Lesson Eight 1 Timothy 6

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1 Lesson Eight 1 Timothy 6 Review all the questions in the lessons before you begin your study. Then read 1 Timothy 6. Section 1 To review and prepare 1. To help you put this chapter into context, summarize what you have learned from this epistle about the danger of false doctrine and false teachers. From 1 Timothy 6:1 & 2, what are the things that Paul tells Timothy to teach and urge? What is the attitude the bond servant should have toward his master? What does the text imply regarding the servant s attitude regarding his station in life? Leaders: In an effort to stay on course regarding the purpose of these lessons, we are not going to discuss the issue of slavery as it is addressed in these verses. We will consider this topic during our study of Titus, primarily as we get into chapter 2. A very good and helpful commentary from John Stott on these first few verses is included in your Resource Section. It may be helpful for you to be prepared to answer questions about this issue, should they arise. But encourage your women that we will return to this topic when we study Titus 2. What do you recall from your study of chapter 2 about the economy of the Ephesian culture? (Lesson 4, question 3) 2. Use the table to organize Paul s teaching in this text. What do you find in the following verses about: Verse 3 False Teachers

2 Verse 4 Verse 5 Verse 9 Verse 10 Men of God Verse 6 Verse 8 Verse 11 Verse 12 Verse 14 Those who desire to be rich ( gain ) Verse 5 Verse 9 Verse 10 We will come back to verses Now that you have an overview of Paul s teaching, let s consider each section on its own. Section 2 1 Timothy 6:3-5

3 Paul eludes to a different doctrine that does not agree with the words of Christ, and he characterizes those that teach it as imagining that godliness is a means of gain. 3. What doctrine do the following words of our Lord Jesus Christ teach about possessions, or riches? a. Matthew 13:19-22 b. Matthew 16:24-26 c. Luke 12:15-21 d. Luke 16:13 What doctrine do the following sound words of the Apostles teach? a. Philippians 4:11-13 b. 1 John 2:15-17 Summarize the good doctrine about money and possessions that you have found. How does the good doctrine contradict godliness is a means of gain? Consider this quote from Lisa Comes, of Joel Olsteen Ministries. How does this statement compare to the good doctrine of Christ & the Apostles? Heaven is full of blessings waiting to be bestowed upon you. God said that He will make a way in your desert. He will cause rivers of blessings to flow into your financial desert. That is supernatural provision God delights in your prosperity! He wants to do something supernatural and new in your finances, even now! But it's up to each one of us to perceive it and know it. You do that with your faith! No one else can do that for you. Receive God's Word into your spirit by agreeing with God, and then you can expect God to move in your finances! 1 4. How does Paul describe the church community under the influence of these false teachers? (verse 4, 5) 1 Lisa Comes, Can You Perceive It?,

4 What do you recall from your study of 1 Timothy 2 about the character of the church that is good and pleasing in the sight of God and how does that compare to the community under the influence of the false teacher? Section 2 1 Timothy 6:6-10 While their doctrine about money is not the only qualifier of the false teacher, there is clearly a theme in this chapter around the issue of riches and gain. These few verses give the church a paradigm for perspective on possessions. 5. Paul uses the same word, gain, in both verses 5 and 6. What does he mean by the word in each instance? Verse 5 Verse 6 Use the Resource Section to look up the Greek word for contentment. What is the word and what is the synonym given? The only other time this word is used is found in 2 Corinthians 9:8. Write that verse here. How does that verse help you to understand Paul s meaning of great gain in godliness with contentment? 6. What reminder of the obvious does Paul give in verse 7? How do the following verses support Paul s point? a. Job 1:21 b. Psalm 49:17 c. Ecclesiastes 5:15 Thought: Why do you think Paul felt the need to make this obvious statement (verse 7)? John Piper comments: At the greatest crisis of your life, when you need contentment and hope and security more than any other time, your money and all your possessions take wings and fly away. They let you down.

