My long time friend and Bible Teacher, Doug Miller, shared a passage with me recently. Even though I have written a book on I & II Timothy, (II Timothy 3: 1-4) really gripped me as he read it. “But understand this: In the last days terrible times will come. For men will be lovers of themselves, lovers of money, boastful, arrogant, abusive, disobedient to parents, ungrateful, unholy, unloving, unforgiving, slanderous, without self control, brutal, without love of good, traitorous, reckless, conceited, lovers of pleasure rather than lovers of God, having a form of Godliness but denying it’s power. HAVE NOTHING TO DO WITH THESE PEOPLE.”
Immediately I went to work on the exegesis of the passage and it has really held on to my heart. The context is layered. “Know this, in the final period of time”, (chalepoi) A REDUCING OF SPIRITUAL POWER WILL REDUCE YOUR STRENGTH AND MAKE THE NAVIGATION OF YOUR LIFE DANGEROUS.
What causes this loss of power putting us into a spiritual danger zone? The answer comes at the end of verse 4: “having a form of Godliness but denying it’s power.”
First, Godliness is (eusibius) meaning the virgin birth, sinless life, death, resurrection, ascending into Heaven, the Holy Spirit descending on the Day of Pentecost AND MY INVOLVEMENT IN THE ADVANCEMENT OF THESE TRUTHS.
Second, an essential part of Godliness is the belief that God works in a supernatural and miraculous sphere and function. BOTTOM LINE–at the end of time preachers and teachers will find it easier to boil down salvation to a quick fix way to feel better while not introducing people to the supernatural power of the miraculous. Not doing so will weaken us, making life dangerous to navigate.