“Two Men of God” 1 Timothy 1:1-2

“Two Men of God” 1 Timothy 1:1-2


“Two Men of God”

1 Timothy 1:1-2

Pastor Richard C. Piatt II




Well, take your Bible and turn with me to the epistle of 1 Timothy. Epistle of 1 Timothy.

As I have been reviewing different things in my sermon logs and so forth, I had seen that actually going verse by verse and through a particular book of 2 Timothy has never been done. We’ve had sermons from 2 Timothy, but never gone verse by verse. However, the words of one of my seminary professors said, if you ever want to preach something in the second book, you need to start at the first book first. So in other words, if you want to preach verse by verse through second Corinthians, preach first Corinthians first. or second Thessalonians do first Thessalonians first. So I’m going to follow his advice. It’ll take a little bit longer, but it’ll be something I think that is very good for us.

I also think that this will really be good for us because of what Pastor Ryan is doing in the adult Sunday school class. Those are available if you have not been able to pay attention or not been able to come or pay attention, you know, depending, you know, if you’re working in nursery. I’m thinking heavenly thoughts. I’m being nice. That if you haven’t been able to come or if you haven’t been able to find that, I think you’ll find that very helpful. And I would encourage you to come because as he goes through church history, he’s gone through basically the book of Acts and I’ll be making a reference to some of those kinds of things. And he’s in first, second and third century and some of the early church fathers and how that they have been a tremendous help to us.

I think all of that is extremely important for several reasons. One reason being, and I have just recently gone through this with a dear brother, and that is that we may quote a man of church history. It could be Tertullian, it could be Augustine, or it could be some other church father And when we do that, I think most of our people, especially if you’ve been here for a very long period of time, you understand that when we quote a person like that, that we’re quoting because what they said is in a line with what the word of God says. But we’re not giving them carte blanche on every single thing the person believed. you ought to be careful, now you can laugh, but you could be careful in wanting to quote me and wanting to believe everything that I believe. But the idea there is, is that in early church history, plus, during some of that time, they had New Testament documents, but the canon wasn’t understood as far as its completion.

And so therefore, they were in some cases, maybe hit miss. and they need a little bit more help and time. And that maybe took place in their lifetime or maybe it took some more years to get some further information. What do you do in all of that? How, you know, if we can’t turn always to the church fathers to get us help on the doctrine of the church and how we’re supposed to conduct ourselves. If you can’t turn to the book of Acts, because in the book of Acts, again, they didn’t have the whole New Testament.

I like quoting this just because it really helped me. The apostle Paul never heard John 3.16. Does that kind of surprise you? Now, I will also say that because of the greatness of my God, I’m not gonna say that he didn’t quote it one time and not know that it was John 3.16. Because God gave special revelation of his inerrant word as they would teach and preach. But John 3.16 was not written down on a piece of papyrus until after the Apostle Paul was dead. And so there’s some things like that and recognized as the word of God.

So there’s some things that, you know, and the New Testament documents, they were in the process of being spread. You have the idea of progressive revelation. Well, if you can’t just look at there, then what do we do with knowing how we’re supposed to conduct ourselves in the church? And what about how much freedom really is there? First and Second Timothy and Titus are commonly called the pastoral epistles. They are a practical indoctrination and full of practical designation of how we’re to conduct ourselves. They furnish invaluable lessons and instructions for pastors and for churches.

Now, rather than just saying that myself and saying that we can come and learn principles, if you are there in 1 Timothy, you probably went to 1 Timothy chapter one, but to get the key verse of the first epistle of Paul to Timothy, go to chapter three and we’ll begin at verse 14. Chapter three and verse 14. The Apostle Paul took a while to get to or get to give us a passage whereby we can really find out what this all book is all about. And I think it becomes extremely important because of some of the topics that are going to come up. Verse 14 of Chapter 3. Now, keep in mind, this is Paul writing to Timothy Paul the apostle writing to Timothy, a faithful man who has been left behind at the church in Ephesus to set things that are right. And notice, this is what he writes. These things I write to you, though I hope to come to you shortly. But if I am delayed, I write. And so now he says, this is the reason why these things are written down.

