Paul’s Instructions to Timothy on Teaching and Leadership – 1 Timothy 4-5

Just as Jesus warned of false teachers (Matthew 7:15), Paul warns Timothy while he was at Ephesus of such men in chapter four. As he exhorts Timothy in his teaching, Paul says in verse 12: “let no one despise you for your youth, but set the believers tan example in speech, in conduct, in love, in faith, in purity.” This is one of the passages that lead many to believe Timothy to be much younger than he probably was. Paul is speaking here in relative terms. Timothy was old enough by the time of this writing to have had much experience at teachings, having traveled a great deal with and without Paul to do so.

Ephesus-003In chapter five, Paul tells him that the church should take care of its widows, but those who have others to care for them should be taken care of by their own people — the right thing to do, of course. Verse 23 is used by some to excuse all sorts of alcohol use. The verse actually says “No longer drink only water, but use a little wine for the sake of your stomach and your frequent ailments.” The words “a little” are key here, and such wine was not so strong as what people drink today anyway. Water was often not very pure in many places, and anyone who had “frequent ailments,” as Timothy apparently did, would benefit from the substitution.

/Bob’s boy

Bible Reading Schedule for this month
Click links below to read or listen to audio of one of this week’s chapters in Colossians and Luke

1 Tim 1, 1 Tim 2, 1 Tim 3, 1 Tim 4, 1 Tim 5

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some images © V. Gilbert & Arlisle F. Beers

Please visit this site’s menu item “The Author’s Books” for info on the author’s books, website, and Facebook page.

All of my comments in this blog are solely my responsibility. When reading any commentary, you should always refer first to the scripture, which is God’s unchanging and unfailing word.

 

 

 

 

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Only One Gospel – Galatians 1-2

Paul addresses the Galatians in chapter one, beginning by establishing his authority as an apostle “not from men nor through man, but through Jesus Christ and God the Father.” We can infer, as has been the case elsewhere, that some had called his status as an apostle into question. It is clear from his writing that there were some that were teaching false doctrine, as he begins this chapter with a rebuke to them. He couldn’t have said it any plainer or stronger: “…even if we or an angel from heaven should preach to you a gospel contrary to the one we preached to you, let him be accursed.”

The ancient territory of Galatia, in central Asia Minor, surrounds modern Ankara, Turkey.

The ancient territory of Galatia, in central Asia Minor, surrounds modern Ankara, Turkey.

The words are just as relevant to us today. There are still false prophets. One need only surf the television channels for a short time to find one. There are those who preach health and wealth and almost anything that the gospel does not teach, sometimes throwing in a bit of the truth for good measure. We must guard against believing what we wish to be true preached by man and coming only from man.

In defending his apostleship, he begins a narrative of his conversion from a persecutor of the very church he now served — which he  continues in chapter 2. He even speaks of his confrontation with Peter in Galatians 2:11-14 over Peter “pulling back” from the Gentiles because he feared the circumcision party.

In verses 15-21, we learn that it is members of that party that must have been causing the strife in Galatia, which is, of course, the reason for his narrative. He wanted to reassure them of the gospel, and that they were not under the old law, as those teachers were trying to make them believe.  He tells them “through the law I died to the law, so that I might live to God. I have been crucified with Christ. It is no longer I who live, but Christ who lives in me…for if righteousness were through the law, then Christ died for no purpose.”

Bible Reading Schedule for this month
Click here to read or listen to audio of this week’s chapters in Mark and Galatians

/Bob’s boy
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some images © V. Gilbert & Arlisle F. Beers

Please visit this site’s menu item “The Author’s Books” for info on the author’s books, website, and Facebook page.

All of my comments in this blog are solely my responsibility. When reading any commentary, you should always refer first to the scripture, which is God’s unchanging and unfailing word.