Multiply: Practical Purity

1Timothy 5:17-6:2
Today’s passage hinges on a single sentence, “Keep yourself pure” (1Timothy 5:22). Paul is trying to finish up his letter to Timothy and quickly hits several different points (maybe his scroll was running out of space). All these points have a common point. There is the potential for sin and the way to avoid sin is to live like Christ.

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Multiply: Nourishment & Salvation

1Timothy 4:1-16
‘The Spirit explicitly says that in later times some will fall away from the faith…’ (v.1 NASB). The contrast this statement points us to lays between paying attention to ‘things taught by demons’ and the nourishment found in ‘truths of the faith and good teaching’ (v.6). When we are children physically, we are unable to feed ourselves and are completely dependent for our nourishment on others; our parents feed us. But as we grow, we begin to gain the skills we need to feed ourselves so that we are less and less dependent on our parents for that provision, until one day, we declare our independence and take on the job of providing for ourselves. We learn how to feed ourselves, everything from the technical skills needed to prepare a meal to the much more global task of earning the paycheck that provides what is needed to prepare that meal. In the spiritual realm, that same process occurs; we are feed ‘truths’ by our parents that become the foundation for our outlook and understanding of the world around us and as we grow, we take on the task of grasping and building the Truth for ourselves. What we pay attention to as we go about that task makes all the difference in the outcome.

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Multiply: Doxology

1Timothy 3:16
Every so often Paul surprises us and we have an example of that in 1 Timothy 3. My imagination always sees Paul pacing about with a very serious face, scrunched in concentration while dictating his letters (see Romans 16:22 as an example). All of a sudden, probably in great surprise to his amanuensis*, he bursts out in song. Picking himself up off the floor, Paul’s scribe would then jot down the song.

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Multiply: Love & Respect

1Timothy 5:1-16
Based upon his many letters to troubled churches in the first century, we could consider the apostle Paul somewhat of a church coach. Paul challenged early Christians in their areas of weakness and encouraged them in their strengths. Much of Paul’s coaching to these early churches had to do with their social interaction with one another and within society. Paul was not afraid to speak bluntly to the early churches and clearly define his expectations for their behavior. 1Timothy 5:1-25 specifically gives us insight into how Paul wanted the churches to care for elders and widows. These instructions can benefit us as a church today, as well, as we strive to see the kingdom of God grow and multiply in our midst.

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Multiply: Service in the Church

1Timothy 3:1-16
1 Timothy 3 presents us with qualifications for the leaders of the Church. We have several names for leaders in the Bible as well as different types of leaders. For the local church there are two primary leaders, the “elders” and the “deacons”. These positions of leadership are foundational for the church serving two primary functions: the elders provide spiritual teaching and guidance where the deacons provide the leadership for the physical needs of the Church. It is also implied that elders are normally full time workers, especially those that are preacher/teachers (1 Timothy 5:17) whereas deacons were volunteers.
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Multiply: Questions & Culture

1Timothy 2:1-15
Not all questions are created equal. Good answers demand good questions and some questions are better than others; the value we receive in the answer we receive depends on the question itself. There is no harm in asking Father the questions we have, we just can’t let our initial questions be our final ones. Asking questions is one of the ways in which we seek God and find out who He is. These verses in 2Timothy challenge us and they challenge our thinking about who we are, they fly in the face of our culture and its expectations of both men and women. We can be very tempted to ask God ‘Why?’ but that may not be the best question we can ask. It certainly can’t be the last question we ask.

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