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«1 Timothy 6:1-2 1 Timothy 6:1-Christian Slaves Are To Regard Their Masters As Deserving Of Total Respect So That The Reputation Of God, Specifically ...»

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1 Timothy 6:1-2

1 Timothy 6:1-Christian Slaves Are To Regard Their Masters As Deserving

Of Total Respect So That The Reputation Of God, Specifically His Teaching

Won’t Be Slandered

1 Timothy 5:1-2: Paul Addresses Timothy’s Proper Conduct with Respect To Older

and Younger Men

In 1 Timothy 5:1-6:2, the apostle Paul gives instructions to Timothy with

regards to various groups in the Ephesian Christian community. In 1 Timothy 5:1-

2, he gives instructions to Timothy with regards to his proper treatment of older and younger men and women in the church. This is followed by an extended discussion of a problem concerning widows in 1 Timothy 5:3-16. Then, in 1 Timothy 5:17-25, he addresses the proper treatment of elders and need to exercise caution when ordaining men to be overseers. Lastly, in Timothy 6:1-2, the apostle discusses the proper conduct of Christian slaves towards their masters. By these instructions, Paul is describing the Christian community as a family that is to operate according to God’s love by the power of the Spirit. The members of this family are to show proper respect and honor toward each other. This family has responsibilities and an authority structure build into it.

In 1 Timothy 5:1, Paul instructs his young delegate Timothy as to how to conduct himself with regards to both older and younger men.

1 Timothy 5:1 Do not severely reprimand an older man but rather continue making it your habit of appealing to them as a father, younger men as brothers. (My translation) This verse contains a prohibition and is followed up with a command. The former tells Timothy what not to do with regards to older Christian men whereas the latter what he is to do with regards to not only older men but also younger men in the Christian community.

“An older man” is the adjective presbuteros is not referring to overseers, i.e.

pastor-teachers or those with the gift of administrations, i.e. leadership as it does in 1 Timothy 5:17 and 19. Rather the word in verse 1 is describing males in the Christian community who were older. This is indicated by the fact that the plural form of the word appears in verse 2 with reference to the older women in the Christian community. 1 Timothy 2:11-15 and 1 Timothy 3:1-7 make clear that women were prohibited from exercising authority and teaching men in the local assembly. Thus, the feminine form of presbuteros in verse 2 is referring to older women and not women pastors, i.e. overseers. Therefore, presbuteros in 1 Timothy 1 ©2011 William E. Wenstrom, Jr. Bible Ministries 5:1 is referring to the “older men” in the Christian community. This word refers to a man who has reached his forties or was forty-six years of age or older The prohibition “do not severely reprimand an older man” is prohibiting Timothy severely reprimanding or rebuking an older Christian man. It makesno comment as to whether Timothy was in fact guilty of severely reprimanding older men in the Christian community. However, Paul’s statements in 1 Timothy 1:3 and 4:6 indicate that Timothy was carrying out everything he wrote in this epistle.

Thus, the prohibition here in 1 Timothy 5:1 is simply a reminder to Timothy to continue doing what they talked about before Paul left for Macedonia.

Furthermore, Paul would not have delegated Timothy such a difficult task as the one in Ephesus unless he felt confident that his young delegate could carry out everything he required of him.

“But rather continue making it your habit of appealing to them as a father” is a strong emphatic adversative clause and stands in direct contrast with the previous prohibition for Timothy to not severely reprimanding an older Christian man. This command calls for Timothy to appeal to older Christian men as if they were his father in the sense of showing the respect and honor as he would with his own father. Therefore, the emphatic contrast is between Timothy severely reprimanding an older Christian man and treating older Christian men as if they were his father, with all honor and respect.

This command denotes that Timothy is to ask earnestly that an older Christian man abandon ungodly behavior in contrast to severely reprimanding him for this behavior. He is to “appeal” to older Christian men as if they were his own father, thus they were to be treated with the utmost respect and with honor. This command speaks of Timothy appealing to the older Christian men when they are conducting themselves in an ungodly fashion in the sense of bringing to their attention that such behavior is wrong but doing so by treating them with honor and respect so as to illicit a positive response to such an appeal.

