2 Timothy 2:7
Consider what I say; and the Lord give thee understanding in all things.
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(7) Consider what I say; and the Lord give thee understanding in all things.—The older authorities read here will give; also instead of “and the Lord,” the translation should be, for the Lord. Thus the sentence should run: for the Lord will give thee understanding in all things. Some difficulty has been found in explaining exactly why, when we look at the foregoing words, Timothy should be so specially charged to consider St. Paul’s words here, and why the declaration respecting “understanding in all things” was made in this particular place. Theophylact suggested because the preceding exhortations were in the form of metaphors, “he spake all things in an enigmatical form:” but surely these metaphors were the reverse of obscure, and did not seem to need for their comprehension any special enlightenment; if then we refer the words of this verse exclusively to what precedes, it will be best to understand the charge of St. Paul, “Consider what I say,” &c., as directing Timothy’s attention to the personal application of each of the pictures, or metaphors. It seems, however, that the words “Consider,” &c., while referring to what he had said, belong also to the far weightier words he was about to write in the next sentence (2Timothy 2:8). He is in this chapter exhorting Timothy to be strong in the faith in the face of many troubles. He has instanced to him earthly examples to show how success, even here, depends on enduring perseverance, and is now passing on to set before him other and far higher inducements for him “to be strong;” and between the first set of arguments and the second he bids him “Consider what I say” (part has been said, but yet other and deeper things are to follow). God will five him power to grasp their meaning in all their depth.

2:1-7 As our trials increase, we need to grow stronger in that which is good; our faith stronger, our resolution stronger, our love to God and Christ stronger. This is opposed to our being strong in our own strength. All Christians, but especially ministers, must be faithful to their Captain, and resolute in his cause. The great care of a Christian must be to please Christ. We are to strive to get the mastery of our lusts and corruptions, but we cannot expect the prize unless we observe the laws. We must take care that we do good in a right manner, that our good may not be spoken evil of. Some who are active, spend their zeal about outward forms and doubtful disputations. But those who strive lawfully shall be crowned at last. If we would partake the fruits, we must labour; if we would gain the prize, we must run the race. We must do the will of God, before we receive the promises, for which reason we have need of patience. Together with our prayers for others, that the Lord would give them understanding in all things, we must exhort and stir them up to consider what they hear or read.Consider what I say; - see the notes at 1 Timothy 4:15. The sense is "Think of the condition of the soldier, and the principles on which he is enlisted; think of the aspirant for the crown in the Grecian games; think of the farmer, patiently toiling in the prospect of the distant harvest; and then go to your work with a similar spirit." These things are worth attention. When the minister of the gospel thinks of his hardships, of his struggles against an evil world, and of his arduous and constant discouraging toil, let him think of the soldier, of the man who struggles for this world's honors, and of the patient farmer - AND be content. How patiently do they bear all, and yet for what inferior rewards!

And the Lord give thee understanding in all things - Enable you to see the force of these considerations, and to apply them to your own case. Such are often the discouragements of the ministry; so prone is the mind to despondency, that we need the help of the Lord to enable us to apply the most obvious considerations, and to derive support from the most plain and simple truths and promises.

7. Consider the force of the illustrations I have given from the soldier, the contender in the games, and the husbandmen, as applying to thyself in thy ministry.

and the Lord give, &c.—The oldest manuscripts read, "for the Lord will give thee understanding." Thou canst understand my meaning so as personally to apply it to thyself; for the Lord will give thee understanding when thou seekest it from Him "in all things." Not intellectual perception, but personal appropriation of the truths metaphorically expressed, was what he needed to be given him by the Lord.

Consider what I say; weigh these things with thyself in thy own thoughts.

And the Lord give thee understanding in all things; but thou wilt not effectually understand them without a Divine influence, opening thy mind to a comprehension of them, and thy heart to a reception of all these things, and all other things which it is reasonable for thee to know and understand.

