The Bible is our guide for all aspects of Christian living.
The most important advice we could ever take is that instruction of the Bible. While it is always helpful to listen to an elder saint and hear all the testimonies of life, it will never change the heart like seeing God’s word for ourselves. While the greatest preaching in the world may impact a person to do better and convict the current state of life, reading God’s word will forever burn memories that can be used forever. We must learn to always turn to the word of God for instruction for daily living. This lesson emphasizes three essentials for Christian living: we must have and hold to right doctrine; we must continue in prayer; and we must be committed to living a godly or Christlike life. Through his letter, the Apostle Paul has provided for all who read and study his letter, practical instruction for Christian living.
GOLDEN TEXT: 1Timothy 6:12 Fight the good fight of faith, lay hold on eternal life, whereunto thou art also called, and hast professed a good profession before many witnesses.
…….Fight for this cause that is so good, and lay hold onto your eternal reward with a grip that cannot be loosened!
HOLD FIRM TO RIGHT DOCTRINE
A. Live by Sound Doctrine
1Ti 1:1 Paul, an apostle of Jesus Christ by the commandment of God our Saviour, and Lord Jesus Christ, which is our hope;
1Ti 1:2 Unto Timothy, my own son in the faith: Grace, mercy, and peace, from God our Father and Jesus Christ our Lord.
1Ti 1:3 As I besought thee to abide still at Ephesus, when I went into Macedonia, that thou mightest charge some that they teach no other doctrine,
…….The very first instruction that Paul gave Timothy is that the ones under the sound of his voice were to teach nothing other than the truth!
1Ti 1:4 Neither give heed to fables and endless genealogies, which minister questions, rather than godly edifying which is in faith: so do.
…….Apparently some had been teaching fairlytale-like stories, legends and myths (fables). Not only were they not teaching strict truth, they were also teaching pedigree and ancestry (if you weren’t born into it you could never receive from it). This belief completely ignores the grace of God which is able to save and transform any person.
1Ti 1:5 Now the end of the commandment is charity out of a pure heart, and of a good conscience, and of faith unfeigned:
…….The result of of preaching sound doctrine will always be Love out of a pure heart and produce love out of a pure heart. A pure heart comes from understanding where God had brought you from and where he has brought you to. A person that has never experienced salvation could never purely teach what it does for a persons life.
Good conscience: If there is one thing much of the church has lost or forgotten, it is this. A good conscience is a spiritually healthy sense of what is right and what is wrong. We must have this discernment! Too many times the church today has accepted what is wrong and rejected what is right.
1Ti 1:6 From which some having swerved have turned aside unto vain jangling (random talk, to babble);
…….Have you ever come to the point in conversation that you run out of words and simply don’t want the conversation to end, so you continue to talk about something that doesn’t relate to the previous conversation? Apparently the preachers and teachers at Ephesus were doing this in their services, preaching and teaching about things that were irrelevant to sound doctrine.
1Ti 1:7 Desiring to be teachers of the law; understanding neither what they say, nor whereof they affirm.
…….Any time we converse about the Gospel to either the unlearned or the learned, it is important to never speak out of turn and never speak of things that are not understood. It is impossible to effectively teach something, especially spiritual, what is not understood. It is extremely encouraging to fellowship with doctrinal conversation, but we must learn that what comes out of the mouth on this particular topic, must be from of pure truth.
KEEP THE FAITH
1Ti 1:12 And I thank Christ Jesus our Lord, who hath enabled me, for that he counted me faithful, putting me into the ministry;
1Ti 1:13 Who was before a blasphemer, and a persecutor, and injurious: but I obtained mercy, because I did it ignorantly in unbelief.
…….We know from other scriptures that before Paul was saved he was one of the churches greatest enemies. From kicking people out of the synagogues, to imprisoning saints and killing people for practicing the teachings of Christ, He was vile. Though he understands completely the punishment for any sinner not saved by grace, he makes this statement about himself; “I obtained mercy, because I did it through misunderstanding.” Because Paul at one time had so much understanding of the law but was ignorant to the truth of grace, he could preach with assurance that he knows what Christ can do for a person.
1Ti 1:18 This charge I commit unto thee, son Timothy, according to the prophecies which went before on thee, that thou by them mightest war a good warfare;
…….Paul reminded Timothy here to remember the prophecies that were spoken concerning his ministry, and fight a good fight! We as Christians should never come to the place in life where we forget the promises that God places over our lives! When we are discouraged, hurting or feel tired and weak, remember the promise!
