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Why did Paul have Timothy bring him the cloak, scrolls and parchments in 2 Tim 4:33?

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  • Why did Paul have Timothy bring him the cloak, scrolls and parchments in 2 Tim 4:33?

    In 2 Timothy 4:13 Paul writes to Timothy requesting “…When you come, bring the cloak that I left with Carpus at Troas, and my scrolls, especially the parchments….”

    What is the application here for us in this seemingly unimportant comment? Does this contains a message from the Holy Spirit for us today? Of course it does. We must always remember that ALL Scripture is God-breathed and is useful for teaching, rebuking, correcting, and training in righteousness. (2 Timothy 3:16) Paul mentions three items here, and urges Timothy to remember to carry with him. The Bible often mentions symbolic items in sets of three to illustrate the operation of the Trinity in our spiritual lives.

    THE CLOAK - Is an outer overcoat worn during a storm. In the bible this kind of garment relates to the work of the Holy Spirit in our lives, transforming our behavior - the Bible often symbolizes sanctification of our outer behavior with garments or clothing (see, for example, Zechariah 3:3-5; Isaiah 61:3-10; Matthew 22:11-14). It reminds us, though, that the new life that the HOLY SPIRIT gives us covers everything else and protects us from the storms of life – the trials we face in this world.

    Paul left this in Troas, which was an important city for his missionary journeys – it was the point from which he launched his ministry into Macedonia at the Holy Spirit’s direction (Acts 16:8-12; 2 Corinthians 2:12). Troas was one of the last places he visited at the end of his ministry, to reunite with his travel companions (see Acts 20:5-7). Troas was a place of great beginning and successful conclusions for Paul’s ministry. It was the place where he raised Eutychus from the dead.

    This amplifies the point about the operation of the Holy Spirit in our lives. The Spirit, according to his initiative, should lead our outreach. The Spirit also brings us home, brings us back to the place of fellowship and on toward our final destination in eternity.

    The cloak had remained in the care of “Carpus,” a brother in the Lord whom the Bible mentions nowhere else. His name, however, means “fruitful.” Spiritual fruit is the primary objective of the Holy Spirit indwelling us – fruit in terms of souls brought to the Lord (Luke 13:6-10; John 15:8,16; Philippians 1:22; Colossians 1:6), and fruit in terms of sanctification or godly character (see Matthew 7:16-18; Matthew 12:33; Luke 3:8; Galatians 5:22-23; Ephesians 5:9; Philippians 1:11; Colossians 1:10). This connects nicely with the symbol of the cloak (sanctification) and the city of Troas (beginning and end of ministry).

    THE SCROLLS - Refer to the written Law, which remind about GOD THE FATHER whose words and commandments are eternal. See these verses as well: Isaiah 29:18; Isaiah 30:8; Isaiah 34:16; Jeremiah 36:2-32; Ezekiel 2:9; Daniel 12:4. This refers to the eternal words of the Father, given as law and prophecy (judgments). Ezekiel was told to “eat the scroll” (see Ezekiel 3:1-11), which speaks of us taking his word and his commands into our hearts, assimilating them into our identity. In the book of Revelation, no one was worthy to open the scroll except the Lamb of God (Revelation 5:2-10). Jesus opens the Father’s words for us (Revelation 5:9-10; Luke 24:45).

    THE PARCHMENTS - These were usually made from sheepskin or goatskin - and refer to the Lamb of God, Jesus Christ, who died for us. These skins were soaked in special mixtures and then stretch out in the hot sun, as thin and dry as possible. This reminds us of JESUS dying on the cross in the hot son, suffering from thirst, as he bore our sins. Today we receive the operation of the blood of Jesus in our lives, and it brings us forgiveness, healing, and victory over sin.

    ESPECIALLY - This word points us prophetically to the fact that the blood of Jesus is the starting place for our spiritual lives, the centerpiece of our salvation. Jesus is the Cornerstone. We receive the Holy Spirit through him, because of his death for us, and we can live in fellowship with the Father through Jesus as well – everything in our spiritual lives depends completely on coming through Christ.

  • #2
    Type in the title. I should have said 2 Tim 4:13. Can someone fix that please?


    • #3
      Or... he was cold, he needed to write the new testament epistles (Pauline, of course) and he needed his reference material - the Old Testament.
      John 14:6
      Jesus answered, "I am the WAY and the TRUTH and the LIFE, no one comes to the Father except through Me."


      • #4
        I'm sure there was a reason for that particular moment. What you described is probably the application for that particular moment. But we also need to consider that all scripture is inspired - and has it's Spiritually application for the Church today - yes, even seemingly random details like this one. It's common sense to dress warm in a cold place :-)