1 Timothy 3:15
But if I tarry long, that you may know how you ought to behave yourself in the house of God, which is the church of the living God…
That thou mayest know how thou oughtest to behave thyself in the house of God. "Behavior" seems a commonplace word enough, and we often assign it a subordinate place in religion. It is, however, a word large as "character." It is a vocabulary in itself. It is not "do" havior, but "be" havior! What I do may be accidental; what I am is everything. Paul has been addressing pastors, deacons, women professing godliness, and wives. He has dealt with marriage, and the ruling of children; and now he speaks to the Church about the conduct of men in church. WHAT IS BEHAVIOR? A man's behavior reveals much of what he is. Earnest or frivolous; gentle or hard; forgiving or unforgiving; selfish or generous; pitiful or censorious; appreciative or unthankful. Behavior is an every-hour sermon. It corrects the notion that a man's religion is mainly in his doctrine or opinions, his ritual or ceremonial. Manners are not to be put on like a garment, nor can we masquerade in them and pretend to be what we are not. Bending the knee is nothing, if we are not reverent at heart. A gift is nothing, unless given from love. Prayer is nothing, unless our life is a prayer. Praise is nothing, unless our life be a garment of praise. Manners are not etiquette, nor best dresses, nor courtesies of speech; they are the expressions of a life. In this aspect their potency is wonderful. In church we are to behave well; not to give ourselves airs, as rich, or learned, or superior people, but to remember that we are bought with a price. But behavior is not much thought about. There is an idea that some men are good at heart, though they are brusque, if you knew how to approach them. This is nonsense. The flower does not wait for me to unfold it; it does not say, "If you knew how to tempt my kindness, I would give you fragrant incense." It is a flower everywhere, to everybody. - W.M.S.
Parallel VersesKJV: But if I tarry long, that thou mayest know how thou oughtest to behave thyself in the house of God, which is the church of the living God, the pillar and ground of the truth.