Third in a series of studies of 2 Timothy 3:14-17
“All Scripture is given by inspiration of God, and is profitable for doctrine, for reproof,
for correction, for instruction in righteousness. that the man of God may be complete, thoroughly equipped for every good work” (2 Timothy 3:16-17).
Continuing his instruction to the young preacher Timothy, Paul tells him two more
points for which the scriptures are profitable: for reproof and for correction. While
these two words convey almost the same meaning in English, there was a distinction
in the original language.
“Reproof” means “correction, censure, or conviction” (Thayer), carrying with it the
idea of making a person aware of his unrighteous behavior. When one is reproved,
he is made aware of his sin.
“Correction” means “restoration to an upright or a right state, correction,
improvement” (Thayer), pointing more to the restorative aspect of this process.
After a person is made aware of his sin, he must take the steps given in scripture to
show that he is giving up his unrighteous behavior if he wants to please God.
Paul’s desire for Timothy is that he will be “a complete” man of God himself and also
that he will be able to assist those whom he teaches in living the way God wants
them to live and in accomplishing the work in which every Christian must be
involved (“equipped for every good work”).