v. 1. Paul, an apostle of Jesus Christ by the will of God, according to the promise of life which is in Christ Jesus,
v. 2. to Timothy, my dearly beloved son: Grace, mercy, and peace from God the Father and Christ Jesus, our Lord.
It is a solemn address with which the apostle opens his letter: Paul, an apostle of Christ Jesus by the will of God, for the proclamation of life which is in Christ Jesus, to Timothy, my beloved son. As in the first letter, so Paul here calls himself an apostle of Christ Jesus, purposely placing the stress on the office of Christ, through which the apostolic office is effective. Paul belonged to those first teachers of the New Testament Church that had been enlightened and equipped with an unusual measure of gifts for the work of founding this Church in all the world. The election of Paul to this office had not taken place on the basis of his own choice and desire, but by the will of God, who had chosen him and given his entire life a different direction through his conversion and subsequent call. He therefore held this office and performed its work not for any reasons of self-aggrandizement, but for the purpose of proclaiming, of announcing the true life in Christ Jesus, the life which follows and is dependent upon the preaching of the Word of Grace. The life which God intended for men from eternity, the life which was brought down upon the earth by the only-begotten Son of God, Joh_1:4; 1Jn_1:2, the life which we shall enjoy in its richest measure in eternity, Col_3:3-4; Gal_6:8; Rom_5:17, that is the life which is proclaimed in the Word, that is the content of all apostolic preaching. It is the life in Christ Jesus, for without Him there can be no true life. Having thus characterized his office and given a summary of his preaching, Paul addresses Timothy as his beloved son, with whom he was united in the bonds of a most cordial and fatherly love, 1Co_4:17; Php_2:20-22
The greeting of the apostle is identical with that of the first letter: Grace, mercy, peace from God the Father and Christ Jesus, our Lord. He that has received the reconciliation, the grace of God by faith, will also receive the assurance of the merciful love of God in Christ with full confidence, being fully convinced that the peace of God which passes all understanding is the sure gift of God to all that believe. Having been justified by faith, having become partakers of the grace and mercy of God, we have peace with God through our Lord Jesus Christ, Rom_5:1.