And now it’s the book of 1 Timothy, inspired, holy, inerrant revelation from God. I write so that you may know how you ought to conduct yourself in the house of God, which is the church of the living God, the pillar and the ground of truth. And without controversy, great is the mystery of godliness. God was manifest in the flesh, justified in the spirit, seen by angels, preached among the Gentiles, believed on in the world, received up into glory. And there’s so much more. The book is so rich. But he says, I write these things so that Timothy, you may know how you ought to behave yourself in the household of God. Well, what does he write about? And the purpose of the book?

Well, there has been a general recognition that at the church at Ephesus, which was a very fine church established by the Apostle Paul, that they had an emergency. that people were bringing in false teaching into the church there at Ephesus. It had to be dealt with. And it really comes down to they were accepting of various human options of philosophy. There’s an openness, which was reflective of the world. Ephesus was a very wicked city. A lot of immorality, a lot of it. There was just things that went on there that were terrible. But yet when the gospel came, it had a marvelous impact upon the society and so forth. There was tremendous change. But one of the tendencies that was true, that was true, has been true, is true, and always will be true until Jesus come, is the influence of the world coming into the church. And that is something that is a reality. And that can be good or bad, but I’m going to quickly say, I’m not thinking in only doctrinal terms.

The Apostle Paul did not know what electricity was, so he didn’t have lights like this. He didn’t know what air conditioning was. Well, we learned those things in the world, and now we’ve adapted those things to help us. They didn’t have pianos or, you know, they didn’t. There’s some ways in which that we have seen how that you can adapt. This morning we heard about the differences between polemics and apologetics, and how part of that is a separation from the world, or is it an adoption of the things of the world? And so one has to be careful. But is that up to every believer in and of themselves as far as how a church is to conduct itself? When is it that the world infiltrates the church?

Now I could become controversial and say things like smoke machines and special lighting behind the preacher and all this kind of stuff, but I am really gonna restrain from that. But who is it that helps try and figure out some of those things? When is it that the church ought to stand opposed to when people come in and say things like this? Well, I believe that that passage says this. Or if I want to just jump in both feet in controversy, we’re not a Southern Baptist church, but the Southern Baptists have just seen how much it can be. And they’ve taken a stand on it for which we are grateful. And that is, can there be women preachers? And you say, well, there are women preachers. Well, there’s women who call themselves that. But are we to conduct ourselves in the house of God and to allow a woman to preach and have authority over man, over a man?

Well, how does one take care of all of those things? And is it just going to be Pastor Piatt’s perfect ponderings? Or is it going to be, I should have thought one up for you. That one’s always been mine. But the idea of Pastor Ryan’s ramblings on his thoughts, let me just put it that way. Oh, that one might stick, I’m so sorry. But is that how we determine truth? Or how is it? And do we just say, well, Piatt’s the old guy and McKean is the young guy. And since one’s gonna be kicking off pretty soon and the other one, he’s gonna be dying and six feet under and the other one’s gonna be around probably for a while. So maybe we ought to go with his ramblings rather than the ponderings.

Really, that’s how we determine how we’re gonna conduct ourselves. I like the concept of, What does the word of God say? And I believe that’s why you’re here too. That’ll get you for those comments about celebrating when I’m leaving. Turn back now to chapter one, verse one. In the first, actually the first two verses, we have the epistolary greeting. And we could take some time and go through this and it would be really worthy to do so.

I’ve chosen not to do that today. But Paul, an apostle of Jesus Christ, by the commandment of God, and notice this is of God, our savior, and the Lord Jesus Christ, our hope. There’s a lot that could be said there concerning God who is the Savior and Christ who is our hope. I think that we can understand all of that. But what’s interesting is, is if you take just verse one and you look at it. So who wrote the letter? Well, we say, well, it’s a bit obvious, it says so. It says that the apostle Paul was doing that. And it was to, verse two, to Timothy, a true son in the faith.

