Sunday, July 30, 2017


1 TIMOTHY 2:1-4

Susan: We will begin this passage with a few definitions of words that we sometimes assume we understand.

Webster’s 1828 American Dictionary of the English Language:

EXHORT', verb transitive egzhort'. [Latin exhortor; ex and hortor, to encourage, to embolden, to cheer, to advise. The primary sense seems to be to excite or to give strength, spirit or courage.]

1. To incite by words or advice; to animate or urge by arguments to a good deed or to any laudable conduct or course of action.

I exhort you to be of good cheer. Acts 27:22.

Young men also exhort to be sober minded.

EXHORT servants to be obedient to their masters. Titus 2:6.

2. To advise; to warn; to caution.

3. To incite or stimulate to exertion.

EXHORT, verb intransitive To deliver exhortation; to use words or arguments to incite to good deeds.

And with many other words did he testify and exhort Acts 2:40.

The New Strong’s Exhaustive Concordance of the Bible


1162 – dĕēsis – from 1189 – a petition: prayer, request, supplication

1189 – dĕŏmai – to beg (as binding oneself) i.e. petition – beseech, pray (to), make request


4335 – prayer (worship); by impl. An oratory (chapel):—pray earnestly, prayer


1783 – ĕntuĕxix – from 1793: an interview, i.e. (spec.) supplication:—intercession, prayer.

1793 – ĕntugchanō – to chance upon, i.e (by impl.) confer with; by extens. To entreat (in favor or against):—deal with, make intercession.

1 Timothy 2:1 I exhort therefore, that, first of all, supplications1162, prayers4335, intercessions1783, and giving of thanks, be made for all men;

Susie: Paul encouraged Timothy to pray as well as to teach others to pray. The exhortation, the encouragement, the instruction he gave to Timothy applies to all believers, to all of the Messianic community, followers of the Lord Jesus Christ.

Susan: Paul describes three attitudes of prayer that should all be done in the context of thanksgiving. We are to come humbly as beggars because we are incapable of earning God’s favor by our deeds. It is only by His mercy and grace that we can approach Him at all.

Susie: This is why many of us kneel or bow our heads when we pray, as a symbol of humility.

Susan: We are to be lost in adoring our First Love, the Lord Jesus, the One who sacrificed everything to redeem us.

Susie: Our prayers should include praise for who God is as well as for what He has done in the past and will do in the future.

Susan: Intercession is pouring your heart out to God on behalf of someone else’s challenges. But, also, thanking Him through the trials to victory.

Susie: The part of the Strong’s definition that jumped out at me was that intercession could be for or against. I may be interceding for God to move in a life or interceding against the enemy.

Susan: If we position ourselves in a framework of thanksgiving, we are trusting that the Lord hears and will answer His children. He may answer yes, no, or wait.

Susie: These prayers are to be made for all people (men means mankind). Lest we think we should pray only for believers, look at the next verse!

1 Timothy 2:2 For kings, and for all that are in authority; that we may lead a quiet and peaceable life in all godliness and honesty.

Susan: If things are going well for the leaders of your country, things will be better for you. Christ expects His followers to obey this mandate to pray for those in authority.

Susie: One may say it is difficult to pray for and on behalf of a leader who is not a Christian or perhaps even antagonistic to the faith. Paul was telling the Ephesians to pray for Emperor NERO! You know, the one who burned Christians alive as torches! What can we pray for a king or president who is not a believer?

Susan: We need to pray that he or she comes to know Jesus in a personal, undeniable, tangible way as Savior and Lord.

Susie: We can pray the Lord grants them wisdom in their position. This is not just for national leaders, but can encompass local leadership as well. Not only for politicians but for all in authority, including the leadership of our churches.

Susan: Pray for those who lead our cities, our nation, and our world. A quiet life refers to external circumstances, those controlled by others.

Susie: Peaceable refers to internal calmness. When we are praying for those in authority, it is with the understanding that God is in control which brings great inner peace.

