1 Timothy 4:1
Verse (Click for Chapter)
New International Version
The Spirit clearly says that in later times some will abandon the faith and follow deceiving spirits and things taught by demons.

New Living Translation
Now the Holy Spirit tells us clearly that in the last times some will turn away from the true faith; they will follow deceptive spirits and teachings that come from demons.

English Standard Version
Now the Spirit expressly says that in later times some will depart from the faith by devoting themselves to deceitful spirits and teachings of demons,

Berean Study Bible
Now the Spirit expressly states that in later times some will abandon the faith to follow deceitful spirits and the teachings of demons,

Berean Literal Bible
But the Spirit expressly states that in later times some will depart from the faith, giving heed to deceitful spirits and teachings of demons,

New American Standard Bible
But the Spirit explicitly says that in later times some will fall away from the faith, paying attention to deceitful spirits and doctrines of demons,

King James Bible
Now the Spirit speaketh expressly, that in the latter times some shall depart from the faith, giving heed to seducing spirits, and doctrines of devils;

Holman Christian Standard Bible
Now the Spirit explicitly says that in later times some will depart from the faith, paying attention to deceitful spirits and the teachings of demons,

International Standard Version
Now the Spirit says clearly that in the last times some people will abandon the faith by following deceitful spirits, the teachings of demons,

NET Bible
Now the Spirit explicitly says that in the later times some will desert the faith and occupy themselves with deceiving spirits and demonic teachings,

New Heart English Bible
But the Spirit says expressly that in later times some will fall away from the faith, paying attention to seducing spirits and doctrines of demons,

Aramaic Bible in Plain English
But The Spirit speaks plainly that in the last time they shall depart one by one from the faith and they shall go after deceiving spirits and after the teachings of demons,

GOD'S WORD® Translation
The Spirit says clearly that in later times some believers will desert the Christian faith. They will follow spirits that deceive, and they will believe the teachings of demons.

New American Standard 1977
But the Spirit explicitly says that in later times some will fall away from the faith, paying attention to deceitful spirits and doctrines of demons,

Jubilee Bible 2000
Now the Spirit speaks expressly, that in the latter times some shall depart from the faith, listening to spirits of error and doctrines of demons;

King James 2000 Bible
Now the Spirit speaks expressly, that in the latter times some shall depart from the faith, giving heed to deceitful spirits, and doctrines of demons;

American King James Version
Now the Spirit speaks expressly, that in the latter times some shall depart from the faith, giving heed to seducing spirits, and doctrines of devils;

American Standard Version
But the Spirit saith expressly, that in later times some shall fall away from the faith, giving heed to seducing spirits and doctrines of demons,

Douay-Rheims Bible
Now the Spirit manifestly saith, that in the last times some shall depart from the faith, giving heed to spirits of error, and doctrines of devils,

Darby Bible Translation
But the Spirit speaks expressly, that in latter times some shall apostatise from the faith, giving their mind to deceiving spirits and teachings of demons

English Revised Version
But the Spirit saith expressly, that in later times some shall fall away from the faith, giving heed to seducing spirits and doctrines of devils,

Webster's Bible Translation
Now the Spirit speaketh expressly, that in the latter times some will depart from the faith, giving heed to seducing spirits and doctrines of demons;

Weymouth New Testament
Now the Spirit expressly declares that in later times some will fall away from the faith, giving heed to deceiving spirits and the teachings of demons;

World English Bible
But the Spirit says expressly that in later times some will fall away from the faith, paying attention to seducing spirits and doctrines of demons,

Young's Literal Translation
And the Spirit expressly speaketh, that in latter times shall certain fall away from the faith, giving heed to seducing spirits and teachings of demons,
Study Bible
Warnings against False Teachers
1Now the Spirit expressly states that in later times some will abandon the faith to follow deceitful spirits and the teachings of demons, 2influenced by the hypocrisy of liars, whose consciences are seared with a hot iron.…
Cross References
1 Kings 13:18
He said to him, "I also am a prophet like you, and an angel spoke to me by the word of the LORD, saying, 'Bring him back with you to your house, that he may eat bread and drink water.'" But he lied to him.

Jeremiah 23:26
"How long? Is there anything in the hearts of the prophets who prophesy falsehood, even these prophets of the deception of their own heart,

Matthew 18:7
Woe to the world for the causes of sin. These stumbling blocks must come, but woe to the man through whom they come!

