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THE FIRST EPISTLE OF PAUL TO TIMOTHY - Chapter 6 - Verse 6

Verse 6. But godliness. Piety; religion. The meaning is, that real religion should be regarded as the greatest and most valuable acquisition.

With contentment. This word, as now used, refers to a state of mind; a calm and satisfied feeling; a freedom from murmuring and complaining. The idea is, that "piety, connected with a contented mind—or a mind acquiescing in the allotments of life—is to be regarded as the real gain." Tindal gives substantially the same interpretation: "Godliness is great riches, if a man be content with that he hath." Coverdale,—" Howbeit, it is of great advantage, who is so godly, and holdeth him content with that he hath." The word which is used here—autarkeia —means, properly, self-sufficiency, and is used here, in a good sense, to denote a mind satisfied with its lot. If there be true religion, united with its proper accompaniment, peace of mind, it is to be regarded as the true riches. The object of the apostle seems to be, to rebuke those who supposed that property constituted everything that was worth living for. He tells them, therefore, that the true gain, the real riches which we ought to seek, is religion, with a contented mind. This does more to promote happiness than wealth can ever do, and this is what should be regarded as the great object of life.

{a} "godliness with contentment" Pr 15:16

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