Proverbs 21:1The king's heart is in the hand of the Lord, as the rivers of water: he turneth it whithersoever he will.

Susan: Godliness is hard work especially when He asks us to thank Him in and for things that do not make sense to our finite brains (i.e. phantom pain, school shootings, tragedies).

Susie: Godliness is first and foremost an attitude of the heart. Keeping our focus on Jesus, listening to the still, small voice of the Holy Spirit, and trusting that our Father works everything for our ultimate good and His glory.

Susan: Honesty is living out that holy attitude as a living beacon for the Lord and His kingdom purposes.

Susie: Honesty could be translated “moral earnestness” and is living out godliness among people. It is behaving like a believer in our earthly relationships.

1 Timothy 2:3 For this is good and acceptable in the sight of God our Saviour;

Susan: This righteous living is approved and endorsed by Jesus.

Romans 12:2 And be not conformed to this world: but be ye transformed by the renewing of your mind, that ye may prove what is that good, and acceptable, and perfect, will of God.

Susie: The only way to achieve godliness is to have God’s Holy Spirit controlling your life. It cannot be done in your own strength.

Romans 8:5 For they that are after the flesh do mind the things of the flesh; but they that are after the Spirit the things of the Spirit.

Susie: Our faith in the Lord, our trust in Jesus, brings the Holy Spirit to dwell in us. Therefore, until we act by faith, we are not pleasing to God not matter how “good” society may think we are.

Hebrews 11:6 But without faith it is impossible to please him: for he that cometh to God must believe that he is, and that he is a rewarder of them that diligently seek him.

Susan: The Holy Spirit woos us into the commitment to Jesus and to walk in obedience thereafter.

1 Timothy 2:4 Who will have all men to be saved, and to come unto the knowledge of the truth.

Susie: The King James Version may seem to say that everyone will ultimately be saved, but this is not the case.

1 Timothy 2:4 (ESV) who desires all people to be saved and to come to the knowledge of the truth.

Notes from John MacArthur Study Bible:

The Gr. word for “desires” is not that which normally expresses God’s will of decree (His eternal purpose), but God’s will of desire. There is a distinction between God’s desire and His eternal saving purpose, which must transcend His desires.

Susie: The Father, in His love, wants the Gospel message presented to all people, in all places. However, not everyone will receive it, believe it, and trust in Jesus. What, exactly, is the truth they are to teach?

Susan: The truth of the Gospel is that Jesus is the One and Only Begotten Son who came to earth as a man, lived perfectly according to God’s laws, and died as the perfect Lamb of God to pay the ransom for our sins. His body was laid in a tomb for three days. Then God raised Him from the dead, and He appeared to over 500 people before ascending to the Father’s right hand to make intercession for all who believe.

Susie: The Holy Spirit gives us the faith to believe these truths and accept God’s free gift of salvation from sin. Once we have trusted the truth about the Lord Jesus Christ, we are assured we will live with Him forever.


1.       Write a definition of exhort and example sentences in your own words.
2.       What are the differences between supplication, prayer, and intercession?
3.       Does one type of prayer seem easier to you than another? Why or why not?
4.       Should we pray only for fellow believers? Why or why not?
5.       Why should we pray for our president and other national leaders?
6.       Who ultimately controls the president?

7.       Does God promise that all people will be saved? Back up your response with Scripture.

Thursday, July 27, 2017


1 TIMOTHY 1:15-20

1 Timothy 1:15 This is a faithful saying, and worthy of all acceptation, that Christ Jesus came into the world to save sinners; of whom I am chief.

Webster’s 1828 American Dictionary of the English Language:


1. Kind reception; a receiving with favor or approbation.

This is a saying worthy of all acceptation 1 Timothy 1:15.

Susie: The phrase “This is a faithful saying” is found only in the Pastoral Epistles. Paul used it to introduce key, basic doctrines.  The doctrine here is that the purpose of the incarnation, Jesus coming to earth as a man, was that He would die on the cross to save sinners.  Jesus Himself affirmed this:

Matthew 9:13 But go and learn what this means: ‘I desire mercy and not sacrifice.’ For I did not come to call the righteous, but sinners, to repentance.”