Pastor, what’s the problem? Well, it’s kind of interesting in the fact that there are those, in fact, there’s a majority of those and much material that does not agree that Paul was the author. They say things like, well, it lacks the logic and the strength. of the Book of Romans. It has, and I love this, only it frustrates me so much, it has the wrong vocabulary. Oh, these are words the Apostle Paul didn’t use, as if Paul was locked into the Book of Romans language for his entire vocabulary. It just blows me away how that there are, professing themselves to be wise, they become fools, but people who think that they’re going to limit Paul by his vocabulary to a particular book or to some of his other writings. It lacks the logic and the piece of this.

Other writings are not quoted, as if Paul always has to quote other writings. The content of the epistle is for the wrong century, the wrong names of God. There’s too much church organization. or he’s trying to instruct Timothy how to have the organization in an early church. Now, of course, they would never look at it. Gnosticism, it was the problem going on and he addresses it.

Well, if you were in Sunday school today, The Ebonites, that one he put up first, but then Gnosticism was the next one. They’re the, I always refer to it as the nanu-nanu kind of people. They’re the weirdos who, you know, they gotta have a deeper meaning, or they’ve gotta, you know, physical is bad, spiritual is good, and all that kind of stuff. Well, those things don’t just pop up. And so when people that well, Paul couldn’t have been writing about that, well, maybe the Spirit of God gives us in holy inspired position and passage to help address those issue because he knew they weren’t coming up.

Oh, yeah, but that’s because they don’t believe in supernatural revelation. They deny miracles, even the miracles that kind of remain unstated, that the miracle of inspiration of God’s Holy Word. And so we live in a day and age where people want to add to the issue of how we are to conduct ourselves into the word of God, or conduct ourselves in the house of God. Others will then really restrict us to things like the regulative principle, which I find very difficult to be consistent in its application. And no one has ever fully convinced me how that is to be practically applied. But I do think that the principle itself is a nice guideline, because it says, if the Bible doesn’t deny it, that doesn’t automatically say that it’s okay.

But just because the Bible practice it, the day that we start offering up lambs and cutting off and twisting off bird’s heads and putting blood on the communion table, I’m out of here for more reasons than one. So one has to be kind of careful that, okay, on worship principles, but you see, The world is full of people who will deny what the word of God says, Paul. Well, no, that couldn’t have been Paul, an apostle of Jesus Christ by the commandment of God. You know, if you’re not gonna say that Paul wrote the book, then I would imagine you have problems with Paul being an apostle because of what he said just already over there for when he does the list of sins and he goes to chapter one, verse 10, for fornicators, sodomites, for kidnappers. I mean, they already don’t like Paul.

We heard about, again, in the first, second century, when people were upset that, well, Jesus didn’t say those things. Paul said them. Well, that came. But guess what? Paul was led of the Spirit to write 1 and 2 Timothy to teach the church what we’re to believe and how to conduct ourselves in the household of faith. And it came before all those other weirdos came in to corrupt it. And so someone would say, how on earth can we have any rational local New Testament church that stands for truth today. It’s by the working of the spirit of God and a people of God who will take the word of God and read it and apply what the word says. That’s why we want to be sure that we maintain the whole thing about what does the Bible say?

Well, there’s another problem they don’t like, and that is, They don’t know what to do with Paul in prison. The imprisonment of the apostle Paul, and when you take the book of Acts and you read it, they say there’s no way Paul could have written 1st and 2nd Timothy. Well, let’s see, I don’t know. Who wrote 2nd Timothy? Well, look at 2nd Timothy chapter one. Uh-oh. Almost looks like a ditto. Paul, an apostle of Jesus Christ by the will of God, according to the promise of life, which is in Christ Jesus. To Timothy, our beloved son.

