The Love of Money – 1 Timothy 6

In chapter 6, Paul speaks to Timothy of those who are bondservants. This would include those who were akin to indentured servants, as well as those who were actual slaves. Slavery abounded in those times, and the Roman empire was built upon it. Whatever lot they were in, Paul’s point was that they should regard their masters as n”worthy of honor” and conduct themselves in such a manner that unbelievers would see that Christians were honorable themselves.

Rembrandt's Timothy and his grandmother, 1648.

Rembrandt’s Timothy and his grandmother, 1648. (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

Paul urges Timothy to teach and be an example to all that godliness and humility are worthy characteristics, and much more important than anything of the world. He says in verse 6 that “godliness with contentment is great gain,  for we brought nothing into the world, and we cannot take anything out of the world.” And it is in verse 10 that the oft misquoted verse about money is given “the love of money is the root of all kinds of evil.” He closes in verse 20, repeating the theme that has been stated in scripture so often about not leaning on one’s own understanding: “avoid the irreverent babble and contradictions of what is falsely called “knowledge,” for by professing it some have swerved from the faith.

/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 6, 2 Tim 1, 2 Tim 2, 2 Tim 3, 2 Tim 4

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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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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

___________________

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.

 

 

 

 

Qualifications for Deacons and Overseers – 1 Timothy 3

In the third chapter of Paul’s first letter to his young charge, Paul talks about the qualities that should be found in men who serve as elders and deacons. Referring to them here as overseers, Paul says that elders should be the husband of one wife, above reproach, hospitable, and (among other things) able to manage his household well. Otherwise, he says, how can they be expected to care for God’s church?

Painting of a Russian Orthodox deacon leading ...

Painting of a Russian Orthodox deacon leading an ektenia (litany). (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

The qualities he lists for deacons are very similar, and notice that how their wives conduct themselves is judged to be important as well. The role of women in the Lord’s church is not one to be taken lightly; and it is (unfortunately) often under-valued by men and women alike. In the case of the wives of deacons and elders, one can see that in a well-functioning congregation, these women play a critical role in assuring the instruction of the young, caring for men and women of all ages, and instructing and leading young women in their walk with the Lord. Indeed, it is a fact that the Lord’s church could not function properly at all without the aid of godly women.

/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

___________________

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.

 

 

 

 

Paul’s Opening to Timothy – 1 Timothy 1-2

In Paul’s first letter to Timothy, he calls him “my true child in the faith.”  paul had great affection for Timothy, and had entrusted him with much important work. He had sent him to the Thessalonians when he had been concerned about their faith. He had left him at Ephesus, where one of his most cherished bodies of brethren dwelled. Now his encouragement for his young companion in this letter comes not only with discussion of the mistakes and sins of those they both know, but also with instruction for those things the brethren will most need from Timothy.

Rembrandt's Timothy and his grandmother, 1648.

Rembrandt’s Timothy and his grandmother, 1648. (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

Chapter two contains scripture that is most often misunderstood, and even maligned or flatly ignored — especially in this age. In the middle of telling Timothy how men should behave, he talks about how women should adorn themselves modestly. Of course, dressing modestly is certainly expected of both men and women even today. But the description Paul gives here is a warning against the way that women were dressing and behaving in those days as part of a “new Roman woman” movement of the day.

The movement was one that encouraged such women to both dress and behave in a sexually provocative manner, as well as assert themselves into situations that were taboo for the times. The admonishment for women not to teach or exercise authority over a man (verse 12) clearly refers to the assembly (worship) — not in everyday life. This can be seen from the context, which is set in verse 8.

/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

___________________

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.

 

 

 

 

A Noble Task – (1 Timothy)

As is the case with most of his epistles, Paul’s first letter to Timothy is the subject of much speculation and some disagreement. Some scholars believe that Paul wrote this letter toward the end of the Rome imprisonment that occurred in the final chapters of the Book of Acts. Others are convinced that Paul was released after two years there, and that this first letter to Timothy was written after that release and before a second, final imprisonment in Rome.

English: Ananias restoring the sight of Saint Paul

English: Ananias restoring the sight of Saint Paul (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

There is some secular evidence to support a fourth missionary journey, including writings by Clement of Rome, who some say was a friend to the apostle. None of this comes from inspired scripture, of course. But in 1 Timothy 1:3, Paul tells his young friend “as I urged you when I was going to Macedonia, remain at Ephesus so that you may charge certain persons not to teach any different doctrine…” Of course, Paul could be talking about a previous trip to Macedonia, but it seems more likely that he is speaking of a fairly recent occurrence. Either way, the date of the letter is generally accepted as from 62-64 A.D. (almost certainly no later than 65 A.D.).

Paul covers several points with Timothy in this letter. Foremost of course is the saving grace of our Lord Jesus Christ. He also addresses the problem of false doctrine, and the urgency of teaching others the right way to both worship and to serve God. Paul recognized the importance of the local body of the church at each location being unified and caring for one another. But in chapter two, he wants Timothy to instill in them a different attitude toward the rest of the world, urging “that supplications, prayers, intercessions, and thanksgivings be made for all people, for kings and all who are in high positions, that we may lead a peaceful and quiet life, godly and dignified.”

English: Head-piece to the second epistle of P...

English: Head-piece to the second epistle of Paul the apostle to Timothy, vignette with an altar and incense burner (2 Timothy 3:5); letterpress in two columns below and on verso. 1800. Inscriptions: Lettered below image with production detail: “P J de Loutherbourg del”, “J Heath direx.” and publication line: “Pubd. by T Macklin, Fleet Street London”. Print made by James Heath. Dimensions: height: 490 millimetres (sheet); width: 390 millimetres (sheet). (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

Paul also recognizes the fact that Timothy’s youthfulness may sometimes be an impediment to being taken as seriously as he needs to be. But he advises him to overcome that with godly living, abstaining from youthful passions and irreverent speech, and just generally being a prime example of a child of God. He also outlines how the church should care for its widows, as well as limits for such responsibility.

One of the most important matters that Paul instructs Timothy about is the qualifications for, and expectations of, overseers (or elders), as well as those of deacons (1 Timothy 3). All over the world today, this chapter is used as a blueprint for choosing men among the local church that will “shepherd the flock” among them. As he says, “if anyone aspires to the office of overseer, he desires a noble task.”

Young men of every congregation today need to be constantly reminded (yes, and taught and trained) on the importance of these areas of their lives. There is nothing so vital to the future of the Lord’s church as the nurturing and grooming of godly men to assume those roles when they are ready. It is an awesome responsibility that such a man takes on and, more often than not, it is a thankless job. But we know how important it is to God because of Jesus’ words to Peter in John 21:17 before he ascended – “Feed my sheep.”

(This year’s reading plan for Luke, Acts, and 1 and 2 Chronicles averages just 15 verses per day – 5 days per week!)
Schedule for this week

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

Please note: I did not design the reading plan that I am following in my blog.  All of my comments in this blog, however, are solely my responsibility.  When reading ANY commentary, you should ALWAYS refer first to the scripture, which is God’s unchanging and unfailing word. Reading schedules, as well as a link to the site where you can get the reading plan that I’m currently following for yourself can be found on the “Bible Reading Schedules” page of my website at http://graceofourlord.com.

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