Coming up next the last chapter of 1Timothy — chapter 6 — and then where?

1 Timothy 6

New Living Translation (NLT)

6 All slaves should show full respect for their masters so they will not bring shame on the name of God and his teaching. If the masters are believers, that is no excuse for being disrespectful. Those slaves should work all the harder because their efforts are helping other believers[a] who are well loved.

False Teaching and True Riches

Teach these things, Timothy, and encourage everyone to obey them. Some people may contradict our teaching, but these are the wholesome teachings of the Lord Jesus Christ. These teachings promote a godly life. Anyone who teaches something different is arrogant and lacks understanding. Such a person has an unhealthy desire to quibble over the meaning of words. This stirs up arguments ending in jealousy, division, slander, and evil suspicions. These people always cause trouble. Their minds are corrupt, and they have turned their backs on the truth. To them, a show of godliness is just a way to become wealthy.

Yet true godliness with contentment is itself great wealth. After all, we brought nothing with us when we came into the world, and we can’t take anything with us when we leave it. So if we have enough food and clothing, let us be content.

But people who long to be rich fall into temptation and are trapped by many foolish and harmful desires that plunge them into ruin and destruction. 10 For the love of money is the root of all kinds of evil. And some people, craving money, have wandered from the true faith and pierced themselves with many sorrows.

Paul’s Final Instructions

11 But you, Timothy, are a man of God; so run from all these evil things. Pursue righteousness and a godly life, along with faith, love, perseverance, and gentleness. 12 Fight the good fight for the true faith. Hold tightly to the eternal life to which God has called you, which you have confessed so well before many witnesses. 13 And I charge you before God, who gives life to all, and before Christ Jesus, who gave a good testimony before Pontius Pilate, 14 that you obey this command without wavering. Then no one can find fault with you from now until our Lord Jesus Christ comes again. 15 For at just the right time Christ will be revealed from heaven by the blessed and only almighty God, the King of all kings and Lord of all lords. 16 He alone can never die, and he lives in light so brilliant that no human can approach him. No human eye has ever seen him, nor ever will. All honor and power to him forever! Amen.

17 Teach those who are rich in this world not to be proud and not to trust in their money, which is so unreliable. Their trust should be in God, who richly gives us all we need for our enjoyment. 18 Tell them to use their money to do good. They should be rich in good works and generous to those in need, always being ready to share with others. 19 By doing this they will be storing up their treasure as a good foundation for the future so that they may experience true life.

20 Timothy, guard what God has entrusted to you. Avoid godless, foolish discussions with those who oppose you with their so-called knowledge. 21 Some people have wandered from the faith by following such foolishness.

May God’s grace be with you all.

Advertisements

More from 1Timothy 5 verses 17-25

It’s been a week or so since I’ve written, I’ve been consumed with our testimony…..again I am going through 1Timothy just me and the Holy Spirit. Using no notes, commentaries, books…..lining my life up from my past as a pastor and today as a man who dwells in the resting place.

17 Elders who do their work well should be respected and paid well,[e] especially those who work hard at both preaching and teaching. 18 For the Scripture says, “You must not muzzle an ox to keep it from eating as it treads out the grain.” And in another place, “Those who work deserve their pay!”[f]

This is a great word….a great principle…..and a truth! But for me this is a very difficult one to face, so I’m just going to be honest and speak about it from my life, my perspective and my thoughts today.

I agree with Paul as he says an Elder should be respected and paid well. A pastor wears many hats, works 24/7 and the expectations are very high from everyone around them for the most part. But with that said allow me to confess my attitude while I was a pastor and what I feel about it now.

When I started out pastoring all I wanted to do was preach the Word, I was willing to do anything do this, all that was important was sharing the Word and what I knew had taken place in my life. This was my calling from the Lord – TRANSFORMATION!!! Preaching with a humble spirit.

