1 Timothy 5:21
Parallel Verses
New International Version
I charge you, in the sight of God and Christ Jesus and the elect angels, to keep these instructions without partiality, and to do nothing out of favoritism.

New Living Translation
I solemnly command you in the presence of God and Christ Jesus and the highest angels to obey these instructions without taking sides or showing favoritism to anyone.

English Standard Version
In the presence of God and of Christ Jesus and of the elect angels I charge you to keep these rules without prejudging, doing nothing from partiality.

New American Standard Bible
I solemnly charge you in the presence of God and of Christ Jesus and of His chosen angels, to maintain these principles without bias, doing nothing in a spirit of partiality.

King James Bible
I charge thee before God, and the Lord Jesus Christ, and the elect angels, that thou observe these things without preferring one before another, doing nothing by partiality.

Holman Christian Standard Bible
I solemnly charge you before God and Christ Jesus and the elect angels to observe these things without prejudice, doing nothing out of favoritism.

International Standard Version
With God as my witness, as well as the Messiah Jesus and the chosen angels, I solemnly call on you to carry out these instructions without prejudice, doing nothing on the basis of partiality.

NET Bible
Before God and Christ Jesus and the elect angels, I solemnly charge you to carry out these commands without prejudice or favoritism of any kind.

Aramaic Bible in Plain English
But I testify to you before God and our Lord Yeshua The Messiah and his chosen Angels, that you will observe these things and not let your mind be prejudiced for anything and do nothing by favoritism.

GOD'S WORD® Translation
I solemnly call on you in the sight of God, Christ Jesus, and the chosen angels to be impartial when you follow what I've told you. Never play favorites.

Jubilee Bible 2000
I charge thee before God and the Lord Jesus Christ and the elect angels, that thou observe these things without preferring one before another, doing nothing by partiality.

King James 2000 Bible
I charge you before God, and the Lord Jesus Christ, and the elect angels, that you observe these things without preferring one before another, doing nothing by partiality.

American King James Version
I charge you before God, and the Lord Jesus Christ, and the elect angels, that you observe these things without preferring one before another, doing nothing by partiality.

American Standard Version
I charge thee in the sight of God, and Christ Jesus, and the elect angels, that thou observe these things without prejudice, doing nothing by partiality.

Douay-Rheims Bible
I charge thee before God, and Christ Jesus, and the elect angels, that thou observe these things without prejudice, doing nothing by declining to either side.

Darby Bible Translation
I testify before God and Christ Jesus and the elect angels, that thou keep these things without prejudice, doing nothing by favour.

English Revised Version
I charge thee in the sight of God, and Christ Jesus, and the elect angels, that thou observe these things without prejudice, doing nothing by partiality.

Webster's Bible Translation
I charge thee before God and the Lord Jesus Christ, and the elect angels, that thou observe these things without preferring one before another, doing nothing by partiality.

Weymouth New Testament
I solemnly call upon you, in the presence of God and of Christ Jesus and of the elect angels, to carry out these instructions of mine without prejudice, and to do nothing from partiality.

World English Bible
I command you in the sight of God, and Christ Jesus, and the chosen angels, that you observe these things without prejudice, doing nothing by partiality.

Young's Literal Translation
I testify fully, before God and the Lord Jesus Christ, and the choice messengers, that these things thou mayest keep, without forejudging, doing nothing by partiality.
Parallel Commentaries
Matthew Henry's Concise Commentary

5:17-25 Care must be taken that ministers are maintained. And those who are laborious in this work are worthy of double honour and esteem. It is their just due, as much as the reward of the labourer. The apostle charges Timothy solemnly to guard against partiality. We have great need to watch at all times, that we do not partake of other men's sins. Keep thyself pure, not only from doing the like thyself, but from countenancing it, or any way helping to it in others. The apostle also charges Timothy to take care of his health. As we are not to make our bodies masters, so neither slaves; but to use them so that they may be most helpful to us in the service of God. There are secret, and there are open sins: some men's sins are open before-hand, and going before unto judgment; some they follow after. God will bring to light the hidden things of darkness, and make known the counsels of all hearts. Looking forward to the judgment-day, let us all attend to our proper offices, whether in higher or lower stations, studying that the name and doctrine of God may never be blasphemed on our account.

