A Charge Of Paul To Timothy

By Milton Jamieson

“But thou, O man of God, flee these things; and follow after • righteousness • godliness • faith • love • patience • meekness.” —1 Timothy 6:11 KJV

The Charges Given To Timothy
The charge here is not one of indictment, allegation, accusation or blame. Rather it is one of commitment, as if a superior military officer gave an order to a soldier to keep watch over a person, thing or place. He or she would be under obligation to guard it with his life.

There are many other charges that the apostle gave to Timothy, and in some cases these were given so he could charge others also. I just make mention of some of them:

  • “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” (1:3).
  • “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” (v.18).
  • “And these things give in charge, that they may be blameless” (5:7).
  • “I charge thee before God, and the Lord Jesus Christ, and the elect angels, that thou observe these things without preferring one before another, doing nothing by partiality” (v.21).
  • “I give thee charge in the sight of God, who quickeneth all things, and before Christ Jesus, who before Pontius Pilate witnessed a good confession” (6:13).
  • “Charge them that are rich in this world, that they be not highminded, nor trust in uncertain riches, but in the living God, who giveth us richly all things to enjoy” (v.17).
  • “I charge thee therefore before God, and the Lord Jesus Christ, who shall judge the quick and the dead at His appearing and His kingdom” (2 Tim. 4:1).

The Men Of God
The charge of 1 Timothy 6:11 was given to the only man in the New Testament who was called a “man of God.” In Scripture there are seven named men of God. Each of these men were marked by one or more of the six things mentioned in our verse, though doubtless there were other good features in their lives. We may remind ourselves that the man of God comes on the scene when there is a challenge to the honor and rights of God, at a time of departure and decline.

Consider these men of God and the virtue of Christ which showed most brightly in each of them:

  • Moses. “And this is the blessing, wherewith Moses the man of God blessed the children of Israel before his death” (Dt. 33:1). One of the features of Christ that radiated ever so brightly in Moses was meekness, the meekness of Jesus Christ.
  • Samuel. “And he said unto him, Behold now, there is in this city a man of God, and he is an honourable man; all that he saith cometh surely to pass: now let us go thither; peradventure he can shew us our way that we should go” (1 Sam. 9:6). Samuel is known as an honorable and dignified man of God, setting forth the dignity of Christ.
  • Shemaiah. “But the word of God came unto Shemaiah the man of God, saying, Speak unto Rehoboam, the son of Solomon, king of Judah, and unto all the house of Judah and Benjamin, and to the remnant of the people, saying, Thus saith the Lord, Ye shall not go up, nor fight against your brethren the children of Israel: return every man to his house; for this thing is from Me. They hearkened therefore to the word of the Lord, and returned to depart, according to the word of the Lord” (1 Ki. 12:22-24). Shemaiah, the man of God, was clearly a man of peace, setting forth the peace of Jesus Christ.
  • Elijah. “And he sent again a captain of the third fifty with his fifty. And the third captain of fifty went up, and came and fell on his knees before Elijah, and besought him, and said unto him, O man of God, I pray thee, let my life, and the life of these fifty thy servants, be precious in thy sight.” (2 Ki. 1:13). Elijah displayed the righteousness and justice of God.
  • Elisha. “And she said unto her husband, Behold now, I perceive that this is an holy man of God, which passeth by us continually” (4:9). Elisha as man of God presented the grace and holiness of Jesus Christ.
  • David. “And he appointed, according to the order of David his father, the courses of the priests to their service, and the Levites to their charges, to praise and minister before the priests, as the duty of every day required: the porters also by their courses at every gate: for so had David the man of God commanded” (2 Chr. 8:14). David as man of God showed the love and forgiveness of God.
  • Timothy. “But thou, O man of God, flee these things; and follow after righteousness, godliness, faith, love, patience, meekness” (1 Tim. 6:11). “All scripture is given by inspiration of God, and is profitable for doctrine, for reproof, for correction, for instruction in righteousness: That the man of God may be perfect, thoroughly furnished unto all good works” (2 Tim. 3:16-17). Timothy as man of God gave testimony to the faithfulness of Christ.

Like The Men Of God
Having been made right with God through faith and on the basis of the blood of Jesus Christ, we ought to pursue a life of righteousness for His glory. Godliness is next, bringing in God in all that we say or do. God’s will must be prominent, seeking His will, His honor and His glory. Faith is third, by which we please God and do exploits for Him. After faith is love. Love is the grace, mercy and compassion of Christ in action. Next is patience, expressing the endurance of Christ even in suffering and various kinds of adversity. Finally, meekness is the gentleness and mildness of Christ on display.

Like the men of God we ought to be filled with and display all the moral fullness of Him. B

These excellent things are the expression of eternal life – which itself is the portion of those who believe on the Son of God. The life is ours, as is made so abundantly plain by the apostle John. Yet we are exhorted to lay hold of it, for it is a dependent life – Christ being its Source and Object. We lay hold of it in laying hold by faith in Him and of all those things which find their center in Him.

The men of the world lay hold of earthly gain, or of as much of it as they can compress into their fists. We are called to eternal life; and we lay hold of that life by going after all those things of which, from a practical standpoint, it consists. —F. B. Hole (adapted)

Author: Sebastien

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