Luke 19:10 …for the Son of Man has come to seek and to save that which was lost.”

1 Timothy 1:16 Howbeit for this cause I obtained mercy, that in me first Jesus Christ might shew forth all longsuffering, for a pattern to them which should hereafter believe on him to life everlasting.

Susie: Let me refresh our memories about the apostle Paul. BC (before his encounter with Christ), Paul was a Pharisee commissioned by the High Priest to persecute Christians.  He sought them out to arrest them to be beaten and even executed for the “crime” of following Jesus. 

Susan: Paul was a living advertisement, a billboard, if you will, of God’s overwhelming, abundant, amazing mercy, grace, and patience.

Susie: Paul not only preached the gospel, the plan of salvation through Jesus Christ; his personal testimony was a demonstration of that very grace.

Susan: Paul’s hope was that sharing his personal conversion story, becoming vulnerable and transparent before the people concerning his before and after experience with Christ, would cause other people to come to faith in Jesus Christ and be part of Jesus’ forever, eternal family.

Susie: Earlier, this led us to a discussion of the thieves that were crucified on either side of Jesus. Let’s take a brief look at that passage:

Luke 23:39-43 And one of the malefactors which were hanged railed on him, saying, If thou be Christ, save thyself and us. But the other answering rebuked him, saying, Dost not thou fear God, seeing thou art in the same condemnation? And we indeed justly; for we receive the due reward of our deeds: but this man hath done nothing amiss.  And he said unto Jesus, Lord, remember me when thou comest into thy kingdom. And Jesus said unto him, Verily I say unto thee, Today shalt thou be with me in paradise.

Susie: Both of the men crucified with Jesus were guilty of crimes that one of them acknowledged were worthy of death. One saw the dying Jesus in His humanity and mocked that if He were really the Messiah, the Christ, the Anointed One, He should be able to save not only Himself but them as well. But the other had eyes of faith.

Susan: He saw the same Jesus in His earth-suit—beaten to an unrecognizable state, naked, dehydrated, the epitome of weakness—yet he called him Lord. In humility, he asked that Jesus would remember him when He got to His kingdom.

Susie: His faith was immediately rewarded as Jesus assured him that he had a future home with Him in Heaven. The point of this worthwhile rabbit trail is that no matter how vile you are, if you have faith to believe Jesus is the Son of God who died for your sins and rose again, God will graciously receive you into His family just as he did Paul and the believing thief on the cross.

1 Timothy 1:17 Now unto the King eternal, immortal, invisible, the only wise God, be honour and glory for ever and ever. Amen.

1 Timothy 1:17 (CJB)    So to the King — eternal, imperishable and invisible, the only God there is — let there be honor and glory for ever and ever! Amen.

Susie: Paul describes God as eternal, immortal (imperishable) and invisible. What is the significance of each of these descriptors?

Susan: Eternal means He had no beginning and no end. He was, is, and forever will be.

Revelation 1:8 I am Alpha and Omega, the beginning and the ending, saith the Lord, which is, and which was, and which is to come, the Almighty.

Susan: God is immortal or as the CJB interprets the word “imperishable.” Jesus’ earth-suit, his physical body, died so that He could serve as the only acceptable sacrifice for the sin of humanity. However, God is spirit, and as such, Jesus was still alive. Peter addressed this reality:

1 Peter 3:18–19 For Christ also hath once suffered for sins, the just for the unjust, that he might bring us to God, being put to death in the flesh, but quickened by the Spirit: By which also he went and preached unto the spirits in prison;

Susie: Why is it important that other than the brief time Jesus walked on earth as the God-man, that the Lord God is invisible?

Susan: This truth is crucial because in being invisible, God can be all places at all times (omnipresent).