Consider what I say,.... The advice given by the apostle to Timothy, to be strong in the grace of Christ; to commit the doctrines of the Gospel to faithful and able men; and to endure hardness for the sake of it: as also the characters which he bore as a soldier, a runner in a race, or a wrestler, and an husbandman; and therefore must not expect ease and rest, but war, difficulties, toil, and labour; and likewise under what titles Christ was to be regarded; as his General, and Captain of salvation, that commanded him; as the righteous Judge, that held the prize and crown for which he was running; and the chief Shepherd, who would reward all his labours; and moreover, the glorious reward of grace itself, he might expect, as eternal life, when he had fought the good fight the crown of righteousness, when he had finished his course, or run his race; and a crown of glory that fades not away, when the chief Shepherd should appear: and by putting him upon the consideration of these things, he suggests, that they were matters of moment and importance, and would be of great use to him in assisting and encouraging his faith, amidst all trials and exercises; and whereas they were expressed in figurative terms, taken from the soldier, the runner in a race, and the husbandman, they might not at first view be so easy to be understood; and therefore he would have him think of them, and meditate upon them, and weigh them in his mind; as well as he would not have him take things upon trust from him, but examine them whether they were right or not; though he doubted not but that they would be found to be agreeable to the standard of truth: wherefore he prays as follows,

and the Lord give thee understanding in all things; in all the above things, and in all others; in all the doctrines and mysteries of grace, and in all the rules of conduct in life. No man has of himself an understanding in spiritual things; this is the gift of God; and where it is given there is need of an increase of it, and always of such a prayer for it. The Alexandrian copy, Vulgate Latin, and Arabic versions, read, "the Lord will give thee", &c, and so the words are a promise, an encouragement to Timothy, to consider well of these things; for he might assure himself, that, in so doing, God would give him more understanding in them.

{5} Consider what I say; and the Lord give thee understanding in all things.

(5) All these things cannot be understood, and much less practised, unless we ask of God and he gives us understanding.

2 Timothy 2:7. As he has been expressing his exhortations in figurative gnomes, Paul thus continues: νόει, ὃ λέγω] which does not refer immediately to the thoughts expressed, as Heydenreich, Matthies, and others think, but to the form of expression. It does not mean, therefore: “lay these exhortations to heart,” but: “mark or understand what I say” (de Wette); comp. Matthew 24:15; Ephesians 3:4; Ephesians 3:20; so, too, Hofmann, only that he for no sufficient reason refers the words merely to the last sentence. Plitt is of opinion that the apostle is intending thereby to give a quite general warning against misconceptions; but this would be an arbitrary disturbance of the connection of ideas.

To this exhortation Paul confidently adds that God will not fail to bestow on Timothy understanding in this and all other points; γάρ here, as elsewhere, is a particle of explanation.

ἐν πᾶσι belongs to this verse, and not, as Sam. Battier thinks, to the following one.

2 Timothy 2:7. νόει ὃ λέγω: Intellige quae dico (Vulg.), Grasp the meaning, cautionary and encouraging, of these three similes. Cf. “I speak as to wise men; judge ye what I say” (1 Corinthians 10:15), and the use of the verb in 1 Timothy 1:7.

δώσει, κ.τ.λ.: If you have not sufficient wisdom to follow my argument, “ask of God, who giveth to all men liberally” (Jam 1:5).

μνημόνευε Ἰησοῦν ΧριστὸνΔαυείδ: These words form rather the conclusion of the preceding paragraph than the beginning of a new one. St. Paul in pressing home his lesson, passes from figures of speech to the great concrete example of suffering followed by glory. And as he has, immediately before, been laying stress on the certainty of reward, he gives a prominent place to ἐγηγερμένον ἐκ νεκρῶν. Jesus Christ, of the seed of David, “Himself man” (1 Timothy 2:5), is the ideal soldier, athlete, and field-labourer; yet One who can be an example to us. It is not the resurrection as a doctrinal fact (A.V.) that St. Paul has in mind, but the resurrection as a personal experience of Jesus Christ, the reward He received, His being “crowned with glory and honour, because of the suffering of death” (Hebrews 2:9). It is not τὸν Ἰησοῦν καὶ τὴν ἀνάστασιν (Acts 17:18), but Ἰησοῦν ἐγηγερμένον, the perfect (as in 1 Corinthians 15:4; 1 Corinthians 15:12-14; 1 Corinthians 15:16-17; 1 Corinthians 15:20) preserving the notion of the permanent significance of that personal experience of Jesus. In the other passage, Romans 1:3, in which St. Paul distinctly alludes to our Lord’s human ancestry, the phrase τοῦ γενομένου ἐκ σπέρματος Δαυεὶδ has a directly historical and polemical intention, as expressing and emphasising the human nature of Christ in antithesis to His Divinity. Here ἐκ σπερμ. Δ. merely expresses the fact of His humanity. We cannot affirm with certainty that the phrase has the Messianic import that Song of Solomon of David has in the Gospels.