So Paul wrote both of them. But the second one appears that he’s in prison, but in 1 Timothy, he’s free, he talks about a life of liberty. Well, then this would have to be written before the Roman imprisonment. but you can’t put some of the things that are found in the book of First Timothy before Paul’s imprisonment. And so they say, you see, it can’t be right. there could be what has been termed and what most people in the conservative circles would teach, that there were two Roman imprisonments.

His first one, he reached Rome, the Apostle Paul, about 61 AD. He was held a prisoner for two years, according to Acts chapter 28 and verse 30. And Then, during this time, he wrote the prison epistles, Ephesians, Philippians, Colossians, Philemon. And in each of those, he mentions his bonds and that he’s in prison. But it also, there were those elements of hope. When we get to 2 Timothy, yeah, he’s not looking at being released. There is a completely different attitude. So it would appear that at the end of the book of Acts, he’s in prison or in chapter 28, but he’s released, and he writes, he gets out. What’s some of the same thing? Well, okay, Timothy, get over there to Ephesus, because I wrote to him, and there is this thing called the Ephesus emergency problem that they’ve got. It’s found in chapter one, verses three through 11. And there seems to be some real issues of people that are having a problem with the doctrine of theology or the doctrine of God. Timothy, I’m going to send you over there and take care of him. And I’m going to write a book and I’ll give you some instructions how to set the things up.

In fact, Titus, very clear, he says, and Titus, you get over there and set in order the things that need to be set in order. So he got out, there’s excitement, he’s buzzing these letters off, but then there was a second arrest after that. The release was real. He expected to be reestablished with his friends, if you read all the way to the end of the books, and see what he is expected to see. Now, it’s also interesting that during this release, he visits Spain and the East as he writes it in First Timothy and Titus. He wanted to go to Spain. It’s mentioned in the Book of Romans of his desire there. But what’s also interesting is this. Clement of Rome says he went to Spain. Now, that doesn’t make it Inerrant truth, Clement of Rome was one of the early church fathers.

And I mentioned that because you might say, why are we spending time in Sunday school learning about these guys? Because we rely on these guys. Sometimes we don’t get what they say. And just because we quote them doesn’t mean we agree with everything that they would say, or we’d be as wacko as they are, probably more so. But Clement at Rome mentions in one of his writings, well, Paul went to Spain. Well, that didn’t come out of the blue. I think it would mean that Paul went to Spain. Not only that, there’s a Uritorian fragment that says that he did. Dicebius says, Christostom says, Jerome says, and that he eventually had gone on to this Niletus and others. And so we lean on them to gather information and that becomes our ammunition against others who simply cannot take God’s holy word at face value and read Paul, an apostle of Jesus Christ by the commandment of God, our savior and the Lord Jesus Christ, our hope.

You see, you don’t have to have the early church fathers. But let me just tell you something, they add more to our apologetic and our answering the fools that won’t listen to God’s word and deny the straight statement of the scripture. You don’t have to know those things. But when you have those things, it adds security to your faith. So what we have is the book of first and second Timothy, The first one, he gets out, he pens, and he sends to a church that he loves.

Now, what about the thing of the vocabulary? Well, is this, what kind of a letter is it? Well, it says to Timothy, a true son in the faith. That’s why we believe in a literal interpretation. That’s a personal letter. And we’ve said it before, if you write personal letters is a little bit different than if you’re writing the IRS and trying to get out of a penalty, okay? There’s gonna be a main difference. And so different vocabulary goes for different purposes. This one also just teaches us the apostle’s heart for a fellow minister. That’s why the title interpret two godly men, two men of God. Two men of God in the early New Testament church.

This is not of a particular local church, although they’re both involved in the maintaining and love and concern and edification of that local church. The Apostle Paul had been the pastor. Timothy was appointed as their pastor. There was this communication that was coming and the purpose of it was, okay, everybody, and the local church, this is how you’re to conduct yourselves. So it really tells us some really cool stuff. It shows us the cool aspect of the heart of the Apostle Paul. I remember my pastor, as I was being called into the ministry, that he came to the pastoral epistles, and that’s when I fell in love with them. He just says, oh, you get to find out so much. What was the heartbeat of the Apostle Paul and everything? And I go, well, that’s what I want. If anything, I want to know about about the Apostle Paul.

