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Can 2 Timothy 2:24 be MISUSED?

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Can 2 Timothy 2:24 be MISUSED?

Postby jpat1975 » Fri Oct 05, 2018 1:06 pm

In this verse it says:

2 Timothy 2:24 (ESV) "And the Lord’s servant must not be quarrelsome but kind to everyone, able to teach, patiently enduring evil,"

In particular the point on being "quarrelsome"?

What DOES qualifies as being "quarrelsome"?

What DOES NOT qualify as being "quarrelsome"?

Has anyone ever used this verse incorrectly about you, or about someone else?

I wonder sometimes if people don't use this verse as a knee-jerk reaction to avoid telling the truth to someone in error.

If we have Christian friends holding to an incorrect teaching like "generational curses for Christians too"; "Word of Faith"; "Jesus was a socialist"; etc - do we simply keep our mouths shut? Do we wait for them to bring up the subject? If we take the initiative does that automatically make someone "quarrelsome" if the other person feels defensive? Can we be always held responsible for making someone "feel defensive"?

In closing, I liked this video, but wasn't sure I agreed with the point about not "making someone feel defensive" because there are so many people too defensive as it is, and no amount of sugarcoating will prevent that.

https://youtu.be/lrYsMpPWWR4
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Re: Can 2 Timothy 2:24 be MISUSED?

Postby Paidion » Sat Oct 06, 2018 7:10 pm

But avoid foolish and ignorant disputes, knowing that they generate strife. And a servant of the Lord must not quarrel but be gentle to all, able to teach, patient, in humility correcting those who are in opposition, if God perhaps will grant them repentance, so that they may know the truth...(2 Timothy 2:23-25 NKJV)

The word in Greek is actually a verb rather than an adjective. It is a form of "μαχομαι" which lexicons say primarily means "to war." Figuratively this means to violently dispute. I'm sure you've experienced people disputing in anger. If we, in humility, attempt to correct someone (as Paul in this passage indicates that we should do) then we will not be verbally warring with anyone, or "engaging in foolish and ignorant disputes."
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Re: Can 2 Timothy 2:24 be MISUSED?

Postby Singalphile » Sun Oct 07, 2018 10:46 pm

I think it's usually easy to identify when someone is being quarrelsome. I'm sure it can be misused, though.

In my experience, it's usually best to keep one's mouth shut about most such things. I will occasionally give my own contrary opinion about something if someone else did. I'm sure we're all capable of doing it tactfully. I like to say something like, "In my experience ...," or, "The way I see it, ...,", or, "One of my favorite Bible teachers explains it like this ...." If someone objects or tries to rebut you, then just let it go, unless the person is mature in that area and clearly wants to talk about it.

I don't like to ever act or speak as certainly, emphatically, and confidently about anything (i.e., politics, non-essential Christian views, even sports) except the core Christian faith and values. If you're later proven wrong or if someone just sees it differently, then you risk losing all credibility and opportunity with that person, which is especially sad if he or she is not a believer. Nothing's worth that.

The video's pretty good, I think. I think it's better to err on the side of caution and silence. Issues related to sinful behavior (e.g., someone committing adultery or cheating customers) might obligate you to act, of course. But it's not a sin to have a wrong opinion, afaik ("as far as I know").

I do think we can be partly responsible for making someone "feel defensive" (although that is kind of a vague idea). By way of analogy, it's similar to how a woman (or man) can be responsible for tempting a man (or woman) with adulterous thoughts by how she (or he) dresses or acts.
... that all may honor the Son just as they honor the Father. John 5:23
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