Perilous Times!

"This know also, that in the last days
perilous times shall come."

II Timothy 3:1

The greatest threat to the kingdom of Jesus Christ today is the carnal, compromising, effeminate, and worldly Christianity the devil has spawned to destroy the faith once delivered to the saints. False teachers promote it on every side. The cure is simple, but few ministers will use it, since most hearers are demanding fables and entertainment instead. The importance of this prophecy cannot be overstated. You are living in the fulfillment of the perilous times!

False Teachers

This may be the most important text in the Bible for Christians in 2005!

 

Introduction

    1. This is one of the very most relevant and important passages in the Bible for Christians in the year 2005.
    2. There is one lesson in these 22 verses, and the flow of the context should be preserved (II Tim 3:1 – 4:5); 2 Tim 3:1 - 4:5 though you may know several of the verses in the passage, you need to see them as part of one single lesson.
    3. These are Paul's last words of exhortation to Timothy, as he was prepared to depart this life (II Tim 4:6-8).
    4. In stark contrast to the mega-church movement, seeker sensitive compromise, and purpose-driven drivel is Paul's demand for old-fashioned Bible preaching and rejection of religious association and market surveys!
    5. If you are a lover of Jesus Christ, you are at war, whether you know it or not, with contemporary Christians!
    6. Take a strong stand on any New Testament doctrine or practice and you will discover you are at war (3:12)!
    7. True and zealous saints will want to understand and obey every word and phrase in this sober prophecy.
    8. We have just studied the destruction of Jerusalem in 70 AD, where the Lord gave many practical warnings; you also have many practical warnings in this passage of a dangerous and threatening brand of Christianity.
    9. Nominal Christianity is degenerating rapidly every day in a downward spiral of carnality and compromise.
    10. This prophecy and warning identifies this apostasy and moral collapse and prescribes the remedy for it.
    11. We are living in the very midst of the fulfillment of this prophecy, which ought to challenge all zealous saints.
    12. But because this prophecy does not itch carnal ears like the "Left Behind" series, it will be ignored by most.
    13. Since this prophecy and warning occurs in a Pastoral Epistle, every God-called minister should take heed.
    14. The purpose of this study is to further our personal commitment to holiness and true Bible Christianity.
    15. Either you are part of the perilous times and going down, or you are fighting against these perilous times.
    16. We must fight in our souls, lives, families, schools, churches, entertainment, friends, associations, etc., etc.
    17. This is the Bible defined war between the kingdom of Jesus Christ and the powers of darkness and lies; Satan has learned that persecution only made saints and churches stronger, so now He will pleasure you to death.
    18. Noble hearers will say, "Give me the full sense of this passage to be a better Christian for the Lord Jesus."
    19. Every father should be convicted and provoked to examine himself and his family in light of these perils.
    20. Your future, your family's future, and your church's future depends on grasping and heeding this prophecy.
    21. We will be naming some names, because we must to identify the heretics and make the message useful.

 

THE WARNING OF PERILOUS TIMES (3:1)

  1. Remember, you are reading a Pastoral Epistle of inspired ministerial advice from Paul to Timothy.
    1. The apostle of the Gentiles was teaching Timothy how to guide and rule the church (I Tim 3:15).
    2. Timothy was to take this information and spread it further by ministerial succession (II Tim 2:2).
    3. Paul followed his warning and exhortation to Timothy with news he was dying (II Tim 4:6-7).
    4. Paul needed to exhort Timothy to continue in the things Jesus had given Paul (II Timothy 3:14).
    5. Paul's inspired words are superior to any seminary, council, creed, or pope (II Timothy 3:16-17).
    6. Any conference using Bill Hybels or Rick Warren is not only inferior, but counterproductive!
  2. Though the "last days" may extend from Christ to the end of the world (Acts 2:17; Heb 1:2), Paul used that term and "perilous times" here to describe a time yet coming by virtue of the future tense; Timothy was not yet in it, so we may rightfully look for a fulfillment in history, even our generation!
  3. If the blessed God described these future times as perilous, we should carefully heed the warning.
    1. Perilous. Very dangerous; full of risk; hazardous; very harmful; dreadful; frightening; threatening; terrible; greatly to be avoided. (OED).
    2. It is of the greatest importance for us to properly identify what constitutes a real threat to saints.
    3. There are threats more dangerous than persecution and martyrdom, which instead purified saints!
    4. If we neglect this plain prophecy and warning, we will not be a church that pleases Jesus Christ.
    5. Christians respond immediately and aggressively to health or wealth perils, what about spiritual?
  4. Man has ideas of what would be perilous times, but we must compare them soberly to God's idea.
    1. Satan's deceptions distract and divert Christians to get them to fight windmills instead of error.
    2. There is no warning here about famine, recession, war, disease, pollution, global warming, etc.
    3. There is no warning of cults, idolatry, witchcraft, murder, adultery, pornography, bestiality, etc.
    4. There is no warning here against the UN, the CFR, the USSR, UNICEF, CIA, BSA, NEA, etc.
    5. Satan uses the above threats to distract and discredit Christians and cause them to deny God.
      1. Communism and Y2K showed that many saints are distracted and diverted from the real war.
      2. Such fears distract saints by causing them to be vigilant and active in the wrong battle.
      3. Such fears discredit saints by showing the world that they do not recognize real dangers.
      4. Such fears deny God by apparently forgetting He is in total charge of international politics.
      5. The only fear a child of God should have is fear of God, Who can cast into hell (Lu 12:4-5).
      6. Our spiritual battle, not against flesh and blood, is the only battle (Eph 6:10-18; I Peter 2:11).
      7. Satan has political preachers who make fighting international conspiracies their main gospel.
  5. Perilous times were a future threat – they shall come – which introduces us to their precise identity.
    1. The pagans of Timothy's day already had the symptoms that follow. Paul saw something worse.
    2. All generations have had these sinful proclivities in natural men, so there is a much greater evil.
    3. The warning of future perilous times, defined as moral decline, cannot be mere worldly excess.
    4. The warning is against carnal Christianity, not the general sinfulness of the unbelieving world.
    5. Since these sins have always been, the warning must be Christianity allowing and living them.
    6. This is a prophetic warning of a deceitful and seductive, degenerate and dangerous Christianity.
    7. They would have a "form of godliness," implying they are professing and practicing Christians.
    8. They would love pleasures more than God, implying they were not just worldly, godless pagans.
    9. They would creep into houses and lead captive silly women, yet they are not wicked kidnappers.
    10. They would promote much learning to these silly women, but there would be no truth learned.
    11. As long as there were martyrs for the truth, you did not have to worry about such Christianity.
    12. This situation would degenerate with evil seducers and deceivers deceiving and being deceived.
    13. It includes the general rejection of preaching sound doctrine for the entertaining fables of men.
    14. By comparing "perilous times shall come" (3:1) and "the time will come" (4:3), we must say that if this is not a prophecy of this very generation, what other generation could it possibly be?
    15. Paul told Timothy to turn from these men, which requires them to be a false brand of Christians, for Timothy did not need to be exhorted to turn away from pagan worldlings (II Thess 3:1-2).
    16. This passage, from 3:1 to 4:5, describes the rise of a compromising and effeminate Christianity.
    17. This passage, from 3:1 to 4:5, perfectly describes the Christianity of our times and its remedy.
    18. With all the love and fancy for Bible prophecy, why is there no zealous response to these words?
  6. Paul has given a similar warning in two other places that manifestly pertains to Roman Catholicism.
    1. He told the Thessalonians of a falling away [from truth] before the man of sin (II Thess 2:1-12).
    2. He told Timothy of men departing from the faith to Catholic fasting and celibacy (I Tim 4:1-6).
    3. There is no doubt that in one way the passage before us applies to the false Christianity of Rome.
    4. However, by scrutiny of the passage, we can see the further degeneration to today's Christianity.
  7. In light of this threatening prophecy, saints must exhort one another often (Heb 3:12-13; 10:23-25).
  8. The Christianity about to be described is unacceptable to the holy God of heaven (Heb 12:28-29).
  9. The perils listed by the Spirit should be the criteria for self-examination of families and churches.
  10. The perils are for Christians … they are not general perils for mankind, the world, etc., etc.

