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Lesson No. 54—Take Your Bible to Bible Class for Reading the Scriptures

LESSON THEME:—1 TIMOTHY

1 Timothy 3:14-16.

  • KEY WORD—”BEHAVIOUR.”

  • KEY VERSE1 Timothy 3:14-15.

  • KEY PHRASE—”SOUND DOCTRINES AND CHRISTIAN BEHAVIOUR.”

Home Readings.

This is the first of the three pastoral epistles or letters to pastors instead of to churches. Read all of it this week and for family altar read:

WRITER—Paul.

DATE—About 65 A. D. probably from Phillipi.

TO WHOM WRITTEN—TIMOTHY, was one of Paul’s own converts, and was called by him “his beloved and faithful son in the Lord,” 1 Corinthians 4:17. He was born at Lystra in Asia Minor, was converted there during Paul’s first; missionary journey, and although he knew all about Paul’s persecutions and afflictions, was willing to cast in his lot with him. His father was a heathen Greek, but his mother, Eunice, and his grandmother, Lois, were Jewesses. He was not circumcised as an infant, probably because his father objected. When, however, he became the co-worker of Paul in order to conciliate the Jewish Christians, who would have weakened Timothy’s position as a gospel preacher, Paul took Timothy and circumcised him. But Paul refused to have Titus circumcised, because he, unlike Timothy, was a Gentile by birth. Timothy was ordained as an evangelist, and did much valuable service for Paul and was greatly loved by him. His name is mentioned with Paul’s first imprisonment at Rome for two years, he was the apostle’s faithful helper, and later, when Paul’s life was about to be offered up, he affectionately urged Timothy to come to him. It was while Timothy was pastor at Ephesus that he received the two letters known as 1 and 2 Timothy.

OCCASION—The apostle had hoped to go to Ephesus to counteract false teachings, and instruct the church in sound doctrines and church government. Being unable to make the journey, and realizing that the apostolic period was nearing its end, he, therefore, set down in writing for the guidance of all churches, some clear revelations.

PURPOSE

  1. To encourage Timothy to war a good warfare.

  2. To instruct the churches in sound doctrines and church government.

  3. To inspire Christian behaviour in the house of God.

GREAT FACTS:—

  1. Doctrines.

  2. Worship.

  3. Church Officers.

  4. Conduct

  5. Classes.

Great Fact I. Unsound Doctrines Rebuked.

1 Timothy 1.

Paul here charges those who teach new and strange doctrines, not to mix fables and legends with the gospel. The Law is excellent in that it proves to men that they cannot be righteous of themselves, and therefore directs them to Christ, 1 Timothy 1:4-8. Paul is grateful that the Lord in His loving kindness has appointed him to be a minister, although once he blasphemed, Persecuted and insulted, 1 Timothy 1:13. The exhaustless patience of Christ was shown towards him that he might be an example to all who afterwards believe of how Christ can save and use a great sinner, 1 Timothy 1:12-15. He urges Timothy to wage a noble war, with faith and a clear conscience, for some having thrust aside have wrecked their lives, 1 Timothy 1:18-20.

LESSON—When men come to die, the religion they have thought out and invented for themselves will yield them no comfort, but will be like the religion of a certain sculptor. On his death-bed a priest pointing to a beautiful cross the sculptor had made, said, “Behold your God, who died for you.” “Alas!” said the sculptor, “I made it.” There was no comfort for him in the work of his own hands. In religion, that which is created in one’s own brain will yield no comfort to one’s own heart. The most important question of all is, “What does God say?

Great Fact II Public Worship.

1 Timothy 2.

Paul first exhorts the members of the church to pray regularly for those in authority over them and for all men, that Christians may be able to lead quiet, profitable and religious lives. This is acceptable in the sight of Christ our Saviour who is the one mediator between God and men, and who gave Himself as the ransom price for all, 1 Timothy 2:1-6.

The apostle desired that the men should lead the prayers and that they should not pray angrily against their fellow-Christians, 1 Timothy 2:8. Women should dress quietly and modestly and not with jewellery and costly clothing, and the apostle would not consent to a woman teaching men in public, for Adam was made before Eve, and women find the place of highest well-being in family life, 1 Timothy 2:9-15.

LESSON—When a heathen woman who offered herself for baptism was asked if she would give up her ornaments for Christ, it was an unexpected blow, but after looking at her necklace again and again, she said, “I love Christ more than this.” Can we say this about unworthy pleasures and unscriptural beliefs?

Great Facts III The Qualifications of Church Officers.

