The Soteriology Of 2 Timothy 2:11-13 – Part I -- By: David S. Ermold
JODT 14:43 (December 2010) p. 65
The Soteriology Of 2 Timothy 2:11-13 – Part I
* David S. Ermold, Th.M. student, Capital Bible Seminary, Lanham, Maryland
Throughout history, many creeds have been formulated in order that doctrinal truths may be stated succinctly (e.g. the Apostles’ Creed or the parallel Trinitarian creeds of Nicaea and Constantinople). Although it is debated whether Paul’s quotation of an outside source in 2 Timothy 2:11-13 was a creed or a hymn, or perhaps his own thoughts,1 the issue still remains: a proper understanding of this creed-like statement could establish a doctrine of soteriology that could then be set as a standard for churches today. The passage reads:
11 πιστὸς ὁ λόγος·
εἰ γὰρ συναπεθάνομεν, καὶ συζήσομεν·
12 εἰ ὑπομένομεν, καὶ συμβασιλεύσομεν·
εἰ ἀρνησόμεθα, κάκεῖνος άρνήσεται ἡμᾶς·
13 εί άπιστοῦμεν, ἐκεῖνος πιστὸς μένει,
ἀρνήσασθαι γὰρ ἑαυτὸν οὐ δύναται.
The verses may be translated as follows:
11 Faithful is the saying:
For if we died with [Him], we will also live with [Him],
12 If we endure, we will also reign with [Him],
If we deny, He also will deny us,
13 If we are unfaithful, He remains faithful,
He is unable to deny Himself.2
JODT 14:43 (December 2010) p. 66
Relevance Of Study
It is the contention of this article that 2 Timothy 2:11-13 holds several keys to understanding not only soteriology but even eschatology. Some of these doctrines have been lost or unexplored throughout the centuries of church history for a variety of reasons. Some of these doctrines, such as reign with Him, have been diluted or largely ignored. If doctrines can be established and defended using not only the immediate context, but also the whole of the epistle and perhaps the New Testament, this may not only formulate doctrine, but practice also.
Some schools of thought do not hold t...
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