1-2 Timothy Bible Study Resources

The bible study resources on this page are intended to help you understand and apply 1-2 Timothy. Scripture instructs people to seek wisdom (Prov. 4:7), so utilizing the resources that God has provided the Church, helps bible study leaders, participants, and even preachers and teachers. Below you will find helpful and simple information on 1-2 Timothy, including a video overview from The Bible project, a list of facts and figures, and a book summary, all intended to help you get off to a strong start on studying this book.

1-2 Timothy Bible Study Resource: Video Overview

To better understand the message of 1-2 Timothy, it is help to start with an overview. The Bible Project is a great resource to learn from and share with a bible study, small group, or congregation. “We are committed to helping the whole world see the Bible as one unified story that leads to Jesus,” is the mission of The Bible Project, which is based in Portland, Oregon, USA. Best Bible Commentaries uses these video with explicit permission. Please see more about The Bible Project below. [1]

1-2 Timothy Facts and Figures

1 Timothy at a Glance: This book was written to instruct Timothy on how to effectively relate to and deal with the various groups of people in his church including himself, church officers, false teachers, etc. In addition, Paul also reviews his own ministry and aptly summarizes the person and work of Jesus Christ. Bottom Line Introduction: FROM AN OLD MAN OF GOD TO A YOUNG MAN OF GOD! Surely no young pastor in all of church history enjoyed such a mentor (Paul) than did this one (Timothy). [2]

Facts about 1 Timothy

1. Who? Paul. He was also known as Saul of Tarsus (Acts 9:11). This relentless enemy of Christians (Acts 8:3; 22:5, 19; 26:11; Gal. 1:13) would, following his conversion (Acts 9:3-9), become the greatest missionary, church planter, soul winner, and theologian in church history, authoring nearly half of the New Testament books!

2. What? The books of Romans, 1 and 2 Corinthians, Galatians, Ephesians, Philippians, Colossians, 1 and 2 Thessalonians, 1 and 2 Timothy, Titus, Philemon.

3. When and where? Written in 62 A.D. from Macedonia.

4. Why and to whom? To overview the duties of both leaders and laity in a local church. Addressed to the church at Ephesus.

Key Events

1. Warnings against false teachers

2. Proper worship of God

3. Qualifications for pastors and deacons

4. Contrasting godless shepherds with godly ones

5. Advice regarding specific church members (part one)

6. Advice regarding specific church members (part two)

Key Individuals

1. Paul, author of 1 Timothy and at least 12 other New Testament books, church planter, evangelist, missionary, and perhaps the greatest of all the apostles

2. Timothy, Paul’s young associate, ministering in Ephesus and the recipient of two apostolic letters, First and Second Timothy

3. Hymenaeus and Alexander, two heretics, given over to Satan by Paul because of blasphemy

Key Places

1. Ephesus: capital city of the Roman province of Asia. Paul established a church in Ephesus during his third missionary trip and had assigned Timothy to serve as its pastor.

Unique Features

1. The book of 1 Timothy is the first of three New Testament letters written especially to pastors. The other two are 2 Timothy and Titus. Paul probably wrote both this epistle and Titus between his first and second imprisonments.

2. The New Testament has much to say concerning Timothy.

3. His name appears some 24 times.

4. He was from Lystra and probably was saved during Paul’s first missionary trip (Acts 14:19-20; 16:1-2).

5. His mother (Eunice) and grandmother (Lois) were godly Jewish women, but his father was a pagan Greek (Acts 16:1; 2 Tim. 1:5).

6. He is invited by Paul to “join the team” during the apostle’s second trip (Acts 16:3).

7. This team would consist of Silas, Paul, and Luke.

8. Timothy may have been chosen to take John Mark’s place. (See Acts 13:5.)

9. He is circumcised by Paul that he might have freedom to preach the gospel in the various Jewish synagogues (Acts 16:3; see also 1 Cor. 9:20).

10. Timothy is formally ordained by Paul and the presbytery (1 Tim. 4:14; 2 Tim. 1:6).

11. He also accompanies Paul during the third missionary trip (Acts 19:22; 20:4; 2 Cor. 1:1, 19).

12. He becomes Paul’s close companion during the apostle’s first imprisonment. (See Phil. 1:1; Col. 1:1; Philem. 1)

13. Like Paul, Timothy also suffers imprisonment. (See Heb. 13:23.)

14. He performs a ministry in at least five New Testament churches:

 Thessalonica (1 Thess. 3:2, 6)

 Corinth (1 Cor. 4:17; 16:10; 2 Cor. 1:19)

 Philippi (Phil. 2:19-23)

 Berea (Acts 17:14)

 Ephesus (1 Tim. 1:3)

15. Timothy may have been a somewhat reserved individual and one who did not always enjoy robust health (1 Tim. 4:12, 14-16).