As a Christian we should have no pride in our lives and even more so as a preacher, pastor, minister. I have to confess that I had pride and as the years went by my pride grew….and after some time I took on a “I deserve” or “you owe me” attitude. As I write this it makes me sick to stomach. I had a pastor friend who always talked about how we should live in nice homes, drive nice cars, have nice things………after all we are God’s children, God’s hand picked men and that is how he would want it. And…..I bought into it…..because of this way of thinking I lived beyond my means….trying to look the part of a successful preacher.  I would pressure my board to make sure we “had” what we needed, I would get angry, hurt and prideful in my spirit over these things….speak death into the church and the leadership for not giving more and taking care of me and my family. I literally led my church in financial troubles, worries and hardships making sure I was paid etc…..I really didn’t realize it at the time, I thought I was right…….today I sit here with tears in my eyes just thinking of the crappy attitude I held, the judgment I passed on church, leaders, boards, members…..I had a “GIVE ME GIVE ME GIVE ME” attitude and didn’t even realize it. Lord have mercy on me.

At the same time there are churches that “hoard” their money – saving it for the future!! I always scratch my head at that one and always will. There is today and when the Lord blesses a church/ministry it should be given away!!! Taking care of people!! Francis Chan challenged his church a few years back….the said in their mission statement that “missions and evangelism” are the number one priority in their church….He said if this is true we should give away 50% of what comes in, give to missions and help the people around us…. instead of building a GREAT BUILDING or driving nice cars… etc… and bank accounts? How would Jesus react to a church that has millions in the bank when He returns while the people around that church are hurting, hungry, can’t pay bills, buy food etc? Shameful!!!!

And yet Paul writes these words…. what is the correct attitude? TRUST GOD – if people, churches, church boards, are “spiritual” people, living and resting in the Father’s rest…….obedient to the Holy Spirit, they will take care of the shepherds! TRUST GOD and be THANKFUL – the truth is I don’t need a big house that impresses people, I don’t need a pool, I don’t need a nice car, I don’t need the best clothes…….ALL I NEED IS JESUS and His promise is ALL MY NEEDS WILL BE MET……So as an encouragement to church people and church leaders, take care of the elders, pastors, missionaries, preachers etc…. TRUST GOD and give them what you can……….IF YOU TRUST God and the PASTOR’S TRUST God ……we all live and rest in Him……we all keep our pride in check….. well it is then that Paul’s writings here will take meaning and come to LIFE!!

19 Do not listen to an accusation against an elder unless it is confirmed by two or three witnesses.

AMEN — there are always people who are saying things about a pastor, elder etc…. blow them off and do not LISTEN to them….they are causing divisions, listening to the enemy and speaking death into that man/woman. NOW……….if there are 2 or 3 witnesses — LISTEN and take actions………. action with “spiritual” leaders in the church………investigate and find out the truth.

One of the problems with this is there are many leaders in the church that are NOT spiritual. They are “elected” into offices because they are popular, have a charismatic personality, or have been in the church forever……..not because they are spiritual people who can lead a church. I can remember asking people to serve on the church board that had NO business being on a church board, why? Because we had to have a church board!!! Had to fill “a spot” — so taking care of gossip, lies, or if an Elder has been accused and is guilty of it, people DO NOT KNOW HOW to deal with it, how to handle it in many churches.

20 Those who sin should be reprimanded in front of the whole church; this will serve as a strong warning to others.

21 I solemnly command you in the presence of God and Christ Jesus and the highest angels to obey these instructions without taking sides or showing favoritism to anyone.

IF we could get these verses down in the way and the spirit that Paul writes them it would be amazing – when is the last time you saw this in action? Exactly!!! Even the thought of this seems so out of place in this world…..but we are not of this world remember. It’s easy to write about how it should be……..but trying to live it or put it into practice that’s another story. I know there are churches out there that can do this……….and I also know that there are churches out there the DO DO THIS but in the wrong attitude, it’s done in a legalism way — not in LOVE and HUMILITY. I don’t have the answers and don’t even know if I have the guts. But I do know that the Pastor/Leader has to be CLEAN, OPEN, HONEST, FULL of INTEGRITY and NO PRIDE to ever have a ministry like this. I was not that man 😦

22 Never be in a hurry about appointing a church leader.[g] Do not share in the sins of others. Keep yourself pure.

Just wrote about this up a couple verses…..

