1 Timothy 6:20
Parallel Verses
New International Version
Timothy, guard what has been entrusted to your care. Turn away from godless chatter and the opposing ideas of what is falsely called knowledge,

New Living Translation
Timothy, guard what God has entrusted to you. Avoid godless, foolish discussions with those who oppose you with their so-called knowledge.

English Standard Version
O Timothy, guard the deposit entrusted to you. Avoid the irreverent babble and contradictions of what is falsely called “knowledge,”

New American Standard Bible
O Timothy, guard what has been entrusted to you, avoiding worldly and empty chatter and the opposing arguments of what is falsely called "knowledge "--

King James Bible
O Timothy, keep that which is committed to thy trust, avoiding profane and vain babblings, and oppositions of science falsely so called:

Holman Christian Standard Bible
Timothy, guard what has been entrusted to you, avoiding irreverent, empty speech and contradictions from the "knowledge" that falsely bears that name.

International Standard Version
Timothy, guard what has been entrusted to you. Avoid the pointless discussions and contradictions of what is falsely called knowledge.

NET Bible
O Timothy, protect what has been entrusted to you. Avoid the profane chatter and absurdities of so-called "knowledge."

Aramaic Bible in Plain English
Oh, Timothy, guard that which is committed to you and escape from empty echoes and from the perversions of false knowledge.

GOD'S WORD® Translation
Timothy, guard the Good News which has been entrusted to you. Turn away from pointless discussions and the claims of false knowledge that people use to oppose [the Christian faith].

Jubilee Bible 2000
O Timothy, keep that which is committed to thy trust, turn away from profane voices and vain things and arguments in the vain name of science,

King James 2000 Bible
O Timothy, keep that which is committed to your trust, avoiding profane and vain utterances, and oppositions of what is falsely called knowledge:

American King James Version
O Timothy, keep that which is committed to your trust, avoiding profane and vain babblings, and oppositions of science falsely so called:

American Standard Version
O Timothy, guard that which is committed unto thee , turning away from the profane babblings and oppositions of the knowledge which is falsely so called;

Douay-Rheims Bible
O Timothy, keep that which is committed to thy trust, avoiding the profane novelties of words, and oppositions of knowledge falsely so called.

Darby Bible Translation
O Timotheus, keep the entrusted deposit, avoiding profane, vain babblings, and oppositions of false-named knowledge,

English Revised Version
O Timothy, guard that which is committed unto thee, turning away from the profane babblings and oppositions of the knowledge which is falsely so called;

Webster's Bible Translation
O Timothy, keep that which is committed to thy trust, avoiding profane and vain babblings, and oppositions of science falsely so called;

Weymouth New Testament
O Timothy, guard the truths entrusted to you, shunning irreligious and frivolous talk, and controversy with what is falsely called 'knowledge';

World English Bible
Timothy, guard that which is committed to you, turning away from the empty chatter and oppositions of the knowledge which is falsely so called;

Young's Literal Translation
O Timotheus, the thing entrusted guard thou, avoiding the profane vain-words and opposition of the falsely-named knowledge,
Parallel Commentaries
Matthew Henry's Concise Commentary

6:17-21 Being rich in this world is wholly different from being rich towards God. Nothing is more uncertain than worldly wealth. Those who are rich, must see that God gives them their riches; and he only can give to enjoy them richly; for many have riches, but enjoy them poorly, not having a heart to use them. What is the best estate worth, more than as it gives opportunity of doing the more good? Showing faith in Christ by fruits of love, let us lay hold on eternal life, when the self-indulgent, covetous, and ungodly around, lift up their eyes in torment. That learning which opposes the truth of the gospel, is not true science, or real knowledge, or it would approve the gospel, and consent to it. Those who advance reason above faith, are in danger of leaving faith. Grace includes all that is good, and grace is an earnest, a beginning of glory; wherever God gives grace, he will give glory.