16. He was, nevertheless, a man of God (see 1 Tim. 6:11).

17. On two occasions Paul reminds Timothy in regards to his spiritual gift. He writes:

 Neglect not your gift (1 Tim. 4:14)

 Stir up your gift (2 Tim. 1:6)

18. This epistle provides the most extended list explaining the needed qualifications for pastors and deacons in the New Testament. (See 3:1-13.)

19. It also includes the first of three passages in Paul’s writings where he predicts last day conditions. (Compare 1 Tim. 4:1-4 with 2 Tim. 3:1-9; 4:1-4.)

20. The reason for man’s headship over the woman is also given in this epistle. (See 2:9-15.)

21. It emphasizes the importance of doctrine on eight occasions, more than can be found in any other Pauline epistles.

22. It records the second of two occasions when a sinning believer was delivered to Satan (1:20). See also 1 Cor. 5:5.

23. Paul probably spent more time with the church in Ephesus pastored by Timothy than he did regarding any other, for a total of three years (Acts 20:31).

24. It is believed that the words in 3:16 and 6:15, 16 constituted an early church hymn (or hymns).

25. This epistle is the only one of all the epistles referring to Pontius Pilate (6:13).

26. Paul sadly records the fulfillment of his Acts 20:29, 30 prophecy in this epistle:

 The prophecy: “Also of your own selves shall men arise, speaking perverse things, to draw away disciples after them” (Acts 20:30).

 The fulfillment: “Holding faith, and a good conscience; which some having put away concerning faith have made shipwreck: Of whom is Hymenaeus and Alexander; whom I have delivered unto Satan, that they may learn not to blaspheme” (1 Tim. 1:19, 20). See also 2 Tim. 2:16-18.

27. For its size this epistle has more separate names for Jesus (17) than any other epistle.

28. The apostle gives us more information on the following subjects in this book than can be found in any other epistle:

 Pastors and deacons (3:1-15)

 The role of women in the church (2:9-15)

 Widows (5:3-16)

 Riches (6:6-10, 17-19)

 Elders (5:1, 17-19)

Comparison with Other Bible Books

1. Colossians and 1 John:

All deal with the Gnostic heresy.

2. Titus:

Both books provide information on pastors and deacons.

3. Second Timothy:

Each epistle has much to say about last day conditions.

Titles for and Types of Jesus

1. Jesus Christ (1:1a)

2. The Lord Jesus Christ (1:1b)

3. Jesus Christ our Lord (1:2)

4. The blessed God (1:11)

5. Christ Jesus (1:15)

6. The eternal, immortal, and invisible King (1:17a)

7. The only wise God (1:17b)

8. God our Savior (2:3)

9. The mediator (2:5a)

10. The man (2:5b)

11. The ransom (2:6)

12. The incarnate God man (3:16)

13. The living God (4:10a)

14. The Savior of all men (4:10b)

15. The only potentate (6:15a)

16. King of Kings (6:15b)

17. Lord of Lords (6:15c)

2 Timothy Facts and Figures

2 Timothy at a Glance: This book, Paul’s final epistle was written to instruct, encourage, exhort, warn, and reassure his favorite son in the faith, Timothy. Bottom Line Summary: THE FINAL WORDS OF GOD’S FINEST WITNESS. Some believe Jesus may have had the apostle Paul in mind during the last part of his statement to the disciples in Matt. 11:11: “I tell you the truth, Among them that are born of women there has not risen anyone greater than John the Baptist: yet he who is least in the kingdom of heaven is greater than he.” [2]

Facts about 2 Timothy

1. Who? Paul. He was also known as Saul of Tarsus (Acts 9:11). This relentless enemy of Christians (Acts 8:3; 22:5, 19; 26:11; Gal. 1:13) would, following his conversion (Acts 9:3-9), become the greatest missionary, church planter, soul winner, and theologian in church history, authoring nearly half of the New Testament books!

2. What? The books of Romans, 1 and 2 Corinthians, Galatians, Ephesians, Philippians, Colossians, 1 and 2 Thessalonians, 1 and 2 Timothy, Titus, Philemon.

