1 Timothy 1 – I Better Watch Out!

v3-7: Some men who want to be teachers liked to speculate and discuss things that went beyond God’s Word and lead to “fruitless discussion.” I recommend that we avoid people who like to show off their knowledge because they will eventually advocate their pet theories (speculations) and gradually or abruptly stray from the Word, gradually leading to fruitless discussions (v6). When considering pastors/teachers/preachers, I always look for love for who they are teaching as verse 5 mentions.

Info about verse 4:

The arguments about genealogies seem to be about the law and mixed up with myths, so that the genealogical records were part of the myth and endless stories that had nothing to do with Christ or the gospel:

The expression “myths and genealogies” is one. It must not be divided, as if Paul were thinking, on the one hand, of myths, and on the other, of genealogies. The apostle refers undoubtedly to man-made supplements to the law of God (see verse 7), mere myths or fables (2 Tim. 4:4), old wives’ tales (1 Tim. 4:7) that were definitely Jewish in character (Titus 1:14). Measured by the standard of truth, what these errorists taught deserved the name myths. As to material contents these myths concern genealogical narratives that were largely fictitious.

If you have ever read Jewish Haggadah, it is the most creative kind of biblical exegesis that makes even the weirdest modern day false teachings seem quite tame. From the smallest little idea found somewhere in the Bible they could erect long descriptive claims that had nothing to do with the text or even the Bible. It is fascinating if it were not actually destructive:

We feel at once that here we have been introduced into the realm of typically Jewish lore. It is a known fact that from early times the rabbis would “spin their yarns”—and endless yarns they were!—on the basis of what they considered some “hint” supplied by the Old Testament. They would take a name from a list of pedigrees (for example, From Genesis, I Chronicles, Ezra, Nehemiah), and expand it into a nice story. Such interminable embroideries on the inspired record were part of the regular bill of fare in the synagogue, and were subsequently deposited in written form in that portion of The Talmud which is known as Haggadah. (NEW TESTAMENT COMMENTARY Exposition of The Pastoral Epistles, William Hendriksen and Simon J. Kistemaker)

Note: As a teacher of the Word, I am ever mindful of this danger for myself, and, although I have a few ideas regarding some issues, I pray and stay close to what the Scriptures say to support whatever I think may be true. All teachers are vulnerable in this area, but realizing vulnerability makes one less vulnerable. If I ever state something and it can be shown by the Scriptures to be wrong, I will quickly and readily recant. Another thing I try to always do is identify a statement as being “my opinion” rather than “God-breathed,” meaning the reader should realize it may be off. It is a fair warning that Christian authors, speakers, and TV preachers rarely give which bothers me. I know that I must stand before God Himself and give an account for everything I teach (James 3:1).

v8-11: This says that the Law was not made for the righteous but for people who practice bad things. They are described as lawless, rebellious, and ungodly. This does NOT mean these people are not loved by God and cannot be saved because many have been saved over the centuries.

v13-16: Paul explains how wrong and misguided he was, even admitting he was the worst of all because he knew more about God than the average person, yet he was still far from the Truth. Then he gives glory to Jesus for how much mercy He had toward him.

v18: “Fight the good fight.” This encourages all believers to resist doing and thinking wrong and being pleasing to our Creator. This is a battle between the forces of good and evil, and we are caught between. Each day we have thoughts that we must wage war against. In addition, a person or group may oppose the godliness in us or oppose some godly thing we are doing. So do not be surprised when temptations and persecutions come our way. It is part of our training and gives us opportunities to reflect God’s goodness and glory to unsaved people. So be sure to see God’s hand in all that we experience, and share with others the great things that God has done for us….until He calls us home.

1 Timothy 2: A politically incorrect chapter for both conservatives and liberals!

v1-3: We are urged to pray for ALL those in authority, including our king (president) so we can have a peaceful life.

v4: God desires all people to be saved.

v5: “…there is one mediator between God and men, the man Christ Jesus.” This means that if we want to petition (pray to) God, there is no other person or name by whom we use to reach Him. A mediator is one who stands between two parties or people and brings them together allowing each side to communicate their thoughts via the mediator. According to the Word, only Jesus has this authority. There are no other Scriptures that allow other names of people to be used in this manner. If other names are used, it detracts from Jesus and brings major deception. I wonder how He feels when some people use other names to approach God? Especially considering all that He did for us to break down that barrier between God and man! It’s not like He is not available to us, right?