Paul’s statements in 1 Timothy 1:3 and 4:6 indicate that Timothy was carrying out everything he wrote in this epistle including this command. Thus, this command here in 1 Timothy 5:1 is simply a reminder to Timothy to continue doing what they talked about before Paul left for Macedonia. Furthermore, Paul would not have delegated Timothy such a difficult task as the one in Ephesus unless he felt confident that his young delegate could carry out everything he required of him. Therefore, the present imperative is simply a reminder to Timothy to continue doing what Paul told him to do before he left for Macedonia.

“As a father” marks the manner in which Timothy was to treat older Christian men. He was to treat them as if they were his own biological father. Thus, the implication is that he was to treat them with the utmost respect and with great 2 ©2011 William E. Wenstrom, Jr. Bible Ministries honor since this was the case in Graeco-Roman society and the Jewish family in the first century.





“Younger men” is the adjective neos, which refers to Christian men who have not reached the age of forty or forty-six which marked an older man. It is not referring to men younger than Timothy but those who were younger in comparison to those who were considered older by Graeco-Roman and Jewish society.

“As brothers” marks the manner in which Timothy was to treat younger Christian men. He was to treat them as if they were his own biological brothers.

The idea behind the word is that Timothy is to treat younger Christian men as his peers and not as inferiors. This however, does not diminish his authority as a pastor or as Paul’s delegate to the Ephesian Christian community.

The apostle Paul in 1 Timothy 5:2 continues his thought from 1 Timothy 5:1 by addressing Timothy’s proper conduct with respect to older and younger women in the Christian community in Ephesus.

1 Timothy 5:2 Continue making it your habit of appealing to older women as mothers, younger women as sisters, with absolute purity. (My translation) This verse teaches that when the need arises, Timothy is ask earnestly older Christian women to abandon ungodly behavior in contrast to severely reprimanding them. It denotes that he is to ask earnestly younger Christian women to abandon ungodly behavior in contrast to severely reprimanding them. He is to appeal to older Christian women as if they were his own mother and younger Christian women as if they were his sisters.

When the need arises, Paul wants Timothy to appeal to the older and younger Christian women when they are conducting themselves in an ungodly fashion in the sense of bringing to their attention that such behavior is wrong but doing so by treating them with honor and respect so as to illicit a positive response to such an appeal.

Paul’s statements in 1 Timothy 1:3 and 4:6 indicate that Timothy was carrying out everything he wrote in this epistle including this command in 1 Timothy 5:2.

Thus, this command is simply a reminder to Timothy to continue doing what they talked about before Paul left for Macedonia. Furthermore, Paul would not have delegated Timothy such a difficult task as the one in Ephesus unless he felt confident that his young delegate could carry out everything he required of him.

Therefore, this command is simply a reminder to Timothy to continue doing what Paul told him to do before he left for Macedonia.

“Older women” is referring to those women who were either forty years of age and older or forty-six and older.

“As mothers” marks the manner in which Timothy was to treat older Christian women. He was to treat older Christian women as if they were his own biological mother. Thus, the implication is that he was to treat them with the utmost respect 3 ©2011 William E. Wenstrom, Jr. Bible Ministries and with great honor since this was the case in Graeco-Roman society and the Jewish family in the first century.

“Younger women” refers to Christian women who have not yet reached the age of forty or forty-six, which marked an older women. It is not referring to women younger than Timothy but those who were younger in comparison to those who were considered older by Graeco-Roman and Jewish society.

“As sisters” marks the manner in which Timothy was to treat younger Christian women. He was to treat them as if they were his own biological sisters. The idea behind the word is that Timothy is to treat younger Christian women as his peers and not as inferiors. This however, does not diminish his authority as a pastor or as Paul’s delegate to the Ephesian Christian community.

“With absolute purity” refers to Timothy conforming his behavior to the holy standards of the gospel with regards to women in the Ephesian Christian community. It refers to conforming one’s behavior to the holy standards of the gospel with regards to sexual behavior. It denotes that sexual purity was the manner in which Timothy was to conduct himself with respect to younger Christian women. Paul wants Timothy to perfectly embody sexual purity with respect to younger Christian women.