THE CHARACTER OF PERILOUS TIMES (3:2-5a)

PERIL #1: Christians shall be lovers of their own selves. Self-love and self-esteem are perilous times.

  1. Self-love, self-esteem, self-image, and self-confidence are bywords of a humanistic, existential psychology that our generation adores, which has spawned a narcissistic, selfish, and spoiled society.
  2. The world, especially the educated, shows their ignorance and confusion by promoting self-love.
  3. Every degree program requires a psychology course to learn this vain babbling (I Timothy 6:20-21).
  4. They continue to chant their mantra, even though criminals have the highest self-esteem of all men.
  5. It should not surprise us that the world would promote conceit, pride, selfishness, and self-will.
  6. This vain, humanistic, existential generation has bought a devilish lie about the "greatest love of all."
  7. But the terrible travesty and threatening danger is this heretical nonsense being taught by Christians.
  8. Heretics like James Dobson and Robert Schuller promote this lie as the sure panacea for humanity.
  9. Robert Schuller is so confused that he teaches hell to be merely living this life with low self-esteem!
  10. God knows we love ourselves plenty; we must learn to love others as much (Mat 22:39; Eph 5:29).
  11. The most recent studies have discovered that criminals have the greatest self-esteem of any group!
  12. The Bible warns against conceit, pride, selfishness, self-will, and self-centeredness, not for them!
  13. Bible Christianity exalts service to others far above desire for self (Matt 20:28; Acts 20:35; Rom 12:10,16; 14:19; 15:1; I Cor 10:24; Eph 4:2; 5:21; Phil 2:3-4; I Pet 5:5).
  14. It is our solemn duty to zealously hate this heresy and train our children to love and serve others.
  15. Are your children known for being servants, or they generally whiners that expect others to serve?
  16. For a complete Bible study of this subject, see the sermon outline, "The Lie of Self-Love."
  17. For a complete Bible study of a related subject, see the sermon, "The Lie of Unconditional Love."

PERIL #2: Christians shall be covetous of wealth and promote a "results" religion of gain as godliness.

  1. If America is not the most materialistic society of all time, what other society could it possibly be?
  2. The whole nation is on a treadmill at top speed to see what it can acquire to outdo the neighbors.
  3. Covetousness is rather visible in advertising, extortion, lawsuits, covenantbreaking, theft, and lying.
  4. Why do personal bankruptcies occur? And why are they tolerated on a massive scale by most?
  5. It is also visible in lack of giving, saving, and charity, and the enormous accumulation of debt.
  6. It is also visible in widespread greed, depression, frustration, envy, jealousy, and complaining.
  7. It is also visible in marital dysfunction and divorces, due to men and women coveting other spouses.
  8. The lie of the successful Christian businessman seduces many believers into professional ambition.
  9. Yet "ministers," preaching a social gospel of prosperity for all, gather the largest crowds in America.
  10. Paul warned Timothy against religion for results and the lusts of personal ambition (I Tim 6:3-10).
  11. While covetousness characterizes carnal Christians, true saints should be content (Hebrews 13:5-6).
  12. Bible Christianity is based on contentment, thanksgiving, and joy for what one has; covetousness is strictly condemned as idolatry (Exodus 20:17; Luke 3:14; Phil 4:8; Col 3:5-7; I Tim 6:6,8).
  13. Even minding earthly things, which seems innocent enough, is called belly worship (Phil 3:18-19).
  14. It is our solemn duty to hate covetousness, love contentment, and teach the same to our children.
  15. Are your children glad for what they are and have? Or do they always want something else?

PERIL #3: Christians shall be boasters by singing their own praise, either directly or indirectly.

  1. Of course, it makes sense for those loving themselves to praise themselves, and be allowed to do it.
  2. But the blessed God hates boasting (Proverbs 25:27; 27:2; I Corinthians 4:7; 13:4; James 4:16).
  3. The largest churches in the country love their numerical contests, budgets, and facility expansions.
  4. They boast of how they are going to do this and do that without fear of such boasting (Prov 27:1).
  5. Their "results" oriented programs are constantly making public claims of all they have done for God.
  6. They love the titles of biggest, fastest growing, and most buses to attract the carnally minded.
  7. Consider how Jesus and the apostle Paul handled their fame (Matthew 8:4; II Cor 12:11; Eph 3:8).
  8. Consider how wise Agur and King Solomon did the opposite of boasting (Prov 30:1-3; I Kings 3:7)
  9. Consider athletes with backdoor compliments, "I want to thank God for making me so wonderful!"
  10. The biographical sketches of authors on Christian books are full of self-promotion and arrogance: who cares if they graduated Phi Beta Kappa, earned a doctorate, or read a book a day?
  11. Diotrephes loved to have preeminence among the believers, whom John blasted (III John 1:9-10).
  12. Bible Christianity is based on humility, meekness, and trusting God, not human sufficiency ever!
  13. It is our solemn duty to hate boasting. It is much better to despise yourself as Paul (Eph 3:8).

PERIL #4: Christians shall be proud with an excessive and haughty view of themselves as special.

  1. Of course, it makes sense for those loving themselves to be proud, and be encouraged to be so.
  2. For a fuller Bible study of the evil subject of pride, see the sermon outline, "Pride Again."
  3. Ministers, instead of being lowly servants, are puffed up "reverends" and "doctors" (Matt 23:5-12).
  4. Ministers are not to be chosen from novices, lest they be puffed up with the devil's pride (I Tim 3:6).
  5. Moses, the greatest leader of Israel, was the meekest man on the face of the earth (Number 12:3).
  6. They name churches, schools, ministries, and movements after themselves to puff name recognition.
  7. They seldom talk about being "less than the least of all saints," as did the apostle Paul (Eph 3:8).
  8. The humility necessary to take correction is wanting on the part of ministers and members alike.
  9. Rather than describe their abject condition and dependence on God, they boast of their successes.
  10. The idea of seeking God with a poor and contrite spirit is contrary to their arrogance (Is 57:15; 66:2).
  11. Humbling ourselves under the mighty hand of God is how we obtain His mercy (Jas 4:10; I Pet 5:6).
  12. Bible Christianity despises pride in all its forms and teaches instead the necessity of godly humility.
  13. You can measure your pride by how well you submit to and obey the Bible's claims on your life.

PERIL #5: Christians shall be blasphemers by their irreverence toward God and the things of God.

