What does 2 Timothy 4:18 mean?
ESV: The Lord will rescue me from every evil deed and bring me safely into his heavenly kingdom. To him be the glory forever and ever. Amen.
NIV: The Lord will rescue me from every evil attack and will bring me safely to his heavenly kingdom. To him be glory for ever and ever. Amen.
NASB: The Lord will rescue me from every evil deed, and will bring me safely to His heavenly kingdom; to Him be the glory forever and ever. Amen.
CSB: The Lord will rescue me from every evil work and will bring me safely into his heavenly kingdom. To him be the glory forever and ever! Amen.
NLT: Yes, and the Lord will deliver me from every evil attack and will bring me safely into his heavenly Kingdom. All glory to God forever and ever! Amen.
KJV: And the Lord shall deliver me from every evil work, and will preserve me unto his heavenly kingdom: to whom be glory for ever and ever. Amen.
Verse Commentary:
Paul concludes his thoughts from the previous verse. Even though he fully expects to die under Roman imprisonment, he still speaks of God rescuing him. Just as Paul had been delivered from Alexander (2 Timothy 4:14) and in his first legal defense (2 Timothy 4:17), God's will would be perfectly fulfilled, no matter what the earthly outcome. Paul was confident of his salvation and his eternal destiny.

As a result, Paul could praise God, even in prison. Though he expected to soon die, he could still say, "To him be the glory forever and ever. Amen." His life had been given in service to the Lord, the One whom he would soon see face-to-face. Paul's story would soon fulfill his words in Philippians 1:21: "For to me to live is Christ, and to die is gain." He would not simply die and become non-existent or endure soul sleep, but would immediately be in the presence of the Lord Jesus Christ (2 Corinthians 5:6–8; Philippians 1:23).
Verse Context:
Second Timothy 4:9–18 updates Timothy on Paul's ministry partners, as well as his antagonists. Some of Paul's friends have been sent out on missionary causes. Others, such as Demas, have turned their back on Paul and abandoned him. Only Luke, the author of the Gospel of Luke and the book of Acts, is still with him. Paul specifically warns Timothy about Alexander the coppersmith. Paul knows full well that he will not survive this trip through the Roman legal system. Rather than despair, he still rejoices in his salvation and praises God.
Chapter Summary:
Paul summarizes his instructions to Timothy, through a practical application of his prior teachings. Timothy is "charged" by Paul to defend his faith, against all error and false teaching, at all times. Timothy will face resistance. Paul also openly admits that his life is nearly over, so Timothy will need to soldier on without him. After this, Paul gives some personal updates about his situation, giving Timothy a few instructions and advice about particular people. Paul makes a final appeal for Timothy to visit him, then closes his letter—as he will close his life—focused on the grace of God.
Chapter Context:
Paul summarizes his instructions to Timothy, through a practical application of his prior teachings. Timothy is "charged" by Paul to defend his faith, against all error and false teaching, at all times. Timothy will face resistance. Paul also openly admits that his life is nearly over, so Timothy will need to soldier on without him. After this, Paul gives some personal updates about his situation, giving Timothy a few instructions and advice about particular people. Paul makes a final appeal for Timothy to visit him, then closes his letter—as he will close his life—focused on the grace of God.
Book Summary:
Second Timothy is the last New Testament letter written by Paul. Paul writes these words while awaiting execution by Rome. At this time, around AD 67, Timothy was leading the church in Ephesus. Paul writes to Timothy in order to encourage him. Paul is facing the worst of all hardships: his own impending death. So, he encourages Timothy to stand strong in his faith, with a reliance on the written Word of God. This letter echoes many of the themes Paul uses in his other letters.
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