12. And Tychicus have I sent to Ephesus.
13. The cloke that I left at Troas with Carpus, when thou comest, bring with thee , and the books, but especially the parchments.
14. Alexander the coppersmith did me much evil: the Lord reward him according to his works:
15. Of whom be thou ware also; for he hath greatly withstood our words.
16. At my first answer no man stood with me, but all men forsook me: I pray God that it may not be laid at their charge.
17. Notwithstanding the Lord stood with me, and strengthened me; that by me the preaching might be fully known, and that all the Gentiles might hear: and I was delivered out of the mouth of the lion.
18. And the Lord shall deliver me from every evil work, and will preserve me unto his heavenly kingdom: to whom be glory for ever and ever. Amen.
In the first verse we are looking at today, Paul informs Timothy that he sent a man named, Tychicus, to Ephesus. Most likely to preach, and encourage the Christians there in Paul's absence. That's my guess, but I don't think anyone really knows anything about this man.
In verse thirteen Paul gives him a list of things he wants Timothy to bring to him.
- His cloke. A circular piece of clothing with a hole in the middle for your head, and possibly a hood, it reached all the way to the ground, so it basically did the work of a blanket. Paul was most likely cold in that prison, and like a normal human being, wanted something to keep him warm, and possibly dry.
- The books. I don't know which books these were, but they might have been copies of the Old Testament.
- But especially the parchments. I did not know what this meant until I read what our friend Barclay had to say. :P He said that it was probably the early versions of the gospels! What did Paul say? He said "especially the parchments." More than his cloke, he wanted to read God's word. Where is a better place to find comfort and encouragement?!
- His name is Alexander
- He is a coppersmith. Someone who makes things out of copper.
- He did much evil to Paul.
- He withstood the works of the disciples.
In the next three verses Paul talks about how all forsook him, but God stood by him, for he was doing the work God had planned for him. The first thing he says, is that all men forsook him, they all left him, no one was brave enough to stand by him for God. Then he does something that every Christian wants to do, and should do, a thing that Christ said when he was dieing on the cross; I pray God that it may not be laid to their charge." That, my friends, is true forgiveness, to be able to pray that God will not lay on their charge, the ones that are torturing you, and killing you, and putting you in prison. wow.
Now, he says, "Notwithstanding the Lord stood with me, and strengthened me; that by me the preaching might be fully known, and that all the Gentiles might hear: and I was delivered out of the mouth of the lion." He says that even though all men deserted him, the Lord stood with him. It is like an army going out to battle, the enemy comes on, and all the men flee, except one; he and his commander, stand alone on the battlefield facing a whole army alone! No doubt, that is how Paul felt. He says next that his commander, the Lord, strengthened him; so that he could keep on preaching so that all the Gentiles (all people except Jews) could hear the gospel. Paul says that the Lord didn't strengthen him for his own use and pleasure, but so that he could go on preaching!
The last thing he says there, is that he was, "..delivered out of the mouth of the lion." In other words, he was rescued from certain death.
Well, sorry y'all, I was going to do verse eighteen too, but I have to go. We might possibly finish chapter four tomorrow! God bless!