The Epistles of Paul to Timothy - Audio and Written Bible Commentary

 

Paul's First Epistle to Timothy, Part 1: Yahshua [Jesus] Christ is God and His Gospel is for Israel

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Paul's First Epistle to Timothy, Part 1: Yahshua [Jesus] Christ is God and His Gospel is for Israel

Now we are going to begin a presentation of Paul’s first epistle to Timothy, as we near the completion of a commentary on the epistles of Paul of Tarsus which we had begun with the epistle to the Romans in the Spring of 2014. This is now the 109th presentation in the series. It may be fitting that the pastoral epistles to Timothy and Titus are presented last in order of Paul’s epistles, as they are in most Bibles. However one error that most Bibles make is not to count Hebrews amongst Paul’s other epistles. Furthermore, Philemon belongs with Colossians, and it is not really a pastoral epistle in the sense of those which were written to Timothy and Titus. Going one step further, we have decided to put both of the epistles to Timothy last in order here because we find it appropriate to present 2 Timothy at the very end of our presentation of Paul’s epistles, although 2 Timothy was not actually the last of Paul’s epistles chronologically. When we do finally present 2 Timothy, we hope to make a full explanation of our reasons for that. If we had chosen to make our entire presentation in the order in which Paul wrote his epistles, 1 Timothy would follow Titus, and it in turn would be followed by 2 Corinthians. 2 Timothy would come later, as Paul was under house arrest in Rome when it was written (see Ordering and chronology of the epistles of Paul).

Paul had apparently written his first epistle to the Corinthians not long before he left Ephesus, in what was most likely the Spring of 56 AD, which we had explained in part 3 of our presentation of that epistle. He had initially planned on going to Achaia by way of Makedonia, and spending the winter in Corinth, as he wrote in chapter 16 of that epistle. But some time during the initial stage of his travels Paul decided instead to winter in Nicopolis, which is in Epirus and northwest of Corinth. As we had explained earlier in this series, such as in the opening segment of our commentary on the epistle to Titus, Paul must have received a letter from Corinth in answer to the epistle which we know as 1 Corinthians, and he then decided to delay going to Corinth and spent the subsequent winter at Nicopolis instead. He gave his reasons for that decision in the opening chapters of 2 Corinthians, which was written as he wintered in Nicopolis, and both Titus and Timothy were with him.

Paul's First Epistle to Timothy, Part 2: Gender Roles in Apostolic Christianity

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Paul's First Epistle to Timothy, Part 2: Gender Roles in Apostolic Christianity

This program is subtitled Gender Roles in Apostolic Christianity, which is a discussion for the end of the presentation. We wanted to subtitle it When All is not ALL, and that is a theme as we present the opening verses of 1 Timothy chapter 2. We opted for the subtitle which we did only because of the current war against traditional gender roles in modern society which is now coming to a crescendo. In the end, God will not be mocked. There are only two genders, and they are determined by the biology of one’s birth. Those genders are given peculiar roles assigned to them byt the Creator, and in the end they will once again assume those roles. Everything else is a sickness spawned by the minds of devils.

Paul of Tarsus having had both Timothy and Titus (the Titus Justus of Corinth) in his company for long periods of time, which is evident in Acts chapters 16 through 18 and in various of his other epistles, we may be confident that these men had learned first-hand how Paul believed that a Christian assembly should be organized, and how Christians should conduct themselves in their daily lives and interactions with one another and with the world outside. We may also imagine that these pastoral epistles among Paul’s letters are very likely not the only epistles which Paul had written to his younger companions, but rather, that they are the only ones which survived.

Paul's First Epistle to Timothy, Part 3: Leadership Credentials

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Paul's First Epistle to Timothy, Part 3: Leadership Credentials

As we have already explained, Paul of Tarsus was writing Timothy while en route from the Troad through Macedonia, as he traveled to Nicopolis in Epirus where he had planned on spending the winter before a visit to Corinth in the Spring of 57 AD. Timothy is still in Ephesus, from where Paul had recently departed, and Paul is exhorting him in areas which he must of felt needed special attention, hoping that Timothy would pass these things on in the course of his teachings to the Ephesians. Paul’s comments supporting our interpretation are found in chapter 4 of this letter.

In the last presentation of our commentary on this first epistle to Timothy, in chapter 2, we saw that the apostle passed on to his younger companion a brief sketch depicting the demeanor which he hoped would be born by all Christian men, that they should endeavor to lead quiet and peaceful lives and be found in supplications, prayers, intercessions and thanksgiving on behalf of their fellows. Here it should be noted, that this does not mean that Paul expects Christian men to be merely passive keepers of the Faith, sitting around all day and passing the time in prayer. Rather, Paul has described the attitude of Christian men and not their activity. He has explained how they should be found carrying themselves as they toil and struggle in their Christian walk, for the objective of accomplishing good deeds, works resulting in the accumulation of treasure in heaven – things which he mentions here in chapters 4 through 6 of the epistle. The true Christian activity is proactive, and neither sedentary nor pacifist.