Monthly Archives: February 2017

For Wednesday March 1: Better Organization

Paul wrote to Timothy and Titus instructing them concerning affairs of the churches with which they worked.

Many resist the idea that there is an organizational aspect to the church. The opposing view is that the word church simply means the people called together (which is true) and that the church is nothing more than a group of believers supporting one another like a family.

What do these verses in 1 Timothy and Titus reveal about any organization in the churches? Are these just older men who should be examples or is there a more formal organization here?

1 Timothy 3:1-13

1 Timothy 5:17-18

Titus 1:5-9

 

 

Concerning elders, note how these texts use different words to designate the same work:

Acts 20:17 From Miletus he sent to Ephesus and called for the ________________of the church…………28 “Therefore take heed to yourselves and to all the flock, among which the Holy Spirit has made you __________________ , to ____________________the church of God which He purchased with His own blood.

Titus 1:5 For this reason I left you in Crete, that you should set in order the things that are lacking, and appoint _______________  in every city as I commanded you– 6 if a man is blameless, the husband of one wife, having faithful children not accused of dissipation or insubordination. 7 For a ________________must be blameless, as a steward of God……

1 Peter 5:1 The ___________________who are among you I exhort, I who am a fellow elder and a witness of the sufferings of Christ, and also a partaker of the glory that will be revealed: 2 ______________ the flock of God which is among you, serving as ____________________ .

 

 

What might be suggested by these statements:

Titus 1:5 For this reason I left you in Crete, that you should set in order the things that are lacking, and appoint elders in every city….

1 Peter 5:2 Shepherd the flock of God which is among you.

Acts 14:23 So when they had appointed elders in every church…..

 

 

Some of the opposition to organization is a reaction to abuses by those in authority in churches. An extreme, but  not uncommon expression of this attitude would be “The church is controlled by a bunch of men who are only interested in my attending and giving”.  What qualifications for elders help guard them against becoming abusers of authority? See also 1 Peter 5:3.

 

 

Compare the qualifications for elders in 1 Timothy 3:1-7 and Titus 1:5-9.  Are there any differences?

 

 

How might Titus 3:1 relate to the predicament of whether or not a church should have a corporate identity?

 

 

 

 

 

 

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For Wednesday February 22 – Better Praise!

In the letters to Timothy and Titus Paul uses expressions that are somewhat poetic in nature and which are grand statements of faith and praise. Perhaps they give us a glimpse of the joy we should feel when worshiping God or they serve as reminder of how excited we should be to be Christians!

1 Timothy 3:16 kind of sums up the whole purpose of Jesus’ earthly mission.

Some have suggested that in 2 Timothy 2:11-13 Paul might have been quoting an early hymn.

We will also look at two statements in Titus that are beautiful descriptions of the gospel and are worthy of meditation!

1 Timothy 3:16 And without controversy great is the mystery of godliness: God was manifested in the flesh, Justified in the Spirit, Seen by angels, Preached among the Gentiles, Believed on in the world, Received up in glory.

  1. What do you think Paul means when he says this is a “great mystery”?
  2. He lists 6 aspects of the work of Jesus.  List them and make an attempt to define each.

 

2 Timothy 2:11 This is a faithful saying: For if we died with Him, We shall also live with Him. 12 If we endure, We shall also reign with Him. If we deny Him, He also will deny us. 13 If we are faithless, He remains faithful; He cannot deny Himself.

  1. What does it mean to die with Jesus (there are two possibilities).
  2. What must we endure?
  3. What will happen if we deny Him?
  4. What comfort is there in knowing if we are faithless He still remains faithful and He cannot deny Himself?

 

Titus 2:11 For the grace of God that brings salvation has appeared to all men, 12 teaching us that, denying ungodliness and worldly lusts, we should live soberly, righteously, and godly in the present age, 13 looking for the blessed hope and glorious appearing of our great God and Savior Jesus Christ, 14 who gave Himself for us, that He might redeem us from every lawless deed and purify for Himself His own special people, zealous for good works.

  1. In addition to bringing salvation to all men this passage says the GRACE OF GOD teaches us how to live.   Identify (at least) 3 things we are to be doing according to this text.

 

Titus 3:3 For we ourselves were also once foolish, disobedient, deceived, serving various lusts and pleasures, living in malice and envy, hateful and hating one another. 4 But when the kindness and the love of God our Savior toward man appeared, 5 not by works of righteousness which we have done, but according to His mercy He saved us, through the washing of regeneration and renewing of the Holy Spirit, 6 whom He poured out on us abundantly through Jesus Christ our Savior, 7 that having been justified by His grace we should become heirs according to the hope of eternal life.

  1. This text teaches us not to think we are better than other people by reminding us of how we were saved. It says we have been saved and we are heirs, but how does the text remind us that we still ought to be very humble?
  2. In a few words, how did we go from being a lost sinner to being saved?
  3. Our salvation is “not by works of righteousness which we have done”.  How do you understand that expression?

 

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For Wednesday February 15 – Zealous For Good Works

Paul’s letters to Timothy and Titus frequently mention the importance of good works: See 1 Timothy 2:10, 5:10, Titus 3:1, 3:14, 6:18, Titus 2:14, 3:1, 8, 14.

  1. How would you define “good works”?
  2. What specific good works do 1 Timothy 5:9-10 and Titus 3:14 identify?

 

Titus 2:11-14 is one of the grandest texts in Paul’s letters to Timothy and Titus. It tells us that the grace of God that brings salvation has appeared to all men. That grace teaches us how to behave.

  1. What does it say we are to do, first negatively, then positively?
  2. Why according to Titus 2:14 did Jesus give Himself for us?
  3. Why do you think God wants us to be a people who are zealous for good works?

 

 

1 Timothy 6:17-19

  1. Who addressed with these commands?
  2. Are they to sell everything they have?
  3. What blessing is promised to those who share in this manner?

 

1 Timothy 2:9-10

  1. How does a woman “adorn herself” with good works?

 

Titus 3:8-9

  1. How does Titus 3:8 describe the command to do good works?
  2. What did we say previously about the “faithful sayings” in Timothy and Titus?
  3. What are some of the other “faithful sayings”.
  4. Compare verse 8 with verse 9.  What does it say about the kind of people we ought to be?

 

 

 

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For Wednesday February 8 – Women In Church

Give some thought to what 1 Timothy 3:14-15 is saying: “These things I write to you, though I hope to come to you shortly; 15 but if I am delayed, 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 ground of the truth”.

Why does Paul say he wrote to Timothy?

How does he describe the church in verse 15?  It is the “__________ of God”.

What topics had Paul addressed immediately prior to this statement?

  1. In 2:1-10?
  2. In 2:11-15?
  3. In 3:1-7?
  4. In 3:8-13?

In light of what Paul says in 3:15 how should we take the instructions he gives regarding women, elders, and deacons?  Is there any reason to disregard his instructions here?

 

THE ROLE OF WOMEN IN CHURCH – 1 Timothy 2:8-15

Verse 11 says , “Let a woman learn in ________________________”.    Compare how some different translations translate this.

What are women actually prohibited from doing in this text? (12)

What reasons does Paul give for this restricted role of women?

  1. V13
  2. V14 –

 

How do you understand verse 15?

 

According to the qualifications in chapter 3, can women serve as elders?

 

Browse through 1, 2 Timothy and Titus. What else do you learn about Christian women and their role in the church?

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