1 Timothy 5:3-16: Paul Addresses the Problem of Widows

In 1 Timothy 5:3-16, the apostle Paul instructs Timothy with regards to handling the problems with widows. This discussion is the most extensive of any group in the entire epistle. This indicates that this was a significant problem in the Ephesian Christian community and expresses an urgency for this situation to be dealt with promptly and correctly.

In this pericope, Paul identifies four different types of widows: (1) Real widows who are in need and have no relatives to support them financially and are at least sixty years of age and have lived a godly life (verses 3, 5, 9-10, 16b). (2) Widows who have relatives who can support them financially (verses 4, 8, 16a). (3) Widows who have a self-indulgent lifestyle (verses 6-7). (4) Young widows (verses 11-15).

Paul teaches that only the first group is to be supported financially by the Ephesian Christian community. The relatives and the children of the second group were responsible to financially support this category of widows. The third group was not worthy of financial support. The fourth group was to remarry, not only so as to be supported by their husbands but to keep them occupied so that they do not become busybodies and gossips. The apostle did not want the church to waste its financial resources on people who were really not in need.

4 ©2011 William E. Wenstrom, Jr. Bible Ministries Therefore, in 1 Timothy 5:3-16, the apostle Paul instructs Timothy as to which widows should be enrolled to receive benefits from the church and who should not.

This is not an official order of widows because since this passage does not address the duties of widows but rather simply the qualifications that must be met by widows in order for them to be supported by the church.

This compassionate concern for widows is rooted in the teaching of the Old Testament, which of course reflects the Lord’s concern for them (Exodus 22:22;

Deuteronomy 10:18; 14:29; 24:17; Psalm 94:6; Isaiah 1:17; Malachi 3:5) and was adopted by the first century apostolic church (Acts 6:1; James 1:27). In fact, the office of deacon in the first century apostolic church came into existence to deal with the problem of the caring of widows in the Christian community (Acts 6:1In 1 Timothy 5:3-16, Paul is emphasizing the need for discernment in the sense that the church was not responsible to care for every widow but rather only those who had no family or relatives to support them and were thus truly alone.

This passage also harkens back to 1 Timothy 2:9-15 in that it rebukes women who were imitating the lifestyle of the “new” type of woman emerging in certain social circles in Rome and throughout the Empire. We call these women “liberated’ here in the 21st century. In 1 Timothy 5:3-16, Paul rejects such a lifestyle for a Christian woman and stipulated that it disqualifies Christian widows from receiving assistance from the church.

1 Timothy 5:3 Continue making it your habit of honoring widows who are truly widows. (My translation) This verse begins a pericope that ends in 1 Timothy 5:16 and addresses the issue of which widows in the Ephesian Christian community who were eligible to receive financial as well as material aid from the church. It contains the figure of “asyndeton” in order to emphasize the prohibition in 1 Timothy 5:3 in the sense that he wants Timothy to dwell upon it and obey it. This figure emphasizes the importance of this command for the Christian community in Ephesus.

“Widows” refers to a woman whose husband has died. Specifically, it refers to a special category of widows, namely those who are not receiving financial and material support from their children or relatives. It refers to those who are in need financially because they have no children or relatives to support them financially and are at least sixty years of age and have lived a godly life (verses 3, 5, 9-10, 16b).

“Continue making it your habit of honoring” refers to providing for widows financially who have no children or relatives to support them as an expression of honoring them. Paul’s statements in 1 Timothy 1:3 and 4:6 imply that Timothy was carrying out everything he wrote in this epistle including this command. Thus, this command here in 1 Timothy 5:3 is simply a reminder to Timothy to continue doing 5 ©2011 William E. Wenstrom, Jr. Bible Ministries what they talked about before Paul left for Macedonia. It is simply a reminder to Timothy to continue doing what Paul told him to do before he left for Macedonia.

“Who are truly widows” refers to those widows who meet the qualifications presented by Paul in this pericope making them eligible for financial aid from the church but does not deny that other widows are not in the normal sense of the word.



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