I don't have the Sunday School lesson book yet, so this is a substitute lesson.
Peril in the Last Days
Theme: Standing firm in the faith.
Know: The last days are going to be awful times. The last days are today.
Think: We need to be prepared to defend the faith by knowing the Bible, true doctrine, and are able to answer questions challenging our faith.
Do: Study the Bible and its doctrine, study apologetics, and pray to be prepared in wisdom and grace.
Scripture: 2 Timothy 3:1-9
Notes and questions:
B1 Paul is writing to Timothy. This is one, if not the last, of Paul's writings before he dies for the faith (~68AD). This was written approximately 65-67 AD. Timothy was pastor at Ephesus.
- Character traits of the last days people--2 Timothy 3:1-5
- Actions of the last days people--2 Timothy 3:6-9
- Lovers of themselves (G5367) They are narcissists. A Narcissist believes themselves to be superior to others and demands the attention that they are special.
- DSM-5 criteria for narcissistic personality disorder include these features:
- Having an exaggerated sense of self-importance
- Expecting to be recognized as superior even without achievements that warrant it
- Exaggerating your achievements and talents
- Being preoccupied with fantasies about success, power, brilliance, beauty or the perfect mate
- Believing that you are superior and can only be understood by or associate with equally special people
- Requiring constant admiration
- Having a sense of entitlement
- Expecting special favors and unquestioning compliance with your expectations
- Taking advantage of others to get what you want
- Having an inability or unwillingness to recognize the needs and feelings of others
- Being envious of others and believing others envy you
- Behaving in an arrogant or haughty manner Source
- Development--often by parental over evaluation, in other words, lying about their ability, telling the child that THEY are special, more than other children. See the link below.
- Self test See here
- How parents raise a child to be a narcissist. See here, which includes a short test to check your parenting skills.
- How did the Lord Jesus handle people problems? He tells them, us, and me the truth.
- Nicodemus--over and over again the Lord Jesus spoke the truth to Nicodemus, even to the point of ignoring his question. John 3:1-21
- The Young ruler--again telling the truth to the dismay of the young ruler. Matthew 19:16-22
- The Pharisees and scribes--again telling the truth, which made them very angry. Matthew 23:29-33
- Tax collector and Pharisee--told the people that the tax collector--hated by all--went home justified. Luke 18:9-14
- Lovers of money--these put earning money above anything else in life. The have no empathy, sympathy, kindness, etc. This is avarice. Compare Luke 12:15, Romans 1:29, 2 Peter 2:14
- Boastful--bragging about themselves. They have a hard time listening to others. See Jude 1:16, 2 Peter 2:18, Psalm 10:3
- Arrogant--this is the motivator for being boastful. It was the first sin. It was the sin of satan. It is haughtiness. Proverbs 6:16-17, Psalm 10:4, Proverbs 8:14, 1 Timothy 3:6, etc.
- Abusive--this may be verbal, physical, genital, financial, spiritual, etc. or any combination. Abuse of any type is the opposite of love as taught in 1 Corinthians 13. The word is blasphemy and the context shows that it refers to blaspheming anyone including God.
- Disobedient to their parents--this doesn't refer to parental commands that are illegal as, "Go murder Jones." It refers to house rules and the commands given in the New Testament.
- Unthankful--especially towards God. People not thanking others for a kindness are also becoming more and more common. Ezekiel 22:7, Romans 1:20-21.
- Unholy--the word for holiness in Greek signifies a separation, both from what is evil and to what is good. Good and evil are defined by God in the Bible. These people then are the opposite. They are separated from what is good and to what is not good. Isaiah 5:20. See also Malachi 2:17.
- Without natural affection--that is, without love for anyone other than themselves. The word suggests "without natural love." Natural love would be the love of family, children, etc. where one would think there would be kindness and love. I would think it could also apply to friends when they turn against their them. Matthew 10:21
- Impossible to please--will not forgive or ask for forgiveness. Proverbs 30:15, 2 Peter 2:13-15
- False accusers--telling lies about another person to hurt their reputation. Acts 6:11-15, Matthew 26:59-60, Matthew 15:19
- Without self-control--do whatever they want and in many ways do not and cannot stop. 1 Samuel 20:30, Proverbs 16:32, 1 Corinthians 9:25
- Brutal--the word suggests something fierce and savage. When they fight, they fight with everything they got. It goes with a lack of self-control. Causing pain in others is enjoyable. This is senseless violence.Genesis 4:8 (1 John 3:12-15), Luke 11:49-51, 2 Kings 24:1-4
- Despise those who are good--they hate good, as defined by God, and thus will oppose God's standards and God's people verbally and/or physically. The idea is to be hostile, even to hate, good and good people. Isaiah 53:3, Luke 10:16, 1 Thessalonians 4:8, Luke 6:16
- Traitors--this is someone you trust, you then turns against you as Luke 6:16. A traitor can be one who turns against standards, rules, doctrine, God, people, family, friend, etc. How does one become a traitor? Something replaces their first love. They loved God; now they do not. Matthew 10:21,
- Reckless--impulsive, rash. It shows a disregard for others whether feelings or well being. These make decisions without thinking about the consequences. Acts 19:36. The opposite would be to think something out before acting or speaking.
- Conceited--is to think we are better than others. It is a form of bias, racism, even hate. They are not being truthful about themselves and their abilities (or lack thereof). Daniel 5:20, Psalm 10:4, Esther 3:5, Mark 12:38-39
- Lovers of pleasure rather than lovers of God--priorities do make a difference. Proverbs 21:17, Luke 8:14, 2 Thessalonians 2:12, Hebrews 11:26
- Having a form of godliness--outward only. They are religious and spiritual, but there is no change in character. They just pretend to be godly. Matthew 23:27, Matthew 6:2, Mark 7:6
B2 As we consider these character traits, let us share how people displayed this trait to us, how we might have done this trait, why God is against these traits, and how to avoid them.
B3 The rule of the Holy Spirit concerning these is--"having a form of godliness but denying its power. And from these people turn away!" (2 Timothy 3:5, EMTV)
B4 2 Timothy 3:6, have you ever heard this type of "preacher?" These "preachers" promise easy forgiveness or positive agreements for the sin. This is the type of preacher who just dismisses sin, dismisses guilt, makes someone feel good and loved by God without repentance.
B5 2 Timothy 3:7, what is missing in these evil preachers? Truth
B6 2 Timothy 3:8, what 3 character traits are listed about these fakes? Why should we be the exact opposite of them? Why don’t they care about the truth? How did they corrupt their mind? Reprobate means they have rejected the faith, thus they are disapproved and worthless.
B7 2 Timothy 3:9, how will these fake preachers be outed, shown to be false, to all?