Pulpit Commentary

Verse 20. - Guard for keep, A.V.; unto thee for to thy trust, A.V.; turning away from for avoiding, A.V.; the profane for profane and vain, A.V.; the knowledge which is falsely for science, falsely, A.V. Guard that which is committed unto thee; τὴν παραθήκην (παρακαταθήκην, T.R.). Guard for keep is hardly an improvement. The meaning of "keep," like that of φυλάττω, is to guard, keep watch over, and, by so doing, to preserve safe and uninjured. This meaning is well brought out in the familiar words of Psalm 121, "He that keepeth thee will not slumber.... He that keepeth Israel shall neither slumber nor sleep. The Lord himself is thy Keeper" (so too Psalm 127:1; Genesis 28:15, etc.). Παραθήκη or παρακαταθήκη, occurs elsewhere in the New Testament only in 2 Timothy 1:12, 14, where the apostle uses it (in ver. 12) of his own soul, which he has committed to the safe and faithful keeping of the Lord Jesus Christ; but in ver. 14 in the same sense as here. "That good thing which was committed unto thee guard ['keep,' A.V.]." There does not seem to be any difference between παραθήκη and παρακαταθήκη, which both mean "a deposit," and are used indifferently in classical Greek, though the latter is the more common. The precept to Timothy here is to keep diligent and watchful guard over the faith committed to his trust; to preserve it unaltered and uncorrupt, so as to hand it down to his successors exactly the same as he had received it. Oh that the successors of the apostles had always kept this precept (see Ordination of Priests)! Turning away from (ἐκτρεπόμενος); only here in the middle voice, "turning from," "avoiding," with a transitive sense. In the passive voice it means "to turn out of the path," as in 1 Timothy 1:6; 1 Timothy 5:15; 2 Timothy 4:4. The profane babblings (see 1 Timothy 4:7; 2 Timothy 2:16); κενοφωνία; only here and 2 Timothy 2:16, "the utterance of empty words," "words of the lips" (2 Kings 18:20). Oppositions (ἀντιθέσεις); here only in the New Testament. It is a term used in logic and in rhetoric by Plato, Aristotle, etc., for "oppositions" and "antitheses," laying one doctrine by the side of another for comparison, or contrast, or refutation. It seems to allude to the particular method used by the heretics to establish their tenets, in opposition to the statements of the Church on particular points - such as the Law, the Resurrection, etc. The knowledge which is falsely so called. There is a very similar intimation of the growth of an empty philosophy, whose teaching was antagonistic to the teaching of Christ in Colossians 2:8, and with which St. Paul contrasts the true γνώσις in ver. 3. This was clearly the germ (called by Bishop Lightfoot "Gnostic Judaism") of what was later more fully developed as the Gnostic heresy, which, of course, derived its name from γνῶσις, knowledge or science, to which they laid claim (see Bishop Lightfoot's able 'Introduction to the Epistle to Colossians,' specially p. 100; and his notes on 1 Timothy 2:8, sqq.).

Gill's Exposition of the Entire Bible

Keep that which is committed to thy trust,.... That is, the Gospel, see 1 Timothy 1:11 which is a rich treasure put into earthen vessels, and ought to be kept pure and uncorrupt, and faithfully dispensed, and diligently preserved, that so it may be continued genuine and sincere, and not be either adulterated and depraved, or be taken away by false teachers. And it may also include his gifts for the ministration of it, which were to be kept in use, and stirred up, and not neglected, but cultivated and improved to the advantage of the church, and of the interest of Christ:

avoiding profane and vain babblings; about the law, and circumcision, and other things, which the false teachers insisted much on, and amused their hearers with; and which were vain, empty, useless, and unprofitable talk. Some copies, and so the Vulgate Latin version, read, "profane newnesses of words"; or new words, which ought not to be introduced, for they often bring in new doctrines: the form of sound words, the wholesome words, the words of our Lord Jesus Christ, the words which the Holy Ghost teacheth, should be held fast; and especially all new words should be avoided, which are contrary to them, or in the least weaken them, or detract from them.