But then we also need to know some of the things about Timothy. Who is this Timothy? Well, he was a native of Lystra, where Paul first met him on the first missionary journey in Acts 16. His mother was a devout Jewish, and his grandmother also, Lois and Eunice. His father was a Greek, which was unique and providential by the sovereign hand of God, You see how I got sovereignty overriding providence, and I think that’s a good way to view it. That he brought that, because he would be used in Gentile churches. He was brought up in the scriptures. As a youth, he was converted on Paul’s first missionary journey in Acts 14 and 16. The brethren of his community reported that he was a well-behaved man, and here it just says a true son of the faith. Paul chose him to be a companion on his preaching endeavors and so forth.

Paul had him circumcised so he wouldn’t be, I think, quote, unquote, odious to the Jews. But it wasn’t mandatory. It wasn’t for his salvation or a requirement, but it was done. It was a point on which Paul was so close to him, they ministered together in a great and special way. And they both loved Ephesus and the people of God in Ephesus. He was a young man, let no man despise your youth. He was a sickly man, apparently, had stomach problems, take a little wine for your stomach’s sake. Baptists try to say that’s only juice. I don’t think that cuts it. I think it was real wine and I’m just gonna leave it there. It was the medicinal use of wine that Paul told Timothy to take. But it only points out that much more that he wasn’t some kind of a show dog or super strong dude, but that he was a sickly man, but he was a faithful man, he was a good man. And the apostle Paul is going to instruct him, bearing his heart of the ministry Timothy, this is what is really important.

Now I would hope that that in and of itself would just be enough for all of us to say, okay, I wanna hurry up and get into this book. You’re not even gonna be here next Sunday, so we know you gotta wait two weeks to get me, but then you got me for two sermons, I think. So we’ll jump in there in a couple of weeks. But let me just give you a little bit of the taste of the heart of the Apostle Paul. What was it that he said? What is he about now to say? I’ve been in prison. I see the reality. What really counts? What do we got to get right? Because Marcion is going to be coming. We got to deal with double wackos of some people. We don’t even know if they’re really going to be saved or not. Tertullian, some other dudes. You know, people are going to come along and they’re going to come up with things that are just wild. And he says, OK, these are the things now in our day and age.

There’s a ministry in Washington, D.C. from Mark Dever, a fine ministry, a fine ministry. It’s a big Southern Baptist church. I think he’s still associated with them. I’m not sure, but he has been in the past. An outspoken man, a man who knows Puritanism probably better than anybody in a Ligonier. He just really knows Puritanism extremely well. He’s a great man. And he has been known, however, even more for what is called Nine Marks. Nine Marks Ministry, it’s online and so forth. And it’s called Nine Marks of a Healthy Church. And it’s kind of taken off and nine marks kind of delineate some other things like church disciplines when it comes to mine. A church that does not exercise church discipline is not a local New Testament church. I don’t know that I would make that one of the top nine. I do think that if you’re going to be a biblical local New Testament church, I do think you should exercise church discipline. So I don’t, I’m not in disagreement with him. I just don’t know that I would take that as part of that.

And that’s why when I come back, and rather than coming up with Pastor Piatt’s Perfect ponderings of what are the marks that every church ought to do, well, we can come to this and to say that the Apostle Paul gives six charges. Now you could divide them up in different ways. And so some may come up with four, some may come up with eight. They’ll all come within the organization, because we’re dealing with the inspired text. And this is what we’re going to be looking at in the weeks ahead.

