Understanding The Bible
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BY THE AUTHOR
Dr. Clarence E. Mason, Jr.
Philadelphia College of Bible
The PERSON of the Lord; not just the fulfillment of a doctrine but the coming of a beloved person!
Grace, mercy, peace!
HIS CHARGE RENEWED 1:3-17
The place and need of the charge
See Acts 20:17-39, Paul's closing words to the Ephesian elders, warning that wolves would creep in. Timothy was needed at Ephesus.
The end (or purpose) of the charge
Love proceeding out of a pure heart, a good conscience, and a faith unfeigned.
The reason of the charge
Some have "swerved"--missed the mark. They have missed the purpose of the law. "BUT WE KNOW" the law is good "IF a man use it lawfully. " The law is for condemnation of evildoers; it is not intended for the righteous man, either for the Pharisee who thanked God that he was so good (i.e., law as a principle of merit or life) or for a Christian who has been made RIGHTEOUS in Christ! There is no credit to a man for being good; he ought to be. The law shows man's desires are WRONG!
For grace that had flowed out to him and caught him.
His unbelief was the cause of his ignorance.
He thanks God for salvation! The WORK of Christ was to SAVE SINNERS. He had no other purpose in coming to this earth. Necessity was laid upon Christ--He must come to earth if He is to save sinners. He came voluntarily. There is no salvation outside of this world (no second chance). All signs (flood, etc.) and all prophets had failed. He must come!
Verse 16 thanks God for grace by which he is made an example (cp. 1 Cor. 15:8; Acts 9). He was saved, not by preaching of the gospel but by the appearing of Christ; so he is an example of many of his own people (Israel) who will be saved when Christ appears - -"a nation born in a day."
THE NEW CHARGE 1:18-3:13
What that charge is: that he might war a good warfare 1:18
Reason for the charge
That he should be warned against the danger of thrusting faith and a good conscience from him. Currently there were two glaring examples (Hymenaeus and Alexander) whom Paul had "delivered to Satan" (for body-destruction, possibly, or for discipline). There is no thought here of loss of salvation. Paul exerts his apostolic authority to do this. God uses Satan as a rod of chastisement.
Intercession required for this new charge 2
Duty and scope of intercession 2:1-2
Christians are sinfully negligent in failing to pray for those in authority, chiefly heads of state. Did you pray today for the key leaders of China, Russia, India, U.S., etc.?
Encouragement to pray 2:3-4
God's desire that all men should be saved.
Medium for that prayer 2:5-7
The Lord Jesus. Four things necessary for a mediator:
A mediator must be one whom both parties accept.
He must be equal to both parties.
He must thoroughly understand both sides of the case.
Both parties must agree to accept his decision. God has committed all judgment to the Son. Have you?
Conditions for that prayer 2:8-15
Men - to lift up holy hands in prayer 2:8
Not a prohibition of wearing silver or gold, but the emphasis is rather that "she should adorn herself" with things much more valuable than these: "with good works, as becometh women professing godliness"! The woman who has only jewelry for adornment is to be pitied (9-10).
Also, she is not to aspire to gain dominion over the man; she is to be in subjection to the man as the man is to Christ. It is not a matter of inferiority. A woman's place is basically one of privacy; the man's is public. Public authoritative teaching is the thought here (12). Of course, a woman can herald the gospel. There is nothing against that. But here it is a matter of usurping the public leadership in teaching and ruling.
Despite Eve (a woman) being Satan's tool for the race's ruin, "nevertheless (verse 15 says) she shall be saved in (or by) the Child-bearing. "That is, through a woman (Eve) sin came into the human family; through a woman (Mary) a Saviour entered the human family, to cleanse from sin and deliver from sin's power.
Order in the church 3:1-13
The bishop, literally "overseer" (same office as "elder") 1-7 Not a polygamist (so common in those days) Not quarrelsome from getting too much wine. Not "given to" it. Not a novice in spiritual things. A good home-ruler. Must have good report with those outside the church.
The deacons (literally "servants" or
"ministers") 8-13 These serve as spiritual assistants of the overseer.
Blameless (8-9); should be men carefully screened and spiritual; their
wives must be fit also as accomplices. They must be good home-rulers. The
important thing to see is that God furnishes these men to the local
church. We should RECOGNIZE them as such as we see their gifts manifested.
This should be the basis of their selection, not pleasing personalities.
THE TWO GREAT "MYSTERIES" 3:14-16
The "mystery" of godliness (or piety)
Verses 14-15 are intimately connected with the "mystery" of verse 16. The church is the immovable depository of the revelation of God upon earth, the guardian of the truth. Verse 16 may well have been an early hymn or creed chant, taking us from the incarnation to the ascension:
"Manifest in the flesh" - the Word became flesh (Jn. 1:14; 1 Jn. 1:1-2; 4:1-3) "Justified in the Spirit" - the first two lines might better be read:
"He in flesh was manifested, By the Spirit was attested"
The Holy Spirit vindicated (attested to) Christ. He gave amen to His every word and act as being those of a perfect man. He was "declared righteous by the Spirit, " who testified constantly to His perfect life.
"Preached unto the Gentiles and believed on in the world" - before He left earth
"Seen of angels" (or "by the angels was beholden") - "which things the angels desire to look into" (1 Pet. 1:12)
"Received up into glory" ("and in glory taken up")
The "mystery of godliness or piety" is the incarnation of God in human flesh (remember the prominence of angels at the scenes associated with the birth and life of Jesus) and the ascension of a true human being who was actually taken up bodily to Heaven. He was HAILED by God as Priest forever after the order of Melchisedek on His arrival at the throne in the view of all the angelic hosts. No doubt the demons and Satan in the lower air would have stopped His ascension if they could have! What a marvelous time it must have been! (Cp. Ps. 24)
The "mystery" of iniquity (or lawlessness)
(2 Thes. 2) 4:1-5
The apostasy is called "doctrines of demons": Mrs. Eddy, the higher critics, etc., did not write their own thoughts, but were inspired of demons; these things were not originated in the human mind apart from Satan. All prohibitions about food and drink are not scriptural. The believer is a FREE man! Verses 3 and 4 have been remarkably fulfilled in Rome.
PRACTICAL WALK (BEHAVIOR) IN THE HOUSE OF GOD 4:6-6:12a
Counsel for Timothy as a minister 4:6-16
Error to be rebuked 6-7
Spiritual athletics 8-10 (lit., "profits a
Exercise of the body is not unprofitable, but exercise of the spirit is far more important.
A preacher's high calling 11-16
Take heed! Work hard! Stir up (fan into flame) the gift; neglect it not! Meditate on these things.
Treatment of members
A neglected and little understood portion of practical church polity. Read in Arthur S. Way and Centenary to get a clearer understanding of many of the thoughts.
Relations with parishioners 1-2
Directions regarding widows 3-8
What widows are to be placed on the list 9-10
What widows are to be excluded from the list 11-15
The church not to relieve relatives of just responsibility 16
Directions about elders or ministers 17-20
Solemn appeal 21-22
Counsel for himself as a private individual 5:23-25
Counsel concerning slaves 6:1-2
Especially as regards things pertaining to the body: "the poor rich" and "the rich paupers."
Covetousness, which is idolatry 3-10
Run well your course 11-12
Exhortation to the rich 17-19
Finally, my son 20-21a
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