23 Don’t drink only water. You ought to drink a little wine for the sake of your stomach because you are sick so often.

24 Remember, the sins of some people are obvious, leading them to certain judgment. But there are others whose sins will not be revealed until later. 25 In the same way, the good deeds of some people are obvious. And the good deeds done in secret will someday come to light.

In other words…..private life and ministry MUST match up to public life and ministry!!

 

 

We did it….gave our testimony

On Sunday my wife and I stood in front of our church family, our family and gave testimony as to what has taken place in our lives. It is difficult for some to understand why we would do such a thing, and there are many reason one being it’s HEALING for both of us. The biggest reason is to bring glory to God! What has taken place is nothing short of a miracle…in just a little over a year we are doing better than we EVER have in our life together…..26 years!!!

As we spoke it was amazing — not sure how it was received but to watch Diane stand with a SMILE and talk about the pain that she endured for so many months, her journey with the Lord, the choices she made and the support she had from a few friends and family was absolutely amazing!! GOD IS GOOD!!! I do believe that this day has opened the door to many things for us. We can minister to those with the same problems in a way we could have never ministered before as “pastors” in fact we did more harm than good when it came to helping people in marriages and infidelity. Today we are able to have compassion, we KNOW what the feelings are like, the rage, the anger, the brokenness, the humility, on both sides of the fence. Both the one who cheats and the one who has been cheated on.

I did not want to do this for the most part, but I did it for Diane….I did it for our church family. I started out by telling them we have joined the church, we have become part of the family and families DO NOT HAVE SECRETS……well healthy families don’t! Most of this testimony was about Diane and how her love for the Lord opened the door for so many including this man. It changed our family and changed so many hearts…. GOD IS AWESOME….HIS PROMISES ARE ALWAYS YES and AMEN!!! He proves himself over and over again.

Today I am thankful

1Timothy Chapter 5 — still rolling along verse by verse

Here are a few more verses, I really don’t think they need much explaining………pretty plain on what he is writing. It boils down to either we are going to live these out or not.

A widow who is put on the list for support must be a woman who is at least sixty years old and was faithful to her husband.[c] 10 She must be well respected by everyone because of the good she has done. Has she brought up her children well? Has she been kind to strangers and served other believers humbly?[d] Has she helped those who are in trouble? Has she always been ready to do good?

Paul puts some restrictions on who is qualified for support and who is not  – this is tough stuff in the today’s church! People make mistakes, Lord know I have made more than most…….but there is a HUGE difference from one who lives carelessly and one who is remorseful, repentant, and humble. In the world and certainly in the church there are “givers and takers” and as I see this Paul is saying when a giver becomes old and needs help we are to become “givers” to take care of them. We know in reality who is who, what a person is. The world and I believe the enemy plays a big role trying to bring guilt to the church, leaders, and even families when it comes to things like this.

IF one lives a life of purity, giving, loving, taking care of others, holiness, Christlikeness etc…. when we grow old we will reap the rewards. NOT THAT WE LIVE that way just to reap a reward……..it’s just a principle that takes place.

11 The younger widows should not be on the list, because their physical desires will overpower their devotion to Christ and they will want to remarry. 12 Then they would be guilty of breaking their previous pledge. 13 And if they are on the list, they will learn to be lazy and will spend their time gossiping from house to house, meddling in other people’s business and talking about things they shouldn’t. 14 So I advise these younger widows to marry again, have children, and take care of their own homes. Then the enemy will not be able to say anything against them. 15 For I am afraid that some of them have already gone astray and now follow Satan.

No need to even dig into this………so deep and so true!!!

16 If a woman who is a believer has relatives who are widows, she must take care of them and not put the responsibility on the church. Then the church can care for the widows who are truly alone.

And again here — the responsibility always falls on family first — then the church — this in reality would change our world so much if we lived it out.

 

Chapter 5 continued – taking care of widows

Take care of[b] any widow who has no one else to care for her. But if she has children or grandchildren, their first responsibility is to show godliness at home and repay their parents by taking care of them. This is something that pleases God.