5 They are fair weather friends at best. And you enter eternity with nothing but the measure of contentment that you had in God Verse 8 promotes a simplicity of living that ought to mark the true teacher, the man of God. What do you learn from the following verses about simplicity? a. Psalm 37:16 b. Proverbs 15:16 c. Proverbs 16:8 Thought: Carefully read 1 Timothy 6:8. Is this statement a cause and effect statement? (Like If you walk out in traffic, then you will get hit by a car ) How do you know? Read Philippians 4:11-13 (also written by Paul). What key word is found twice in these verses about contentment? According to verse 13 (Phil. 4), what is the secret of contentment? The writer of Hebrews 13:5, 6 agrees. What does this verse promise as a means to contentment with simplicity? 8. What desire is the opposite of contentment, verse 9? What is the fate of those who desire to be rich? How do the following verses convey the warning that Paul teaches in this text? a. Ecclesiastes 5:10 b. Psalm 49:10 c. Proverbs 28:20 Challenge: The warnings of Scripture with regard to pursuing wealth and the danger of greed are given not only in verbal instruction but also through true stories of people s lives. Which Biblical examples can you recall that instruct you about such danger? 2 John Piper, Battling the Belief of Covetousness

6 The desire to be rich is a temptation that breeds other desires. How does Paul describe them? What is the end result of the downward spiral of greed? The metaphor that Paul uses pictures them sinking and drowning. How has Paul previously used such a word picture in this letter in chapter 1? What does that metaphor convey about the seriousness of Paul s admonition? It is important to understand that Paul is not just saying that greed that leads to other desires will not only mess up your job, or your marriage, or your reputation (although it will). What s at stake is eternity. How does Jesus confirm this solemn warning in Mark 8:36? NOTE: An important distinction must be noticed in verse 10. Is Paul saying here that money is the root of all kinds of evils? What exactly does he say and why does that matter? Section 3 1 Timothy 6:11-19 Now Paul uses Timothy as an example for the church of a leader who is a man of God. He is deliberately contrasted with the false teachers. He is called to be radically different from them. 9. What four commands does Paul give Timothy? Use the Resource Section to look up the Greek word for pursue. What is Paul trying to convey to Timothy in his charge to pursue righteousness, godliness, faith.? How is that same spirit evident in his command to fight the good fight? How does this command recall an earlier command in 1 Timothy 1:18? Notice the word faith (verse 12) has the definite article the in front of it. Why is that important and how is it consistent with Paul s theme in this epistle? Use the Resource Section to look up the word for take from the phrase take hold. How does it echo the verbs already used in this section? Summarize Paul s instruction to Pastor Timothy from these verses. What kind of man must he be?

7 10. How is the doxology found in verses 13 to 16 a warning to the Man of God? How is it an encouragement? What instruction is there for you with regard to holiness, truth and eternity? 11. Recall your response to the questions at the beginning of this lesson relative to the bond servant. Now read verses 17 to 19. What similarities do you find between Paul s instruction to the servant and his instructions to the rich? Thought: What might be the significance to Paul s beginning this section with a word to servants and ending with a word to the rich? Final thoughts It is unlikely that most believers would affirm the false teaching that godliness is a means of gain. However, it is probable that many believers do have a practical theology that connects godliness to blessing. What do you think about that? (Use Scripture to think through this issue appropriately. Carefully consider the Biblical definition of blessing.) As you consider the paradigm for possessions that you have studied, how would you qualify your contentment quotient? Discontent Content Is there a need for repentance? Write a response to the Lord as you consider your own posture regarding gain. (Keep in mind Philippians 4:11-13 & Hebrews 13:5,6.)

8 Given the strong language of Paul to Timothy in verses 11-14, how ought you to pray for those men who are leading your church? How are you challenged in your own personal pursuit of righteousness as you consider these verses? What have you learned about your behavior in the household of God this week?

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