Luke 17:1
Jesus said to His disciples, "It is inevitable that stumbling blocks will come, but woe to the one through whom they come!

John 16:13
However, when the Spirit of truth comes, He will guide you into all truth. For He will not speak on His own, but He will speak what He hears, and He will declare to you what is to come.

Acts 20:23
I only know that in town after town the Holy Spirit warns me that chains and afflictions await me.

Acts 21:11
Coming over to us, he took Paul's belt, bound his own feet and hands, and said, "The Holy Spirit says: 'In this way the Jews of Jerusalem will bind the owner of this belt and hand him over to the Gentiles.'"

1 Corinthians 2:10
But God has revealed it to us by the Spirit. The Spirit searches all things, even the deep things of God.

1 Corinthians 11:19
And indeed, there must be differences among you to show which of you are approved.

2 Thessalonians 2:3
Let no one deceive you in any way, for it will not come until the rebellion occurs and the man of lawlessness (the son of destruction) is revealed.
Treasury of Scripture

Now the Spirit speaks expressly, that in the latter times some shall depart from the faith, giving heed to seducing spirits, and doctrines of devils;

the Spirit.

John 16:13 However, when he, the Spirit of truth, is come, he will guide you …

Acts 13:2 As they ministered to the Lord, and fasted, the Holy Ghost said…

Acts 28:25 And when they agreed not among themselves, they departed, after that …

1 Corinthians 12:11 But all these works that one and the selfsame Spirit, dividing to …

1 John 2:18 Little children, it is the last time: and as you have heard that …

Revelation 2:7,11,17,29 He that has an ear, let him hear what the Spirit said to the churches; …

Revelation 3:6,13,22 He that has an ear, let him hear what the Spirit said to the churches…

expressly.

Ezekiel 1:3 The word of the LORD came expressly to Ezekiel the priest, the son …

the latter.

Numbers 24:14 And now, behold, I go to my people: come therefore…

Deuteronomy 4:30 When you are in tribulation, and all these things are come on you, …

Deuteronomy 32:29 O that they were wise, that they understood this, that they would …

Isaiah 2:2 And it shall come to pass in the last days, that the mountain of …

Jeremiah 48:47 Yet will I bring again the captivity of Moab in the latter days, …

Jeremiah 49:39 But it shall come to pass in the latter days, that I will bring again …

Ezekiel 38:16 And you shall come up against my people of Israel, as a cloud to …

Daniel 10:14 Now I am come to make you understand what shall befall your people …

Hosea 3:5 Afterward shall the children of Israel return, and seek the LORD …

Micah 4:1 But in the last days it shall come to pass, that the mountain of …

2 Timothy 3:1 This know also, that in the last days perilous times shall come.

1 Peter 1:20 Who truly was foreordained before the foundation of the world, but …

2 Peter 3:3 Knowing this first, that there shall come in the last days scoffers, …

Jude 1:4,18 For there are certain men crept in unawares, who were before of old …

depart.

Daniel 11:35 And some of them of understanding shall fall, to try them, and to …

Matthew 24:5-12 For many shall come in my name, saying, I am Christ; and shall deceive many…

2 Thessalonians 2:3 Let no man deceive you by any means: for that day shall not come, …

2 Timothy 3:1-5 This know also, that in the last days perilous times shall come…

2 Timothy 4:4 And they shall turn away their ears from the truth, and shall be …

seducing.

Genesis 3:3-5,13 But of the fruit of the tree which is in the middle of the garden, …

1 Kings 22:22,23 And the LORD said to him, With which? And he said, I will go forth, …

2 Chronicles 18:19-22 And the LORD said, Who shall entice Ahab king of Israel, that he …

2 Corinthians 11:3,13-15 But I fear, lest by any means, as the serpent beguiled Eve through …

2 Thessalonians 2:9-12 Even him, whose coming is after the working of Satan with all power …

2 Timothy 3:13 But evil men and seducers shall wax worse and worse, deceiving, and …

2 Peter 2:1 But there were false prophets also among the people, even as there …

Revelation 9:2-11 And he opened the bottomless pit; and there arose a smoke out of …

Revelation 13:14 And deceives them that dwell on the earth by the means of those miracles …

Revelation 16:14 For they are the spirits of devils, working miracles, which go forth …

Revelation 18:2,23 And he cried mightily with a strong voice, saying, Babylon the great …

Revelation 19:20 And the beast was taken, and with him the false prophet that worked …

Revelation 20:2,3,8,10 And he laid hold on the dragon, that old serpent, which is the Devil, …

and doctrines.

