2 Timothy 2:10
For this reason I endure all things for the sake of the elect, so that they too may obtain the salvation that is in Christ Jesus, with eternal glory.
Sermons
A Noble PurposeH. W. Beecher.2 Timothy 2:10
Enduring for the Elect's SakeC. H. Spurgeon.2 Timothy 2:10
Heaven, or the Final Happiness of the RighteousJ. Hubbard.2 Timothy 2:10
SalvationR. Key.2 Timothy 2:10
Salvation in ChristSpeaker's Commentary., W. E. Boardman2 Timothy 2:10
Suffering to Help OthersC. H. Spurgeon.2 Timothy 2:10
Sufferings on Behalf of the ElectH. R. Reynolds, D. D.2 Timothy 2:10
Supporting Others2 Timothy 2:10
The Believer's Salvation Obtained by Christ and Connected with GloryEssex Congregational Remembrancer2 Timothy 2:10
The Redemptive End of AfflictionJ. Barlow, D. D.2 Timothy 2:10
The Visible Church for the Sake of the ElectJ. H. Newman, M. A.2 Timothy 2:10
Hardship in Connection with the Christian MinistryR. Finlayson 2 Timothy 2:1-13
The Example of the Apostle's Own SufferingsT. Croskery 2 Timothy 2:9, 10

I. TIMOTHY WAS TO BE ENCOURAGED BY THIS EXAMPLE. "Wherein I suffer hardship unto bonds as a malefacto." He was now a prisoner at Rome, because he preached the gospel of Jesus and the resurrection, and suffered as much as if he had been a breaker of all laws, human and Divine.

II. THE APOSTLE'S IMPRISONMENT DID NOT IMPOSE FETTERS UPON THE GOSPEL, "But the Word of God is not bound." This was said for the encouragement of Timothy, who may have feared that the Roman imprisonment would be fatal to the progress of the gospel. The apostle, though a prisoner, had liberty to add many pages to that Word of God which Nero could not bind, for we have no less than three or four prison Epistles in the canon of inspiration. The imprisonment of John Huss in a fortress on the Rhine gave him leisure to write the truth he could no longer proclaim with fiery lips to the Bohemians. The Wartburg seclusion of a year gave Luther the leisure to translate the Scriptures for his German countrymen. Verily the Word of God is not bound.

III. THE MOTIVE OR DESIGN OF THE APOSTLE'S SUFFERINGS. "Therefore I endure all things for the elect's sake, that they also may obtain the salvation which is in Christ Jesus with eternal glory."

1. The zealous minister of Christ thinks no sufferings too great that are needed for the sake of God's elect. The apostle's life was one long career of labour and affliction on their behalf.

2. Ministers must labour for the salvation of the elect. Human instrumentality is clearly recognized and honoured in this great work. Paul, Apollos, and Cephas were "ministers by whom the Corinthians believed."

3. There is a salvation provided for the elect. They are "chosen in Christ" before the foundation of the world "unto holiness" (Ephesians 1:4).

