What did Paul mean referring "to be entangled in civilian affairs"?
2 Timothy 2:4
ESV - 4 No soldier gets entangled in civilian pursuits, since his aim is to please the one who enlisted him.
Community answers are sorted based on votes. The higher the vote, the further up an answer is.
While I am a fan of the ESV, I think your confusion could be cleared up by looking at this verse in the NASB: "No soldier in active service entagles himself in the affairs of everyday life, so that he may please the one who enlisted him as a soldier." Paul goes on to also use an analogy using athletes, and then farmers. So you can be pretty sure that the three examples: soldier, athlete, and farmer are all analogies. He's encouraging Timothy to stay focused on his mission.
No I don't think Paul was referring to a job because Paul himself was a tent maker along with preaching the Gospel. What he was doing was strengthening Timothy to embrace and endure sufferings and not to be caught up with the things of this world. When a soldier is enlisted in an army that individual has to be prepared at all time for war, they have to separate themselves from civilians and focus on fighting for their lives as well as for the life of others. So it is with Christians, we are enlisted in the army of Jesus Christ and our fight is against principalities and powers in high places and if we loose that focus and get caught up in this world, we will loose the fight, this is why Paul continued, in the same chapter, to say that those who competes in a race must abide by the rules. One of the rule for a Christian soldier is found in I John 2:15 "Do not love the world or the things in the world. If anyone loves the world, the love of the Father is not in him." That's what Paul was saying here. Hope this helps :)
All answers are REVIEWED and MODERATED.
Please ensure your answer MEETS all our guidelines.
A good answer provides new insight and perspective. Here are guidelines to help facilitate a meaningful learning experience for everyone.