Paul continues to teach Timothy the importance of godliness, the fact the Jesus is the only Messiah (especially so for those who believe), spiritual maturity is more important than chronological maturity, and the importance and how to remain steadfast in the faith.

My translation and notes of 1 Timothy 4:6-16

Remind Brethren

6 If yous remind the brothers and sisters of these things, yous will be a good servant of Jesus Christ, being nourished in the words of faith and good teaching to which yous have carefully followed.

[In order to avoid error, we must be taught about truth, taught proper Bible interpretation, taught Biblical doctrine, worldview, and lifestyle, so we will recognize error. It is part of God’s commission for all pastors. Let us be faithful to that commission. We must then teach these things to the people of our congregation. The Greek word for ‘nourished’ is (G1789) ἐντρέφω entrepho. It means to educate and being trained in. We are to know facts, know application of the facts, and study the facts frequently—facts of Christian faith as is revealed in the Holy Scriptures. This knowledge then must be passed down to others. Paul notes that Timothy has ‘carefully followed’ these things, so must we].

7 Shun crude myths and old wives’ tales, instead exercise yourselfs for godliness.

[These myths and old wives’ tales are what some listen to for their comfort preaching consisting of childish stories, jokes, and pop psychology. There is no worship of God, no conviction of sin, and no encouragement for holy living. The Greek word for ‘crude myths’ is G952) βέβηλος bebelos, which means heathen and wicked; Robertson suggests it has the idea of Trodden under foot, unhallowed. The Greek word for ‘exercise’ is (G1128) γυμνάζω gumnazo, which means literally ‘exercise naked’. It carries the sense of putting forth rigorous effort and discipline to live a godly life. God has given us what we need to live a godly life (the Scriptures); see 2 Peter 2:3].

8 For bodily exercise profits briefly, but godliness is beneficial for everything having a promise of this present life and the one to come.

[The Greek word ‘briefly’ is (G4314) πρός pros and (G3641) ὀλίγος oligos, a short phrase meaning ‘for a little bit’ thus, briefly. If one stops exercising, then the benefit diminishes over time. Also, abstinence and spiritual ritual exercises do not benefit either (1 Timothy 4:3). In contrast, the spiritual exercise of godliness is beneficial for everything and carries into eternity. What really profits is godliness (thoughts, desires, words, and deeds aligned with God’s). There is a benefit to godliness in this life that carries over into the next life (eternal in heaven). We might as well, with God’s grace, start living the life and worldview of heaven before we get there. It is God’s plan for the best and blessed life. All people benefit from a society that is godly. God’s church (believers) are the salt and light to our generation.].

9 This is a trustworthy saying, deserving full acceptance.

[This verse is referring to the blessings of godliness].

10 It is for this that we labor and suffer reproach, because we trust in the living God, who is the Savior of all people, especially of those who believe.

[There is only one savior—Jesus Christ. No person, religion, creed, theory, theology, person, government, etc. can save except Jesus. See 1 Timothy 2:4, Acts 4:12, John 4:42, and 1 John 4:14. Henry Morris (Defender’s STUDY BIBLE 2004) writes: all men. Christ’s death is sufficient to save all men (1 John 2:2), but it becomes effective only for those who believe (John 3:36].

Things to Insist

11 Pass along and teach these things.

[The Greek word for ‘pass along’ is (G3853) παραγγέλλω paraggello, which means communicate, pass along a message/information/command from source to another, and to make an announcement about something that must be done (BDAG). See 1 Corinthians 11:17 and Matthew 15:35 (Jesus gave the command and the disciples passed along the message). These verbs are in the imperative mood, so are commanded for us to obey].

12 Let no one despise yours young age, instead be an example to the believers in speech, behavior, love, attitude, faith, and purity.

