"That we may be leading a
mild and quiet life"
1 Timothy 2:2
In I Timothy 2:2 Paul says we may be leading a mild and quiet life, and in: 1 he gives us one of the ways to do this:
"I am entreating, then, first of all, that petitions, prayers, pleadings, thanksgivings be made for all mankind."
He then says in 3:
"For this is ideal and welcome in the sight of our Savior, God."
What does Paul say is ideal and welcome in the sight of our Savior, God?
First, believers should pray for all mankind.
"God, Who wills that all mankind be saved and come into a realization of the truth"
The believer has been given a gift that most of mankind hasn't, and that would include most of what is now called "Christianity." They have been shown what God's will is - that all mankind will be saved and come into a realization of the truth - and we are to pray in accord with God's will.
Jesus said essentially the same thing:
"Thus, then, you be praying: "Our Father Who art in the heavens, hallowed be Thy name. Thy kingdom come. Thy will be done, as in heaven, on earth also"
This wasn't a wishful prayer that Jesus was praying.
Rather, He is saying that we are to pray for God's will to be done, because God's will will be done on earth as His will is being done in heaven. Our prayers are to be in harmony with God's will, not ours.
Paul tells us what God's will is: that all mankind be saved and come into a realization of the truth.
So, with this knowledge we can live a mild and quiet life and not become frustrated when our prayers go "unanswered" for others who don't believe and remain in unbelief (or when those who call themselves believers don't see this truth), because we (the believer) know God's will. We know that His will is being done in heaven as well as on the earth.
We also know that His will to save all mankind and bring them into a realization of the truth will happen, so with this knowledge we should all be praying in accord with God's will.
Yet, for some reason most can't see the truth.
Mankind has been so jaded by media, propaganda and religion that it can realize only what it sees at present.
A good example in our time would be the terrorist attacks on 9/11. After those attacks, all you saw were slogans that said, "Pray for America."
Absent from every network, televangelist program and church sign was: "Pray for Iraq" or "Pray for Afghanistan," or "Pray for Bin Laden."
The Scriptures teach that we are to pray for our enemies and those who are non-believers, as well as help those who despise and use us.
God now has become the God of North America, Australia, parts of Europe, and countries that don't threaten our lifestyle.
Oh, sure: we send missionaries out to these so-called godless countries to convert the few, but for the most part they remain god-forsaken, or so we are led to believe.
This is God's creation, this is God's world; none of it is without God's presence. Just because we put names on pieces of earth and call it "our" country never gives us exclusive rights to His world.
All things are God's.
All of us are a part of His creation - whether most believe that or not doesn't negate the facts.
God, and especially His Word, has been used by religion and mankind to commit some of the most heinous crimes ever committed. The Bible has been mishandled not only to lead mankind into unjust wars, but to bind certain races into slavery and others into religious bondage. It is also being used to put unbelieving mankind into a torture pit at the time of death - all because most don't realize what God's will is.
"On these things meditate." (I Timothy 4:15).
To be in harmony with God's will, you have to have a realization of what God's will is.
As stated above, God's will is for all mankind to be saved and to come into a realization of the truth.
This realization of the truth isn't only for unbelievers: it applies to believers as well.
As believers we should be praying, as well as searching the Scriptures, so that we will come into a realization of this truth, as that is what Paul says will present us qualified to God.
"Endeavor to present yourself to God qualified, an unashamed worker, correctly cutting the word of truth."
(II Timothy 2:15).
Here's what Paul told Timothy to do:
"Give heed to reading, to entreaty, to teaching. On these things meditate. In these be, that your progress may be apparent to all. Attend to yourself and to the teaching. Be persisting in them, for in doing this you will save yourself as well as those hearing you." (I Timothy 4:13-16).
Timothy was already saved, and those who were hearing him were probably saved as well; but this has nothing to do with getting saved.
My personal thoughts about this portion of Scripture are that it has to do with realizing our salvation.
We who are believers have yet to come into a realization of our salvation; we haven't yet experienced the true fullness of what being saved really entails - we are being brought into an increasingly greater realization of our salvation. We are still waiting; but, while we wait we should be spending time in the Scriptures - meditating on them, persisting in them - because in doing this we will have a more certain understanding of our salvation
and a realization of what God has promised not only to us, but to all mankind as well.