κατὰ τὸ εὐαγγέλιόν μου: The Gospel preached by me. See reff., and τὸ εὐ. τὸ εὐαγγελισθὲν ὑπʼ ἐμοῦ (Galatians 1:11; 1 Corinthians 15:1), which of course is identical in substance with τὸ εὐ.… ὃ ἐπιστεύθην ἐγώ (1 Timothy 1:11). The verity both of Christ’s humanity and of His resurrection was emphasised in the Gospel preached by St. Paul. This is brought out by the punctuation of R.V.

7. Consider what I say] ‘Apply the parable’; for our Lord—the Great Teacher of parables—shall give thee understanding. The ms. authority requires the future indicative instead of aorist optative. The verb belonging to our substantive here ‘understanding’ is used by our Lord in Matthew 13:51, after all His parables of the kingdom of heaven, ‘Have ye understood all these things?’ and the corresponding adjective in Matthew 15:16 ‘And Peter answered and said unto Him, Declare unto us the parable. And He said, Are ye also even yet without understanding?’

2 Timothy 2:7. Νόει) attend to, consider, what I say: σύνεσις, understanding, is of the divine gift; νοεῖν, to consider, is the part of a well-minded man. Paul says this, if you compare 2 Timothy 2:6 with 2 Timothy 2:5. If the husbandman (Timothy) hath (or shall have) laboured, then first he ought (he is entitled) to partake of the fruits (in which the resurrection of Christ abounds, 2 Timothy 2:8; 2 Timothy 2:11-12); but if this were the whole meaning of Paul, he would have said, τὸν μεταληψόμενον δεῖ κοπιᾷν. Therefore from this seventh verse we may gather that a thought rather different is involved in this expression, which amounts to this:—Paul trained the mind of Timothy, 2 Timothy 1:6; therefore fruits are chiefly due to him from Timothy. In this view, Paul does not openly require, as is necessary in addressing dull men, but by amphibology and enigma, that Timothy should ingenuously acknowledge and perform the duty; and this he does by three comparisons taken from the employment of the soldier, the wrestler, the husbandman.—δῴη γὰρ σοι, for may the Lord give to thee) The meaning is, He will give; there is thus a connection between consider and for; but affection adds the modus or ἧθος [see Append. on “Modalis Sermo.” Here the imperative mood expresses the feeling].—ὁ Κύριος, the Lord) Christ.—ἐν πᾶσι, in all things) He had already given him understanding in many things: this being taken for granted, Paul says, May He give it in all things.

Verse 7. - For the Lord shall give for and the Lord give, A.V. Consider what I say. The apostle's lessons had been given in parables or similitudes. He therefore begs Timothy to note them well, lest the application to himself should escape him, suggesting further that he should seek the necessary wisdom and understanding from God. So our Lord, at the end of the parables recorded in Matthew 13, says to his disciples in ver. 51, "Have ye understood all these things?" and elsewhere, "He that hath ears to hear, let him hear." Understanding (σύνεσιν); one of the special gifts of the Spirit (Isaiah 11:2, LXX.; see Colossians 1:9; Colossians 2:2). 2 Timothy 2:7Consider (νόει)

Better, understand.

And the Lord give thee understanding (δώσει γάρ ὁ κύριος σύνεσιν)

More correctly, for the Lord shall give. For σύνεσιν understanding, see on Mark 12:33; see on Luke 2:47; see on Colossians 1:9.

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