The Church in Ruins (Brief Thoughts on II Timothy), Part 46

A Lonely Stand

For Demas has forsaken me, having loved this present world, and is departed unto Thessalonica; Crescens to Galatia, Titus unto Dalmatia. Only Luke is with me (II Timothy 4:10-11).

Timothy and Paul had lonely stands. Timothy was in Asia where all had turned away from Paul (II Timothy 1:15). Paul was in Rome where “only Luke” (II Timothy 4:11) was with him.

Demas (as well as Crescens and Titus, it would appear) forsook Paul, “having loved this present world” (II Timothy 4:10). Does this mean that they forsook Paul for what is often viewed as “worldliness?” What was it about this present age that made them forsake Paul? The context of the entire book of II Timothy would seem to indicate that this was the abandonment of Paul for this present religious age. Theirs was a wholesale abandonment for this world’s religious course.

The Faithful Five

Five men are specifically listed by name who had remained faithful. You could count them on one hand. There was of course Paul, and Luke who was with him (II Timothy 4:11). Then there was Timothy, and Mark who was with him (II Timothy 4:11); and there is Tychicus (II Timothy 4:12).

The situation was so bleak that when Paul first appeared on trial before the authorities not a single soul stood with him. He stood on trial all alone. “At my first answer no man stood with me, but all men forsook me: I pray God that it may not be laid to their charge” (II Timothy 4:16).

(to be continued)

Clyde L. Pilkington, Jr.
Bible Student’s Notebook
© 2001, 2009 Bible Student’s Press

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