v14 Continue to tell these things to your people, so that they remember them. Tell them that they must not quarrel about words. Tell them seriously, because God hears you. To quarrel about words does not help anyone. But it destroys those people who listen.
v15 Always try to be the kind of person that God is happy about. Do everything that you can to be like that. Be a worker who has no reason to be ashamed of his work. Teach the true message correctly. v16 But stay away from people who talk about silly, wrong things. Those things do not help anyone and they do not come from God. Words like that cause people to do bad things. And those people will get worse all the time. v17 Words like that cause people who believe them to become like sick people. Those words cause people to get worse and worse. Hymenaeus and Philetus are people who talk like that. v18 They teach things that are different from the true message. They say that God has already caused all the dead people to become alive again. These men are confusing some Christians, so that those Christians do not know what to believe.
v19 But what God has done can never change. His work is strong, like the strong stones that people use under a big building. Those stones do not move, and they hold the whole building up. And God’s work has his mark on it. It is like a strong stone with these words on it: ‘The *Lord knows who his own people are’ (Numbers 16:5). And: ‘Everyone who calls himself the *Lord’s must stop doing wrong things’ (Isaiah 26:13).
v20 In a big house, there are different kinds of dishes. There are some dishes that people have made from gold or silver (another valuable metal). They use dishes like that only for special purposes. They do not let those dishes get dirty. There are also dishes that people have made from wood or clay (sticky material from the ground). They use those dishes for purposes that are not special. Those dishes may get very dirty. v21 It is like that with the *Lord’s people. If they make themselves completely separate from bad, dirty things, then they will be like dishes for special, clean purposes. They will be ready for God to use them. He is like the master of the house. They will be ready for him to use them for any good work.
v22 Young people often want very much to do bad things. Have nothing to do with those bad things. Always try to do what is right. Continue to believe God. Love other people. And always try to be friendly to other people. Try not to argue with them. All those people who really love the *Lord should do these things. Like you, those people pray to the *Lord and they are really good inside themselves.
v23 Stay away from people who want to talk about silly questions. They are fools. You know that those questions cause people to quarrel. v24 And the *Lord’s servant must not quarrel. Instead, he should be kind to everyone. He should be a good teacher. And he should be patient with people. v25 He should be kind to people who do not agree with him. He should teach them kindly what is correct. Maybe God will give them the chance to be sorry that they did not believe Christ. So then they may believe what is true. v26 And then they will start to think clearly. They will understand that *Satan has been using them. He has caused them to do what he wanted. So then those people can get free from *Satan’s power.