If we use as mediators the names of people who have lived in the past, then these people are like God because they can hear thousands of prayers all at once from those people praying. I cannot believe that any human apart from Jesus can hear thousands of prayers at the same time like God can. There is no Biblical evidence for this. It is always dangerous and, shall I say blasphemous, to elevate mere humans to God’s level. At one point in His ministry, Jesus named one human name that was the greatest to live on the earth in history. Surely if anyone could be prayed to it would be this one. But I’ve never heard of anyone praying to him. His name is John the Baptist. There have been many heroes in history – Moses, Gideon, David, Abraham, Joseph, the eleven Apostles, Luke, Mary, Elijah, Elisha, Noah, Rahab, Enoch, Joshua, and Caleb. But none of these were identified by Jesus as the greatest. Moses was the most humble, but the Baptist was the greatest. Even the priesthood was cancelled when Jesus rose from the dead and the veil in the Temple (which was the Old Covenant barrier between God and mankind) split open. The whole Book of Hebrews explains why priests as go-betweens are no longer part of God’s Covenant. Jesus Himself is the Temple and the go-between (mediator). Ever wonder why Jerusalem and its Temple was utterly flattened in 70 AD? It was God’s judgment against Israel for rejecting the Messiah which Jesus foretold in Matthew 24 and Luke 21. Since then, there has been no physical Temple and no animal sacrifices. This should send a loud message to people concerning the identity of Jesus Christ.

v6: Reveals that Jesus was born at the “proper time.” I’ve often wondered what this means. The only thoughts I’ve been able to have is that the perfect time in history would produce more believers that any other time would have, and all the prophecies about the Messiah could be fulfilled.

v8: Paul encourages us to lift up holy hands as we pray. Some Christians have trouble lifting hands to pray or to worship. The Bible in both OT and NT says it is good to do. It demonstrates and humble attitude and a willingness to surrender all to God.

v9-10: The Word recognizes an innate weakness in females – emphasis on outer beauty (probably because men emphasize this too much). So the Word tells women to be modest with their appearance and to build up a reputation for doing good works which is true godliness (or beauty) in God’s eyes. This will attract a good man rather than a mere luster who will not really love the woman over time.

Application for Today: Girls, how do you present yourself to guys? The way you dress reveals much about how you want people to view you. If you “flash a lot of flesh,” you may attract men, but you need a man who loves your inner personality, not merely your outer shell. All females desire a deep, loving relationship. It seems odd to me when I see women present themselves otherwise. I am not speaking against people’s right to dress they way they want. I am simply talking about applying wisdom and challenging folks to perceive what they are seeking.

v11-15: Adam was not deceived. He did disobey, however. He was right there in the Garden when Eve was deceived. Apparently females have a deception proneness therefore need to have a male covering. This does not mean that women are inferior to men, just different. We all have strengths and weaknesses. This world tells us that authority equals superiority. God’s Word never says this. When approaching the King, Queen Esther had no authority, in fact, she could have been slain for entering into the king’s presence uninvited. But she did have faith, courage, love for her people, and influence. This influence changed the king’s mind and thousands of Jewish lives were spared. So the power of influence can actually have more sway than raw authority. Many women don’t perceive this concept. If they do, they must be on the look out for a Jezebel spirit that wants to boss men and manipulate them to get their own way.

Males have their share of weaknesses. Authority does not mean they are better in God’s eyes.  God wants married folks to use each other’s strengths to build their relationship and be a stronger unit. So women should not exercise authority over men. This is in regards to the home and the church. Women can serve in church several ways: teaching other women (pastor’s wives often do this as well as other women), utilize a prophetic ministry, healing ministry, hospitality, and others. But to be the head authority in a church, this Word says no. I would also say that they should not determine doctrine as well because this is what the leadership’s role is. In today’s mixed up culture that has strayed ever so far from God’s instruction book (B.I.B.L.E. = Basic Instructions Before Leaving Earth), these verses smack of male chauvinism. However, there is always wisdom and truth in God’s Word. We would be amazed at how many problems would be spared if people would just do what God says. Men should be leaders in the home and church, and if women do what God says, they will play an influential role to men (men need to listen to wives’ inputs because he should love her as Christ loves the Church and gave Himself up for her). Men are willing to die for their wives. It is put there by God for a reason. More needs to be said in order to balance these verses, but now is not the time. I strongly recommend a DVD series by Emerson Eggrich. It offers a good Biblical explanation about this touchy issue of male and female roles.