And oppositions of science falsely so called; the false teachers boasted of their science and knowledge, but it was not true, solid, spiritual, and saving; it was not an experimental knowledge of the Gospel; it was not the excellent knowledge of Christ, which has eternal life connected with it; it was merely notional and speculative; it was idle, empty, and useless, mere Pagan philosophy, and vain deceit, upon which they formed antitheses, or oppositions and objections to the truths of the Gospel; and even opposed themselves, and the word of God, as well as the faithful ministers of it.

(Knowledge is not determined by a "show of hands". Even though the majority of people believe something, that does not make it true. The majority today do not believe in Noah's flood, 2 Peter 3:4. It was so in Noah's day also, but the unbelievers all drowned! Many fervently believe in evolution and try to compromise the scriptures with it. This verse stands as a stark warning to those who do not try everything through God's Word. Isaiah 8:20 Editor.)

Jamieson-Fausset-Brown Bible Commentary

20, 21. Recapitulatory conclusion: the main aim of the whole Epistle being here summarily stated.

O Timothy—a personal appeal, marking at once his affection for Timothy, and his prescience of the coming heresies.

keep—from spiritual thieves, and from enemies who will, while men sleep, sow tares amidst the good seed sown by the Son of man.

that which is committed to thy trust—Greek, "the deposit" (1Ti 1:18; 2Ti 1:12, 14; 2:2). "The true" or "sound doctrine" to be taught, as opposed to "the science falsely so called," which leads to "error concerning the faith" (1Ti 6:21). "It is not thine: it is another's property with which thou hast been entrusted: Diminish it not at all" [Chrysostom]. "That which was entrusted to thee, not found by thee; which thou hast received, not invented; a matter not of genius, but of teaching; not of private usurpation, but of public tradition; a matter brought to thee, not put forth by thee, in which thou oughtest to be not an enlarger, but a guardian; not an originator, but a disciple; not leading, but following. 'Keep,' saith he, 'the deposit,'; preserve intact and inviolate the talent of the catholic faith. What has been entrusted to thee, let that same remain with thee; let that same be handed down by thee. Gold thou hast received, gold return. I should be sorry thou shouldest substitute aught else. I should be sorry that for gold thou shouldest substitute lead impudently, or brass fraudulently. I do not want the mere appearance of gold, but its actual reality. Not that there is to be no progress in religion in Christ's Church. Let there be so by all means, and the greatest progress; but then let it be real progress, not a change of the faith. Let the intelligence of the whole Church and its individual members increase exceedingly, provided it be only in its own kind, the doctrine being still the same. Let the religion of the soul resemble the growth of the body,which, though it develops its several parts in the progress of years, yet remains the same as it was essentially" [Vincentius Lirinensis, A.D. 434].

avoiding—"turning away from" (compare 2Ti 3:4). Even as they have "turned away from the truth" (1Ti 1:6; 5:15; 2Ti 4:4).

profane—(1Ti 4:7; 2Ti 2:16).

vain—Greek, "empty": mere "strifes of words," 1Ti 6:4, producing no moral fruit.

oppositions—dialectic antithesis of the false teachers [Alford]. Wiesinger, not so probably, "oppositions to the sound doctrine." I think it likely germs existed already of the heresy of dualistic oppositions, namely, between the good and evil principle, afterwards fully developed in Gnosticism. Contrast Paul's just antithesis (1Ti 3:16; 6:5, 6; 2Ti 2:15-23).

science falsely so called—where there is not faith, there is not knowledge [Chrysostom]. There was true "knowledge," a special gift of the Spirit, which was abused by some (1Co 8:1; 12:8; 14:6). This gift was soon counterfeited by false teachers arrogating to themselves pre-eminently the gift (Col 2:8, 18, 23). Hence arose the creeds of the Church, called symbols, that is, in Greek, "watchwords," or a test whereby the orthodox might distinguish one another in opposition to the heretical. Perhaps here, 1Ti 6:20, and 2Ti 1:13, 14, imply the existence of some such brief formula of doctrine then existing in the Church; if so, we see a good reason for its not being written in Scripture, which is designed not to give dogmatic formularies, but to be the fountain whence all such formularies are to be drawn according to the exigencies of the several churches and ages. Probably thus a portion of the so-called apostle's creed may have had their sanction, and been preserved solely by tradition on this account. "The creed, handed down from the apostles, is not written on paper and with ink, but on fleshy tables of the heart" Jerome [Against John of Jerusalem, 9]. Thus, in the creed, contrary to the "oppositions" (the germs of which probably existed in the Church in Paul's latter days) whereby the aeons were set off in pairs, God is stated to be "the Father Almighty," or all-governing "maker of heaven and earth" [Bishop Hinds].

