And, believe me, if a Preacher lets you hold
his books, he trusts you a lot!
See the linkage between the "cloak" and the
"books," immediate and contextual.
"The cloke that I left at Troas with Carpus, when thou comest,
bring with thee, and the books ...."
More about those "books" tomorrow, the Lord
Come to think of it, Paul must have been
expecting to live a while longer. Why else bring the books? He
wants to read and study! But, what else could that old veteran
of the Faith have learned? He wrote 13 or 14 Books of the Bible!
He walked with God like few men ever have! He taught, teacher
supreme, the Scriptures for years and years! Romans is an
example, a sterling one! No better teaching anywhere!
Maybe books to help "while" away the time!
Maybe he has a new study project in mind!
Bible study is both profitable and exciting!
But it's harder to sit and read, to learn
much of anything, if you're freezing!
There were no "rights" for prisoners in those
days. Many died before trial, and many more before their
sentences had been executed.
Think of the honor of it!
What a privilege Timothy had!
To get Paul's coat for him!
To help make that giant Man of God more
So-called "little" things like that, a pair
of shoes or a suit of clothes or a newer jacket, can mean so
much to the Preacher!
Let's be generous to the Men of God!
whosoever shall give you a cup of water to drink in my name,
because ye belong to Christ, verily I say unto you, he shall not
lose his reward." Jesus preaching in Mark 9:41.
If a cup of water gets mentioned, where would
a coat appear on the list? Although in Matthew 10:42 it's "cold"
Paul, old independent "need-nothing" Paul,
has finally asked for something!
We all have to learn the grace of "giving,"
and the grace of "receiving" as we grow in Christ!
Reminds me of something else he wrote:
"For God is not unrighteous to forget your work and
labour of love, which ye have shewed toward his name, in that ye
have ministered to the saints, and do minister." Hebrews
Now, let's go and practice these things!
All of us.
--- Dr. Mike Bagwell
LESSON 6, VERSE 13, THE BOOKS:
Today we study
one of the most interesting phrases Paul ever wrote. At least
this is true if you are a book lover.
During his last Roman
imprisonment, not long before being martyred for the Faith, Paul
requests of Timothy: "The cloke that I
left at Troas with Carpus, when thou comest, bring with thee,
and the books, but especially the parchments." 2nd
I just said "requested." Really
the verb "bring" is in the imperative mood, expressing a
command! Older Preachers can do that at times, especially when
younger Preachers are involved. "Phero" means "to carry, to
tote, to lift and transport." Some weight is implied. Coats and
books and parchments can be bulky, when the books are in scroll
form anyway. An if there are enough of them, they can be heavy
"And the books."
No precise description is
given, nothing further than "the books!"
Paul knew Timothy would
Carpus would too.
Anyone close to Paul would have
Was Paul a reader?
I would like to think so.
He certainly had read, even
studied, quite diligently too, the Old Testament!
And in his corpus he uses
history, poetry, music, logic, irony, biography, and no telling
what else! Paul was a "well read" man, as they say.
Paul even once wrote to
Timothy: "Give attendance to reading."
1st Timothy 4:13, the very counterpart to our 2nd Timothy 4:13
Text here today!
In Scripture, three times only,
when the words "Bring the books" are used, something "good" is
Watch. Here they come; one,
the people gathered themselves together as one man into the
street that was before the water gate; and they spake
unto Ezra the scribe to
bring the book of the law of Moses, which the LORD had
commanded to Israel." Nehemiah 8:1, and that Book was the
Word of God, the Pentateuch, the writings of Moses. And the
result of Ezra having that Book, which he first read, then
preached, was astounding! A Revival began among God's people,
among the Jews! One of the greatest spiritual awakenings in all
night could not the king sleep, and he commanded to
bring the book of
records of the chronicles; and they were read before the king."
Esther 6:1, whereupon the life of Mordecai was spared! That
godly Jew lived, and so did his Nation Israel. The enemy Haman
had plotted genocide! Here is national Revival, nearly like
Ezekiel's valley of dry, dead bones!
Lastly, our Text today.
"The cloke that I left at Troas with
Carpus, when thou comest, bring with thee,
and BRING the
books, but especially the parchments." 2nd Timothy
4:13, where Paul's spirit is to be uplifted, even in the face of
death. That's personal Revival!
Every time in the Scriptures
when that command is issued, "Bring the Book," Revival occurs!
There must be linkage!
The precious Word of God and
Holy Ghost Revival!
centering on exposition, by the way!
centering on the halls of government, by the way!
centering on devotion and exhortation, by the way!
Bring the Book!
A few weeks ago I read a newly
published volume about Adolph Hitler, a very unpleasant subject
I might add. But the premise of that work was this, Hitler
became what he was largely because of what he read! It
seems that hundreds and hundreds of his books are archived in
the Library of Congress in Washington. An author, a researcher
really, studied those books and learned some amazing things!
In a way, we are what we
Surprisingly, one of the books
Hitler devoured, allegedly, was Henry Ford's hateful book on The
International Jew! Wicked Hitler read "Hate the Jews" material,
and he subsequently lived a "Hate the Jews" life!
