Church & Ministry

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.

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

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

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

Enrolling Widows in the Church: Verse 9–10

Χήρα καταλεγέσθω μὴ ἔλαττον ἐτῶν ἑξήκοντα γεγονυῖα, ἑνὸς ἀνδρὸς γυνή, ἐν ἔργοις καλοῖς μαρτυρουμένη, εἰ ἐτεκνοτρόφησεν, εἰ ἐξενοδόχησεν, εἰ ἁγίων πόδας ἔνιψεν, εἰ θλιβομένοις ἐπήρκεσεν, εἰ παντὶ ἔργῳ ἀγαθῷ ἐπηκολούθησεν.

Let a widow be enrolled if she is not less than sixty years of age, having been the wife of one husband, and having a reputation for good works: if she has brought up children, has shown hospitality, has washed the feet of the saints, has cared for the afflicted, and has devoted herself to every good work.

Paul transitions from the families’ responsibility to care for widows to the church’s responsibility. He begins with the command to enroll true widows, further clarifying who those widows are. Read more about Honor True Widows: 1 Timothy 5:3-16 with Implications for the Church’s Social Responsibilities, Part 3

Honor True Widows: 1 Timothy 5:3–16 with Implications for the Church’s Social Responsibilities, Part 2

From DBSJ 21 (2016); posted with permission. Read Part 1.

Exegetical Study

With the historical and literary context addressed, it is now possible to look more closely at the passage itself. Verse three provides the underlying principle for the passage. In verse four, Paul gives his initial instruction to the family of the widow. Paul lays out the first criteria for true widows in verses five and six, before returning to his instructions for the family of widows in verses seven and eight. In verse nine, Paul moves to his instruction to the church regarding widows. In verses nine and ten, he deals with enrolling older widows in the care of the church, while in verses eleven to fifteen he gives his instruction for younger widows. He concludes in verse sixteen with a final exhortation for believing women to care for their own relatives in order to free the church to care for true widows. Read more about Honor True Widows: 1 Timothy 5:3–16 with Implications for the Church’s Social Responsibilities, Part 2

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

Understanding the Purpose of the Church, Part 2

Republished from Baptist Bulletin March/April 2017 with permission. © Regular Baptist Press, all rights reserved. Read Part 1.

Instruction

The saints need instruction, and for this purpose the Lord has not only sent the Holy Spirit and His Word, but has given as gifts to the churches evangelists, pastors, and teachers (Eph. 4:11–15). (It appears that the apostles and prophets ceased with the apostolic era. They are no longer needed since the Word of God has been given.)

The saints need the ministry of teaching and should attend faithfully the preaching of the Word (Heb. 10:24, 25). We should cry out to the Lord to raise up such ministers of the Word out of our churches, and every care should be taken to sustain them as well as to train them in His ministry. Read more about Understanding the Purpose of the Church, Part 2

Understanding the Purpose of the Church, Part 1

Republished from Baptist Bulletin March/April 2017 with permission. © Regular Baptist Press, all rights reserved.

By Paul R. Jackson

Soon after entering the ministry, I heard a man who had graduated from a modernistic seminary say, “The primary business of the church is to equalize the wealth of the world in the hands of the people.” He may have had good motives, but he had poor theology! He did not find this objective for the church’s ministry in the Book. Even the Lord Jesus said, “For the poor always ye have with you” (John 12:8). Certainly Christians should do all that is possible to comfort and relieve poverty and suffering, but the primary ministry of the church is not social and economic. Wonderful social and economic reactions result from a Biblical ministry, but they are the by-products of lives transformed by divine grace as the church preaches the message of personal salvation through faith in Jesus Christ.

Probably nothing about the church is more confused in the minds of men than its objective. What is the purpose of the church? Why did the Lord build the church? Read more about Understanding the Purpose of the Church, Part 1

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