|Lois and Eunice
were known by the Apostle Paul for their true, unfeigned, genuine trust
in God. The faith they possessed was an ever present indwelling force in
their lives. By their example and teaching, these Jewish women prepared
Timothy, Eunice’s son, to receive that same conviction in the existence
and providence of the Creator God.
They began teaching the Hebrew Scriptures to Timothy while he was a baby. Timothy was prevented by his Greek father from being circumcised. This meant he was excluded from the religious life of his maternal heritage. But his mother and grandmother made sure that Timothy knew God through the Scriptures.
We can speculate that Eunice was left a widow who had to earn the family’s living while the grandmother Lois had the daily care of young Timothy. Single parenthood is always difficult and doubly so when the family is cut off by racial and religious bias from those who could ease their circumstances. This family learned to trust God by relying upon his grace---his promise to care for the widow and orphan who call on him.
We can imagine how comforting the Good News that the Messiah had come would be to this small family. The words of the prophets had come to pass. Through Jesus, the Son of God and the Son of Man, they---Lois and Eunice---women!---could receive the Holy Spirit. They and Timothy, half Greek, could become heirs of the promise to Abraham. Through believing that Jesus is the Son of God and receiving the promised Holy Spirit, all three now had a spiritual extended family. They could belong to the household of God and have the fellowship of other people of faith. They were no longer alone. They knew the Scriptures so well that they were able to understand when Paul explained how these same Scriptures spoke of Jesus.
The instruction these two women gave Timothy provided him with the foundation of Bible knowledge that enabled him to receive advanced training from Paul, trained under Gamaliel. Timothy was then entrusted with the responsibility of training others.
Lois and Eunice remind us that we should not underestimate or undervalue the spiritual influence of mothers on the church Jesus is building.
References: All the Women of the
Bible by Edith Deen; The New Strong’s Expanded Exhaustive Concordance of
the Bible; II Timothy chapters one through four; Acts 16:1-3
For the Scripture References and related
Bible Study Guide, go to Bible Study
Guide: Lois and Eunice, Fan into Flame the Gift of God.