The Guide to the Scriptures

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Timothy, Epistles to

Two books in the New Testament. Both were originally letters that Paul wrote to Timothy.

First Timothy

Paul wrote the first epistle after his first imprisonment. He had left Timothy at Ephesus, intending afterwards to return (1 Tim. 3:14). However, Paul felt that he might be delayed, so he wrote to Timothy, perhaps from Macedonia (1 Tim. 1:3), to give him counsel and encouragement in fulfilling his duty.

Chapter 1 contains Paul’s greeting and also his instructions about foolish speculations that were finding their way into the Church. Chapters 2–3 give directions about public worship and about the character and conduct of ministers. Chapters 4–5 contain a description of the latter-day apostasy and advice to Timothy on how to minister to those he was leading. Chapter 6 is an exhortation to prove faithful and avoid worldly riches.

Second Timothy

Paul wrote the second letter during his second imprisonment, shortly before his martyrdom. It contains the Apostle’s last words and shows the wonderful courage and trust with which he faced death.

Chapter 1 contains Paul’s greeting and charge to Timothy. Chapters 2–3 give various warnings and directions, with a challenge to face the dangers ahead. Chapter 4 is a message to Paul’s friends, containing advice about how to handle apostates.