[Chronological age does not mean much; it is maturity, especially spiritual maturity (Ephesians 4:13-15). The examples we must live before all, in honoring God our Savior, is found in what we say (speech), how we act in private and in public (behavior), how we treat others (love—Galatians 5:6), our manner of thinking, feeling, or behaving that reflects a state of mind or disposition—Wordnik (attitude), our beliefs in God (faith), and our god approved actions towards others (purity). Regarding ‘purity’ Alford writes: simplicity of holy motive followed out in consistency of holy action. Maturity is these areas are something all Christians, especially church leaders must believe and live life consistently. We must mature in knowledge, wisdom, actions, godliness in worldview and lifestyle].

13 Until I come, consistently apply yourselfs to the reading [of Scripture], exhortation, and to teaching.

[This is how we grow in faith personally (our personal devotions) and corporately (in the fellowship)].

14 Do not neglect the gift in yous, which was given to yous by prophecy with the laying on of hands by the elders.

[All believers have a gift from the Holy Spirit (1 Corinthians 12:4-7 and Ephesians 4:7). Timothy had a special anointing from the Apostle and the elders. We have no Apostles today. Among the qualifications to be an Apostle, a person had to have been chosen by Jesus in His ministry, traveled with Jesus for the whole 3.5 years of His ministry, etc. See notes at 1 Corinthians 12:28 and Ephesians 2:20, and Philippians 2:25].

Be Steadfast in Your Belief

15 Keep on habitually applying these things. Give yourselfs wholly to them, so yours progress may be obvious to all.

[The things of verse 13 are to be a habit and emphasized in the fellowship. The Greek word for ‘habitually applying’ is μελετάω meletáō (G3191). It means to care for, attend to carefully, practice—Strong’s. As noted by Vincent Biblical meditating is exercising and practicing. Thus, either word (meditate or habitually applying) may convey Paul’s meaning. Let the reader research. Vincent’s (WORD STUDIES IN THE NEW TESTAMENT) has this more detailed noted:

Only here and Acts 4:25 (citation). Often in Class. and lxx. Most translators reject the A.V. meditate, and substitute be diligent in, or practice, or take care for. Meditate, however, is legitimate, although in Class. the word commonly appears in one of the other senses. The connection between the different meanings is apparent. Exercise or practice applied to the mind becomes thinking or meditation. In lxx it represents seven Hebrew equivalents, and signifies to meditate, talk of, murmur, delight one’s self in, attend to. Often to meditate, Joshua 1:8; Psalm 1:2; Psalm 2:1; Psalm 37:12; Psalm 72:6; Sirach 6:7. Meditation is a talking within the mind, and issues in speech; hence to speak, as Psalm 35:28; Psalm 37:30; Isaiah 69:3. Similarly, λόγος signifies both reason and discourse. In Lat. meditari, “to reflect,” is also “to exercise in,” “to practice,” as Virgil, Ecclesiastes 1:2. In the Vulg. meditabor is the translation of murmur or mourn in Isaiah 38:14. The Hebrew הָגָהֽ means to murmur, whisper; hence the inner whispering of the heart; hence to think, meditate, consider, as Psalm 63:7; Psalm 78:13].

16 Watch yourselfs and yours teaching. Continue in them, for in doing this yous will deliver both yourselfs and those hearing yous.

[We must evaluate what we teach and live (Galatians 6:3-4). Are we living what we teach? We have the standard of Christian life—the New Testament. It is the Law of Christ (Galatians 6:2). We are never to stop but only to continue. We must encourage each other daily. Salvation (‘deliver’) refers to: When Paul says, “You will save both yourself and your hearers,” he is not talking about redemption. Timothy was already saved by the grace of God, and so were most of his hearers. The word is used in the same sense as Paul uses it in Philippians 2:13, where he says: “Work out your own salvation with fear and trembling for it is God who is at work in you both to will and to do of his good pleasure,” (Philippians 2:12b-13 RSV). Paul is talking about salvation in the sense of fulfillment, maturity, experienced deliverance from evil and growing in the Lord; that is the idea (Ray STEDMAN EXPOSITIONAL STUDIES)].

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