“Remember that Jesus Christ of the seed of David was raised from the dead, according to my Gospel, wherein I suffer trouble, as an evil doer, even unto bonds; but the word of God is not bound” (II Timothy 2:8-9).
Bound: (Gr): (Deo): To bind literally or figuratively, Bonds
There is a perception in our time that the curtailments on the Word of God are unprecedented; but as bad as it may be getting with the attacks on the Word; we can take heart in knowing that the Word of God will never be bound by mere mortals for the Word of God is eternal.
It is helpful to always remember that the birthing of the Church did not occur in an idyllic time of great peace and prosperity; rather it was birthed under the heavy boot of the Roman Empire and Caesars who did not take kindly to the worship of other gods. So, we see, for example, the Apostle finding himself bound in a prison cell in Rome “suffering trouble as an evil doer” from whence it is commonly understood he wrote his Epistles to his son in the faith, Timothy, as Paul awaited martyrdom. Yet, as bound as he personally was, he boldly declares, “but the word of God is not bound”.
There was a reason for Paul’s enthusiasm and that reason was the word of God was being proclaimed right from the prison where he was confined. Writing to the Philippians he declares: “All the saints salute you, chiefly they that are of Caesar’s household” (Philippians 4:22). The Gospel was believed upon after hearing it from Paul even by Nero’s servants and attendants (cf. Philippians 1:12-13). Oh, what glorious liberty there is in proclaiming and receiving the word of God regardless of the circumstances.
The Word is Not Bound, because the word is not limited to a book that can be banned or burned, rather the word is in the heart of all who believe. What do the Scriptures say? “The word is nigh you, even in your mouth, and in your heart; that is the word of faith which we preach” (Romans 10:8, cf. Deuteronomy 30:14). There are millions today who live in countries where Bibles are banned; nevertheless, there are churches and Pastors over these bodies where Jesus is worshipped, glorified and the Gospel is heard every day. So, wherever we may find ourselves in life, we can always share our faith with whoever is open to receive the precious words of life. This is our heritage, this is the stuff of martyrs, this is the faith we preach passed down to us from the Apostles.
The Word is Not Bound, because as the Apostle clearly states in our text: “Remember that Jesus Christ of the seed of David was raised from the dead, according to my Gospel”. Jesus is the Word of God (cf. John 1:1; I John 1:1) and Jesus is alive, risen from the dead and Lord of all. Jesus is speaking to many hearts in the most restricted areas of the world today, and they are receiving Him into their hearts by faith and surrendering their lives to His will. The Kingdom of God is an ever-expanding, ever-advancing Kingdom that cannot be stopped by governments of men, political parties, or enemies of God (cf. Isaiah 9:7). The Word overcame the world, and He is alive today and will be forevermore.
It is interesting to study the nation of Israel and their experience with the Babylonian captivity. The whole nation was taken into captivity, but the word of the Lord was not bound with them. The Scriptures tells us “The word that came to Jeremiah from the Lord after Nebuzaradan, the Captain of the Guard, had let Jeremiah go from Ramah, when Nebuzaradan had taken him bound in chains among all that were carried away captive of Jerusalem and Judah which were carried away captive to Babylon” (Jeremiah 40:1). Here we see the Prophet bound in chains and taken to Ramah from Jerusalem; yet the word of the Lord came to him there. We can also look to Ezekiel and Daniel in Babylon proclaiming the word of the Lord in the midst of their captivity in a foreign land.
The Word is Not Bound must be received and believed among us. For of a truth as it is written, “The word is nigh you, even in your mouth and in your heart; that is the word of faith which we preach. That if you shall confess with your mouth the Lord Jesus and shall believe in your heart that God has raised Him from the dead, you shall be saved” (Romans 10:8-10). And they cannot take that away. Your testimony, your confession of faith, your mouth speaking the word of the Lord.