Susie: The corollary to that truth is that He can see all things and know all things (omniscient). Perhaps that is why the King James Version also describes God as the only wise God. The most ancient manuscripts omit the word “wise.” It is applicable to the Lord, of course, but the main point is that He is the ONE AND ONLY GOD as the Complete Jewish Bible brought out.

Susan: Therefore, God is the only One deserving of all honor and glory forever and ever (eternity). Amen means “so be it.”

1 Timothy 1:18 This charge I commit unto thee, son Timothy, according to the prophecies which went before on thee, that thou by them mightest war a good warfare; 19 Holding faith, and a good conscience; which some having put away concerning faith have made shipwreck:

Susie: Scripture does not tell us the specific prophecies concerning Timothy or who made them, but it is evident that Paul believed them to be valid.  Paul encouraged Timothy that the Lord would enable him to fight a good and faithful fight to combat the false teaching at Ephesus.

Susan: Paul encouraged Timothy in this way later in the letter as well:

1 Timothy 6:12 Fight the good fight of faith, lay hold on eternal life, whereunto thou art also called, and hast professed a good profession before many witnesses.

Susie: Paul does not specify how others had made a shipwreck of their faith. These had been in the church but had turned away from the truth and followed false doctrine.

Susan: Because they were aware of the truth and walked away from it, the consequences were severe.

1 Timothy 1:20 Of whom is Hymenaeus and Alexander; whom I have delivered unto Satan, that they may learn not to blaspheme.

Susie: Paul had put these two men out of the church in order to 1) end their influence over other church members and 2) take them out of the safety net of fellowship with other believers. This is not saying that they somehow lost their salvation because no one can take that from one who truly trusted Jesus. The purpose was to give them time to reflect and realize the truth of the gospel in order to be restored to fellowship after repentance.


1.       Do our lives bring the honor and glory to God that He deserves?
2.       Are we walking billboards advertising the saving grace and power of the Lord Jesus?

3.       Has the Lord shown you a particular task to accomplish and are you taking steps to do so? 

Tuesday, July 25, 2017


1 TIMOTHY 1:8-14

1 Timothy 1:8 But we know that the law is good, if a man use it lawfully;

Susie: Paul is writing to Timothy concerning the Mosaic Law rather than law in general. The Mosaic Law was good, of course, because it was given directly to Moses by God.

Susan: The Mosaic Law and the other Old Testament books were the only Bible the first century believers had.

Susie: These letters were recognized as authoritative because they were written by an apostle but would not be accepted as a part of the canon of the New Testament until about the fourth century A.D.

1 Timothy 1:9-11 Knowing this, that the law is not made for a righteous man, but for the lawless and disobedient, for the ungodly and for sinners, for unholy and profane, for murderers of fathers and murderers of mothers, for manslayers, For whoremongers, for them that defile themselves with mankind, for menstealers, for liars, for perjured persons, and if there be any other thing that is contrary to sound doctrine;  According to the glorious gospel of the blessed God, which was committed to my trust.

Susan: The Law is for the lawless person, to point out his/her unrighteousness in order to convict the person and point out their need of a Savior.

Galatians 3:24-25 Wherefore the law was our schoolmaster to bring us unto Christ, that we might be justified by faith. But after that faith is come, we are no longer under a schoolmaster.

Susie: The false teachers were, in part, Judaizers, who taught that Christians must be circumcised and keep the law as a prerequisite to salvation. In order to discuss verses 9 and 10 further, it will be helpful to have a list of the Ten Commandments in front of us:

The 10 Commandments List, Short Form
1.        You shall have no other gods before Me.
2.        You shall not make idols.
3.        You shall not take the name of the LORD your God in vain.
4.        Remember the Sabbath day, to keep it holy.
5.        Honor your father and your mother.
6.        You shall not murder.
7.        You shall not commit adultery.
8.        You shall not steal.
9.        You shall not bear false witness against your neighbor.
10.  You shall not covet

Susie: Those who are lawless and insubordinate, ungodly and sinners, unholy and profane would be breaking the first four commandments that address man’s relationship to Holy God. The rest of the couplets Paul uses to describe the lawless ones relate to commandments six through ten concerning relationships between people.

