James Gray - Concise Bible Commentary
Paul, an apostle of Jesus Christ by the commandment of God our Saviour, and Lord Jesus Christ, which is our hope;1 timothy 1:1-20
THE SALUTATION (1 Timothy 1:1-2)
In this notice the beautiful designation of our Lord Jesus Christ as “Our Hope.” He Himself is our Hope. And when we remember that these words were written by Paul in his later years, they are all the more affecting. And notice the designation given Timothy in 1 Timothy 1:2. What bearing has this upon the proposition that he probably owed his conversion to Paul’s labors?
REFERENCE TO TIMOTHY’S MISSION AT EPHESUS (1 Timothy 1:3-4)
We have referred to the circumstance of his being left there by Paul, in our introduction. It seems to have necessitated urging on Paul’s part. What language indicates as much? What charge was he to lay upon the teachers at Ephesus? In what two directions (especially Jewish) were they inclined to digress from the Gospel? What would be likely to be the outcome of such digression?
DESCRIPTION OF THE FALSE TEACHERS (1 Timothy 1:5-7)
In this description it will be noted that the root of the offense, was in swerving from love, for such is the correct translation of the word “charity” in 1 Timothy 1:5.
DESCRIPTION OF THE TRUE USE OF THE LAW (1 Timothy 1:8-11)
These false teachers pretended to discourse of the law, by which is meant the law of Moses, without really knowing the subject on which they spoke.
The law did not apply to those who were saved under the Gospel, but it had the same bearing as ever to the unbeliever.
DIGRESSION: THE CIRCUMSTANCES OF PAUL’S CONVERSION (1 Timothy 1:12-17)
This springs from his allusion to the Gospel in 1 Timothy 1:11, a Gospel committed to his trust as a steward to proclaim. He does not spare himself in extolling the grace of God toward him (1 Timothy 1:13-15), and he uses his own history as an example and encouragement to the worst of sinners (1 Timothy 1:16).
PERSONAL CHARGE TO TIMOTHY (1 Timothy 1:18-20)
This charge is the single one to fight the good fight of faith, to which he is stimulated by two considerations. The first is the “prophecies which went before” on him, the supernatural predictions of his future; and the second, the failure of some who had started in the fight with him and fallen back. The good fight of faith in his case is that which was personal to himself, and that which concerned his ministry. It is not the conflict of the Christian life in general which Paul refers to so much, as that of a leader in the church against the opponents of a pure Gospel.
1. What title is given Jesus Christ in this lesson?
2. What led to the defection of these false teachers?
3. How does Paul consider his ministration of the Gospel?
4. What is meant by the fight of faith in Timothy’s case?
5. How many questions are in the body of this lesson, and how many have you answered satisfactorily?