Weak women. Are you one? Would you even know it, if you are?
In the last days (all the days from the ascension of Jesus Christ until his return), people will become lovers of self. They will do all the bad things. (Just look at 2 Timothy 3:2-4) But the worst of the worst is this:
They have the appearance of godliness but they deny its power. (2 Timothy 3:5)
When you look at them, they have it together. They’re in church on Sunday, they’re in ladies Bible study, sitting next to you. They’re singing in the choir, teaching Sunday School, serving on committees and going on mission trips. All these people who appear godly, but never allow the power of the Holy Spirit to transform their lives on the inside. Ouch. Chris calls that the unregenerate church member. It’s so easy to go about our business, assuming that the people we go to church with are saved. But that’s just not true. Sadly, there are a lot of church members who have never actually become new creations. (Could that be one reason church can be so hard sometimes?) These people joined the church as if they were joining a book club. Sign me up, they said. No regeneration. No transformation. No power! They have the appearance of godliness but they deny its power.
(Can I just say something? If that just struck a nerve with you, if you thought, “That’s me!” when I described that unregenerate church member…It is never too late to be changed. It’s never too late to fully accept the power that the Holy Spirit offers to those he transforms! Please let me know if that’s you so I can pray with you and pray for you and help you get pointed in the right direction.)
As if all that didn’t step on our toes enough, Paul keeps going. There’s a big problem here in Paul’s day, and it is still a big problem in our day. Weak women. False teachers. Paul has written pages and pages now to Timothy, warning him of the false teachers that are so prevalent in Ephesus. And if you think for three and a half seconds, I bet you can come up with a few false teachers in our day too. But here’s the problem with these false teachers- they needed a way to spread their lies. So guess who they went after? The women. Women were the doorway to the home back then. And for the most part, I’d say that’s still true today. In most homes and families, the woman is the one who keeps the calendar, makes scheduling decisions, oversees the day-to-day happenings of the family. She’s the one who looks after the children most of the time, does the shopping and keeps everyone in line. And most of the time, it’s the woman who thinks about spiritual matters.
But actually, these false teachers didn’t just worm their way into households looking for women, they wormed their way into households looking for weak women. Paul describes these women in verse 6 as women who are” burdened with sins and led astray by various passions, always learning and never able to arrive at a knowledge of the truth.” These false teachers look for weak women who don’t really know what they believe or why they believe what they believe, women who are trapped in sin or just plain old led astray by various passions. Maybe their passion is their work or their kids or their friends or their hobbies. Whatever these passions are, they’re distracting these women from arriving at a knowledge of the truth!
So check yourself, women. Are you weak? Is there a worm in your house? Are you believing the false teaching being whispered in your ear because you simply don’t know the difference between a truth and a lie or because you’re so busy, wrapped up in your various passions? Once these worms, these false teachers, get through you into your household, they will go after your children, after your husband, after everything precious to you. And remember, they don’t scream lies in your ear, they whisper lies that are so subtle you don’t even realize they’re lies.
You must be so careful who you listen do, dear woman. You must be so careful what teaching you allow into your home.
Hang with me – next week we are finishing up Paul’s letters to Timothy in 2 Timothy 4. I promise, you’re gonna want to stick around for that one! There are some things we need to watch out for!
I want to end this blog on a positive note, on a precious promise, but the gravity of the subject matter we’ve been working through is weighing heavy on my heart. I don’t want you to miss the fact that there are unregenerate church members who look like they have it all together, but inside they’re an un-saved hot mess. Ask God if that’s you. Ask him if you’re a weak woman who’s been letting worms into your home. Ask Him to show you and He will. So the precious promise I will leave you with is this:
If any of you lacks wisdom, let him ask God, who gives generously to all without reproach, and it will be given him. (James 1:5)