Daniel 11:35-38 And some of them of understanding shall fall, to try them, and to …

1 Corinthians 8:5,6 For though there be that are called gods, whether in heaven or in …

1 Corinthians 10:20 But I say, that the things which the Gentiles sacrifice, they sacrifice …

Colossians 2:18 Let no man beguile you of your reward in a voluntary humility and …

Acts 17:18 Then certain philosophers of the Epicureans, and of the Stoicks, …

Revelation 9:20 And the rest of the men which were not killed by these plagues yet …

IV.

(1) Now the Spirit speaketh expressly.--Rather, But the Spirit. But (de) in very strong contrast to the sublime mystery of Redemption St. Paul has been speaking of as the glorious treasure contained in the Church of which Timothy and his colleagues were ministers: but in spite of that sublime truth which should occupy the thoughts and fill the hearts of Christians, men will busy themselves with other and very different things; with a spurious mock devotion, dreaming that God's mercy and love were to be purchased by mere abstinence from certain meats, or by an unnatural renunciation of the home and family life. The "words of the Spirit" here allude to a mysterious power, to a divine gift, traces of which occur again and again in the New Testament pages. Among the supernatural signs which were vouchsafed to the first generation of believers, and with very rare exceptions only to the first generation--to men and women, many, if not most, of whom had seen Jesus, and had had personal contact with Him--must be reckoned those mysterious intimations of the will of the Holy Spirit which guided and encouraged the Church of the first days. That intimation came in varied forms: to the Twelve in the form of fiery tongues (Acts 2:1-12); to a more numerous company (Acts 4:31); to Peter on the occasion of the conversion of Cornelius (Acts 10:10-16; Acts 10:19-20); to St. Paul on three occasions in the course of his second missionary journey (Acts 16:6-7; Acts 16:9-10); through the medium of the prophet Agabus (Acts 21:11). St. Paul alludes to many such voices of the Spirit, and heavenly intimations, when speaking to the elders of Miletus (Acts 20:23). One of these special revelations, made to himself, he here quotes.

In the latter times.--All those ages are here referred to which succeed the coming of the Lord. In these Paul lived, and we are still watching the slow and solemn march past of these latter ages. The errors foreseen then, have more or less affected the internal government of the Church during the eighteen hundred years which have passed since St. Paul's words were written. In no age, perhaps, have they been more ostentatiously thrust forward than in our own.

Some shall depart from the faith.--"By denying what is true, by adding what is false," says Bengel.

Giving heed to seducing spirits.--This expression must not be watered down by explanations which understand this expression as referring to false teachers. The "seducing spirits" are none other than created to be received with thanksgiving of them which believe and know the truth. (4) For every creature of God is good, and nothing to be refused, if it be evil powers and spirits subject to Satan, and which are permitted to influence and to work in human hearts. (See Ephesians 2:2; Ephesians 6:12--passages in which these spiritual communities of wickedness and their powers over men are again alluded to by St. Paul.)

Doctrines of devils.--Doctrines and thoughts taught by, suggested by, evil spirits. The personality of these unhappy beings is clearly taught by St. Paul. Of their influence in the heathen world and their antagonism to Christ and His followers, see 1Corinthians 10:20-21.