Susan: Murderers of fathers and mothers are definitely in violation of the fifth commandment to honor you parents. Those who kill a person, manslayers, disregard the sixth commandment, the commandment not to take a human life.

Susie: Fornicators, those who have sexual relations outside of Biblical marriage, and sodomites which is another term for homosexuals are against the spirit of commandment number seven. A Biblical marriage is the union of one man and one woman. Adultery encompasses any sexual act that is not between a husband and his own wife or a wife and her own husband.

Susan: In Paul’s day, the kidnapping (stealing) of children was rampant. When we think of stealing, we think of one’s personal possessions; but nothing is more personal than your God-given children.

Susie: Stealing definitely breaks commandment number eight, but taking a child from its family—Wow! Liars and perjurers are bearing false witness as condemned in commandment number nine. And many of these sins are directly related to coveting which is covered in commandment number ten!

Susan: In case the ten commandments did not encompass everything, Paul made the broader category of anything that does not line up with sound doctrine.

Susie: Paul had taught Timothy and the Ephesians sound doctrine as taught to him by the Lord Jesus. God had commissioned Paul to preach the gospel and instruct the believers. False teachers were contradicting the sound teaching they had received from the apostle Paul.

1 Timothy 1:12-13 And I thank Christ Jesus our Lord, who hath enabled me, for that he counted me faithful, putting me into the ministry; Who was before a blasphemer, and a persecutor, and injurious: but I obtained mercy, because I did it ignorantly in unbelief.

Susan: Paul praises God for His empowerment and the fact that the Lord considered him trustworthy, calling him into ministry. Paul acknowledges that he is God’s instrument and could not preach in human effort. It is only by the Spirit of God who works in and through him.

Susie: This reminds me of what Paul stated in his letter to the Philippians:

Philippians 4:13 I can do all things through Christ which strengtheneth me.

Susie: Paul also notes that God put him into ministry. He did not choose this occupation for himself but was appointed to it by the Lord.

Susan: Paul testifies about himself that he was all about bringing misery to Christians. He captured them and turned them over to their tormentors. All these are things Paul did before his encounter with the resurrected Jesus on the Road to Damascus.  Paul received pardon for his actions because he trusted the Savior, Jesus Christ.

1 Timothy 1:14 And the grace of our Lord was exceeding abundant with faith and love which is in Christ Jesus.

Susie: Paul was fully aware that the man he had become was completely due to the grace of God. The Lord’s mercy and loving forgiveness had brought about a change in him.

Susan: The Lord had not simply restored aspects of Paul’s life but had given him a total transformation!

Susie: God had transformed Paul from a persecutor of believers to a proclaimer of the Gospel characterized by faith and love.


1.       The law is for what category of people?
2.       What purpose does the Mosaic Law serve?
3.       Do the examples of unrighteousness given by Paul only encompass a person’s relationship to God? Explain:
4.       According to Paul’s own testimony in this chapter, what was he like before he trusted Jesus?

5.       To what does Paul attribute his ability to have faith, to preach, and to love?

Sunday, July 23, 2017


1 TIMOTHY 1:1-7

1 Timothy 1:1 Paul, an apostle of Jesus Christ by the commandment of God our Saviour, and Lord Jesus Christ, which is our hope;

Susie: Paul always acknowledged that he did not proclaim himself to be an apostle but was made one by the will and command of Jesus. What does he mean by referring to Jesus as “our hope?”

Susan: The Greek word for hope can be defined as “a pleasant expectation.” Jesus is our ultimate pleasant expectation!

Susie: What do you mean?

Susan: Jesus, before He ascended back to the Father, said that He must go and that He would prepare a place for those who believe so that they could be with Him forever. He promised to return and receive all who believe and trust in Him in order to take us to the Father’s house (John 14).

Susie: Therefore, Jesus is the embodiment of the hope we have of eternal life with God.