  1. The God of the Bible, terrible in holiness, has been replaced with a pitiful god of their own making.
  2. Songs, jokes, anecdotes, movies, and light sermons belittle the great and dreadful God of the Bible.
  3. Every sort of foolish device has been added to Sunday School programs without any fear of God.
  4. They sing "Happy Birthday" in assemblies like they are a troop of Girl Scouts around a campfire.
  5. Pastors mud wrestle with pigs, paint their hair purple, or do the chicken strut for attendance records.
  6. Persons are baptized in the name of Jesus and then live just like the unbelieving world around them.
  7. For a fuller Bible study of the inventions, see the sermon outline, "Contemporary Christianity."
  8. Churches sacrilegiously advertise, "If you come back, we promise not to throw the book at you."
  9. Churches carnally cancel the evening service to instead have a Super Bowl party in the church.
  10. They make pictures and movies about God and Jesus without regard for the Second Commandment.
  11. They celebrate a pagan winter festival to the sun as Christ's birthday and bake Him a birthday cake!
  12. A holy God as a consuming fire and demanding reverence and godly fear is gone (Heb 12:28-29).
  13. They take the name of God in vain directly and indirectly with careless speech and professions.
  14. Euphemistic swearing such as "For heaven's sake," "Golly gee," "My goodness," "Land's sake," "Dog gone," "Holy Cow," "For Pete's sake," and any other such expression are all blasphemous.
  15. Bible Christianity stands in dread reverence of the great God and treats all spiritual things with care.
  16. There is no room for jokes about God, heaven, hell, the devil, religion, Peter, or any related subject.

PERIL #6: Christians shall be disobedient to parents and rebell against any and all proper authority.

  1. The first and most important authority structure we meet with in life is that of parents over children.
  2. The average Christian does not know the difference between obedience and honour, nor apply it.
  3. Jokes about parents and children and their relationships are laughed at foolishly and without fear.
  4. The typical Christian does not have a clue about God's opinion of disrespect (Deut 27:16; Pr 30:17).
  5. The typical Christian does not have a clue about capital punishment in God's law for cursing or hitting a parent (Ex 21:15,17; Lev 20:9; Deut 21:18-21; Prov 20:20; Matt 15:4).
  6. Parental rule is despised; godly punishment is outlawed; Bible child training is ridiculed; children are pampered and promoted; and teenagers are given the right to make their own decisions.
  7. The average Christian family is dysfunctional with rebellious and disobedient children as a result.
  8. James Dobson, an effeminate, humanistic psychologist, is looked to as the guru for children training; but he would not and could not ever preach Proverbs 20:30, if he even knows it exists in the Bible!
  9. Pastors tell fathers their children are "free, white, and twenty-one," as if such are free from parents.
  10. Authority of husbands, masters, magistrates, and pastors is also despised by a rebellious generation.
  11. Parents no longer have much of a role at all in spousal selection (Gen 24:1-4; 25:20; I Cor 7:36-38).

PERIL #7: Christians shall be unthankful for the abundance of all things, though living in great plenty.

  1. If our nation does not enjoy more prosperity and plenty than all others before us, which had more?
  2. God clearly recognizes when He grants great abundance, and He expects thanksgiving (Deut 28:47).
  3. Widespread unthankfulness bringing sodomy has infected these Christians as well (Rom 1:18-27).
  4. Thanksgiving is an act of worship commanded of all true saints (Phil 4:6-7; I Thes 5:18; Heb 13:15).
  5. Most Christians and churches are confident in themselves rather than thankful to God for blessings.
  6. Even Thanksgiving Day has been reduced to Turkey Day or Pilgrim Day, rather than thanks to God.
  7. We must hate all complaining and murmuring and be widely known for fervent thanksgiving, for this is a mark of the sons of God in the midst of a crooked and perverse generation (Phil 2:14-16).
  8. There is little thanksgiving for spiritual blessings, since most believe they are claimed by free will.
  9. There is little thanksgiving for Scripture, understanding of it, and conviction by it, due to free will.

PERIL #8: Christians shall be unholy in their affections, speech, and actions by worldly compromise.

  1. No one distinguishes between the holy and profane, but all is jumbled together (Ezek 22:26; 44:23).
  2. Holiness, hatred for sin, and love of purity are lost and ridiculed as marks of an outdated religion.
  3. Moses and Joshua took off their shoes in God's presence, but who even considers such a thing now!
  4. Virginity is now ridiculed and ignored, which is holiness of body that God exalted (Deut 22:13-21).
  5. Spiritual adultery, or compromising friendship with the world, is basically unknown (James 4:4).
  6. Holiness is hardly preached, little understood, and certainly not practiced in any Bible sense of it.
  7. God's worship is modified at will without regard for examples like Nadab and Abihu (Lev 10:1-4).
  8. The severity of God's punishment for profane compromise is entirely unknown (Num 15:30-41).
  9. The average Christian watches television and the glamour of sin with abandon (Ps 101:3; Rom 1:32).
  10. Though the apostle called for a living sacrifice of our bodies, none follow him (Romans 12:1-2).
  11. It is impossible to tell the difference between most Christians and the world in speech, dress, entertainment, business ethics, family function, dating practices, vacations, politics, authority, etc.

PERIL #9: Christians shall be without natural affection in conduct by perverting ordinary standards.

  1. Sexually this certainly includes sodomy, which many churches now allow (Rom 1:26-27; I Cor 6:9).
  2. There are churches and denominations even ordaining sodomites and justifying same-sex unions.
  3. Many modern "Christians" condone abortion, the cruel murder of an unborn child (Job 39:13-17).
  4. Many bleeding heart "Christians" oppose the death penalty in their twisted view of things (Gen 9:6).
  5. Many mother-nature "Christians" protect baby seals and unwanted kittens while endorsing abortion.
  6. Many women's libbers revolt against God's role for women to obey and reverence their husbands.
  7. Bible Christianity condemns cross-dressing and effeminacy as sins God hates (Deut 22:5; I Cor 6:9).
  8. Do your children understand there is a huge and desirable difference between boys and girls?
  9. God's people will take a stand on all the distinctions that God placed between the sexes.

PERIL #10: Christians shall be trucebreakers without regard for commitments to peace and unity.

  1. Regardless of efforts to make peace, selfish Christians are implacable in demanding their own way.
  2. Implacability is that spirit that refuses to make peace no matter what inducements are presented.
  3. Bitterness, divorce, grudges, compromise, division, right hand of falsehood, and strife are common.
  4. Churches have cliques and split over foolish things, breaking their commitment to church peace.
  5. Unable to forgive, they give the appearance or the word of forgiveness, but remember the offence.
  6. Strange children were something that David prayed for God to take away from him (Ps 144:7-8,11).
  7. Bible Christianity is based in peace: peacemaking is one of its highest goals (Jas 3:17-18; Eph 4:3).
  8. Do you require your children to resolve all bitterness and conflicts and be peacemakers with others?
  9. Do you require your children to forgive and forget when it comes to the offences of others?

PERIL #11: Christians shall be false accusers by spreading slander without regard for reputations.

  1. It makes sense for those loving themselves to hate others and have little regard for their reputations.
  2. The ease by which negative news about others is spread by Christians is symptomatic of this vice.
  3. False accusations are slander, but there are related sins of backbiting, talebearing, and whispering.
  4. Bible Christianity is based in total truth about others, so that every effort is made to protect others.
  5. Do you crush discussion that harmfully reflects on the character and reputation of others (Pr 25:23)?
  6. Do you train your children to not criticize, slander, or backbite others that are not present at home?

PERIL #12: Christians shall be incontinent with a great lack of self-discipline and temperance.

  1. Paul used this term to describe self-discipline and self-restraint of one's sexual drive (I Cor 7:5).
  2. No one waits for sex in marriage now, as such would require way too much patience and self-denial.
  3. Unable to remain quiet, when talking would be foolish, they blurt out something inane anyway.
  4. Unable to save their money for a major purchase, they simply add foolishly to their exorbitant debt.
  5. The children of most Christians cannot contain themselves in any situation but dedicated to them.
  6. They cannot endure sound doctrine, because they are undisciplined, intemperate, and lazy people.
  7. Children must have junior church with graham crackers and milk for even a 15-minute sermonette.
  8. They do not rule their spirits, their speech, their appetites, their spending, their use of time, etc.
  9. Bible Christianity is a religion of moderation, which is temperate self-control and self-denial.
  10. Temperance is a fruit of the Holy Spirit, which Paul practiced (I Cor 9:24-27; Galatians 5:22-23).