What are six charges found in the book of 1 Timothy that was on the heart of the apostle Paul? he wanted Timothy to take a look at there. Well, first of all was this, beginning in chapter three, verse three of chapter one, he gives him a charge concerning sound doctrine, sound doctrine. The term sound has as its basic root idea of that of which is healthy, it is foundational, it is strong, that Paul is gonna tell Timothy, if you wanna mark of what we really need to get together on, because we’re all gonna be dying off here pretty soon, and we’re gonna pass this off to the next generation. What is the one thing we have to do? You gotta have sound doctrine. What does the church believe? And so we have the danger to that that is expressed in verse three. I charge you there, I charge, I urge, I’m sorry. I urge you when I went into Macedonia remain an emphasis that you may charge some that they teach no other doctrine nor give heed to fables and endless genealogies which causes disputes and godly edification or rather than godly edification which is in the faith.

Now the purpose of the commandment is love from the pure heart, from a good conscience, from a sincere faith, which some, having strayed, have turned aside to idle talk, desiring to be teachers of law, understanding neither what they say or the things which they affirm. For they know that the law, for we know that the law is good if one uses it lawfully. And so it’s gonna be basically, there’s a danger to sound doctrine that was going to be found in the first 11 verses. The illustration of sound doctrine, look at verse 12. I thank Jesus Christ, our Lord, who has enabled me because he has counted me faithful, putting me into the ministry, although I was formerly a blasphemer. And he talks about how he had almost messed these things up before.

Verse 15, this is a faithful saying worthy of all acceptance that, Jesus Christ came into the world to save sinners, of whom I am chief. Don’t ever lose sight of what is the purpose of the church. To entertain teenagers? To make people feel good? No, it preaches Christ. It preaches doctrine. It does not just go on what is happening in the world today. He says, to show all loving, long-suffering is a pattern of those who are going to believe on him for everlasting life. Now, and then he goes into doxology. Now to the King, eternal, immortal, invisible, to God who alone is wise, be glory and honor, honor and glory forever and ever, amen. This charge I commit to you, son Timothy, according to the prophecies previously made concerning you, that by then you may wage a good warfare, having the faith and a good conscience, which some, having rejected concerning the faith, have made shipwreck.

Now, I’m gonna make a bold statement here, and I’ve had people get upset with me. One very good person even left the church, because I would name a name of people that have gone heretical, and have simply are dangerous in the faith. They said, we should never mention names. That’s funny. Verse 20, of whom are Harmonius and Alexander. Paul mentioned names. Sometimes, and you don’t always have to do it, sometimes names need to be named. You ever hear of a coppersmith that got in trouble? Sometimes you gotta put a face on it. But if that isn’t enough, whom I delivered to Satan that they should learn not to blaspheme. Now, he gives a charge. Doctrine is worthy fighting for. We must believe the truth. Christ is the center of it. We must preach the truth, teach the truth, and sound doctrine, give a charge for that.

Second charge is a charge concerning public worship. I’ll quickly go through this. I’ll just raise a lot of eyebrows on this one. It says, I will therefore, or therefore I exhort, first of all, that supplications, prayers, and intercessions, and the giving of thanks be made for all men. So church services, teach that church to pray. You pray for all kinds of people. You pray for the president, whether you would vote for him or not. You pray for the lost. You pray for believers. You pray for the sick. You pray for the healthy. You pray for the traveling. You pray for people and all that. and be thankful for them, for kings who are in authority and so forth. For this is good and acceptable, verse three. And then it goes through and talks about this. Good instructions on prayer.

But then Paul stops preaching and starts meddling. I desire therefore that men pray. And that does not say women. That’s one reason why I don’t call on women to pray. We’ll go on and talk about that. Lifting up holy hands without wrath and doubting, and like man are also women adorn themselves. And it gets into some apparel issues. Verse 11, let a woman learn in silence with all submission. Well, this is one reason why the contemporary Christianity, they despise the apostle Paul. They see him as a male chauvinist pig. The problem is, he’s writing what the Spirit of God wants, not in the world, but in the church. Will we listen, and will we follow? If a church has a woman pastor, the church still needs to look for a pastor, because they don’t have one, if you get the drift.

