Widows

Honor True Widows: 1 Timothy 5:3–16 with Implications for the Church’s Social Responsibilities, Part 4

From DBSJ 21 (2016); posted with permission. Read the series so far. This installment continues the exegetical study of 5:3-16.

Instruction of Younger Widows: Verses 11–15

νεωτέρας δὲ χήρας παραιτοῦ ὅταν γὰρ καταστρηνιάσωσιν τοῦ Χριστοῦ, γαμεῖν θέλουσιν ἔχουσαι κρίμα ὅτι τὴν πρώτην πίστιν ἠθέτησαν ἅμα δὲ καὶ ἀργαὶ μανθάνουσιν περιερχόμεναι τὰς οἰκίας, οὐ μόνον δὲ ἀργαὶ ἀλλὰ καὶ φλύαροι καὶ περίεργοι, λαλοῦσαι τὰ μὴ δέοντα. βούλομαι οὖν νεωτέρας γαμεῖν, τεκνογονεῖν, οἰκοδεσποτεῖν, μηδεμίαν ἀφορμὴν διδόναι τῷ ἀντικειμένῳ λοιδορίας χάριν ἤδη γάρ τινες ἐξετράπησαν ὀπίσω τοῦ Σατανᾶ.

But refuse to enroll younger widows, for when their passions draw them away from Christ, they desire to marry and so incur condemnation for having abandoned their former faith. Besides that, they learn to be idlers, going about from house to house, and not only idlers, but also gossips and busybodies, saying what they should not. So I would have younger widows marry, bear children, manage their households, and give the adversary no occasion for slander. For some have already strayed after Satan.

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Honor True Widows: 1 Timothy 5:3–16 with Implications for the Church’s Social Responsibilities, Part 1

From Detroit Baptist Theological Seminary’s DBSJ 21 (2016); posted with permission.

by Benjamin G. Edwards1,2

Paul’s instructions in his first epistle to Timothy are an invaluable resource to believers. They serve as a superb foundation for knowing how the church is to be organized and to function. Paul’s guidelines for overseers and deacons in chapter three are familiar to nearly all Christians as they consider who is qualified to serve in that capacity. The exhortations for Timothy’s life and ministry in chapter four have often been used to challenge both new and experienced church leaders to fulfill the responsibility they have received from God. Paul’s discussion concerning prayer in chapter two is a popular passage, both for church life and in discussions of God’s will in regard to salvation. One’s understanding of the role of women in the church depends heavily on the interpretation of Paul’s teaching in 2:11–15. These concerns make certain passages in 1 Timothy well-known among contemporary believers.

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