PERIL #13: Christians shall be fierce in their treatment of others without basic kindness and gentleness.

  1. Ours is an effeminate society, but try speaking out and seeking holiness among these compromisers.
  2. But consider teenagers, abortion, lawsuits, unions, Christmas, modest dress, protecting virginity, etc.
  3. Ministers can get cruel and violent, if you do not agree with them or do not turn out as their clone.
  4. Paul had men that preached out of strife to add to Paul's burdens in prison (Philippians 1:15-16).
  5. Roman Catholic inquisitions and other works of that "Christian" church show their devilish heart.
  6. Bible Christianity is based in gentleness, tenderheartedness, graciousness, and lovingkindnesses.
  7. The bitterness, grudges, and lack of forgiveness that characterize many are contrary to Christ.
  8. These selfish persons will hold bitterness and grudges into the next generation in some churches.

PERIL #14: Christians shall be despisers of those that are good and righteous by hating holy saints.

  1. Conservative, sober, and good men are railed on and ridiculed as being extreme fanatics.
  2. Have you ever heard "Puritan," "square," "old fashioned," "Amish," or "Bible thumpers"?
  3. Liberals and wicked men are promoted, justified, and protected at the same with the above acts.
  4. The more distance you try to put between yourself and the world the more you will be ridiculed.
  5. As Paul will warn shortly, all that live godly in Christ Jesus shall be persecuted (II Tim 3:12).
  6. Bible Christianity is based in loving good men, those that obey God (Ps 119:63; Titus 1:8).
  7. As Cain killed Abel because Abel's works were righteous, this murderous heart still exists today.

PERIL #15: Christians shall be traitors and manifest great unfaithfulness to duties and commitments.

  1. Railing on government and disregarding government authority are the strictest example of a traitor, and in most churches there is either a flippant view of government or "patriots" espousing anarchy.
  2. Women betray unborn children, husbands their wives, and employees their masters (Mal 2:10-16).
  3. Divorce, church hopping, and turning on friends will be popular among these carnal Christians.
  4. How many Christians think it is perfectly acceptable to partake in a labor union to strike a master?
  5. How many Christians think it is acceptable to declare personal bankruptcy and steal from creditors?
  6. But if you are free from being that kind of traitor, what about guilt for purloining (Titus 2:9-10)?
  7. Bible Christianity provides things honest and avoids even the smell of deceit or betrayal, and it maintains total submission and respect for government.
  8. Let us be known for keeping commitments, loyalty, and faithfulness in all parts of our lives.

PERIL #16: Christians shall be heady with rash and impulsive conduct and decision-making.

  1. Because of loving themselves, pride, and highmindedness, Christians would be impulsively foolish.
  2. They would be hasty and rash in matters of religion, and they would be inconsiderate toward others.
  3. Those under authority want their own way regardless: they are headstrong to do their own thing.
  4. Submission and cooperation are considered foolish and weak, but these are the traits of godliness.
  5. Rather than the word of God restraining them, they are quick to rush off in new endeavors.
  6. Caution, deliberation, patience, planning, and other conservative efforts are rejected as stupid.
  7. Bible Christianity is based in proving all things and using a multitude of counselors (Pr 11:14).
  8. Haste makes waste and is foolish (Prov 19:2); humble and submissive circumspection is wise.
  9. Prudent men foresee evil and wise men are circumspect in decision-making (Pr 22:3; Eph 5:15-17).

PERIL #17: Christians shall be highminded with lofty opinions of themselves and their thoughts.

  1. This is further reference to the arrogance, conceit, haughtiness, and pride of modern Christians.
  2. It also includes presumption in matters too high for them as men, where they should humbly inquire.
  3. Peter indicted false teachers that would come for their great swelling words of vanity (II Pet 2:18).
  4. Can anyone be higher or more presumptuous than the popes, cardinals, and bishops of Rome?
  5. Bible "scholars" change the word of God and print it with their names as often as markets allow.
  6. Bible "scholars" put their study notes on the page with God's words and put their name on the Bible.
  7. Bible "scholars" pontificate the meaning of things as if no one but themselves has a clue of wisdom.
  8. But God has promised to blind and confuse "scholars" (Matthew 11:25-27; I Cor 1:19-20; 3:19-20).
  9. The word-faith movement has men presuming to be the mouthpiece of God over Scripture. Consider E.W. Kenyon, Kenneth Copeland, or Benny Hinn. Ever watch them get a "word of knowledge"? They will come up with just about any new doctrine under the sun by the inspiration of devils.
  10. Rather than trembling before the word of God, they are froward in their conceit (Pr 26:12; Is 66:2).
  11. David, Solomon, and Agur gave good examples for Bible Christians (I Kings 3:7; Ps 131:1; Pr 30:2).
  12. Bible Christians are willing to condescend to men of low estate without any conceit (Rom 12:16).
  13. Bible Christians know that anything they are or have is only by God's grace (I Cor 4:7; 15:10).
  14. Bible Christians are happy and thankful to be little babes of the Lord Jesus Christ (Matt 11:25-27).
  15. Bible Christians turn away from such men that are puffed up in their fleshly minds (Col 2:8,18).

PERIL #18: Christians shall become lovers of pleasures more than lovers of God in carnal living.

  1. The first and great commandment is to fully love God, but Christians make Him second to pleasure.
  2. Here is one of the plainest indictments of Christianity in America, where the love of pleasure is king!
  3. America loves sports, recreation, amusement, pets, entertainment, and anything fun more than God.
  4. Epicureanism – eat, drink, and be merry – could not have exceeded the average Christian's life.
  5. The obsession, passion, and creativity for pleasure are great; but they grudge God a few minutes.
  6. The only way most churches keep the younger generation is to offer them worldly entertainments.
  7. The typical movie is 120 minutes, and they watch 3-10 a week; but the one sermon is 15 minutes.
  8. Churches typically have 50% show at the A.M. service, 25% at the P.M., and 10% on Wednesday.
  9. Early services are offered so the carnal members can have the rest of the day for play and pleasure.
  10. Instead of conservative and sober singing to worship God, they must bring in Christian rock and rap!
  11. The lives of the martyrs and others who suffered for the cause of Jesus Christ are totally different.
  12. Demas was one of the first to put his love of the world over his love of God and Paul (II Tim 4:10).
  13. How many Christians love to worship a holy God and hear Bible preaching in comparison to fun?
  14. How many Christians love to read the word of God, meditate, pray, sing hymns, and talk to others?
  15. How many could read Psalm 73:25-26 and grasp the words, let alone mean them unconditionally?
  16. We make decisions daily that indicate this relationship in our lives i.e. hobbies, sports, television, recreation, exercise, vacations, hunting, reading, playing, sleeping, eating, and so forth and so on.
  17. Those who mind earthly things, no matter what they profess, are belly worshippers (Phil 3:18-19).
  18. The devil has chosen to no longer persecute Christians to death – he will pleasure them to death.
  19. Consider the case of widows. Paul feared young Christian widows dead in pleasure (I Tim 5:5-6).
  20. Peter warned of false teachers in the churches that would be given over to their lusts (II Pet 2:13-14).
  21. Jude warned also of such teachers turning God's grace into sensual lasciviousness (Jude 1:4,18-19).
  22. Bible Christianity seeks first the kingdom of God and His righteousness (Matthew 6:33; Col 3:1-4).
  23. Every father must keep his family from being infatuated with this world's fun (I John 2:15-17).
  24. The love of pleasure will make a man poor financially and spiritually (Proverbs 21:17; Luke 8:14)!
  25. This seductive draw of the world reduces saints to lukewarm and without first love (Rev 2:4; 3:16).
  26. The devil's pleasures are not truly pleasant, for only God offers true pleasures (Job 36:11; Ps 16:11).