Verse 1. - But for now, A.V.; saith for speaketh, A.V.; later for the latter, A.V.; fall away for depart, A.V. The Spirit saith expressly (ῤητῶς); only here in the New Testament, and very rare in classical Greek. But the adjective ῤητός, in the sense of something "laid down," "definite.... expressly mentioned," is common. It was, doubtless, on account of these prophetic warnings of a falling away from the faith, that the apostle gave the preceding heads of Christian doctrine in such a terse and tangible form, and laid such a solemn charge upon Timothy. (For examples of these prophetic utterances, see Acts 11:28; Acts 13:2; Acts 20:23; Acts 21:11; 1 Corinthians 12:8; 1 Corinthians 14. '30, 32, etc.) Shall fall away (ἀποστησονται). So St. Paul says (2 Thessalonians 2:3) that the day of Christ will not be, "except the falling away (ἡ ἀποστασία) come first" (comp. Hebrews 3:12). The faith; objective (see 1 Timothy 3:9 and 16, note). This "falling away" is to take place ἐν ὑστέροις καιροῖς; not, as in the R.V., in "later times," but as in the A.V., "the latter times." The adjective ὕστερος is only found here in the New Testament. But in the LXX. (e.g., 1 Chronicles 29:29; Jeremiah 1:19; Jeremiah 27:17, LXX.), ὕστερος means "the last," as opposed to "the first." And so the adverb ὕστερον always in the New Testament (see Matthew 4:2; Matthew 21:37; Matthew 26:60; or more fully ὕστερον πάντεν, 22:27). Here, therefore, ἐν ὑστεροις καιροῖς is equivalent to ἐν ταῖς ἐσχάταις ἡμέραις (Acts 2:17) and ἐν ἐσχάταις ἡμέραις (2 Timothy 3:1; comp. James 5:3; 1 Peter 1:5; 2 Peter 3:3; Jude 1:18). It should be observed that in all these passages there is no article. Giving heed (προσέχοντες); as in ver. 13; in 1 Timothy 1:4; Titus 1:14; Acts 8:6, and elsewhere. Seducing spirits (πνεύμασι πλάνοις). Such were the "lying spirits" who deceived (ἠπάτησαν) Ahab to his destruction (2 Kings 22:22). Πλάνος, seducing, is not elsewhere found in the New Testament as an adjective (see Matthew 27:63; 2 Corinthians 6:8 2John 7, in all which places, however, it is almost an adjective). The idea is "causing to wander," or "go astray." St. John warns his people against such deceiving spirits (John 4:1-6). He calls them generically πνεύμα τῆς πλάνης, "the spirit of error." Doctrines of devils; i.e. teachings suggested by devils. So the unbelieving Jews suggested that John the Baptist had a devil (Luke 7:33), and that our Lord himself had a devil (John 7:20; John 8:48, 52; John 10:19). Now the Spirit speaketh expressly,.... The prophecy hereafter mentioned was not an human conjecture, but, as all true prophecy, it came from the Spirit of God, who spoke or delivered it; either in the prophets of the Old Testament, who, as they spoke of the Gospel dispensation, so of the defection that should be in it; and particularly of antichrist, and of the apostasy through him, which is what is here intended, especially in Daniel's prophecies, under the names of the little horn, and vile person, Daniel 7:1 and Daniel 11:1, or in the Lord Jesus Christ, who foretold that false prophets would arise and deceive many; or in some of the prophets in the Christian church, such as Agabus, and others, who might in so many words foretell this thing; or rather in the apostle himself, at this time, since this prophecy was delivered not in dark sayings, in an enigmatical way, in an obscure manner, as prophecies generally were, but in plain language, and easy to be understood, and wanted no interpreter to unriddle it; and seeing that it is nowhere to be found in so many express words elsewhere: and moreover, the apostle does not say the Spirit "hath spoken", but the Spirit "speaketh"; then, at the time of the writing of these words, in and by him. The prediction follows,

that in the latter times some should depart from the faith; that is, from the doctrine of faith, notwithstanding it is indisputably the great mystery of godliness, as it is called in the latter part of the preceding chapter; for from the true grace of faith there can be no final and total apostasy, such as is here designed; for that can never be lost. It is of an incorruptible nature, and therefore more precious than gold that perishes; Christ is the author and finisher of it; his prevalent mediation is concerned for it; it is a gift of special grace, and is without repentance; it springs from electing grace, and is secured by it; and between that and salvation there is an inseparable connection; it may indeed decline, be very low, and lie dormant, as to its acts and exercise, but not be lost: there is a temporary faith, and a persuasion of truth, or a mere assent to it, which may be departed from, but not that faith which works by love: here it intends a profession of faith, which being made, should be dropped by some; or rather the doctrine of faith, which some would embrace, and then err concerning, or entirely quit, and wholly apostatize from. And they are said to be some, and these many, as they are elsewhere represented, though not all; for the elect cannot be finally and totally deceived; the foundation of election stands sure amidst the greatest apostasy; and there are always a few names that are not defiled with corrupt principles and practices; Christ always had some witnesses for the truth in the darkest times: and now this defection was to be "in the latter times"; either of the apostolic age, which John, the last of the apostles, lived to see; and therefore he calls it the last time, or hour, in which were many antichrists, 1 John 2:18. And indeed in the Apostle Paul's time the mystery of iniquity began to work, which brought on this general defection; though here it has regard to some later times under the Gospel dispensation; to the time when the man of sin, and the son of perdition, was revealed, and when all the world wondered after the beast: and indeed, such will be the degeneracy in the last days of all, that when the son of man comes, as the grace, so the doctrine of faith will be scarcely to be found in the world: the means by which this apostasy will obtain and prevail will be through men's