3. When and where? Written in 67 A.D. from Rome.

4. Why and to whom? Written to serve as Paul’s final legacy. Addressed to the church at Ephesus.

Key Events

1. Paul speaks concerning his son (Timothy), and their Savior (Jesus)

2. Rules and responsibilities assigned to the pastor

3. Warnings about the coming great apostasy

4. Last will and testimony of Paul

Key Individuals

1. Paul, author of 2 Timothy and at least 12 other New Testament books, church planter, evangelist, missionary, and perhaps the greatest of all the apostles

2. Timothy, Paul’s faithful and beloved associate, pastor of the Church at Ephesus, and recipient of two apostolic letters, First and Second Timothy

3. Lois, Timothy’s godly grandmother

4. Eunice, Timothy’s godly mother

5. Phygellus and Hermogenes, two professing believers who deserted Paul in Asia

6. Onesiphorus, faithful believer who ministered to Paul both in Ephesus and in Rome.

7. Hymenaeus and Philetus, two professing believers rebuked by Paul for their heretical views regarding the biblical doctrine of resurrection

8. Jannes and Jambres, two Old Testament Egyptian occultists who opposed Moses in his day, here referred to by Paul as examples of those who will oppose the truth in the last days

9. Demas, Paul’s close associate who forsook him on the eve of his execution in Rome

10. Luke, beloved Gentile physician who authored the Gospel of Luke and the Book of Acts, who remained faithful to Paul during the Apostle’s final days in a Roman prison

11. John Mark, nephew of Barnabas, and author of the Gospel of Mark, who forsook Paul during his first missionary journey, but now is urged by the imprisoned apostle to visit him

Key Places

1. Rome: capital city of the mighty Roman Empire where the imprisoned Paul writes his final epistle just prior to his execution by Nero

2. Thessalonica: the city that Demas (Paul’s friend) moved into when he deserted the imprisoned apostle in Rome

Unique Features

1. This epistle is his spiritual swan song, his dying shout of triumph.

2. Paul writes more about last day conditions in this epistle than in any other. (See 3:1-13; 4:1-4).

3. After being released from his first Roman imprisonment (Acts 28), Paul is once again arrested.

4. This arrest may have taken place suddenly in Troas, thus explaining why Paul left there without taking his cloak, parchments, or Old Testament scrolls (2 Tim. 4:13).

5. On July 19, A.D. 64, Rome was burned (probably by Nero) and the Christians were blamed. Christianity then became an illegal religion, and to evangelize was a crime punishable by death.

6. Paul was probably arrested again sometime after July of A.D. 64, and condemned to death.

7. During his second and final imprisonment he wrote 2 Timothy.

8. His second imprisonment was far different from the first.

 He was then a political prisoner awaiting trial. He is now a condemned criminal, awaiting death.

 Then he lived in his own hired house. Now he huddles in a cold, damp, dark dungeon.

 During his first imprisonment he was visited by many. Now he is forsaken by all.

9. This is the most personal letter; in Romans we see Paul the theologian; in 1 Corinthians, Paul the counselor; in 2 Corinthians, Paul the preacher; in Galatians, Paul the defender; in 1 Timothy and Titus, Paul the statesman; but here in 2 Timothy, Paul the man.

10. The letter is rich in personal allusions. Paul mentions 23 men, women, friends, and foes.

11. He also lists (by name) more enemies of the gospel in this epistle. These are:

 Phygellus and Hermogenes (1:15)

 Hymenaeus and Philetus (2:17)

 Jannes and Jambres (3:8)

 Alexander the coppersmith (4:14)

12. Dr. J. Vernon McGee writes: “In 2 Timothy Paul speaks of the ultimate outcome of gospel preaching. The final fruition will not be the total conversion of mankind, nor will it usher in the Millennium. On the contrary, there will come about an apostasy which will well-nigh blot out ‘the faith’ from the earth. This is in complete harmony with the startling word of Christ, ‘When the Son of man cometh, shall he find faith on the earth?’ This is not in keeping, of course, with a social gospel which expects to transform the world by tinkering with the social system. These vain optimists have no patience with the doleful words of 2 Timothy. Nevertheless, the cold and hard facts of history and the events of the present have demonstrated the accuracy of Paul” (Second Timothy, p. 196.)

13. At least six analogies depicting the Christian life are given here in this book. The believer is likened to a soldier (2:3), athlete (2:5), farmer (2:6), student (2:15), vessel (2:21), and servant (2:24).

14. Tradition says Paul was imprisoned in Rome’s Mamertine Prison, which had only two cells, one below the other, with Paul occupying the lower cell.