PERIL #19: Christians shall have a form of godliness, but denying the power thereof to control them.

  1. It does not mean that they will believe in God, but deny His power to create, save, preserve, etc., etc.
  2. The word "power" here intends authority, right, or rule (Rom 13:1-3; I Cor 7:4; 9:4-6; II Thess 3:9).
  3. Therefore, the specific fault is outward religion without authority or rule to change lives to be holy.
  4. Christians would keep up a ritual of religion, but they would reject any control of how they lived.
  5. Paul described this peril in other haunting words when writing another minister, Titus (Titus 1:16).
  6. Many want to be known as having religion in their lives, but their religion does not rule their lives.
  7. They assemble in the name of Jesus, call themselves churches, and do some singing and preaching; but they will not divide over doctrine, demand apostolic practice, or turn off the television!
  8. Their contemporary Christianity adds things unheard of a few decades ago and allows things that were strictly prohibited a few decades ago. See the sermon outline, "Contemporary Christianity."
  9. In an effort to attract the unregenerate and make them feel comfortable, which they call being seeker sensitive, they water down the gospel and add enough worldliness to make church like a nightclub.
  10. There is no hard preaching against immodest dress, worldly music, carnal friends, premarital sex, purloining on the job, disrespect to parents, euphemistic swearing, jokes about government, etc., etc.
  11. You cannot tell Christians any longer by dress, speech, music, attitudes, conduct, etc. God forbid!
  12. The true grace and gospel of God teaches men to deny themselves and live godly (Titus 2:11-15).
  13. Paul explained God's grace and then demanded transformation (Rom 12:1-2; Eph 4:1; Heb 10:23)!
  14. True saints are not mere hearers of the word, for they are also doers of the word (James 1:21-25).
  15. What is faith if it hath not works? It is no better than the vain faith of the devils (James 2:14-26).
  16. The man who claims to know God must also keep His commandments or be a liar (I John 2:4).
  17. The message of Jesus Christ, which these carnal compromisers will hate, is this: "If any man will come after me, let him deny himself, and take up his cross daily, and follow me" (Luke 9:23).
  18. Taking up your cross is not wearing a WWJD bracelet; it is destroying such pompous phylacteries!
  19. The Lord Jesus Christ is not impressed by those whose hearts and mouths are different (Mat 15:7-9).
  20. Bible Christianity includes violent pressing into the kingdom (Matt 11:12; 13:44-46; Acts 19:18-20).
  21. Neither does it befriend the world, which carnal Christianity loves dearly (II Cor 6:14-17; Jas 4:4).
  22. Seeker sensitive religion is entirely heretical in every respect, for (1) we are not to conform the gospel of Jesus Christ to this world in any way, (2) Bible evangelism does not seek those who have no interest in God or truth, and (3) the gospel is not to be presented with any enticing enhancements.

THE RESPONSE TO PERILOUS TIMES (3:5b)

  1. Paul told Timothy to separate from the company and fellowship of Christians with these symptoms of the compromising and damning apostasy from the apostolic faith once delivered to the saints (3:5).
  2. Saints and churches should not associate with carnal Christianity, for to do so is to endorse those persons and doctrines that are despised by the Lord Jesus Christ (II Chron 19:1-2; Ps 144:7-8,11).
  3. Ministers must make distinctions and separate from false teachers (I Timothy 6:3-5; Titus 3:10-11).
  4. Modern ecumenical versions of the Bible have deleted the order to withdraw from I Timothy 6:5!
  5. Every man of God must confirm the current state of Christianity and separate from its fellowship.
  6. Unity is not a virtue, when it is joining with compromising, carnal Christians (Mat 12:30; Rev 18:4).
  7. The apostolic command is to identify and separate from Christian compromisers (Rom 16:17-18; I Cor 5:11; Gal 1:8-9; Phil 3:18-19; I Tim 6:3-5; II Thess 3:6,14-15; Titus 3:10-11).
  8. Standing fast in the apostolic faith once delivered to the saints is our mandate based on the grace of God in choosing us to salvation and sending the truth to us (II Thess 2:9-15; Phil 1:27Jude 1:3).
  9. If the church is the pillar and ground of the truth, fables must be rejected (I Tim 3:15; II Tim 4:3-4)!
  10. The churches of Christ should avoid associations, denominations, fellowships, conventions, etc., etc.
  11. These carnal Christians will condemn you for violating the unity of the body of Christ by separating, though they will isolate and vilify you, as soon as they realize you stand unflinchingly on Scripture.
  12. Separating from compromisers in obedience to these words requires rejecting Bill Gothard seminars, Promise Keepers' rallies, Benny Hinn crusades, Gibson's "The Passion of the Christ" movie, Billy and Franklin Graham crusades, Youth for Christ, U.N.I.C.E.F., contemporary music, and similar efforts at ecumenical unity at the expense of doctrinal and practical integrity. M.
  13. We must turn away from these false Christians, and we must clear these symptoms from our lives.

THE CHARACTERS OF PERILOUS TIMES (3:6-13)

