2 Timothy 2:13 Apparent contradiction

Hi folks. Can I get your thoughts?

2 Timothy 2:13 appears to contradict itself. What am I not understanding?

“But if we deny him
he will deny us.
If we are unfaithful
he remains faithful,
for he cannot deny himself.”

First it says he will deny us if we deny him. But then it appears to say that he will not deny us even if we are unfaithful

If we denounce him he will denounce us.

If we choose to reject the gift he has given us, he is faithful to continue to offer it should we want to accept it again.


Jesus is called ‘the stone’

He is consistent in character.

He reamins, for example, the loving Savior regardless of what others do.

Grace to you,


From Haydock’s Catholic Bible Commentary:

Ver. 13. If we believe not; i.e. if we refuse to believe in God, or if after having believed, we depart from our faith, the Almighty still continues faithful; he is still what he was. Our believing in him cannot increase his glory, nor can our disbelief in him cause any diminution thereof, since it is already infinite. (Estius) — The sense may be: when we renounce God, and refuse to believe in him, will he be less powerful to punish us? or, will his menaces be less true or less efficacious? He will effect his work without us, for he will infallibly bring about the salvation of his elect. (Bible de Vence)

If we reject God’s grace, then that grace is rejected.
However, God is ever merciful and God once again, will continues to offer us his grace.

So even the prodigal son can be saved.

God’s love is unconditional.

But there is a hell.

God says: “I did not come to condemn the world…I judge no one”.

But to the damned He says: “Depart from me, you accursed.”

If we reject Him, He respects our free will - He cannot force us to love Him, though He gives us all He can, even Himself and the partaking in the divine nature, in order for us to chose Him, and He loves us first so that we may love Him.

But if we are unfaithful, He remains faithful, because it is written: “I have loved you of an everlasting love.” So if we sin, He will not destroy us, but give us a time to repent and the necessary “auxiliating grace” for us to even be able to repent - “where sin abounds, grace abounds all the more”, “in weakness my power is made perfect”. If we repent, He is ready to forgive us. No, He goes after us. Who, having 99 sheep, leaves the flock to look for the one misbehaving sheep that ran unto darkness and danger? Is it not better by human logic to forget about that one and focus on the 99 remaining? But Christ goes looking for us in His faithfulness, He knocks at our door until we open, and He carries us back in loving kindness. “A penitent and contrite heart I will not refuse. I will not forsake you…behold. I have engraved you on the palms of my hands.”

The Son of Man is “a sign of contradiction”, never forget it :wink:

Thanks guys. That really helps.

My wife asked the same thing last night.

The first couplet shows that God does change, sort of, in that he allows our freewill to prevail over his desire that all be saved. Yet thisis not a true change for it is in God’s nature to allow us choice. He made us for love, not as robots.

The second couplet sets the contrast between our own inconsistent nature and God’s immutability. No one will go to Hell because God is fickle. They go to Hell for just the opposite reason, because God is constant.

I am with R C on this one.

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