Now a true widow, a woman who is truly alone in this world, has placed her hope in God. She prays night and day, asking God for his help. But the widow who lives only for pleasure is spiritually dead even while she lives. Give these instructions to the church so that no one will be open to criticism.

Here Paul is speaking to the church on how to take care of widows and what a “true widow” is. First of all he say that if she has NO ONE ELSE to take care of her the church should…the body of Christ……..the local church. IF she is truly alone in this world! But if she has children or grandchildren they should take care of her, in fact Paul says “that their first responsibility is to show godliness at home and repay their parents by taking care of them” And then goes on to say it pleases God.

Again this is NOT a command, it’s not a heaven or hell issue when it comes to our salvation, it’s a principle that first helps the elderly, makes sure they are cared for, and it helps society in the world. In today’s world they are pushing for euthanasia as a legal way of “helping our seniors” or as it’s also known as “mercy killing” It takes a burden off the gov’t and off the families while convincing the rest of the world that it’s helping those who can’t take care of themselves. This is LEGAL in many countries now and it’s touched on through Obama Care in the US … trust me it’s coming. GOD HAS THE ANSWERS and the SOLUTIONS!!!

Paul then gives us what a “true widow” is. “A woman who is truly alone in this world, has placed her hope in God. She prays night and day, asking God for his help. But the Widow who lives only for pleasure is spiritually dead even while she lives”

These are instructions for the church and families. He is saying it’s the churches responsibility to take care of a true widow as if she is her own. What about a spiritually alive widow who has family that is spiritually dead? Then what? I know people and I know churches when it comes to things like this……this situation could become an entire board meeting that may even get heated. I say what would please God? I have seen families that allow their mother to live as a pauper while they are waiting for her to pass to inherit all she has. Some families are so addicted to drugs, alcohol, and other junk that they can’t even think correctly and can only look out for themselves…….. what then? I say what would please God?

Some churches are poor and have to watch every penny, the budget’s are so tight and they won’t let go or won’t allow the bank account to get low…..I understand that but what would God bless? A church that gives it all away or a church that has a huge bank account? What about the widow who drives you NUTS, is not all there mentally and drains the body and has nobody else to take care of her? What would please God?

I pastored for 16 years and for the most part never saw this is “action” 100% – I think the church has good intentions, but I will say this. I did NOT LEAD the church to this kind of life style, this type of LOVE, this type of ministry. I did not lay my life down and put widows first! I did not lead them and teach them, I was selfish and wanted to make sure I got paid, make sure we had this or that……….I write this with great shame and a very sick feeling in my Spirit. If I ever get the chance to do it over again ministry sure would be different.

If there was a church that was focused on living out the Scriptures without being “legalistic” in any way at all, the pastor of the church would lead them into this church life style, where people would share all they had, give all they could, their number one focus would be “others” the needy, the widows, the sick, the addicted, the unlovable…….money would not be an issue……I truly believe it would please God as the word says and if he is please, and if he blessed it, people would give it all away in their lives!!!!

The he goes on to say “But those who won’t care for their relatives, especially those in their own household, have denied the true faith. Such people are worse than unbelievers”

What does he mean the are worse than unbelievers? Well at least unbeliever say they are unbelievers but a believer who does not follow the heart of Jesus, they are double minded, liars, and only fooling themselves. The man who speaks what he believes and lives by it is much better off than a man who says one thing and does another. Bottom line……take care of your parents, grandparents when they are old and not able. This PLEASES God.

Well there are the first 8 verses…….lol only 17 more to go in this chapter. The next couple weeks will be slow for I have to focus on our testimony to prepare for the 22nd. I’m excited and nervous…..May God get ALL THE GLORY!!!

Moving on to Chapter 5 in 1Timothy

Moving on to chapter 5 – this has taken awhile to get through but getting there…. scripture by scripture. Here we move into Paul writing Timothy with advise about “Widows, Elders and Slaves”. He is giving Timothy a teaching on how the church should take care of and love people. These are not heaven or hell “rules” for the church!! These are principles that create a strong church and takes care of PEOPLE! OH how the church today could learn from this!! I will go through with my thoughts as I seek the Holy Spirit on these things….Here are the first 16 verses.

