Paul thanks God for Timothy
1This letter is from me, Paul. God chose me to be an apostle of Christ Jesus. God sent me to tell people about the true life that he has promised us. We receive this life when we belong to Christ Jesus.
2I am writing to you, Timothy. You are like my own child, and I love you very much.
I pray that God the Father and Christ Jesus our Lord will continue to help you and be kind to you. I pray that they will give you peace in your mind.
3I serve God in a good way, that I know is right. My ancestors served God in that way too. When I pray to God, at night and during the day, I always remember to pray for you. And I thank God for you. 4I remember how you wept when I said ‘Goodbye’ to you. I want to see you again very much, so that I may be completely happy. 5I remember how you really believe in Christ. Your grandmother, Lois, and your mother, Eunice, already believed in Christ before you did. Now I am sure that you yourself really trust him also. 6For that reason, I want you to remember the gift that God gave you when I put my hands on you. Use that gift more and more to serve God well. 7Be strong like that, because God has given us his Spirit. And his Spirit does not cause us to be afraid. Instead, he causes us to be strong to serve God. He helps us to love God and other people. And he helps us to rule ourselves properly. #1:7 The Christian leaders had put their hands on Timothy and they had prayed for him when he started to serve God. See 1 Timothy 4:14. At that time, God had given Timothy a special gift so that he could be a good leader of the church and a teacher. That authority came from God's Spirit. Perhaps Timothy had been afraid to use that authority. So, Paul tells him that he must use it. He must be brave to teach the true Christian message.
Paul tells Timothy to be a brave teacher for Christ
8So do not be ashamed of the message about our Lord that we tell people. And do not be ashamed of me because I am in a prison. I am a prisoner because I serve Christ. You must understand that you will receive trouble because you tell people the good news about Jesus Christ. So, be ready to have the same kind of trouble as I have. Let God make you strong when you have trouble. 9God is the one who has saved us. He has chosen us to serve him with good, clean lives. He did not save us because of anything good things that we have done. He chose to do it because he is very kind. He decided to do that before time began, because of what Christ Jesus would do for us. 10Now Christ Jesus has come to save us, and we have seen how kind God is. Christ has destroyed death's power over us. We have heard the good news that he brought to us. So now we understand about life with God for ever.
11That is the same good news that God has chosen me to tell to people. He has sent me as his apostle to teach his message to people. 12That is why I have these troubles. But I am not ashamed to be in prison. I have believed in Christ and I know him well. I know that I can trust him to keep his message safe. God has given me the authority to speak that message to people at this time. #1:12 It is not completely clear what this verse means. It could mean ‘Christ will keep safe what I have given to him’. Or it could mean ‘Christ will keep safe what he has given to me’. Christ had chosen Paul to teach his good news. So Paul is probably saying that he trusts Christ to keep that message safe. Christ has the power to keep it safe until that great day when he comes back. #1:12 That great day when Jesus comes back is the day when he will judge everyone. He will decide what should happen to them after their death.
13You have God's true message from me. Let those words be an example to you, so that you also teach what is true. Do this because you belong to Christ Jesus. Continue to trust him and to love his people. 14God has given you his good message to keep safe. God's Holy Spirit, who lives in us, will help you to keep it safe.
15You know that almost all the believers in Asia region have turned against me. They include Phygelus and Hermogenes. #1:15 Timothy was the leader of the believers in Ephesus, which was the capital city of Asia region.
16But Onesiphorus has stayed to help me. I pray that the Lord will be kind to his family. He often came to help me not to be sad. He was not ashamed to help me, even though I am in a prison. 17When he came here to Rome, he looked carefully for me until he found me. 18I pray that the Lord will be kind to Onesiphorus on that great day when he judges people. You know very well how much Onesiphorus helped me there in Ephesus also. #1:18 Again, ‘that great day’ means the day when Jesus will decide about everyone. He will decide what should happen to them after their death. See also verse 12.