Pulpit Commentary

Verse 21. - In the sight of for before, A.V.; Christ Jesus for the Lord Jesus Christ, A.V. and T.R.; prejudice for preferring one before another, A.V. I charge thee, etc. It has been well remarked that the solemnity of this charge indicates the temptation which there might be to Timothy to shrink front reproving men of weight and influence" rulers" in the congregation, and "elders" both in age and by office, young as he himself was (1 Timothy 4:12). Perhaps he had in view some particular case in the Ephesian Church. Charge (διαμαρτύρομαι; not παραγγέλλω, as 1 Timothy 6:13); rather, I adjure thee. The strict sense of διαμαρτύρομαι is "I call heaven and earth to witness the truth of what I am saying;" and then, by a very slight metonymy, "I declare a thing," or "I ask a thing," "as in the presence of those witnesses who are either named or understood." Here the witnesses are named: God, and Christ Jesus, and the elect angels. In 2 Timothy 2:14 it is "the Lord;" in 2 Timothy 4:1 God and Jesus Christ, as also in 1 Timothy 6:13. In the passages where the word has the force of "testifying" (Luke 16:18; Acts 2:40; Acts 10:42; Acts 18:5; 1 Thessalonians 4:6, etc.), no witnesses are named, but great solemnity and earnestness are implied. The elect angels. This is the only passage where it is predicated of the angels that they are elect. But as there is repeated mention in Holy Scripture of the fallen angels (Matthew 25:41; 1 Corinthians 6:3; 2 Peter 2:4; Jude 1:6; Revelation 12:7, 9), the obvious interpretation is that St. Paul, in this solemn adjuration, added the epithet to indicate more distinctly the "holy angels," as they are frequently described (Matthew 25:31; Luke 9:26, etc.), or "the angels of God" or "of heaven" (Matthew 22:30; Matthew 24:36; Luke 12:8, 9; John 1:51). Possibly the mention of Satan in ver. 15, or some of the rising Gnostic opinions about angels (Colossians 2:18), may have suggested the epithet. The reason for the unusual addition of "the angels" is more difficult to adduce with certainty. But perhaps 2 Timothy 4:1 gives us the clue, where the apostle shows that in appealing to Jesus Christ he has a special eye to the great and final judgment. Now, in the descriptions of the lust judgment, the angels are constantly spoken of as accompanying our Lord (Matthew 16:27; Matthew 25:31; Mark 8:48; Luke 9:26; Luke 12:8, 9; 2 Thessalonians 1:7, etc.). If St. Paul, therefore, had in his mind the great judgment-day when he thus invoked the names of God and of Christ, he would very naturally also make mention of the elect angels. And so Bishop Bull, quoted in the 'Speaker's Commentary.' Without prejudice (χωρὶς προκρίματος); here only in the New Testament, and not found in the LXX. or classical Greek, though the verb προκρίνω occurs in both. Although the English word "prejudice" seems at first sight an apt rendering of πρόκριμα, it does not really give the sense so accurately as "preference." We commonly mean by "prejudice" a judgment formed prior to examination, which prevents our judging rightly or fairly when we come to the examination, which, however, is not the meaning of the Latin praejudicium. But προκρίνω means rather "to prefer" a person, or thing, to others. And therefore πρόκριμα means "preference," or "partiality," or, as the A.V. has it, "preferring one before another." The two meanings may be thus expressed. "Prejudice," in the English use of the word, is when a person who has to judge a cause upon evidence prejudges it without evidence, and so does not give its proper weight to the evidence. "Prefer-once" is when he gives different measure to different persons, according as He is swayed by partiality, or interest, or favor. St. Paul charges Timothy to measure out exactly equal justice to all persons alike. By partiality (κατὰ πρόσκλισιν). This also is an ἅπαξ λεγόμενον as far as the New Testament is concerned, and is not found in the LXX., but is found, as well as the verb προσκλίνω, in classical Greek. It means literally the "inclination" of the scales to one side or the other, and hence a "bias" of the mind to one party or the other. The balance of justice in the hands of Timothy was to be equal.

Gill's Exposition of the Entire Bible

I charge thee before God,.... Who sees and knows all things, and is a righteous and most impartial Judge; with whom there is no respect of persons, and in whose place and stead, the judges of the earth, both civil and ecclesiastical, stand; and to whom they are accountable for the judgment they pass on men and things; and in whose house or church Timothy was, whose business he was doing, and which ought to be done, with a view to his glory; wherefore the apostle gives him this solemn charge as in his sight:

and the Lord Jesus Christ: who also is God omniscient; and is Jesus Christ the righteous, the Head of the church, and the Judge of quick and dead; before whose judgment seat all must appear; where there will be no respect of persons, nor any partiality used.