15. This epistle has much to say about the Word of God:

 Its message is never in chains, though the messenger may be (2:9)

 It is to be proclaimed (4:2)

 It is to be studied (2:15a)

 It is to be correctly interpreted (2:15b)

 It has been personally given by God (3:16a)

 It is profitable for (1) doctrine, (2) reproof, (3) correction, and (4) instruction in righteousness (3:16b).

 It will perfect the believer’s character and service for God (3:17)

 It is to be passed on to others (2:2)

 It will be abandoned and opposed by its enemies in the last days (3:7, 8; 4:3, 4)

16. Paul refers to himself by more titles in 2 Timothy than in any other epistle. He says he is:

 An apostle (1:1)

 A prisoner (1:8; 2:9)

 A preacher (1:11a)

 A teacher of Gentiles (1:11b)

 A role model (2:2; 3:10)

 A convicted evil doer (2:9)

 A martyr (4:6a)

 A departing pilgrim (4:6b)

 A victorious fighter (4:8)

17. In fact in three short verses Paul offers a three-fold summary of his entire ministry:

 Regarding the past: “I have fought a good fight, I have finished my course, I have kept the faith” (4:7).

 Regarding the present: “For I am now ready to be offered, and the time of my departure is at hand” (4:6).

 Regarding the future: “Henceforth there is laid up for me a crown of righteousness, which the Lord, the righteous judge, shall give me at that day: and not to me only, but unto all them also that love his appearing” (4:8).

18. He once may have believed he would partake of the rapture (1 Thess. 4:17), but now realizes this would not be the case (4:6).

19. He had previously presented his body to live for Christ (Rom. 12:1). He now presents it to die for Christ (4:6).

20. His dying words echo those once said by Stephen:

 Stephen’s words: “And he kneeled down, and cried with a loud voice, Lord, lay not this sin to their charge. And when he had said this, he fell asleep” (Acts 7:60).

 Paul’s words: “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” (2 Tim. 4:16).

Among the names mentioned in this epistle, two stand out in contrast to each other:

 John Mark, who had once forsaken Paul but now was ministering for God (compare Acts 13:13; 15:37, 38 with 2 Tim. 4:11).

 Demas, who had once ministered for God (Col. 4:14; Philem. 24) but now had forsaken Paul (2 Tim. 4:10).

Comparison with Other Bible Books

1. 2 Thessalonians; 1 Timothy 4; 2 Peter; Jude: All these, like Second Timothy deal with apostasy

2. Deuteronomy; Joshua 23, 24; 2 Peter: These books record the final words of their authors, as does Second Timothy.

Titles for and Types of Jesus

1. Jesus Christ (1:1a)

2. Christ Jesus (1:1b)

3. Christ Jesus our Lord (1:2)

4. Our Savior (1:10)

5. The seed of David (2:8)

6. The Master (2:21)

7. The Lord Jesus Christ (4:1)

8. The righteous Judge (4:8)

1-2 Timothy Introduction

1 Timothy: First Timothy is one of three pastoral letters (including 2 Timothy and Titus) that the aging apostle Paul sent to those who would continue his work. Timothy was, in every way, Paul’s spiritual son. Young but gifted, Timothy had been assigned to lead the church at Ephesus-a church needing order in worship as well as doctrinal correction, plagued as it was by false teachers. Paul’s letter, likely written about a.d. 62-66, counseled the young man on matters of church leadership-from proper worship, to qualifications for overseers (elders) and deacons, to advice on confronting false teaching and how to treat various individuals within a congregation. Paul charged Timothy to live a life beyond reproach, giving believers a standard to emulate.

2 Timothy: Paul wrote this letter as he awaited execution. Despite all that Paul was facing-death, the end of his ministry, abandonment by most of his friends for fear of persecution-he faithfully directed his spiritual son Timothy to the hope that is in Christ. As he exhorted Timothy to boldness, endurance, and faithfulness in the face of false teaching, Paul showed his customary concern for sound doctrine. Scripture, said Paul, is “breathed out by God” and is sufficient in all things pertaining to the faith and practice of Christians (3:16-17). Older believers, therefore, should be eager to pass on their knowledge of Scripture to those who are younger in the faith (2:2). Paul probably wrote from Rome, a.d. 67 or 68. [3]

Notes

[1] “The Bible Project is a non-profit animation studio that produces short-form, fully animated videos to make the biblical story accessible to everyone, everywhere. We create 100% free videos, podcasts, and resources that explore the Bible’s unified story.”

[2] Creative Commons License: This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-Noncommercial-Share Alike 4.0 License | by Harold Wilmington – https://digitalcommons.liberty.edu/sword/

[3] https://www.esv.org/