  1. The new carnal and compromising religion would prey on women with seducing teachers (3:6).
    1. A character trait of false teachers is their preference for women, who are more easily deceived.
    2. Effeminate religion appeals to women, caters to women, exalts women, ordains women, etc.
    3. Catholics have long catered to women with infant sprinkling, last rites, indulgences, Mary worship, church marriages, no divorce, nuns, robes, neutered priests, images, pageantry, etc.
    4. They further entered the homes of these women through auricular confession, where they plied the women to open their souls and hearts to disclose every damning sin they could extract.
    5. If you take the word "houses" only literally, then you must also take the "creeping" only literally: it is not merely the residence that is under consideration, but the husband and family.
    6. The first "house" was ruined by a woman being deceived, and so are many others (Titus 1:11).
    7. These teachers will gear their ministries away from men and toward women to seduce them.
    8. Their effeminate approach and powerless gospel would appeal more to women than to men.
    9. They creep into houses where husbands ought to be ruling and teaching wives (I Cor 14:34-35).
    10. They creep into houses by way of radio and television programs, books, seminars, Internet, etc.
    11. James Dobson and Benny Hinn do this on a daily basis, when the husbands are out of the house!
    12. In order to follow the emphasis of Scripture and to oppose this peril, we will emphasize the men.
  2. These carnal and compromising religious teachers will attract silly women vulnerable to lies (3:6).
    1. Silly. Intellectually weak, foolish, vulnerable, and feeble-minded. (OED).
    2. The first woman showed her weakness to creeping things with lies (I Tim 2:13-14; I Pet 3:7).
    3. While all women are silly in one sense, the apostle is going beyond that general weakness here.
    4. Eve compromised in a few minutes to ridiculous reasoning that was directly contrary to God.
    5. They will be led captive by false teachers as easily and surely as Eve by Satan (II Cor 11:1-2).
    6. Not all women are silly. Some are fearless, holy, and wise as Abigail, Jael, Hannah, Sarah, etc.
    7. May the Lord bless us with holy women that are tenacious for sound doctrine and hate liars!
    8. It was their sins and lusts that made them vulnerable to false teachers, not merely their sex.
    9. How? By being seduced, blinded, mislead, flattered, and appealed to emotionally by their lusts.
    10. Godly men will protect their women from the seducing arts of false teachers looking for them.
    11. Considering the Temperance and Suffrage movements alone exposes their lusts and heresies.
    12. Consider today any social gospel that feeds starving Ethiopians or provides wells for Hindus.
    13. The reverence that women have given the effeminate and sodomitical priests of Rome is sick.
    14. These women will leap on any bandwagon that gives them equality in marriage, saves children from spankings, provides a place in religion for them, makes divorce impossible, gives saving power over dying parents and infants, prohibits outside work for wives, etc., etc.
  3. These carnal and compromising religious teachers will attract sinful women with lust problems (3:6).
    1. These women escape the reality of their God-given duties by "Bible studies" and "learning."
    2. Rather than be the extremely hardworking wife and mother of Proverbs 31, they want more.
    3. Rather than cut the grass, fix a real meal for supper, or invest in a rental house, they trot off to cackle and gossip over tea with other similar creatures in an event they call a "Bible study."
    4. Their lusts and sins are primarily pride, rebellion, discontentment, ambition, and selfishness.
    5. Such women hate the powerful claims of the Bible against their liberated views of things.
    6. They want a speaking, leading, and teaching role in the churches; they want to be ordained!
    7. They want influence, power, and position in church; and the false teachers will give it to them.
  4. The evidence that this prophecy is being fulfilled today is easy for any seeing person to behold (3:6).
    1. Watch when the camera pans the audience at crusades of Benny Hinn and similar charlatans.
    2. What kind of a man would submit himself to a woman preacher or husband-wife teaching duo?
    3. For whom do you think Jimmy Dobson's sappy little stories are created for? Lumberjacks? Not!
    4. Take a traffic count at your local Christian bookstore and remember that men are supposed to be the spiritual leaders and teachers in the home and church. Count them! The majority are women!
    5. Men, it is your job to teach your wife and help her learn from the Bible and God-sent preachers.
  5. In spite of "Bible studies," "seminars," and other "learning" efforts, they never find the truth (3:7).
    1. The "ever learning" applies to the women, not the teachers, who overwhelm them with nothing!
    2. These "silly women," which are obvious in any denominational church, know less than nothing.
    3. They are bleached, grinning social do-gooders without even a beginner's grasp of Bible doctrine.
    4. But they could give you a long list of seminars, conferences, retreats, and books they have read!
    5. Their hair gets shorter, their mouths faster, their faces haughtier, and their minds stupider!
    6. Think! Learning is a total waste of time and energy, unless you are learning the truth of God!
    7. Think! How much of a liberal arts education is utterly worthless and highly dangerous and evil!
  6. The conduct of these religious compromisers is like Pharaoh's magicians, Jannes and Jambres (3:8).
    1. Though the names are not in Exodus, the magicians in Pharaoh's court aped and resisted Moses.
    2. Are we sure on this point? Compare their names to Raamses and Tahapanes (Ex 1:11; Jer 2:16).
    3. They duplicated serpents, blood, and frogs, but not the lice (Exodus 7:9-13,19-25; 8:5-8,16-19).
    4. The man of God brought the message of God, but these diabolical foes attempted to overthrow it.
    5. But they were quickly proven to be frauds, as they saw the finger of God (Ex 7:12; 8:19; 9:11).
    6. And then the blessed God of heaven sent the boils on them as well for a little spite (Ex 9:8-12).
    7. As the magicians spent their lives and efforts to resist the truth, so do the false teachers of today.
    8. Confront Jimmy, Benny, Billy, or Rick with the truth, they will violently oppose your effort.
  7. Paul called these Christian teachers "men of corrupt minds, reprobate concerning the faith" (3:8)!
    1. Of course, since we are in the perilous times, most are not used to name-calling by inspired men.
    2. Paul identified these corrupt teachers of Christianity in greater detail elsewhere (I Tim 6:3-5).
    3. There were many corrupting God's word in Paul's day, but much more so in ours (II Cor 2:17).
    4. They are not truly Christ's ministers, as they are reprobate concerning the faith (Matt 7:23).
    5. They will resist the truth whenever they encounter it, for they have minds corrupted against it.
    6. Some are in the ministry for money and prestige, like Balaam (II Peter 2:13-16; Jude 1:11-13).
    7. How are these teachers similar to the magicians? They both ape and contradict the man of God!
    8. Their minds are corrupted, perverted and twisted, by education, arrogance, lies, money, etc., etc.
    9. They are reprobates concerning the faith, for they are rejected and worthless about the gospel.
    10. Paul was not politically correct, but it did not matter; he was defending the faith against frauds.
  8. They shall not have final success or victory: their religious folly will be clear to all godly men (3:9).
    1. Though Jannes and Jambres were shown to be frauds, Pharaoh and his court remained deceived.
    2. How can their folly be revealed to all men, when the deception gets worse and worse (3:13)?
    3. Because the "all men" must be limited by immediate context to godly men succeeding Timothy!
    4. There will be public evidence by doctrine, conduct, and fruit that they are not teachers of Christ.
    5. God will save His elect by revealing these frauds and providing honest teachers for the faithful.
    6. The folly of their false Christ will be exposed to truth-seeking men, as was the magicians' fraud.
  9. The standard by which all ministers and gospels must be tried is that of the apostle Paul (3:10-11).
    1. As Moses was very different from Pharaoh's magicians, so was Paul from these false teachers.
    2. The lives of all ministers must be compared to the life and example of our beloved brother Paul.
    3. His standard will condemn the doctrine, manner of life, purpose, and so forth of compromisers.
    4. Compare God's record of Paul to Benny Hinn, Pope John Paul II, Jack Van Impe, Bill Gothard, Jerry Falwell, James Dobson, Jesse Jackson, Rick Warren, Jack Hyles, and others like them.
    5. God has put in writing many details of the doctrine, manner of life, purpose, and so forth of Paul.
    6. We can know as much of Paul as he here told Timothy to remember of what he had observed.
    7. Timothy had fully known these things by living in the mentioned cities and accompanying Paul.
    8. Few ministers preach clear enough for you to fully know their doctrine, purpose, faith, etc.
  10. See the ten factors Paul told Timothy to use as the Bible standard against a ministerial downgrade.
    1. Doctrine. The teaching of inspired facts that beats philosophy and science (Col 2:8; I Tim 6:20).
    2. Manner of life. The self-denying and self-sacrificing life of God's true ministers (I Cor 9:1-27).
    3. Purpose. The goal to preach Christ by God's means only to the elect (I Cor 2:1-5; II Tim 2:10).
    4. Faith. Paul was fearless to stand alone, when all others forsook him (II Tim 4:16-18; Acts 20:24).
    5. Longsuffering. Paul bore pain within and without the churches (II Cor 11:22-33; Phil 1:15-17).
    6. Charity. Paul had great love for the converted and unconverted (Rom 9:1-5; 10:1; II Cor 12:15).
    7. Patience. Paul continued to run in spite of opposition and poor results (Phil 3:12-14; II Tim 4:7).
    8. Persecutions. Paul endured more punishment and trouble from men than all others (Acts 20:23).
    9. Afflictions. Paul endured trouble cheerfully on land, in the sea, and in all places (II Cor 6:4).
    10. Deliverance. The afflictions of the righteous are many, but he is always delivered (Psalm 34:19).
  11. Rather than emulate the newest success story, the man of God should follow Paul (3:10-11).
    1. God raised up Paul to ordain Gentile preachers to perpetuate the truth to us (II Tim 2:2; 3:14).
    2. It is a shame so many want to copy Rick Warren and Saddleback, rather than the apostle Paul.
    3. Paul reminded Timothy of the ministerial example he had lived in spite of much persecution.
    4. He encouraged Timothy that he had endured the persecutions, and God had delivered him.
    5. The man of God cannot be discouraged or defeated by persecution, for Paul endured it before.
    6. There are two aspects to persecution: men enduring the affliction, and God delivering from it.
    7. As we do our part in being of good courage, the Lord will strengthen our hearts (Psalm 27:14).
    8. Paul stood and opposed Nero without human assistance, but God saved him (II Tim 4:16-18).
    9. Jesus Christ gave the gospel to Paul, the apostle to the Gentiles, and he gave it to this Timothy.
  12. It is a fact that men holding apostolic doctrine and practice will be hated by this new religion (3:12).
    1. This is not ordinary persecution, but persecution from degenerate Christianity, by the context.
    2. This is no persecution by Nero and pagan Rome, but rather by popes and carnal Christians today.
    3. Paul affirmed plainly the universal prophecy applying to all true saints in these perilous times.
    4. The cause of the persecution is living Christ's religion with godliness, contrary to the form (3:5).
    5. What will bring the persecution? True doctrine, holy living, lovers of God, and more than a form.
    6. Wise men will consider the warning and expect it from family, friends, and church members.
    7. If you are not being persecuted at all for the truth's sake, what should you think about yourself?
  13. The direction of Christianity will not be upward, but evil men and seducers will take it lower (3:13).
    1. The blessed and true God has not promised an end-time revival, as so many desire and promise.
    2. We are not postmillennialists: we do not see the world getting better and truth triumphing in it.
    3. The ignorance by Christian teachers and those following them will continue to spiral down.
    4. They will get worse and worse. How? By ever learning and never able to arrive at the truth!
    5. These false teachers and seducers are both deceived themselves and involved in deceiving others.
    6. Not every false teacher and false doctrine is by malicious design; many are horribly deceived.

