Friday, March 4, 2011

Commentary on 1 Timothy 2:1-6; 3:14-16

I was recently named the Sunday school teacher at my church which I am very excited about. So now I want to share with my readers some of what I teach the students during class. This weeks lesson is titled "Instructions about worship". The following is a commentary that I will be sharing about this weeks lesson. It includes the scripture text from the New American Standard
Bible—Updated (NASU) and the King James Version (KJV), in addition to the
New Revised Standard Version (NRSV).

1 Timothy 2:1-6 — NRSV

2:1 First of all, then, I urge that supplications, prayers, intercessions,
and thanksgivings be made for everyone,
Paul lists some types of requests that can be a part of every prayer (conversation
with God). Supplications discuss with God the needs of others and ourselves,
trusting that God knows and will meet the needs of His children. Intercessions
often involve concern for our sins and the sins of others, where we ask God to
forgive, cleanse, and free people from the power of sin. We sometimes pray as
though we were in their place, confessing their sins as though they were ours and
asking God to forgive us. We offer all of our prayers with thanksgiving to God,
Who by grace invites us to come to Him. Though we are undeserving to come into
His presence, He invites us to come in Jesus’ name. No one should be outside of
the circle of our prayer concerns, for Paul told us to pray for everyone.

2 for kings and all who are in high positions, so that we may lead a
quiet and peaceable life in all godliness and dignity.
In praying for everyone, Paul wants us to include leaders that are political or
religious, business or home, etc. Paul requests that we pray for God to work in
their lives so those who follow Jesus Christ as Lord and Savior do not suffer
persecution or hardships because they are believers, so believers can live godly
and receive respect for living righteous lives.

3 This is right and is acceptable in the sight of God our Savior,
Praying for everyone, for God to work in the lives of everyone to meet their needs
and help them make the changes in their heart, mind, and behavior that they
need to make is right and acceptable in God’s mind. God is our Savior, and the
Savior of all who trust in Him. We can pray for people, especially all leaders, to
come to know God and follow Jesus Christ as Lord and Savior.

4 who desires everyone to be saved and to come to the knowledge of
the truth.
God desires certain events. Some events are directly caused by God. Other events
are permitted by God as He allows people to exercise their ability to choose in
opposition to His will. God desires that everyone love God and their neighbor, but
many fight against God and His desire that we love Him and others. When people
come to a knowledge of the truth, they may choose to live in accordance with the
truth or not; they may choose to follow God as Savior or not. We can pray that
they will choose rightly, which is what God desires.

5 For there is one God; there is also one mediator between God and
humankind, Christ Jesus, himself human,
Christians believe in one God, but here Paul writes of God the Father and God the
Son, two of the three Persons of the Trinity. Jesus was born of the virgin Mary
and conceived by the Holy Spirit; therefore, Jesus is fully human and fully divine.
As such, Jesus Christ can, did, and does serve as the One who brings God and
people together.

6 who gave himself a ransom for all — this was attested at the right
Jesus’ death on the cross was sufficient to provide for the forgiveness of sin, the
cleansing from sin, and the freeing from sin of all people; however, some do not
want to be cleansed and freed from the sins they enjoy; some do not think they
need forgiveness nor do they want forgiveness from God. People can refuse to
accept the ransom that Jesus paid in their behalf. God sent His Son into the
world at just the right time, according to His plan and perfect timing.

1 Timothy 3:14-16 — NRSV

3:14 I hope to come to you soon, but I am writing these instructions to
you so that,
Paul wrote his letter to Timothy in case he was delayed in coming to him. In the
providence of God, his letter was written and saved for us, and so it provides
instruction for us as well. The troubles Paul and Timothy faced we face today, and
the solutions are God-given for us to apply.