Not to be too long today, but
currently I am reading a book about Barak Obama. In this History
the books Mr. Obama read when he was younger, some mentioned in
his own autobiography, are studied. And they, to us
Bible-believing Christians, are pretty "way-out" there! The
author I'm reading suggests Obama read liberal stuff, very
liberal! Maybe even "socialist" in nature! Some were even
written by alleged communists!
That is potentially
Because the books one reads
helps to form a man or a woman into what he or she is becoming!
Now to be fair, let's also
understand that a student can read things with which he does
not agree! I often do that, just to be better able
to refute the enemy. But generally speaking, especially when a
reading "pattern" is established, a person is being impacted and
influenced and changed thereby!
Be careful what you read!
And read well!
But read godly literature!
Paul evidently did.
Preachers, I hope you do too.
"Timothy, when you came, bring
Here's Jesus and a Book, a
Scroll. "And He came to Nazareth, where He
had been brought up: and, as His custom was, He went into the
synagogue on the sabbath day, and stood up for to read. And
there was delivered unto Him the book of the prophet Esaias. And
when He had opened the book, He found the place where it was
written, The Spirit of the Lord is upon me, because he
hath anointed me to preach the gospel to the poor; he hath sent
me to heal the brokenhearted, to preach deliverance to the
captives, and recovering of sight to the blind, to set at
liberty them that are bruised, to preach the acceptable year of
the Lord. And He closed the book, and He gave it again to
the minister, and sat down. And the eyes of all them that were
in the synagogue were fastened on Him. And he began to say unto
them, ...." Luke 4:16-21
And what a Sermon He preached!
--- Dr. Mike Bagwell
Do you have a godly library? If
not, start one today. Books can be expensive. Of course, they
can be bought "used" too, much less costly. Get plenty of "book
advice" from other, older Men of God too. Be readers, for the
Glory of God! You can get a good spiritual education right there
in your study, walking with the giants of the past, through the
books they left us!
LESSON 7, VERSE 13, THE
When Paul wrote about the
"parchments," what did he mean?
cloke that I left at Troas with Carpus, when thou comest, bring
with thee, and the books, but especially the
parchments." 2nd Timothy 4:13
The old Preacher, now in jail
again, needed his outer coat. Winter was coming! He also asked
for his books, or some of them anyway. He had some time on his
hands, maybe time to read. Then, apparently among these "books,"
were some other documents, the highly valued "parchments."
"Especially the parchments."
The adverb "especially" is "malista"
in Greek. It means "most of all" or "chiefly." It's built on the
superlative form of "mala," meaning "very."
It looks like Paul is saying
that of all the items mentioned, coats and books and whatever
else, the most important things were those "parchments."
The noun used for "parchments"
is "membrana." See here our English word "membrane." From Greek
to Latin, "membrana" means "skin!" And even that's from the word
"membrum," being "a part of the body."
So, whatever these items were,
they involved "skins," no doubt the "skins" of animals, dead
In Paul's day, even before, the
most durable writing surface known was just that, animals'
They, the finished products,
logically came to be called "parchments." At first these were
primarily the skins of sheep and goats.
Scribes and teachers and rabbis
wrote on these things, especially if their literature was highly
valued, needing to be preserved for future generations!
To us Christians, the most
precious "literature" we have is God's holy, inspired Word, the
Paul is asking for his copies
of the Scriptures!
Maybe one of the Gospels!
Matthew or Mark or Luke or John, I mean. Not one of these
so-called new things, Philip or Thomas or Mary Magdalene. I'm
sticking with the four first found in my New Testament. I
absolutely reject the others.
Maybe Paul owned some of the
Psalms in scroll form, parchment scrolls. They would have been
bulky, and expensive, as well as precious beyond words.
And here's a surprise.
The actual noun "parchment" is
a variant of the Latin word "pergamina." Look at this carefully.
See in it the name "Pergamos!" That little Church mentioned in
Revelation 2:12. "And to the angel of the
church in Pergamos write; These things saith he which hath the
sharp sword with two edges ...." The Church obviously was
named for its location, the city. And the city was named for its
chief industry, the making of parchment skins! On which
professional scribes could write!
The saved folks in Pergamos
would have done well to more carefully read the
Scriptures that were so prayerfully written on their animals'
skins! They surely could have avoided a lot of the "troubles"
their Church was enduring. "But I have a
few things against thee, because thou hast there them that hold
the doctrine of Balaam, who taught Balac to cast a
stumblingblock before the children of Israel, to eat things
sacrificed unto idols, and to commit fornication. So hast thou
also them that hold the doctrine of the Nicolaitans, which thing
I hate." Jesus to the Church there, Revelation 14-15.
One of the main things the
Scriptures do, is to diligently fight sin!
They teach us to be "separated"
To avoid idolatry!
To flee fornication!
To spurn all false doctrine!
To learn what God loves ... and
Yes, the Bible is the solution
to all our problems.
And Paul wanted his Bible!
That special "copy" he
treasured most highly!
Our Text verse the past three
days certainly reveals Paul's priorities!
These are the Apostle's last
As far as we know.
The last ones written in the
His winter coat.
His books, at least a few of
them, whatever Timothy could carry.
And for sure, the "parchments."
Wish I could have got them for
It would have been an honor.
Thank you, Timothy, for caring
for the old Preacher!
God will bless your efforts.
Is anyone taking care of your
--- Dr. Mike Bagwell
What an amazing Book, the Word of God!