THE CURE FOR PERILOUS TIMES (3:14-17)

  1. Timothy was to hold fast the faithful word he had been taught by brother and apostle Paul (3:14).
    1. Compare the similar ministerial advice that Paul gave to Titus in ordaining men (Titus 1:9-11).
    2. Key to ministerial success, especially in the perilous times, is to continue in things (Col 1:23).
    3. While false teachers get worse and worse by modifying Christianity more and more, God's men stand in the old paths and earnestly contend for the once-delivered faith (Jer 6:16; Jude 1:3).
    4. Paul was the apostle of the Gentiles and the ministerial example for second-generation preachers.
    5. Jesus Christ was a minister to Jews, but Paul showed Gentiles how to follow Jesus (I Cor 11:1).
    6. It was Paul's doctrine and practice that was to be communicated to future ministers (II Tim 2:2).
    7. Paul's gospel was the standard by which all gospels were to be tried (Gal 1:8-9; II Cor 11:3-4).
    8. Paul was the wise masterbuilder to be followed, not Rick Warren or Greg Laurie (I Cor 3:10).
    9. Paul was God's chosen vessel, the apostle to the Gentiles, and the author of the Pastoral Epistles.
    10. His ministry had been confirmed enormously by his miracles, persecution, zeal, and much fruit.
    11. Jesus Christ gave the gospel to Paul, the apostle of the Gentiles, and he gave it to this Timothy.
    12. There are in the history of the church a number of saints and churches referred to as Paulicians.
    13. Are you sure of truth? Then get assured with the certain words of truth, things most surely believed among us, and more sure word of prophecy (Pr 22:17-21; Luke 1:1-4; II Pet 1:16-21)!
    14. We do not want to change anything, unless we change back to the Bible's old paths (Jer 6:16)!
    15. Christians meet in order to help one another hold fast their profession (Heb 3:12-13; 10:23-25).
  2. The source document Timothy was to rely on was something he had used from childhood (3:15).
    1. His mother and grandmother had communicated their faith in Scripture to Timothy (II Tim 1:5).
    2. The true doctrine of salvation is in the Bible, and nowhere else! There is no place for any faith in man, priests, Mary, apostles, saints, baptism, popes, Joe Smith, Ellen Harmon, etc., etc.
    3. The Holy Scriptures are more sure than God's voice from heaven with witnesses (II Pet 1:16-21).
    4. And Timothy did not have the originals, or even a copy of them, or anything even close to them.
    5. While these scriptures were primarily the Old Testament, the New was rapidly being collated!
    6. But he had scripture that could be argued at word level, unlike the NKJV (Gal 3:16; Gen 22:17).
    7. If we are to fully arm our families for this fight, then they need to be taught the Bible very early.
  3. The inspired scriptures are more than sufficient to make any minister perfect before God (3:16-17).
    1. The Old Testament is not sufficient to make a New Testament man of God perfect for doctrine or practice in the church, so Paul clearly included the New Testament in scripture here (I Tim 3:15).
    2. The Councils at Hippo in 393 AD and Carthage in 397 AD, from which Catholics and Protestants trace their New Testament canon, were more than 300 years too late to help true churches following the apostles. They had believed and read the canon for more than 300 years!
    3. Paul confirmed Matthew or Luke to Timothy (I Tim 5:18b); Peter confirmed Paul's epistles as scripture to the Jews (II Pet 3:15-16). Let men write tomes about the canon. Timothy had it!
    4. Let all those who clamor about oral tradition and church fathers choke on these inspired words!
    5. A minister – the man of God – does not need anything more than his Bible to do God's work.
    6. The psalmist did not care what his enemies, his teachers, or the ancients taught (Ps 119:98-100).
    7. Elihu did not care what four very wise men thought compared to inspiration (Job 32:1-22).
    8. If any man or religious group does not line up with Scripture, they are grossly ignorant (Is 8:20).
    9. Men that disagree with the Bible are arrogant, ignorant rejects that have no truth (I Tim 6:3-5).
    10. Science that disagrees with the Bible is false science and to be harshly rejected (I Tim 6:20-21).
    11. Ministers do not need conferences by Bill Hybels or Rick Warren, they need to read the Bible!
  4. Most of these religious compromisers do not even have scripture, for they idolize so-called originals.
    1. These pompous blowhards will talk all day about the "original autographs," which were never in any book at any time, which were never read by one person in human history, which were locked in the ark under the Old Testament, and which is nothing but hot air about nothing.
    2. Ask them to prove the doctrine of inspiration. They will quote II Timothy 3:16 from your KJV!
    3. Instead of worrying about the words of the living God, they want Rick's purpose-driven drivel!
    4. The proliferation of Bible versions today is a disgusting characteristic of these perilous times.
    5. We reject any other translation known today by the criteria of faith, fruit, facts, and fools.
      1. We have FAITH the blessed God preserved His words as promised (Ps 12:6-7; Is 30:8; 40:8).
      2. We see the FRUIT that God has given to the King James Version (Pr 8:12-21; I Thess 2:13).
      3. We know the FACT that the King James can be argued internally on words (Gal 3:16; etc.).
      4. We reject FOOLS that might question or slander the King James (I Cor 1:19-20; 3:19-20).