15 if I am delayed, you may know how one ought to behave in the
household of God, which is the church of the living God, the pillar and
bulwark of the truth.
Paul describes in his letter the best way to behave and the church and the best
way to discipline and organize the church. The church is the household of the
living God. Those truly a part of the church are members of God’s family. The true church will hold up the truth, as a pillar holds up a roof, and the people will
live under and protected by the truth. The bulwark serves as a defense. The
bulwark protects people on the ship when waves wash over a deck. The church
must defend the truth which saves people and enables them to live godly lives

16 Without any doubt, the mystery of our religion is great: He was
revealed in flesh, vindicated in spirit, seen by angels, proclaimed
among Gentiles, believed in throughout the world, taken up in glory.
Jesus is the truth and the Bible is the truth of God written. We cannot and do not
understand completely all the truth of God, that we can understand enough truth
to be saved and enough truth to share with others that they might come to a
knowledge of the truth and be saved. Here, Paul describes Jesus, Who came in
the flesh so the invisible God became visible; Who was raised from the dead after
a ministry in the power of the Holy Spirit; Who was seen by angels at the to and
that his resurrection; Who is proclaimed as Lord and Savior not only among the
Jews, but also to non-Jews, who is believed in by some wherever the gospel is
preached around the world, and Who is seated at the right hand of God in glory.

1 Tim 2:1-6 — NASU Text
First of all, then, I urge that entreaties and prayers, petitions and thanksgivings,
be made on behalf of all men, 2 for kings and all who are in authority, so that we
may lead a tranquil and quiet life in all godliness and dignity. 3 This is good and
acceptable in the sight of God our Savior, 4 who desires all men to be saved and
to come to the knowledge of the truth. 5 For there is one God, and one mediator
also between God and men, the man Christ Jesus, 6 who gave Himself as a
ransom for all, the testimony given at the proper time.

1 Tim 3:14-16 — NASU Text
14 I am writing these things to you, hoping to come to you before long; 15 but in
case I am delayed, I write so that you will know how one ought to conduct himself
in the household of God, which is the church of the living God, the pillar and
support of the truth. 16 By common confession, great is the mystery of godliness:
He who was revealed in the flesh, Was vindicated in the Spirit, Seen by angels,
Proclaimed among the nations, Believed on in the world, Taken up in glory.

1 Tim 2:1-6 — KJV Text
2 I exhort therefore, that, first of all, supplications, prayers, intercessions, and
giving of thanks, be made for all men; 2 For kings, and for all that are in
authority; that we may lead a quiet and peaceable life in all godliness and
honesty. 3 For this is good and acceptable in the sight of God our Saviour; 4 Who
will have all men to be saved, and to come unto the knowledge of the truth. 5 For
there is one God, and one mediator between God and men, the man Christ Jesus;
6 Who gave himself a ransom for all, to be testified in due time

1 Tim 3:14-16 — KJV Text
14 These things write I unto thee, hoping to come unto thee shortly: 15 But if I
tarry long, that thou mayest know how thou oughtest to behave thyself in the
house of God, which is the church of the living God, the pillar and ground of the
truth. 16 And without controversy great is the mystery of godliness: God was
manifest in the flesh, justified in the Spirit, seen of angels, preached unto the
Gentiles, believed on in the world, received up into glory.
[Feel free to leave your comments, conclusions, suggestions, and thoughts as a
Comment on the Bible Lesson Forum. We can learn from one another.]

Five Questions for Discussion
1. What does Paul say we should include in our prayers? Compare his list with
what we normally include or omit in our prayers. How might we need to improve
our prayer life? Can you add to Paul’s list (think of the Lord’s Prayer).
2. What reason does Paul give for praying for leaders? Can you think of additional
reasons to pray for them? Pray for the leaders where you live and others around
the world who need our prayers.
3. In what ways might a Christian leader govern differently from a non-Christian
leader, or differently from a “Christian” leader who does not govern according to
the revealed will and spirit of God in the Bible (who does not seek the Kingdom of
God and His righteousness, though he or she says they are Christian)?
4. Why is truth important? How you and your church can become a better “pillar
and bulwark of the truth”?
5. Read 1 Timothy 3:16 again. What does Paul include in his list that surprises
you? What truths about Jesus from the Bible would you add to Paul’s list? Give a
reason for your answers.

Remain blessed

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