So he gives a charge concerning public worship, and he addresses the demeanor and the involvement of women in that. There’s a charge concerning church offices, chapter three. That’s that whole passage. We’ve just recently changed our constitution and became much more, wrote it out faithfully and put some things through that we’ve had eldership for a while. But this is where it says, if a man desires the position of a bishop, he desires a good work. A bishop then must be, and he has qualifications. Well, as we would take a look at the word bishop, elder, and pastor, and so forth, we find out that all those terms refer to one man, but it is to be a man. They’re found in the masculine. I’ve got a whole sermon. I mean, we will have a sermon on that. That a pastor is to be a man.

Then there’s the qualifications of deacons, verse eight. Deacons must be reverent, not double-tongued and so forth. Verse 11, likewise their wives, or the Greek there’s women, must be reverent. Some churches have female deacons, Phoebe being one in Romans chapter 16. Well, are we to organize that way? What is the role of women in the church? And then we get down to that verse 14 in chapter three, these things I write to you though and hope to come to you shortly. But if I am delayed, I write so that you may know how you ought to conduct yourself in the household of faith. Then he gives a charge concerning chapter four in the false teachers, the appearance of false teachers and the duty of a pastor concerning those things. If verse six of chapter four, if you instruct the brethren in these things, you will be a good minister of Jesus Christ, nourished in the words and good doctrine, which you have faithfully followed, but reject profane and old wives tables, exercise yourself towards godliness. And he goes on and explains what that means and how we can do that.

He then charges different members of the congregation. What about the old? What about the young? What about widows? What about elders? And then what about slaves? Chapters six, verses one and two, he will bring up the slave issue. What about them? And then chapter three, in chapter three, or I’m sorry, chapter six, he will then let loose on the man of God, the man in the pulpit. But you, 6:11, but you, oh man of God, flee these things. Pursue righteousness, godliness, faith, love, patience, gentleness. Fight the good fight of faith. Lay hold on eternal life, to which you were called, and have confessed in the good confession of the presence of many witnesses. I urge you in the sight of God, who gives life to all, and before Jesus Christ, who witnessed the good confession before Pontius Pilate, that you keep this commandment. without spot, blameless, until Jesus Christ appearing. And then he goes into doxology again.

What’s interesting is the last wrap-up of verses, it’s instructions to the rich. We’ll address that when we get there. See, an immensely practical book, written with the heart of the Apostle Paul all over it, but it shows the importance of the perpetuity of the gospel, the passing of the gospel to the next generation. And what really counts, youth ministry and what Sunday school curriculum you use, isn’t mentioned. Worship style and the instruments, it’s not mentioned. Doctrine is, fight against false doctrine and particular instructions, following a creation mandate order on who’s to be doing what, and a strong concept of holiness, godliness, and church leadership. May the church leaders be that of qualified people.

Last week, we had an ordination. We’re reminded of that again. Why do we run a guy through all of those questions and everything? Because it’s important. We have two other men at least, and before this year is up, that will go through another ordination for eldership within our own local church. Why will we do that? Because doctrine and the ability to fight heresy is extremely important. We want qualified men who know right and who also can smell wrong. And we know that they will fight, they’re scrappers for the truth. Now, if that’s all true, and it is, then what does that mean for you and me? You say, well, I’m not gonna be a preacher, I’m not gonna do those things, that may be. But that should also show you how important right doctrine is. And to find a church and to praise God that you’re in a church that finds the things that the Apostle Paul finds important, our church finds important, for we want to follow what the fight of faith is really all about. And the reason for that is we will all stand before the judgment seat of God one day.

Let’s pray. Our Father in heaven, I pray that as we, in the weeks ahead, will spend time in this, in really both of these precious books, that they will be that which they were intended as instructions at how we ought to behave ourselves. And it also shows us what you hold as truly important for the local church to hold. Father, I pray and ask that your hand of blessing would rest upon him. And may we rejoice that we need not fear future judgment because we have Christ as our Savior. But if there’s some soul here today that knows not the truth, may they flee to him, for that is the purpose that he came. He came to seek and to save that which was lost. Help us, Father, to remain faithful. We pray this in Jesus’ name, amen.

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