THE CHARGE FOR PERILOUS TIMES (4:1-5)

  1. Paul charges Timothy with the very solemn and weighty responsibility to combat this apostasy (4:1).
    1. The "therefore" marks Paul's conclusion. The single lesson is intact through the chapter break.
    2. Paul is about to die, so he exhorted Timothy in the strongest terms to hold fast and fight (4:6-8)!
    3. Though many ministers would forsake their calling for fables, he demanded Timothy not move!
    4. Though many Christians would forsake the truth for fables, he demanded Timothy not to move!
    5. Remember! This is private correspondence from Paul to Timothy! Consider the oath carefully!
    6. Paul swore Timothy to his duties, just as every ordination ought to include oaths to service; consider a few other examples of ministerial charges (I Tim 5:21; 6:13-16; II Tim 2:14; 4:1)!
    7. The motives for a minister must be the Person of Jehovah God and Christ's coming judgment.
    8. God's eyes are in every place; Jesus Christ sees all within and without (Pr 15:3; Heb 4:12-14).
    9. Paul himself had shared with the Corinthians his motive in light of judgment (II Cor 5:9-11).
    10. The Blessed and Only Potentate shall soon come: ministers must labor due to it (I Tim 6:13-16).
    11. Jesus as a Judge is an excellent motive for ministers, much better than Preacher So-and-so!
    12. God's ministers live and preach as if they were under this charge, rather than trying to win friends or approval on earth, build a legacy or following of men, or promote a church or ministry.
    13. Here is the oath of office for being a true soldier in the kingdom of Jesus Christ against apostasy.
  2. The action that must be pursued is insistent preaching of the word of God without dilution (4:2).
    1. Having issued the threatening charge, Paul provides a few details of Timothy's responsibilities.
    2. Ministers preach the word, not anecdotes, jokes, stories, illustrations, creeds, or men's words!
    3. But they need the word first in order to preach it, which does not include Satan's false versions.
    4. To preach the word like Jesus and Paul, they need the words of God (John 10:35; Gal 3:16; etc.).
    5. God's word is like a fire and hammer and superior to any dreams (Jer 23:28-29; II Pet 1:19-21).
    6. Instant preaching is insistent, urging, and pressing preaching (Luke 7:4; 23:23; Acts 26:7).
    7. Whether the circumstances are good or not, whether the hearers are receptive or not, blast away!
    8. Compare Jeremiah, Ezekiel, Jesus, and Paul (Jer 1:4-10; Ezek 2:6-7; Luke 4:14-30; I Thes 2:12).
    9. In light of these perilous times, the emphasis was to be on reproving, rebuking, and exhorting.
    10. There is little room for comforting, consoling, and countenancing, when you face perilous times!
    11. How is reproving, rebuking, and exhorting done with longsuffering? Ignoring affliction, opposition, and persecution! Patiently and meekly instructing those that oppose themselves (II Tim 2:24-26)! It has nothing to do with patiently bearing with carnal Christians forever, as some!
    12. How is reproving, rebuking, and exhorting done with doctrine? By careful and methodical instruction in Christ's religion, using the Bible as the means, which is profitable for doctrine.
  3. Most Christians would move from Bible teaching to lust-pleasing fables and entertainment (4:3-4).
    1. This was not the case when Paul wrote, but it would become the case, as it certainly is today.
    2. Has there ever been a generation identified that resented sound doctrine as much as this one?
    3. Charismatics, contemporary worshippers, casual worshippers, and others cannot stand doctrine.
    4. With only a form of godliness, men do not want to hear the word of God taught with authority.
    5. Careful, simple, and repetitive instruction of the gospel is boring to the highminded (Is 28:9-13)!
    6. The Christian compromisers would gather teachers to scratch their itching lusts: Benny Hinn for a show; Jimmy Dobson to take away the rod; Bill Gothard for rote religion; Robert Schuller for self-love; Kenneth Copeland for a new doctrine; Rodney Howard-Browne for unlimited laughter; Billy Graham to bring athletes for testimonies; Jimmy Swaggert for Jerry Lee Lewis music; Anita Bryant for a beautiful woman; Jack Van Impe for a Bible-quoting machine; etc., etc.
    7. They shall turn away from the truth of God's word to the entertaining fables of worldly men.
    8. Compare Isaiah and Jeremiah condemning the same thing in their days (Is 30:8-11; Jer 5:30-31).
    9. How can words 2000 years old so perfectly describe seeker sensitive methods? It is a prophecy!
    10. Observe the active and passive voice in succession; rejection of God's truth will bring fables: compare how rejection of God in creation and unthankfulness brings on sodomy (Rom 1:18-27)!
    11. What fables? Infant baptism, sprinkling, cracker God, Immaculate Conception, celibacy, purgatory, Assumption of Mary, speaking in tongues, Benny Hinn healings, pre-trib rapture, earthly millennium, purpose-driven drivel, Sabbath-keeping, baptism for the dead, God loves all sinners, decisional regeneration, Christmas, lesbian pastors, I'm okay – you're okay, etc., etc.
  4. But Timothy was to watch, endure, work, and prove His ministry from Christ against these men.
    1. He was to watch – be vigilant – in all things, lest compromising carnality affect the churches.
    2. As a watch is a guard, and as a guard must watch, so God's ministers must guard the truth.
    3. A faithful guard is entirely alert, stringently disciplined, eternally vigilant, and fervently zealous.
    4. There is no place in the last days for a minister – or God's people – to be drowsy (I Thes 5:5-11).
    5. He was to endure afflictions – bear the hardness of the war – to be a faithful soldier (II Tim 2:3).
    6. He was to do the work of an evangelist – spreading the truth to those not knowing it (Acts 21:8).
    7. God's ministers must raise their voices and spread the word in order to help as many as possible.
    8. We believe the Great Commission was fulfilled by 70 AD, but this ministerial charge was not!
    9. Paul engaged in evangelism in the marketplace of Athens and in synagogues everywhere. We use the Internet as the most efficient witty invention of all time to reach the most for the least.
    10. He was to make full proof of his ministry – by fulfilling every aspect with zeal (I Tim 4:12-16).

Conclusion: The Challenge of Perilous Times

    1. The peril or danger taught here is a widespread powerless Christianity, and it is the great threat to believers.
    2. The same apostle calls us to be transformed in our minds, not conformed to the pagan world (Romans 12:1-2).
    3. He also calls us to redeem the time for the days are evil, which does not allow for taking it easy (Eph 5:1-21).
    4. In order to be true apostolic Christianity, we must turn away from all false teachers (II Tim 3:5; I Tim 6:5).
    5. We will suffer persecution, if we choose apostolic Christianity, for contemporary Christians hate it (3:12-13).
    6. Do you want a challenge? Eliminate the 19 perils of false Christianity altogether from your family (3:1-5).
    7. We must reject the influence of fearmongers who would evilly distract us with absurd windmills to fight.
    8. You have two great goals: (1) no false distractions or diversions and (2) zeal against these 19 clear perils.
    9. We must oppose the effeminate religion around us by emphasizing and exalting men as spiritual leaders.
    10. We must emphasize the Bible and hard Bible preaching as the antidote to desired fables and entertainment.
    11. We must hold fast to the old paths, continuing in the apostolic pattern, without accepting any current changes.
    12. We must understand and remember many changes will come, but we must earnestly continue without change.
    13. Are you fully committed in body and soul to resist playing church with the rest of these wicked Christians?



  1. For Further Study:
    1. The sermon outline, "Contemporary Christianity," which lists and describes many modern corruptions in the churches.
    2. The sermon outline, "Few There Be that Find It," compares the strait religion of Jesus to the easy religion of the world.
    3. The sermon outline, "Your Body Is the Lord's," which defines the Lordship of Jesus Christ over your bodily activities.
    4. The sermon outline, "Is Jesus Lord?" which probes and questions whether you are obeying Him as Lord in all areas.
    5. The sermon outline, "Forgotten Sins," details many Bible sins that are no longer preached against or even considered.
    6. The sermon outline, "Rude Preachers," which compares God's ministers in the Bible to today's effeminate version.
    7. The sermon outline, "Instant Preaching," which defines Paul's charge to Timothy and illustrates it from the Bible.
    8. The sermon outline, "The Witness of 70 AD," which shows the many prophetic warnings to our Lord's generation.
    9. The web document, "Tongues Have Ceased," deals with one of the modern fables and provides links of false teachers.
    10. The web document, "The Lies of Self-Love and Self-Esteem," identify the teachers and errors of this modern heresy.