4. The salvation is only to be obtained in and through Jesus Christ.

5. It is a salvation that finds its true termination in "eternal glory. - T.C.







I endure all things for the elect's sake.
If we were asked what was the object of Christian preaching and instruction, what the office of the Church, considered as the dispenser of the Word of God, I suppose we should not all return the same answer. Perhaps we might say that the object of Revelation was to enlighten and enlarge the mind, or to make us good members of the community. St. Paul gives us a reason in the text different from any of those which I have mentioned. He laboured more than all the apostles; and why? not to civilise the world, not to smooth the face of society, not to facilitate the movements of civil government, not to spread abroad knowledge, not to cultivate the reason, not for any great worldly object, but "for the elect's sake." And when St. Paul and St. Barnabas preached at Antioch to the Gentiles, "As many as were ordained to eternal life, believed." When St. Paul preached at Athens, "some mocked," others said, "We will hear thee again," but "certain men clave unto him." And when he addressed the Jews at Rome, some believed the things which were spoken, and some believed not. Such was the view which animated, first Christ Himself, then all His apostles, and St. Paul in particular, to preach to all, in order to succeed with some. Our Lord "saw of the travail of tits soul, and was satisfied." St. Paul, as His servant and instrument, was satisfied in like manner to endure all things for the elect's sake; or, as he says in another place, "I am made all things to all men, that I might by all means save some." And such is the office of the Church in every nation where she sojourns: she attempts much, she expects and promises little. This is a great Scripture truth, which in this busy and sanguine day needs insisting upon. There are in every age a certain number of souls in the world, known to God, unknown to us, who will obey the truth when offered to them, what. ever be the mysterious reason that they do and others do not. These we must contemplate, for these we must labour, these are God's special care, for these are all things; of these and among these we must pray to be, and our friends with us, at the Last Day. In every nation, among many bad, there are some good; and, as nations are before the gospel is offered to them, such they seem to remain on the whole after the offer — "many are called, few are chosen." And to spend and be spent upon the many called for the sake of the chosen few is the office of Christian teachers and witnesses. That their office is such seems to be evident from the existing state of Christian countries from the first. Christianity has raised the tone of morals, has restrained the passions, and enforced external decency and good conduct in the world at large. Still, on the whole, the great multitude of men have to all appearance remained, in a spiritual point of view, no better than before. Trade is still avaricious, not in tendency only, but in fact, though it has heard the gospel; physical science is still sceptical as it was when heathen. Lawyers, soldiers, farmers, politicians, courtiers, nay, shame to say, the priesthood, still savour of the old Adam. Human nature remains what it was, though it has been baptized; the proverbs, the satires, the pictures, of which it was the subject in heathen times, have their point still. The knowledge of the gospel then has not materially changed more than the surface of things. Our Saviour's words, spoken of the apostles in the first instance, relate to the Church at large — "I pray not for the world, but for them which Thou has given Me, for they are Thine." In like manner St. Paul says that Christ came, not to convert the world, but "to purify unto Himself a peculiar people, zealous of good works"; not to sanctify this evil world, but to "deliver us out of this present evil world according to the will of God and our Father." This has been the real triumph of the gospel, to raise those beyond themselves anti beyond human nature, in whatever rank and condition of life, whose wills mysteriously co-operate with God's grace, who, while God visits them, really fear and really obey God, whatever be the unknown reason why one man obeys Him and another not. It has laboured for the elect, and it has succeeded with them. This is, as it were, its token. An ordinary kind of religion, praiseworthy and respectable in its way, may exist under many systems; but saints are creations of the gospel and the Church. Not that such a one need in his lifetime seem to be more than other well-living men, for his graces lie deep, and are not known and understood till after his death, even if then. But in process of time, after death, their excellence perhaps gets abroad; and then they become a witness, a specimen of what the gospel can do. There are many reasons why God's saints cannot be known all at once; — first, as 1 have said, their good deeds are done in secret. Next, good men are often slandered; they are mistaken by those, whom they offend by their holiness and strictness. Then, again, their intentions and aims are misunderstood. It is no triumph, then, for unbelievers that the gospel has not done what it never attempted. From the first it announced what was to be the condition of the many who heard and professed it — "Many are called, few are chosen." Though we laboured ever so much, with the hope of satisfying the objector, we could not reverse our Saviour's witness, and make the many religious and the bad few. We can but do what is to be done. We cannot destroy the personal differences which separate man and man; and to lay it as a fault to baptism, teaching, and other ministrations, that they cannot pass the bounds predicted in God's Word, is as little reasonable as attempting to make one mind the same as another. There is nothing to hinder the poorest man from living the life of an angel, living in all the unearthly contemplative blessedness of a saint in glory, except so far as sin interferes with it. I mean, it is sin, and not poverty which is the hindrance. Such is the case with the poor; now, again, take the case of those who have a competency. They too. are swallowed up in the cares or interests of life as much as the poor are. While want keeps the one from God by unsettling his mind, a competency keeps the other by the seductions of ease and plenty. The poor man says, "I cannot go to Church or to the Sacrament of the Lord's Supper, till I am more at ease in my mind; I am troubled, and my thoughts are not my own." The rich man does not make any excuses, — he comes; but his "heart goeth after his covetousness." No; such a one may be far other than a mere man of the world, — he may be a religious man, in the common sense of the word; he may be exemplary in his conduct, as far as the social duties of life go; he may be really and truly, and not in pretence, kind, benevolent, sincere, and in a manner serious; but so it is, his mind has never been unchained to soar aloft, he does not look out with longing into the infinite spaces in which, as a Christian, he has free range. A sort of ordinary obedience suffices them as well as the poor. Alas! and is it so? is the superhuman life enjoined on us in the gospel but a dream? is there no meaning in our own case, of the texts about the strait gate and the narrow way, and Mary's good part, and the rule of perfection, and the saying which "all cannot receive save they to whom it is given?" God grant to us a simple, reverent, affectionate, temper, that we may truly be the Church's children, and fit subjects of her instructions!