Special note on v15: “Women are not “saved” through children in the spiritual sense, but rather leave a legacy or are preserved through bearing children. The same is true of Eve, who had an opportunity to leave a legacy despite her sin. The salvation in this case is that of heritage: women who lead godly lives and raise children are blessed with a special kind of “preservation” in the future.”  Source: https://www.bibleref.com/1-Timothy/2/1-Timothy-2-15.html

1 Timothy 3:

v1-7: Describes the qualifications of an “overseer” or “bishop.” These are men who tend to the spiritual needs of the congregation. Many times churches are too large for a pastor to tend to everyone, so bishops help handle the load.

v8-13: Describes the qualifications of a “deacon.” These are men or women who tend to the physical needs of the church. Stephen was the first one (Acts 6:1-5). The reason that the above qualifications are so high on the morality and maturity scale is to serve and build the Body of Christ (church people) well and to maintain a good reputation among believers and non-believers. Church scandals, and there have been far too many, are devastating to the witness for Jesus Christ and have damaged countless believers.

v15: This is why all believers need to commit to a church. “Lone Rangers’ do not last long in Truth.

Summary of Biblical Church Structure:

1. Jesus Christ – the Head of the Church (universal and local).
2. Apostles, Pastors, Prophets, Evangelists, Teachers.
3. Bishops (spiritual guidance) and deacons (physical help for church).

Other churches may have spin-off words to describe similar offices and functions, but any radical departure from what the Bible says is man-made and not from God. This is not to say that anyone who goes to a church that does not fully follow the Bible is “going to hell.” It does indicate that there will be hindrances and stagnation within the people that attend, however.

1 Timothy 4:

v1-5: Warning about later times when some will fall away from the faith because of demonic doctrines (two examples were forbidding marriage and abstaining from foods). The Word makes clear that all foods are okay to eat, if received with gratitude because it will be sanctified by the Word of God and prayer.

Application for Today: Religion is not the opiate of the masses, it is the enemy of the Cross. It is one thing for someone to freely choose to live a single life in order to have more time to serve the Lord, and another thing for anyone to forbid marriage. The Roman Catholic Church forbids priests and the Pope from marrying. This is a man-made tradition not found in the Bible. In fact God’s Word states that church leaders should have only one wife (Titus 1:6; 1 Tim.3:2). Religious institutions, both Protestant and Catholic, will often have these types of things woven within doctrines. When man-made beliefs are valued over Scripture there are serious problems. Jesus and the Bible are one in the same and are the final authority on everything, not some pastor, priest, or pope. If any church official contradicts Holy Scripture, they are in serious error. It is also possible that they do not know the Lord and probably love power.

v6-7: Encourages us to hold to “sound doctrine.” This would be opposed to man-made traditions (beliefs that are not in the Word) or worldly fables.

v7-8: Compares physical discipline to spiritual discipline. While physical has a little profit, godliness has wondrous influence on the here and now, and in the life to come.

v14-16: An important part of a Biblical church is to have members moving in the gifts of the Holy Spirit. In this verse, anointing people with giftings by the laying on of hands from these anointed members is important to the church. Members need to be raised up to be part of ministry within each church. When this occurs, then people will not simply show up, be talked at, and go home unchallenged and unchanged. Apparently, Timothy had an experience of a teaching gift passed on to him, and Paul wants him to not neglect it but to develop it.

