2 Timothy


Personal information, 4:9-18

ii] Personal instructions


In this passage, Paul gives some personal instructions to Timothy, and then goes on to outline the movements and actions of a number of his associates, concluding with a warning about Alexander the metalworker.


i] Context: See 1:1-5. Following his confession / testimony, v6-8, Paul makes some personal requests, and warns Timothy about Alexander the metalworker. He then gives a final short testimony of God's support in the context of a lack of support from his colleagues at his first trial, concluding with a doxology, v16-18.


ii] Background: See 1:1-5.


iii] Structure: Paul's personal notes:

Paul summons Timothy to Rome, tacewV, "as soon as possible", v9:

Reasons, v10:

The desertion of Demas;

The departure of Crescens and Titus.


Luke is still on hand, but bring Mark, v11;

Tychicus to replace Timothy in Ephesus, v12;

The carriage of some personal items, v13.


Be on guard against Alexander the metalworker, v14-15.


iv] Interpretation:

Paul is keen for Timothy to come and visit him in gaol, v9, and to bring Mark with him, v11, along with an item of Paul's clothing, his books ("scrolls") and manuscripts ("parchments"), v13. He notes that he has sent Tychicus to Ephesus, presumably to stand in for Timothy while he visits Paul in Rome, v12. Paul also mentions the movements of a number of other associates, with particular mention of Demas who, "chasing fads, went off to Thessalonica and left me here", Peterson. Finally, he warns Timothy about Alexander the coppersmith, v14-15.


v] Exposition: A simple verse-by-verse exposition of this passage may be found in the linked pew-level Sermon Notes.

Text - 4:9

Personal instructions and remarks, v9-13: Paul asks Timothy to come and visit him in gaol.

elqein (ercomai) aor. inf. "[do your best] to come" - [be diligent] to come. The infinitive is complementary, completing the sense of the verb spoudazw, "to do one's best, make every effort." The verb can also mean "hasten", but better, "do your best to come to see me soon", Barclay.

proV + acc. "to - toward [me]. Spacial, directional.

taqxewV adv. "quickly" - Modal adverb; with verbs of motion, "quickly, soon."


Paul explains the reason for his request: Demas, who is mentioned in Colossians 4:14, a friend of Paul, has obviously considered his own security and abandoned him. Crescens is also no longer with Paul - we know nothing of this person. Titus is also on the move, now working in Crete.

gar "for" - for [demas forsook me]. Introducing a causal clause explaining why Timothy should make an effort to visit Paul, namely "because" most of Paul's colleagues have moved on and so presumably he is now in need of support. At this time, life's essentials had to be supplied to prisoners by relatives and friends.

agaphsaV (agapaw) aor. part. "because he loved" - having loved. The participle is adverbial, best treated as causal, as NIV; "His heart was set on this world", NEB. The implication is that Demas is now apostate, but it may be he is like a find of mine who felt a call to mission in the Greek Isles!!! It is sometimes difficult to distinguish between the call of nature and the call of the Lord, or indeed, the call of Satan - he who has the whole world in his hand!!!, cf., Lk.4:5-7!!

nun adv. "[this world]" - [the] now [age and went to thessalonica]. The phrase, "the now age", serves as the accusative direct object of the participle "having loved." The temporal adverb nun serves as an adjective; "this present world", ESV. The same sense as "this present age".

eiV + acc. "to" - [crescens] to [galatia, titus] to [dalmatia]. Expressing movement toward and arrival at. There is no suggestion that Crescens and Titus have abandoned Paul. Crescens is unknown, and it is unclear whether he has gone to Galatia (possibly Gaul) for mission work, or just everyday commerce. Titus may well be the Titus of the letter from Paul bearing his name, the Titus who was left in Crete, Tit.1:5. Dalmatia was situated in southern Illyricum.