(J. H. Newman, M. A.)

The question doubtless arises, does St. Paul here, and also in Colossians 1:24, regard his own afflictions as a part of the redemptive suffering by which the elect should receive the gift of Christ's salvation and inherit their eternal glory? This would, undoubtedly, contradict the whole tenor of his teaching elsewhere. "Was Paul crucified for you?" rings out (in 1 Corinthians 1:13) his own indignant disclaimer of any such position. Still he does assert his hope and conviction that direct and positive advantages may accrue to the elect of God from his own sufferings. The "salvation" is "in Christ Jesus"; still there are "things lacking" in the afflictions of the Lord which he and other saints are called upon to supplement, to fill up from another source. They are to be filled up in the persons of the members of Christ's suffering body. Because these bitter sorrows effectuate or tend to produce a closer resemblance to Christ, because they may lead to a more intense consecration on the part of the elect of God, he willingly endures them all. We take it that these θλίψευς of Christ are not His atoning or sacrificial agonies, but all the contumely and repression which He endured for us and with us, and also which He endured for us and with us, and also which He, in sublime sympathy, continues to suffer in His body the Church, and which will not be completed until the last battle has been fought and the last enemy overcome. Thus the Lord dignifies every patiently borne cross, every holy death, as part of His own affliction for the sake of the elect.

(H. R. Reynolds, D. D.)

I. AFFLICTIONS ARE THE MORE WILLINGLY SUSTAINED WHEN THEY FURTHER THE LIBERTY OF THE GOSPEL.

1. For when the Word runs the plots of the wicked are prevented.

2. The wandering sheep gathered.

3. The body of Christ perfected.

4. The kingdom of God enlarged.

II. A GROWN CHRISTIAN CAN SUFFER ALL KINDS OF AFFLICTIONS.

1. For experience have taught him that afflictions are good for him.

2. Many acts make a habit; whence it falls out that tribulation worketh patience.

3. He believeth that though sorrows be bitter at the entrance, they shall be sweet in the end.

4. The Lord assisteth him, by whose strength he can do and suffer all things.

III. THERE BE AN ELECT PEOPLE. Now concerning the elect, two things are not unworthy of our consideration — the one, their number, the other their prerogatives. For their number absolutely taken is great. The prerogatives are many, and all excellent, which are proper to the elect, for they be the objects of God's love. The redeemed of His Son; temples of the Spirit; and co-heirs with Christ of all things.

IV. ALL THE GOODNESS OF OUR SUFFERINGS IS IN RESPECT OF THEIR GROUND AND END.

V. OF THE TWO, A TRUE CHRISTIAN MAN HAD RATHER SAVE SOULS THAN PROSPER IN THIS WORLD. For such know, that to save a soul is more worth than to win the world; and that they shall shine as the sun for ever and ever.

(J. Barlow, D. D.)

A man's purpose in life should be like a river which was born of a thousand little rills in the mountains; and when at last it has reached its manhood in the plain, though, ii you watch it, you shall see little eddies that seem as if they had changed their minds, and were going back again to the mountains, yet all its mighty current flows, changeless, to the sea. If you build a dam across it, in a few hours it will go over it with a voice of victory. If tides check it at its mouth, it is only that when they ebb it can sweep on again to the ocean. So goes the Amazon or Orinoco across a continent — never losing its way or changing its direction for the thousand streams that fall into it on the right hand and on the left, but only using them to increase its force, and bearing them onward in its resistless channel.

(H. W. Beecher.)