giving heed to seducing spirits; either to doctrines which are of a deceiving nature; or to men who profess to have the Spirit of God, and have not, but are evil men and seducers, deceiving, and being deceived; that lie in wait to deceive, and handle the word of God deceitfully; and by attending on the ministry of such persons, through hearing them, and conversing with them, the defection was to begin and spread; and therefore such should be carefully avoided, and their ministry shunned; nor should they be received, nor bid God speed.

And doctrines of devils; such as are devised by devils, as all damnable doctrines be; and all lying ones, for the devil is the father of them; and as are all the false doctrines introduced by antichrist, for his coming was after the working of Satan; and particularly those doctrines of his concerning worshipping of angels, and saints departed, may be called the doctrines of devils, or of "demons"; being much the same with the demon worship among the Heathens, of which the devil was the inventor: unless by doctrines of devils should be meant the doctrines of men, who for their cunning and sophistry, for their lies and hypocrisy, for their malice, and murdering of the souls of men, are comparable to devils. CHAPTER 4

1Ti 4:1-16. Prediction of a Coming Departure from the Faith: Timothy's Duty as to It: General Directions to Him.

The "mystery of iniquity" here alluded to, and already working (2Th 2:7), stands opposed to the "mystery of godliness" just mentioned (1Ti 3:16).

1. Now—Greek, "But." In contrast to the "mystery of godliness."

the Spirit—speaking by the prophets in the Church (whose prophecies rested on those of the Old Testament, Da 7:25; 8:23, etc.; 11:30, as also on those of Jesus in the New Testament, Mt 24:11-24), and also by Paul himself, 2Th 2:3 (with whom accord 2Pe 3:3; 1Jo 2:18; Jude 18).

expressly—"in plain words." This shows that he refers to prophecies of the Spirit then lying before him.

in the latter times—in the times following upon the times in which he is now writing. Not some remote future, but times immediately subsequent, the beginnings of the apostasy being already discernible (Ac 20:29): these are the forerunners of "the last days" (2Ti 3:1).

depart from the faith—The apostasy was to be within the Church, the faithful one becoming the harlot. In 2Th 2:3 (written earlier), the apostasy of the Jews from God (joining the heathen against Christianity) is the groundwork on which the prophecy rises; whereas here, in the Pastoral Epistles, the prophecy is connected with Gnostic errors, the seeds of which had already been sown in the Church [Auberlen] (2Ti 2:18). Apollonius Tyanæus, a heretic, came to Ephesus in the lifetime of Timothy.

giving heed—(1Ti 1:4; Tit 1:14).

seducing spirits—working in the heretical teachers. 1Jo 4:2, 3, 6, "the spirit of error," opposed to "the spirit of truth," "the Spirit" which "speaketh" in the true prophets against them.

doctrines of devils—literally "teachings of (that is suggested by) demons." Jas 3:15, "wisdom … devilish"; 2Co 11:15, "Satan's ministers."4:1-5 The Holy Spirit, both in the Old and the New Testament, spoke of a general turning from the faith of Christ, and the pure worship of God. This should come during the Christian dispensation, for those are called the latter days. False teachers forbid as evil what God has allowed, and command as a duty what he has left indifferent. We find exercise for watchfulness and self-denial, in attending to the requirements of God's law, without being tasked to imaginary duties, which reject what he has allowed. But nothing justifies an intemperate or improper use of things; and nothing will be good to us, unless we seek by prayer for the Lord's blessing upon it.
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Alphabetical: abandon and attention away But by clearly deceitful deceiving demons doctrines explicitly faith fall follow from in later of paying says some Spirit spirits taught that The things times to will

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