1 Timothy 5:

v1-16: Guidelines for respecting older people and caring for one’s own family as a high priority. Recommends that unmarried women who are widowed and still young enough to desire a man and raise children, should get married to avoid passionate urges that can lead down Satan’s path. I think men can apply this as well.

v17-25: Paul formulates some principles for believers – people who preach and teach God’s Word are worthy of being paid (this clearly means that you owe me at least $2,000 for my commentaries – look it up in Hezekiah 3:5). To consider an accusation against a church elder there must be two or three witnesses. If someone flaunts (continues to) sin then rebuke them in front of the congregation so that others will have more fear of sinning themselves (I don’t think this is done in too many churches – maybe because it seems too similar to “The Scarlet Letter” mindset). Do not be premature to lay hands on someone for ministry because they may be too spiritually immature and then become proud of themselves for being elevated to a particular position or status.

v23: Apparently Timothy had “frequent ailments” and some stomach troubles. Paul recommends “a little wine.” We do not know what other ailments Timothy had. Maybe a little booze would help those, but I do not see how it would help a stomach problem. Some research suggests that a little alcohol, especially a red wine, may be good for the heart. Now I’ve heard that it is not the alcohol but the red from the fruit (grape juice can have the same benefit). Alcohol is a sedative drug and can be caustic to the stomach lining, so if Timothy was a little uptight in life causing some stomach distress, then alcohol could play a beneficial role. Perhaps a major point to make on this verse is that the Word is not opposed to the concept of using medicine, which contradicts the Christian Science sect.

1 Timothy 6:

v1-2: Admonition to slaves (manservants) to respect their masters, especially if they are Christians (again, this “slavery” in the Bible is not like the U.S. history of black slavery).

v3-11: Condemns people who use the religious system to gain wealth and describes them as “deprived of the truth.” The only gain we obtain with godliness or our religion is when we have contentment. Those in the Christian religion for materialistic gain will sooner or later fall into a snare because their harmful desires will cause ruin. God is not mocked or fooled (Galatians 6:7). Money is not the root of all evil. Verse 10 says that the LOVE of it is. Big difference. People misquote the Scriptures all the time. Many years ago I remember a teacher who was advocating going on strike. He knew I followed the Bible and as he was trying to bring me to his point of view he said, “You know Dave, the Bible says, ‘God helps those who help themselves.'” Ah, the old humanistic demon rearing his ugly head again. I felt sorry for him, but I still called him on it and said, “No it doesn’t.” He backed off embarrassed. Anyway, v11 says for us to flee from the love of money.

v16: God dwells in light that is so strong that no human can approach (without dying – Exodus 19:21). At the burning bush, Moses could not see God’s face, but only His back lest he die (Exodus 33:20-23). I believe Moses would have died if he saw God’s face because he was still in his sinful physical body. Scripture describes our bodies as the perishable that cannot inherit the imperishable (1 Corinthians 15:50). I always shudder when skeptics demand that God show Himself to them so that they can believe. They have no idea what they are demanding.

v20-21: “O Timothy…avoid…opposing arguments of what is falsely called science (or knowledge) – which some have professed and thus gone astray from the faith.” A great message to those Christians who think that God used evolution to create. One must “tear up” many passages in Scripture to believe that God would use such a horrible method to create everything. He would have to use the death, dying, and suffering processes for billions of years to bring about mankind. I do not want to worship a creator that did his work that way! My God did it right the first time and everything was “good” from the get-go. Now this is Someone I will worship! Jesus also stated that Adam and Eve were at the beginning of the creation (Mark 10:6), rather than coming about from some ape-like creature millions of years later. I still haven’t quite figured out how evolutionists can explain how the male and female genders evolved slowly! At what point did they find each other long enough to procreate their species?! The asexual magically becomes sexual and keeps the species alive over millions of years while changing? Hmmm. Cute trick. No, impossible. The Bible states the obvious scientific fact – male and female genders were made suddenly (“from the beginning”) in order to procreate.

Evolution also insists that death was active on earth BEFORE any human did wrong. Both OT and NT teach that it was Adam and Eve’s sin that brought death into the world, even for the animals (Romans 8:20-22). When one studies in detail what evolution asserts with no scientific proof, it becomes clear that it is a mere philosophy masquerading as science. There is much scientific evidence against evolution, but this is not explored in fair ways in most educational circles. There is much more to be said on this topic, so, if you haven’t already, just click on “Creation vs. Evolution Seminar” on my site’s home page.