Luke, the "beloved physician", Col.4:14, and the writer of Luke and Acts, is still with Paul and continues to support him. Paul asks Timothy to bring Mark along with him to Rome - obviously Mark is back in favour after abandoning Paul during his first missionary journey (assuming that this Mark is the Mark of Acts).

monoV adj. "only" - [luke] alone [is]. Predicate adjective.

met (meta) + gen. "with" - with [me]. Expressing association / accompaniment. Luke the physician, the author of Acts, entered Rome with Paul, cf., Acts 28:16. Yet, this letter may be related to a later imprisonment and so it may not be the same Luke.

analabwn (analambanw) aor. part. "get" - having taken [mark]. Attendant circumstance participle expressing action accompanying the imperative verb age, "bring", so translated as an imperative; "get hold of Mark and bring him along when you come", Cassirer. Mark is a common name so it is not clear whether he is one in the same with the Mark mentioned elsewhere - Acts 12:25, 13:13, Col.4:10, Phil.24.

gar "because" - [bring with yourself] because. Introducing a causal clause explaining why Timothy should collect Mark as he comes to Rome.

moi dat. pro. "to me" - [he is useful] to me. Dative of interest, advantage.

eiV + acc. "in [my ministry]" - to [service]. Here probably expressing purpose, "for the purpose of my ministry"; "he can render me useful service", Barclay.


Tychicus was obviously with Paul in Rome, but he too has left. Paul presumably sent him to Ephesusy to replace Timothy. Tychicus is referred to a number of times in Paul's letters.

de "-" - but/and. Transitional connective, indicating a step in the argument; left untranslated.

Tucikon "Tychicus" - [i sent] tychicus. Accusative direct object of the verb "to send." Possibly the same person mentioned elsewhere, Acts 20:4, Eph.6:21, Col.4:7, ("the beloved brother"), Tit.3:12. Tychicus is possibly sent to assist in ministry at Ephesus while Timothy is visiting Paul in Rome.

eiV + acc. "to" - to [ephesus]. Spacial, expressing direction toward and arrival at.


Paul asks Timothy to bring some incidentals when he comes.

ercomenoV (ercomai) pres. mid. part. "when you come" - coming [bring the cloak which i left behind]. The participle is usually taken here as temporal, "when you come", rather than attendant on fere, "bring", "come and bring."

para + dat. "with" - with [carpus]. Here expressing association, as NIV.

en + dat. "at" - in [troas]. Here local, expressing space, "in Troas."

malista adv. "especially" - [and the papyrus scrolls] especially [the parchments]. Superlative adverb. It may be that the biblia, "scrolls", are copies of the Old Testament scriptures. Parchment, membrana, is a writing material made from thin animal skins, a more expensive writing material than papyrus which was an early form of paper made from woven processed reeds. So, the NEB "above all my notebooks" is surely wrong, given the cost of parchment. Possibly Paul is asking Timothy to bring his books (at this time in the form of scrolls), especially the parchment ones, ie., the more important ones.


Paul makes mention of Alexander the metalworker who has caused him harm by aggressively opposing his teachings, and warns Timothy to be on his guard against him, v14-15.

AlexandroV (oV) "Alexander" - alexander [the coppersmith]. Nominative subject of the verb "to bring charges against" = "did". He may be the Alexander mentioned in Acts 19, with regard the riot led by Demetrius the silversmith. Otherwise, he is unknown.

moi dat. pro. "me" - [did many evil things] to me. Dative of indirect object / interest, disadvantage.

autw/ dat. pro. "him" - [the lord will give back to] him. Dative of indirect object after the verb "to give / pay back to."

kata + acc. "for" - according to [the works of him]. Here expressing a standard; "according to, corresponding to." God's retributive punishment will always fit the crime, but of course, we have all done the crime; "all have fallen short of the glory of God" - do the crime = do the time. Alexander's crimes stand against his account, such that without the application of divine grace realised in Christ, "God will give him what he's got coming", Peterson.


kai "[you] too" - [you] and = also. Adjunctive.

o}n acc. pro. "him" - whom [also you watch out for]. The accusative is adverbial, of reference / respect; "and you also, with reference to him, be constantly guarding (qulassou, durative present imperative) yourself", Wuest.

gar "because" - because. Introducing a causal clause explaining why Timothy needs to be on his guard against Alexander.

logoiV (oV) dat. "message" - [he greatly opposed our] words. Dative of direct object after the anti prefix verb "to resist, oppose, be on guard against." "He has been an obstinate opponent of our teaching", Phillips.


2 Timothy Introduction


[Pumpkin Cottage]