New Living Translation (NLT)

Advice about Widows, Elders, and Slaves

5 Never speak harshly to an older man,[a] but appeal to him respectfully as you would to your own father. Talk to younger men as you would to your own brothers. Treat older women as you would your mother, and treat younger women with all purity as you would your own sisters.

Take care of[b] any widow who has no one else to care for her. But if she has children or grandchildren, their first responsibility is to show godliness at home and repay their parents by taking care of them. This is something that pleases God.

Now a true widow, a woman who is truly alone in this world, has placed her hope in God. She prays night and day, asking God for his help. But the widow who lives only for pleasure is spiritually dead even while she lives. Give these instructions to the church so that no one will be open to criticism.

But those who won’t care for their relatives, especially those in their own household, have denied the true faith. Such people are worse than unbelievers.

A widow who is put on the list for support must be a woman who is at least sixty years old and was faithful to her husband.[c] 10 She must be well respected by everyone because of the good she has done. Has she brought up her children well? Has she been kind to strangers and served other believers humbly?[d] Has she helped those who are in trouble? Has she always been ready to do good?

11 The younger widows should not be on the list, because their physical desires will overpower their devotion to Christ and they will want to remarry. 12 Then they would be guilty of breaking their previous pledge. 13 And if they are on the list, they will learn to be lazy and will spend their time gossiping from house to house, meddling in other people’s business and talking about things they shouldn’t. 14 So I advise these younger widows to marry again, have children, and take care of their own homes. Then the enemy will not be able to say anything against them. 15 For I am afraid that some of them have already gone astray and now follow Satan.

16 If a woman who is a believer has relatives who are widows, she must take care of them and not put the responsibility on the church. Then the church can care for the widows who are truly alone.

5 Never speak harshly to an older man,[a] but appeal to him respectfully as you would to your own father. Talk to younger men as you would to your own brothers. Treat older women as you would your mother, and treat younger women with all purity as you would your own sisters.

This is such an important word here, Paul speaks in deep wisdom to a young Timothy. This is written on how to lead a church….but for us it’s not only for the ELDER’s and Deacons it’s for all of us, everyone that wears the badge of Jesus on their heart.

I can’t tell you how many people have said to me over the years that they left a church, a bible study, a fellowship because they were talked down to….talked down to by a pastor or leader in the church because they “knew it all” as if they have special insight from the heaven’s because of their title or something. It’s called PRIDE and there is NO room in the Kingdom for PRIDE!! We are to speak with respect and love to all people, tender and loving, guiding them along. Nobody will ever be won over through a prideful spirit. In the last chapter Paul just spoke about this…..(go back and study it)

Another issue here is in today’s world many do not know how to talk to a mother, or a father, brother or sister…..the family unit is all but destroyed in our world!! Drugs, alcohol, abuse, divorce, disrespect and the list goes on. In today’s world does a brother talk to his sister with “purity”? Mother and Father with great respect? So there is a problem when it comes to this issue, many do not have a clue! They (leaders, pastors, elders, deacons) come out of dysfunctional families and enter into leadership in the body of Christ……a set up for disaster. How do we fix this? overcome this? Understand this? How does our dysfunction change and become Christ like?

There is only one way — through the power of the Holy Spirit, as we read the Word, He can bring it to life, study and know what God says, desires, and expects….allow the Holy Spirit to renew our minds, restore who we really are created to be! And MOST importantly REST IN HIM every minute of every day!! Our purpose of our life is all about HIM period. IF we have families, friends, co-workers etc……..our purpose is to be a LIGHT, shine for Jesus, he lives within us and any PRIDE, anything that is not of Him, any secrets, anything we try to hide and anything we try to fake will be exposed and it has GREAT effects on all those around you. So, dysfunctions, bad families, the horrible way you may have been brought up, the abuse you may have suffered, has no bearing on a child of the LIVING GOD who renews, restores and changes to the point of the Word saying “we are NEW CREATIONS through God.

I will continue this tomorrow or the next day…. enough for today…I am loving this!