1 Timothy 6:2
And they that have believing masters, let them not despise them, because they are brothers; but rather do them service…
This relationship would be less common than the other.
I. THE RESPECT DUE TO CHRISTIAN MASTERS. "And they that have believing masters, let them not despise them because they are brethren, but the rather serve them." The duty is presented in a twofold form.
1. Negatively. "Let them not despise them." The false teachers might tell the slaves that their servitude was inconsistent with Christian liberty. The slaves might thus, especially in the case of Christian masters, regard them as fully their equals on the ground of the common brotherhood of believers, and refuse them the respect due to their position.
2. Positively. "But the rather serve them." The best way of effecting a partial amelioration of their condition was by rendering a service all the more faithful, because it was rendered to a brother in Christ. Servants must never under any circumstances be disrespectful.
II. THE REASONS FOR THIS COMMAND. They are twofold.
1. Because their master's are brethren. The slaves ought, therefore, to treat them with Christian respect and generosity, knowing that such a service is showing kindness to "brethren."
2. Because those who were "to receive the benefit of their hearty and willing service were faithful and beloved." This thought ought to dignify as well as ameliorate the position of the slave. Such masters were willing to receive such service.
III. THE NECESSITY OF ENFORCING THESE DUTIES. "These things teach and exhort."
1. It was necessary for the comfort of the slave himself as well as for the interests of the master.
2. It was necessary for the credit and honor of the gospel, which would be gravely compromised by restiveness or insubordination on the part of the great subject class.
3. The gospel is not vulgarized by such counsel. It rather dignifies human life in its meanest respects by infusing into it a new beauty and a new generosity of feeling. - T.C.
Parallel VersesKJV: And they that have believing masters, let them not despise them, because they are brethren; but rather do them service, because they are faithful and beloved, partakers of the benefit. These things teach and exhort.
WEB: Those who have believing masters, let them not despise them, because they are brothers, but rather let them serve them, because those who partake of the benefit are believing and beloved. Teach and exhort these things.