A curious old tree that supports other trees is described in a South American journal. It is stated that in Columbus there is a china tree that grew up very tall. Several years ago the top was taken off, leaving the main trunk of the tree about twenty feet high. On the top it has become somewhat decayed, but is making up for lost life by supporting a young forest. There are several different shrubs growing on its top, among others an evergreen three or four feet in height, a blackberry bush, which has put on leaves and flowers, and a water-oak which is about two inches in circumference. It is said that the spectacle is a very remarkable one, and arboriculturists take great interest in it. The old tree is a type of many lives. When God has withdrawn one of His children from active service, he is frequently able to continue his usefulness in another way, by supporting others, lifting them nearer to Heaven and sustaining them with his own stalwart spiritual growth.

An ordinary person may rest in his bed all night, but a surgeon will be called up at all hours; a farming-man may take his ease at his fireside, but if he becomes a shepherd he must be out among the lambs, and bear all weathers for them; even so doth Paul say, "Therefore I endure all things for the elect's sake, that they may also obtain the salvation which is in Christ Jesus with eternal glory."

(C. H. Spurgeon.)

Suppose that by some painful operation you could have your right arm made a little longer; I do not suppose you would care to go under the operation; but if you foresaw that by undergoing the pain you would be enabled to reach and save drowning men who else would sink before your eyes, I think you would willingly bear the agony, and pay a heavy fee to the surgeon to be thus qualified for the rescue of your fellows. Reckon, then, that to acquire soul-winning power you will have to go through fire and water, through doubt and despair, through mental torment and soul distress.

(C. H. Spurgeon.)

Essex Congregational Remembrancer.
I. LET US CONSIDER THE NATURE OF THIS SALVATION.

1. It is a salvation from the condemnation of a broken law.

2. It is a salvation from the power and dominion of sin.

3. It is a salvation from the bondage of Satan.

4. It is a salvation from the temporary triumphs of the grave.

II. LET US INQUIRE IN WHAT RESPECTS THIS SALVATION IS IN CHRIST JESUS. Because it was with His Son Christ Jesus that God was pleased to enter into covenant, respecting human redemption, before the world was.

III. LET US GLANCE AT THE ETERNAL GLORY WITH WHICH THIS SALVATION IS CONNECTED.

1. The persons of the saints will then be glorious. The body will be no longer subject to hunger and thirst, to pain and weariness, or to disease and decay. And then in respect to the soul, it will be formed after the Divine image, in righteousness and true holiness, made to partake, so far as a finite creature is capable, of the image of God.

2. The mansions of which the redeemed shall take possession will be glorious.

3. The society to which they will be admitted will be glorious.

4. The employments of the believer will be glorious.

(Essex Congregational Remembrancer.)

Speaker's Commentary., W. E. Boardman.
That they may also obtain salvation. — Rather, that they also may; they as well as we.

(Speaker's Commentary.)

Salvation in Christ: — Having Christ we have salvation also, while without receiving Christ Himself we can not have the salvation. Having the fountain we have its issuing streams. Cut off from the fountain the streams will not flow to us. Christ offers Himself to be the Bridegroom of the soul. The mistake is that of seeking the salvation instead of seeking the Saviour. Just the same mistake that the affianced would make if she should seek to have the possessions of him to whom she was engaged made over to her from him, without their union in wedlock, instead of accepting his offer of himself, and having the hymeneal bond completed by which he and all he has would become hers.

(W. E. Boardman.)

I. THE NATURE OF SALVATION.

1. Salvation is the great and constant theme of the whole Bible,

2. Salvation is a word of pleasing import.

3. Salvation is a full and complete deliverance from all past guilt and condemnation.

4. Salvation is a glorious deliverance from all the miseries of sin and the bondage of Satan.

5. Salvation is a deliverance from the envenomed sting of death.

6. This salvation is a deliverance from the resurrection of damnation, the horrors of the judgment, and the miseries of the lost in hell. Now for the peculiar characteristics of this salvation.

(1)It is free.

(2)Suitable.

(3)Present.

(4)Gracious.

(5)Eternal.

