There is a place for rightly dividing the word of truth, as we study. 2 Timothy 2:15 made us understand that only when a man does this, can he truly be approved by God to represent Him. Before I go into what today’s post is about, I’ll give a brief explanation on why 2 Timothy 2:15 says what it says.
When we are believers who do not pay strict attention to what the written Word of God says, we would only end up conforming to the world’s standards, because the renewal of the mind is first accessed by studying the word. The word of God is the highest authority of every believer and only when we know what it says and live by it, can we be approved of God to effectively represent Him on earth. (Romans 12:2)
In the previous verses of this chapter, Apostle Paul talks about how the church and Timothy, in particular, should remember the tenets of the faith: that when we share in Christ’s suffering, we reign with Him. But if we deny and disown Him, such will He do to us (2 Timothy 2: 12). He also went ahead to admonish them to avoid controversies that undermine the faith of the hearers (verse 14). In verse 15, which is our focus, he tells them “Study to show thyself approved unto God, a workman who needeth not to be ashamed, rightly dividing the word of truth” (KJV). The amplified version (AMP) uses the words “accurately handling and skillfully teaching the word of truth.” This is the point we are driving at.
In Matthew 24, Jesus gives a full breakdown of all the things to watch out for, against the end time and false prophecy and teachings fall under these things (Matt 24:11). But it is so easy to either be victims or perpetrators of this falseness when we ourselves have no understanding of the word. I know in my blog posts, I emphasize the need to study the word but 2 Timothy 2:15 is telling us it goes beyond studying, we must also rightfully divide, accurately handle, and correctly analyze this word of truth. Otherwise, we would only make it out to be what it is not.
Unscriptural vain talk only makes people more ungodly. This is why it is important to handle the word of God rightly (2 Tim 2:16). I believe there are two possible interpretations of this verse, which are: “RIGHTLY HANDLING” and “RIGHTLY DIVIDING”
The Word of God is the sword of every believer (Heb. 4:12; Eph. 6:17). Therefore, we ought to handle it as such. We ought to use it for its purpose…to rule over sin and cast down imaginations and any high thing that exalts itself against the knowledge of God (Psalm 119:11; 2 Cor. 10:5). The word of God is both a weapon for the safety of a believer and also a tool to destroy the works of the enemy (darkness) in a believer. And if we do know that we hold a sword, we would be better alert…knowing that we carry a deadly weapon. This is how to rightly handle the word.
This implies dissecting the word rightly. If you are given an orange to divide, whether you divide it into 2 or 4 or 8 pieces, the most important part is that it cuts straight through the orange otherwise, you’ll be giving one person more than the other. A similar thing goes with the scriptures. You must be able to cut accurately through the word of God. Do not begin on the matter of salvation saying it is by grace, only to wrap up by saying a man can work for it. That would not be a right division of the word. Make sure you stay in line with the context and setting of the scripture and pay rapt attention to what the Holy Spirit wants to reveal in the scripture at hand, to get a proper interpretation. This is how to rightly divide the word.
It is only when a believer can rightly handle and divide the word that he can skillfully teach it. (2 Tim 2:15 AMP)
The issue of rightly dividing (or handling) the word of truth is very important. That a Christian can be pushed into ungodliness by wrong handling of the word is enough reason for us to see how important this is.
Again, when you do study the word, have it in mind to get a correct interpretation of the word. If you are receiving a particular interpretation of the verse, the Holy Spirit within you would confirm this to you, still with scripture.
Summarily, the word of God is not one to be taken with levity. It is to be handled with utmost care. Furthermore, the interpretation of it must be accurate, starting off on the right foot and following through with that to arrive at the right end, through the help of the Holy Spirit