And the elect angels; by whom are meant not some of the angels, the more choice, excellent, and principal among them; as the seven angels in the Apocryha:

"I am Raphael, one of the seven holy angels, which present the prayers of the saints, and which go in and out before the glory of the Holy One.'' (Tobit 12:15)

among whom Raphael is said to be one. But this is a spurious account, and not to be credited; nor was it an ancient tradition of the Jews, that there were seven principal angels; See Gill on Revelation 1:4. The Chaldee paraphrase on Genesis 11:7 is mistaken by Mr. Mede, where not "seven", but "seventy" angels are spoken of: but here all the good angels are designed, called sometimes the holy angels, and sometimes the angels in heaven; and here, by the Syriac version, "his angels"; either the angels of God, as they are sometimes styled; or the angels of Jesus Christ, being made by him, and being ministers to him, and for him; and also "elect", because chosen to stand in that integrity and holiness, in which they were created; and to enjoy everlasting glory and happiness, while others of the same species were passed by and left to fall from their first estate, and appointed to everlasting wrath and damnation: so that it may be observed that God's election takes place in angels as well as in men; and which flows from the sovereign will and pleasure of God; and was made in Christ, who is their head, and by whom they are confirmed in their happy state; and in which they must be considered in the pure mass, since they never fell; and which may serve to illustrate and confirm the doctrine of election with respect to men. Now before these the apostle charges Timothy; since they are near to the saints, encamp about them, minister unto them, and are concerned for their good; are spectators of their actions, and witnesses of what is done in churches, since they frequently attend the assemblies of the saints, and will descend with Christ, when he comes to judge the world in righteousness: the mention of them in this, charge gives no countenance to the worshipping of angels, since they are not set upon a level with God and Christ; nor is the charge delivered before them as judges, but as witnesses; nor are the words in the form of an oath, but of a charge; the angels are not sworn by, or appealed unto; only in their presence is this solemn charge given; and it may be observed, that even inanimate creatures, the heavens and the earth, are sometimes called upon as witnesses; and besides, it was usual with the Jews to make such kind of obtestations, So Agrippa (i), in his speech to the Jews, exhorting them to fidelity to the Romans, beseeches them by their holy things, , "and the holy angels of God", and their common country, that is, the good of it, that they would remain steadfast. What is the amount of this charge follows,

that thou observe these things; either all that are contained in the epistle, or more particularly the rules prescribed in this chapter; concerning rebuking members of a different age and sex, providing for poor widows, and taking care of the ministers of the Gospel, and chiefly what regards the discipline of the church with respect to the elders of it; as not to admit an accusation against them, unless it is sufficiently evident, and yet not connive at notorious sinners, but rebuke them publicly; and this charge belongs not only to Timothy, but to the whole church, and to all succeeding ministers and churches in all ages. The manner in which these things are to be observed is,

without preferring one before another; or, as the words may be rendered, "without prejudgment"; that is, without prejudging a case, or determining, before hearing, how it shall be; or as the Syriac version renders it, "in nothing let thy mind be prepossessed"; the sense is, that he should attend to any case that should come before him in the church, without prejudice or prepossession, and hearken to what is said on both sides; and judge impartially, and not in haste, but weigh well and consider the evidence that is given, and then determine as the case appears; so the Arabic version renders it, "without haste", or precipitancy; to which agrees the advice of the men of the great congregation, or Ezra's congregation, who were in his time, and succeeded him; , "be slow in judgment" (k), or long at it; that so by strict and close examination, things not known at first may be discovered: and when judgment is passed, it should not be through affection to one party, and disrespect to another; which is called in Scripture a respect of persons, and here a preferring one to another; and which is further explained by adding,

doing nothing by partiality; or by inclining to one side more than to another. A judge should not preponderate to either side, but should hold the balance of justice even, and do nothing to turn the scale one way or another, but as the weight and truth of the evidence direct; and such a rule should be observed in all church affairs.

(i) Joseph. de Bello Jud. l. 2. c. 16. sect. 4. (k) Pirke Abot, c. 1. sect. 1. Vid. Maimon in ib.

Jamieson-Fausset-Brown Bible Commentary

21. I charge thee—rather as Greek, "I adjure thee"; so it ought to be translated (2Ti 4:1).

before—"in the presence of God."