1Ti 1:19 Holding faith, and a good conscience; which some having put away concerning faith have made shipwreck:
…….Only by faith and a good conscience would Timothy be able to persuade others to keep the faith.
1Ti 1:20 Of whom is Hymenaeus and Alexander; whom I have delivered unto Satan, that they may learn not to blaspheme.
…….Paul here mentions two men by name who had abandoned the faith and Christ and were doing spiritual harm to others. If there is anything that can cause confusion and doubt, it is the act of a once pronounced Christian to walk away from what God has performed. We must keep the faith and be that Godly influence through faith on others life’s!
CONTINUE IN PRAYER
A. Pray for All People
1Ti 2:1 I exhort therefore, that, first of all, supplications (intense or earnest), prayers (various planned prayers), intercessions (for others), and giving of thanks (praising God), be made for all men;
…….Just as Paul exhorted here, we must make prayer a priority! Prayer changes things that can’t be touched by mans emotion. Can you think of a recent prayer that changed your circumstance?
1Ti 2:2 For kings, and for all that are in authority; that we may lead a quiet and peaceable life in all godliness and honesty.
…….Regardless if we are praying for others or praying for ourselves, there is something about having that time alone with God that completely changes the characteristic of a man. If we want to be Godly or Christ-like, we must learn to get alone with Him!
1Ti 2:3 For this is good and acceptable in the sight of God our Saviour;
1Ti 2:4 Who will have all men to be saved, and to come unto the knowledge of the truth.
…….Since it is God’s Will for all men to be saved and to follow the order of God, it is our duty to pray for all men, even those who may be the worst of sinners and do the most harm to others.
B. WORSHIP GOD, BELIEVE IN CHRIST
1Ti 2:5 For there is one God, and one mediator between God and men, the man Christ Jesus;
1Ti 2:6 Who gave himself a ransom for all, to be testified in due time.
1Ti 2:7 Whereunto I am ordained a preacher, and an apostle, (I speak the truth in Christ, and lie not;) a teacher of the Gentiles in faith and verity.
1Ti 2:8 I will therefore that men pray every where, lifting up holy hands, without wrath and doubting.
…….it was completely logical that Paul would go from exhorting his fellow Christians to pray, to exhorting his fellow Christians to worship! Notice how Paul even in his writings cannot help but give God glory for what He has done! Any person who has come to a relationship with God through prayer will not be able to continue in a relationship without worship. When God truly fixes and makes His mark on the heart, a man can’t help but worship for who He is and what He has done!
PURSUE GODLINESS ABOVE ALL ELSE
A. Be Content in Christ
1Ti 6:6 But godliness with contentment is great gain.
…….Having relationship with God brings contentment in having nothing but God! With or without, as long as we have God we have Joy!
1Ti 6:7 For we brought nothing into this world, and it is certain we can carry nothing out.
1Ti 6:8 And having food and raiment let us be therewith content.
…….He says here, as long as we have food on the table and clothes for covering we have something to be satisfied about.
1Ti 6:9 But they that will be rich fall into temptation and a snare, and into many foolish and hurtful lusts, which drown men in destruction and perdition.
1Ti 6:10 For the love of money is the root of all evil: which while some coveted after, they have erred from the faith, and pierced themselves through with many sorrows.
…….One small drop of Godly gain goes well beyond anything we could gain in this world with money! While it is not evil to have money in the bank, he said the root of all evil is the “love” of money. Some folks won’t be happy unless there is a certain sum of money on an account, and then after reaching that sum it is found that true happiness can never be acquired. The only peace and Joy that will ever be found in this life can and will only be produced by God! Too many rich people have died and even committed suicide because of the absence of happiness. But not one child of God will ever leave this earth saying that a life in Christ produced misery! Jesus is our one true source of peace and contentment!
B. Seek After That Which is Good
1Ti 6:11 But thou, O man of God, flee these things; and follow after righteousness, godliness, faith, love, patience, meekness.
…….Just as Paul encouraged Timothy to do, we must flee worldly gain and pursue after spiritual gain!
1Ti 6:12 Fight the good fight of faith, lay hold on eternal life, whereunto thou art also called, and hast professed a good profession before many witnesses.
1Ti 6:13 I give thee charge in the sight of God, who quickeneth all things, and before Christ Jesus, who before Pontius Pilate witnessed a good confession;
1Ti 6:14 That thou keep this commandment without spot, unrebukeable, until the appearing of our Lord Jesus Christ:
…….The greatest testimony and influence a man can leave is the one that characterizes the life. When I leave, I want the world to be able to say of me, He loved his God, loved his family and loved his church! He was an influence by experience that encouraged and changed others around him!
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