1 Timothy 1:2 Unto Timothy, my own son in the faith: Grace, mercy, and peace, from God our Father and Jesus Christ our Lord.

Susan: Timothy was Paul’s son in a spiritual sense. Paul had led him to faith in Jesus.

Susie: Paul had instructed Timothy in the teachings of Jesus and felt comfortable placing him in the leadership position of pastor at Ephesus.

New Strong’s Exhaustive Concordance of the Bible:

Charis – graciousness of manner or act: lit. fig., or spiritual; especially the divine influence upon the heart, and its reflection in the life

Susan: Grace and peace was a greeting used by Paul in all his letters. Grace as defined above was asking the Lord to effect change in their lives. With the word peace, Paul was indicating his desire that the Lord set their lives in order, make them whole, and give them rest. Here, Paul also prays mercy for them. God is merciful, compassionate, slow to anger, toward those who place their trust in His Son, Jesus.
1 Timothy 1:3-4 As I besought thee to abide still at Ephesus, when I went into Macedonia, that thou mightest charge some that they teach no other doctrine, Neither give heed to fables and endless genealogies, which minister questions, rather than godly edifying which is in faith: so do.

Susan: Paul told Timothy to stay behind in Ephesus for the purpose of charging, commanding, false teachers to stop teaching erroneous fables about Old Testament people and teach the doctrine of the Gospel as preached by the apostles.

Susie: Paul will address the false teachings more specifically later in the letter. In verse twenty of this chapter, we learn that Paul had in essence excommunicated two former leaders of the church for this very thing. And in chapter 3, he instructs Timothy in the qualifications of church leaders perhaps because some who were teaching false doctrine would need to be replaced. Endless genealogies could refer to trying to prove they were physical descendants of Abraham which is NOT a requirement for salvation.

1 Timothy 1:5 Now the end of the commandment is charity out of a pure heart, and of a good conscience, and of faith unfeigned:

Susie: The result of the charge or command Timothy was to give to those teaching false doctrine would be charity, good conscience, and true faith.

Susan: Charity or love in this context is the kind of love demonstrated by Jesus – a choice to love regardless of how you feel toward a person.

Susie: God has given all people a conscience, an innate sense of right and wrong. One evidence of our trust in Jesus and choosing to follow His will is a “good conscience,” freedom from guilt or shame.

Susan: We looked up “unfeigned” in our favorite dictionary:

Webster’s 1828 American Dictionary of the English Language:

UNFEIGNED, adjective Not feigned; not counterfeit; not hypocritical; real; sincere; as unfeigned piety to God; unfeigned love to man.

Susan: So, Paul was describing faith that is genuine and authentic. There were some who were imposters, faking faith in Jesus.

Susie: Jesus instructed us how to discern whether a teacher is true or false, real or faking it:

Matthew 7:15-16 Beware of false prophets, which come to you in sheep's clothing, but inwardly they are ravening wolves. Ye shall know them by their fruits. Do men gather grapes of thorns, or figs of thistles?

1 Timothy 1:6 From which some having swerved have turned aside unto vain jangling;

Susie: “Vain jangling?” Haven’t heard that term recently.

Susan: The New King James Version renders this “idle talk”. This is conversation that will not build believers up or point them in a godly direction.

Susie: So, this would be useless jargon that sounds religious but really serves no good purpose.

1 Timothy 1:7 Desiring to be teachers of the law; understanding neither what they say, nor whereof they affirm.

Susie: These false teachers wanted the prestige, the “cred,” of rabbis, but did not understand the law they were trying to teach. Instead they were teaching a false doctrine of salvation by works, and not even understanding the works they purportedly thought essential. They were contradicting the Christian doctrine of salvation by grace alone, through faith alone.


1.               Is Jesus Christ your hope?
2.               What is meant by hope in the New Testament context?
3.               Paul uses “grace, peace, and mercy” as greetings. Could we as believers do the same today?
4.               Were the false teachers Timothy needed to command to stop from within or outside the church at Ephesus?