1 Timothy 3.

A pastor should be a man of blameless character, having only one living wife, not quarrelsome, nor greedy for money, but a skilful teacher, and one who makes his own children behave well. Not a new convert lest he be intoxicated with pride, and above all he should have a good reputation among the people outside the church, 1 Timothy 3:1-7. Deacons and deaconesses must have the same moral qualifications, be tested first and only appointed to their office if no objection is raised against them. They too, must rule their households well, and they who serve nobly gain an honourable position and much freedom of speech in the faith, 1 Timothy 3:8-13.

LESSON—Paul is here emphazing the need for Christian behaviour. Some people think that behaviour is not a very important thing, and yet behaviour reveals character. It is not “do-haviour” but “behaviour.” What we DO may be accidental, what we ARE is everything. It is an every-hour sermon. The victory of the early church was won by its behaviour. “See how these Christians love one another,” it was said. “How unblameably we behave ourselves,” said Paul to the Thessalonians.

“I will behave myself wisely in a perfect way,” said the psalmist.

Great Facts IV. Conduct of Good Servants of Christ Jesus.

1 Timothy 4.

Warn the brethren that in later times some will turn away from the faith, giving themselves up to spiritualism, and making use of the hypocrisies of lying teachers. These teach that holiness is obtained through abstinence from marriage and from certain kinds of food. It is not, however, for man to place restrictions upon what God has given with liberal hand for our use. Only receive it gratefully as God’s gift. 1 Timothy 4:1-5.

Lead a Godly life, for while bodily exercise is profitable for some things, yet Godliness is profitable for both this life and the life to come. Let your conversation and conduct, your love, faith and purity be an example to those who hold the faith. Apply yourself to reading, preaching and teaching and do not neglect the divine gift that many at your ordination prophesied was in you. By doing these things he would save himself from the dominion of sin and unto more blessed likeness to Christ, and save his hearers from the guilt and penalty of sin, 1 Timothy 4:6-16.

LESSON—A man had a camel that was wasting away. “See,” cried he to a simple son of the desert, “I have tried cordials and elixir, balsams and lotions, yet all in vain.” The son of the desert looked at the hollow sides and staring bones and said, “Your camel needeth but one thing, food, good food and plenty of it.” “Dear me,” said the traveller, “I never thought of that.” So when we are in low spirits there is our cure. We don’t need pity, we don’t deserve it. We must give our starved souls more prayer, more meditation on the Word and more communion with God. This is a sure cure for all our spiritual ills.

Great Facts V. The Bight Attitude Towards Various Classes.

1 Timothy 5; 1 Timothy 6.

Deal wisely and fairly with the different classes in the church. Only those widows sixty years old should be placed on the Venation. Young widows should marry, be loyal wives and rear Christian children. Officers of the church should be honoured and supported. Be slow in receiving accusations, but rebuke offenders publicly so that others may take warning. 1 Timothy 5. Christian servants should not think any less of their masters because they are their fellow-Christian, but should rather serve them better, 1 Timothy 6:12. Beware of discussions and wranglings with those who do it for gain, for it is Godliness with contentment that gives great gain, 1 Timothy 6:5-6. Urge upon rich Christians that the love of money leads to all kinds of evils. They should rather be rich in good deeds, open-handed and generous, storing up for themselves a good foundation in the future life. Paul charges us before the life-giving God, and Jesus Christ who, before Pilate, (John 18:37) made the great profession of faith, to keep ourselves pure and unblameable until the appearing of our Lord Jesus Christ, 1 Timothy 6:7-21.

LESSON—When the gladiator would enter the Coliseum at Rome, he would look up to the 87,000 people who were assembled to see if he acquitted himself well, and then his eye would rest upon the emperor and his court. The thought of the watching eyes, of the applause he might win, and of the reward of victory all nerved him to do his best. So, Oh Christian, one infinitely greater than Caesar, is looking down upon your arena. He it is who now commands thee, “Take the cross and win the crown!” He it is who charges thee, “Fight the good fight of faith, lay hold of eternal life.”

Questions on the Lesson.

  1. Give key word and key verse.

  2. Name writer, date and place.

  3. Where, under whom and when was Timothy converted?

  4. Tell of his circumcision.

  5. Tell of Timothy’s service with Paul.

  6. What the occasion of this letter?

  7. What the three-fold purpose?

  8. Name the great facts.

  9. Show that man-made doctrines will not stand.

  10. Why should we pray for all rulers and all men?

  11. Illustrate that we should love Christ more than our treasures.

  12. Name the qualifications for church officers.

  13. Show the need for Christian behaviour.

  14. In what things should we be examples?

  15. ‘What is a cure for spiritual ills?

  16. What is said about old widows?

  17. What is said about young widows?

  18. What about the support of church officers?

  19. What is the duty of rich Christians?

  20. Why should we fight the good fight?

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