1 Timothy 6:20 Additional Commentaries
Context
Final Guidance
20O Timothy, guard what has been entrusted to you, avoiding worldly and empty chatter and the opposing arguments of what is falsely called "knowledge "-- 21which some have professed and thus gone astray from the faith. Grace be with you.
Cross References
Acts 16:1
Paul came to Derbe and then to Lystra, where a disciple named Timothy lived, whose mother was Jewish and a believer but whose father was a Greek.

Colossians 2:8
See to it that no one takes you captive through hollow and deceptive philosophy, which depends on human tradition and the elemental spiritual forces of this world rather than on Christ.

1 Timothy 1:2
To Timothy my true son in the faith: Grace, mercy and peace from God the Father and Christ Jesus our Lord.

1 Timothy 1:9
We also know that the law is made not for the righteous but for lawbreakers and rebels, the ungodly and sinful, the unholy and irreligious, for those who kill their fathers or mothers, for murderers,

2 Timothy 1:12
That is why I am suffering as I am. Yet this is no cause for shame, because I know whom I have believed, and am convinced that he is able to guard what I have entrusted to him until that day.

2 Timothy 1:14
Guard the good deposit that was entrusted to you--guard it with the help of the Holy Spirit who lives in us.

2 Timothy 2:16
Avoid godless chatter, because those who indulge in it will become more and more ungodly.
Treasury of Scripture

O Timothy, keep that which is committed to your trust, avoiding profane and vain babblings, and oppositions of science falsely so called:

O Timothy.

1 Timothy 6:11 But you, O man of God, flee these things; and follow after righteousness, …

2 Timothy 2:1 You therefore, my son, be strong in the grace that is in Christ Jesus.

keep.

1 Timothy 6:14 That you keep this commandment without spot, unrebukable, until the …

1 Timothy 1:11 According to the glorious gospel of the blessed God, which was committed …

Romans 3:2 Much every way: chiefly, because that to them were committed the oracles of God.

2 Thessalonians 1:4 So that we ourselves glory in you in the churches of God for your …

2 Thessalonians 2:15 Therefore, brothers, stand fast, and hold the traditions which you …

2 Timothy 1:13,14 Hold fast the form of sound words, which you have heard of me, in …

2 Timothy 3:14 But continue you in the things which you have learned and have been …

Titus 1:9 Holding fast the faithful word as he has been taught, that he may …

Revelation 3:3 Remember therefore how you have received and heard, and hold fast, …

avoiding.

1 Timothy 6:4,5 He is proud, knowing nothing, but doting about questions and strifes …

1 Timothy 1:4,6 Neither give heed to fables and endless genealogies, which minister …

1 Timothy 4:7 But refuse profane and old wives' fables, and exercise yourself rather …

2 Timothy 3:14-16 But continue you in the things which you have learned and have been …

Titus 1:4,14 To Titus, my own son after the common faith: Grace, mercy, and peace, …

Titus 3:9 But avoid foolish questions, and genealogies, and contentions, and …

oppositions.

Acts 17:18,21 Then certain philosophers of the Epicureans, and of the Stoicks, …

Romans 1:22 Professing themselves to be wise, they became fools,

1 Corinthians 1:19-23 For it is written, I will destroy the wisdom of the wise, and will …

1 Corinthians 2:6 However, we speak wisdom among them that are perfect: yet not the …

1 Corinthians 3:19 For the wisdom of this world is foolishness with God. For it is written, …

Colossians 2:8,18 Beware lest any man spoil you through philosophy and vain deceit, …

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