1 Timothy 6:6-8
But godliness with contentment is great gain.…
I. SEEK THE BLESSEDNESS OF GODLY CONTENTMENT.
1. No doubt contentment apart from godliness is a good thing. Seneca and , and other pagan philosophers, were never tired of singing its praises; and , when he walked through the streets of Athens, and saw around him the evidences of wealth, art, and culture, exclaimed, "How many things there are which I can do without."(1) To some this feeling of contentment with their present condition seems constitutional. There are men and women who have an easy-going disposition, which makes the best of everything.
(2) Others again are content, not so much from happy temperament, as from the fact that the lines have fallen unto them in pleasant places, and they have a goodly heritage. Belonging to the rich and leisured classes, they have no temptation to win a position, or to make money, by unworthy means, for these are already theirs without effort.
2. It is not contentment, however, which is inculcated here so much as "godliness with contentment." Many a man has been content without being godly, who might have been saved had his content been disturbed and destroyed.
II. ENTERTAIN A LOWLY ESTIMATE OF YOURSELVES. "We brought nothing into this world." Of all God's creatures, the human child is most helpless, most dependent upon kindly care; and one of the lessons taught by the coming of an infant into the home is the lesson of human dependence. What have we, indeed, through life that we did not receive? The very powers which enable us to win position or wealth are as much Divine gifts as the wealth itself. No one here has reason for boasting or pride, but only for reverent gratitude to Him who has crowned us with loving-kindness and with tender mercy.
III. ESTIMATE JUSTLY THE VALUE OF EARTHLY THINGS. However precious worldly things may seem, it is certain "we can carry nothing out" of the world when we leave it. It is a narrow bed which will form the last resting-place even for the owner of a province or the ruler of a nation.
(A. Rowland, LL. B.)
Parallel VersesKJV: But godliness with contentment is great gain.