Lord—omitted in the oldest manuscripts God the Father, and Christ the Son, will testify against thee, if thou disregardest my injunction. He vividly sets before Timothy the last judgment, in which God shall be revealed, and Christ seen face to face with His angels

elect angels—an epithet of reverence. The objects of divine electing love (1Pe 2:6). Not only "elect" (according to the everlasting purpose of God) in contradistinction to the reprobate angels (2Pe 2:4), but also to mark the excellence of the angels in general (as God's chosen ministers, "holy angels," "angels of light"), and so to give more solemnity to their testimony [Calvin] as witnesses to Paul's adjuration. Angels take part by action and sympathy in the affairs of the earth (Lu 15:10; 1Co 4:9).

these things—the injunctions, 1Ti 5:19, 20.

without preferring one before another—rather as Greek, "prejudice"; "judging before" hearing all the facts of a case. There ought to be judgment, but not prejudging. Compare "suddenly," 1Ti 5:22, also 1Ti 5:24.

partiality—in favor of a man, as "prejudice" is bias against a man. Some of the oldest manuscripts read, "in the way of summoning (brethren) before a (heathen) judge." But Vulgate and other good authorities favor the more probable reading in English Version.

1 Timothy 5:21 Additional Commentaries
Context
A Charge to Timothy
21I solemnly charge you in the presence of God and of Christ Jesus and of His chosen angels, to maintain these principles without bias, doing nothing in a spirit of partiality. 22Do not lay hands upon anyone too hastily and thereby share responsibility for the sins of others; keep yourself free from sin.…
Cross References
Luke 9:26
Whoever is ashamed of me and my words, the Son of Man will be ashamed of them when he comes in his glory and in the glory of the Father and of the holy angels.

1 Timothy 6:13
In the sight of God, who gives life to everything, and of Christ Jesus, who while testifying before Pontius Pilate made the good confession, I charge you

2 Timothy 2:14
Keep reminding God's people of these things. Warn them before God against quarreling about words; it is of no value, and only ruins those who listen.

2 Timothy 4:1
In the presence of God and of Christ Jesus, who will judge the living and the dead, and in view of his appearing and his kingdom, I give you this charge:
Treasury of Scripture

I charge you before God, and the Lord Jesus Christ, and the elect angels, that you observe these things without preferring one before another, doing nothing by partiality.

charge.

1 Timothy 6:13 I give you charge in the sight of God, who vivifies all things, and …

1 Thessalonians 5:27 I charge you by the Lord that this letter be read to all the holy brothers.

2 Timothy 2:14 Of these things put them in remembrance, charging them before the …

2 Timothy 4:1 I charge you therefore before God, and the Lord Jesus Christ, who …

the elect.

Matthew 16:27 For the Son of man shall come in the glory of his Father with his …

Matthew 25:41 Then shall he say also to them on the left hand, Depart from me, …

2 Peter 2:4 For if God spared not the angels that sinned, but cast them down …

Jude 1:6 And the angels which kept not their first estate, but left their …

Revelation 12:7-9 And there was war in heaven: Michael and his angels fought against …

Revelation 14:10 The same shall drink of the wine of the wrath of God, which is poured …

that.

Psalm 107:43 Whoever is wise, and will observe these things, even they shall understand …

Psalm 119:34 Give me understanding, and I shall keep your law; yes, I shall observe …

Matthew 28:20 Teaching them to observe all things whatever I have commanded you: …

without preferring. or, without prejudice.

Leviticus 19:15 You shall do no unrighteousness in judgment: you shall not respect …

Deuteronomy 1:7 Turn you, and take your journey, and go to the mount of the Amorites, …

Deuteronomy 33:9 Who said to his father and to his mother, I have not seen him; neither …

Proverbs 18:5 It is not good to accept the person of the wicked, to overthrow the …

Luke 20:21 And they asked him, saying, Master, we know that you say and teach …

Acts 15:37,38 And Barnabas determined to take with them John, whose surname was Mark…

2 Corinthians 5:16 Why from now on know we no man after the flesh: yes, though we have …

partiality.

Malachi 2:9 Therefore have I also made you contemptible and base before all the …

James 2:1-4 My brothers, have not the faith of our Lord Jesus Christ, the Lord …

James 3:17 But the wisdom that is from above is first pure, then peaceable, …

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