2 Timothy 1:1-2
New American Standard Bible
1 Paul, an apostle of Christ Jesus by the will of God, according to the promise of life in Christ Jesus, 2 To Timothy, my beloved son: Grace, mercy, and peace from God the Father and Christ Jesus our Lord.
Paul was called by God as an apostle. We may wonder why Paul would begin a letter to Timothy who knew him so well laying out his credentials and authority in the body of Christ. Paul was led and guided by The Holy Spirit as he wrote and composed all things, we have in the bible today. The Spirit of God knew that these letters would eventually make up what we have as the New Testament today. So from this introduction we see that this letter comes from the beloved apostle who was forever changed on the road to Damascus.
Paul was called as an apostle by the will of God. It was not something that Paul sought after or signed up for. All those who are called by Jesus Christ are chosen by Him. It is the anointing of God and His grace upon our lives that truly qualifies us. When we examine Paul’s past and how he tried to destroy the church we see a man who many could not conceived being used by God or writing a majority of the New Testament. But here we see the grace of God at work. God’s love, grace, and mercy is available to anyone who is willing to receive. When Paul’s eyes were open he served Jesus Christ with a zeal and commitment that few have known in our modern times.
The promise of life is eternal life that is found in Jesus Christ (John 3:16-18). God did not send His Son to condemn the world but that through Him the world might be saved. This was Paul’s message that burned in his heart. He was compelled to preach and share the truth of the gospel wherever he went. When someone is truly saved and born again by the Lord, they will have a burden to share the gospel. The more we share the gospel, the more the fire to share it will increase. The promise we have of life is not in this life but is eternal life. Eternal life begins the moment we come to saving faith in Jesus Christ. The moment our eyes are open to who Jesus truly is, is the moment that everything changes. In Christ we are a brand-new creation. Our citizenship is no longer in this world, but it is in heaven. All that we have is because of what Jesus has done at calvary.
Paul wrote this personal letter to Timothy. Paul had met Timothy on his first missionary journey and had asked Timothy to join him on his second missionary journey (Acts 16:1-3). Timothy had a reputation and was well spoken of. He was a young man who truly loved the Lord and Paul saw this through the Holy Spirit. Timothy would travel and minister with Paul and all the while was learning and being trained to be the man of God that God called him to be.
Being properly mentored and trained in the body of Christ is essential for ministry success. Jesus modeled this for us with the disciples. The disciples spent much time with Jesus and began to watch Christ minister. As time went on they were given opportunities to minister and learned first-hand how to carry out ministry. Eventually Jesus would entrust them with the work of the kingdom. This is the same case in the life of this young pastor. Paul has discipled and trained Timothy and now Paul writes this farewell letter to his spiritual son. Paul knows that his time is short writing from the dark prison cell he finds himself, but he also knows the importance of all he has invested in young Timothy.
Paul says my beloved son. Beloved is the Greek word agapetos and it means dearly loved and cherished; sometimes preferred above all others and treated with partiality. Paul felt this way because all the time Timothy and Paul spent together. Paul was not married and didn’t have any children. But Paul had invested his life into this man Timothy. Paul knew that his time in ministry would not carry on forever and that all he invested in Timothy was essential for the young man growing and becoming the man of God he was called to be. It is a wise practice to invest in the next generation of leaders. The greatest way we can do this is by spending time with them, having them watch us minister, giving them opportunities to minister, and then entrusting them to carry on the ministry. Young Timothy was beloved by Paul and Paul’s desire like any father was to see his spiritual son succeed amid the many trials and hardships he would face.
Paul writes grace, mercy, and peace. All of these are found in Jesus Christ. Grace is God’s unmerited favor. The mercy of God is the Greek word eleos and means leniency and compassion shown toward offenders by a person or agency of authority; often penal-related. The only reason any of us can experienced the mercy of God is because of the precious blood of Jesus. Jesus blood washes us clean. Jesus took the punishment and wrath we deserve for our sin. Because of Jesus we can approach the throne of grace with confidence and without fear because we know that we have been forgiven (Heb 4:16, 1 John 1:9). Peace is God’s supernatural peace. The peace of God is beyond human understanding (Phil 4:6-7). It is a peace that is found not in the absence of conflict, but in the heart of every storm and trial. It is the very presence of Almighty God that clothes and immerses our lives because of who Jesus is and what He has done. All three of these are available because of who Jesus is and what He has done at Calvary.
Grace, mercy, and peace come from God the Father but they flow through Jesus Christ. Jesus is the way, the truth, and the life (John 14:6). He is the door (John 10:9-16). All that we have is found in Jesus Christ. Paul knew this better than anyone and he knew the only foundation on which kingdom advancement could be build is Jesus Christ alone. When our faith and trust are in Jesus it is a foundation that will not be shaken. Paul opens this letter to young Timothy knowing that his time is short and every word is vital to seeing the kingdom of God continued to be advanced on the earth.
 Rick Brannan, ed., Lexham Research Lexicon of the Greek New Testament, Lexham Research Lexicons (Bellingham, WA: Lexham Press, 2020).  Rick Brannan, ed., Lexham Research Lexicon of the Greek New Testament, Lexham Research Lexicons (Bellingham, WA: Lexham Press, 2020).