With this knowledge from the Scriptures we will be saved from falling into all the false teachings, and we will be certain of what Paul says in the previous verses:
"Faithful is the saying and worthy of all welcome; for this are we toiling and being reproached, that we rely on the living God, Who is the Savior of all mankind, especially of believers. These things be charging and teaching." (:9-10).
Paul knew that this teaching eventually would be covered over by religion. Religion is now the institution that decides who is going to be with God and who isn't.
Ask any Christian this question:
"If I don't believe in Jesus in this life time, will I ever believe in Him in the next life?"
The answer is either clouded with the noncommittal;
"It's up to God," or an emphatic "No."
This is why Paul insisted that Timothy stay in the Scriptures, as that is where this truth can be realized.
Today the Scriptures are the most neglected of all writings amongst Christians. A thirty-five minute sermon on Sunday (no Bible necessary), and some songs, or an hour of listening to a televangelist on Sunday is all that is necessary and you're good to go.
Paul said to Titus:
"Upholding the faithful Word according to the teaching, that he may be able to entreat with sound teaching as well as expose those who contradict"
The only way Titus could expose those who were teaching falsehood was to stay in the Word. That was the only place where he would find sound teaching and come into a realization of the truth of God's will.
Here's an example of exposing those who contradict.
I have a Nelson Study Bible. Everyone who worked on it paid their tuition fee, and then went to the seminary of their choice to learn about God. This is how they interpret I Timothy 4:10, which reads:
"That we rely on the living God, Who is the Savior of all mankind, especially of believers."
This verse describes God as the One who gives life, breath, and existence to all. "Especially of those who believe" draws a contrast between God's common grace to all and His special saving grace to those who trust Him as their Savior.
Do you see the falsehood?
Where in this verse do you read that God gives life, breath and existence to all? (He does do that, as Paul says in Acts 17:24-25, but not here). It can be twisted to say that when you don't want to believe the truth of the Scripture.
You do read that He is the "Savior of all mankind"!
So why not just take the verse for what it says?
He is the Savior of all mankind!
In order for them to do that they would have to admit that God is more powerful, loving and merciful than their religion suggests, and that Christ actually accomplished what He said He would - draw all mankind to Himself (John 12:32) - because of His ultimate sacrifice
Where in this verse (I Timothy 4:10) do you read about "common grace" and "special saving grace"?
You do read that He is the Savior of all, "especially" of believers.
Do you believe that what was done on Calvary was done for you?
If you answer "Yes," then you know this truth - you are coming into a realization of your
salvation, and you are part of the "especially" believers. You have the knowledge of being saved that the unbeliever doesn't yet have - they aren't "especially" believers, they are still in unbelief.
Grace is special! Grace is never "common."
As a matter of fact, and a matter of truth, grace always super-exceeds everything (Romans 5:20).
Why do theologians lessen it by calling it common grace?
Because, when you're taught to believe in and teach of a "god" who will not extend his grace to all, you have to twist the true meaning of scriptural words to suit your denominational doctrine.
Grace means "an act that produces happiness, a benefit bestowed on one who deserves the opposite."
It is what God extends to the believer now, as Paul says:
"For in grace, through faith are you saved, and this is not out of you."
The same grace that saved you will be extended to all in the oncoming eons. We will see it extended to all as Paul tells us in Ephesians 2:7;
"That in the oncoming eons, He should be displaying the transcendent riches of His grace to us in Christ Jesus."
Some of the meanings of the word "display" are, "to unfold, hence to open; to spread wide; to extend."
As stated earlier, we believers are already experiencing and realizing His grace. In the oncoming eons we will see that grace displayed, unfolded, opened, spread wide, and extended to all, and all will come into a realization of Him.
That's not common, that's Divine, and it is in accord with God's character and will.
So pray for God's will to be done - you will be in harmony with the Creator of all, and you will begin to realize why we all are here. For those of you who aren't sure why Christ came, a light will start to flicker where there was once only religious darkness.