Let’s begin by reading 2 Timothy 2:15-18, “Study to shew thyself approved unto God, a workman that needeth not to be ashamed, rightly dividing the word of truth. But shun profane and vain babblings: for they will increase unto more ungodliness. And their word will eat as doth a canker: of whom is Hymenaeus and Philetus; Who concerning the truth have erred, saying that the resurrection is past already; and overthrow the faith of some.”

This portion shows the importance of knowing God’s Word and striving to live a life that pleases the Lord.  We are told to ‘study’ or to ‘strive diligently’ to gain the approval of the Lord.  We should seek to be true workmen…those that can rightfully divide God’s Word so that we can apply it appropriately.

  • 2 Corinthians 11:23 warns us against ‘deceitful workers.’
  • Philippians 3:2 warns us against ‘evil workers.’

It is the TRUE WORKER that studies and understands the Word.  He seeks to apply its teachings and principles correctly, so that he is not ashamed of the way he has taught or followed God’s Word.  Some have said, “You can make the Bible say anything.”  The true workman doesn’t try to make the Word say anything, rather He properly listens to the Word of God and allows the Spirit to reveal its deep and precious truths to him.

In additionally to handling God’s Word correctly, we are warned to “shun profane and vain babblings.”  So, we are to shun, or reject false teachings and we not to allow ourselves to get caught up in useless arguments about profitless issues.  This only serves to ‘increase unto more ungoldiness.’  It’s so easy to get our eyes off the Lord and use our energy in an attempt to prove ourselves correct about unimportant matters.  I once had an opportunity to meet an older couple who seemed to truly love the Lord.  When I was about to leave these two, I asked if there were any more questions I might help them with.  The lady asked me about the mark that the Lord had put on Cain’s head in Genesis 4:15.  She told me she had spent many hours trying to figure what that mark was.  I simply told her that the Lord did not see fit to tell us what that mark was and we should not spend time trying to find out what it was.  I pointed them to Deuteronomy 29:29 which says, “The secret things belong unto the LORD our God: but those things which are revealed belong unto us and to our children for ever, that we may do all the words of this law.”  May we occupy ourselves with what the Lord has revealed to us in His Word.

Hymenaeus and Philetus are mentioned as some who had been caught up in this type of behavior.  It acted like a cancer in their bodies.  It ‘took over’ their lives and robbed them of any spiritual health they may have had.  2 Timothy 2:18, “Who concerning the truth have erred, saying that the resurrection is past already; and overthrow the faith of some.”  People such as these two had seriously erred from the truth of the Word and began to teach that the return of the Lord had already happened.  Some people who were not strong enough to stand firm in the truth, thinking they had been left behind by the Lord, had their faith overthrown on this important point.  It is so vital that we become grounded in the scriptures so that we are not “carried about with every wind of doctrine, by the sleight of men, and cunning craftiness, whereby they lie in wait to deceive.”  Ephesians 4:14.

Let’s briefly recap and see a nice order in these verses.

  • When we STUDY to show ourselves approved God, we will not be ashamed.
  • When we SHUN profane and vain babblings, we are able to maintain our godly standing before God.

When we RECOGNIZE and REJECT error, we will not have our faith overthrown.  (215.4)