II. THE AUTHOR AND SOURCE OF SALVATION. It is "Christ Jesus."

III. LET US POINT OUT ITS METHOD. Some persons try to mystify the plan. But it is simple. The way is easy. Some want to purchase the gift of salvation, but it is not to be bought. It is here — "Look unto Me, and be ye saved, all ye ends of the earth." Turn your eyes from the world and sin, and, by faith, LOOK TO CHRIST!

(R. Key.)

Let us attend to what notices we can gain from the scriptures of truth of the heavenly state, as coming under the notion of salvation and glory. Each of these sometimes is put alone for the whole of it; but being here joined together, they make the description of it more complete; the former directly signifies the negative part, a deliverance from all evil, and the latter the positive, the possession of the highest and greatest good our nature is capable of. And how significantly and emphatically is this salvation with eternal glory said to be in Christ Jesus? It is in Him, as possession purchased, in whose right we can only obtain it. It is in Him as an inheritance kept in truth, and to be conveyed by Him to the appointed heirs. It is in Him as the grand Exemplar in His human nature of the complete and final happiness of the saints. It is in Him both as a beatific object, and as a perpetual medium through which the blessed will see and enjoy God.

I. The Christian shall obtain instantly on his arrival at heaven, and everlastingly possess, a complete salvation, a perfect freedom from all manner of evil.

1. In heaven there will be a perfect and eternal salvation from all sin.

2. The salvation of heaven will be an absolute and perpetual deliverance from the temptations of Satan. In heaven, too, all wicked men, as well as evil angels, shall cease from troubling or tempting; for there shall be none of them there, no more than any matter of temptation in that blessed world.

3. This salvation will be a deliverance from all natural weaknesses; from slowness of apprehension, errors of judgment, slipperiness of memory, levity of will, a rashness or tardiness in resolving, and a heaviness in acting.

4. It will be a deliverance from all the diseases and pains which attend our mortal frame, together with the great variety of disagreeable accidents our life on earth is continually liable to.

5. It will be a deliverance from all God's wrath and anger.

6. It is a deliverance from all relative and sympathising sufferings and sorrows.

7. It will be a deliverance from death. But it is time now to say somewhat —

II. Of the positive felicity of the heavenly world, of which the less will suffice, as several of its ingredients are easily understood from the evils and miseries which they stand in opposition to, and because we can have but a general idea of this part, rather knowing what heaven is not, than what in particular it is. However, what belongs to this state is all great, excellent and glorious. It is glory itself. Now, the glory which continues the heavenly happiness is both objective and subjective, and these reciprocally influencing each other and inseparably concurring to form it. There is a glory without, objects of unspeakable lustre and glory which will be exhibited and presented to the saints in heaven to converse with. And there will be a glory within themselves. All the parts and powers of their nature will be rendered inexpressibly glorious, as by an elevation of them into a fitness to converse with the glorious objects before them, so by an actual exercise on them and the most satisfying gratification by them. Hence the frequent expression in Scripture of their happiness in heaven is their being glorified. And it is the glory of God either way, as it is often called. He realms all the glory of heaven; He is the principal object Himself of the saints' beatific converse, and He forms all the other objects, as well as themselves, glorious. And here we may observe that all these glories will be revealed in a propitious and amiable light. God will manifest Himself to His saints as their own God, and all His perfections and operations are arrayed in love. No room will be left for terror and dismay from the full blaze of His Majesty above, as but a few beams of it breaking in on some of His people here have oppressed their souls with the most dreadful apprehensions. Again, the revelation of heavenly glories will be made to the blessed in a measure exactly suited to their faculties and capacities. There will be no deficiency to cause an uneasy and an unsatisfied craving; no excess to overpower and exhaust the spirits.

1. There will be a perfect knowledge in heaven: a knowledge in the very best manner of the best and noblest things. This knowledge will in a great measure be intuitive, and so consequently very comprehensive, easy, clear, and satisfying.

2. In heaven there will be a perfect rectitude, and regular harmony in all the powers of the soul. As the understanding clearly and steadily beholds the beauties of holiness, the soul will naturally take and keep a correspondent impress, and be satisfied with this Divine likeness.

3. In consequence of this, the active powers will be fully and most delightfully employed in the incessant praises of God and of the Lamb, and in whatever unknown services may be assigned them, all noble and pleasurable.

(J. Hubbard.)

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