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Summary: This message is designed to help us understand how God expects us to maintain relationships within the family of God.

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CHURCH MAINTENANCE

1 Tim 5:1-21

INTRODUCTION:

A. Maintenance can be a hard thing to do.

1. It is easier to buy something new, but eventually you have to do maintenance on it.

2. There are basically two types of maintenance:

a. Preventive – this maintenance is do to preclude a problem, to keep this up and in good working order

b. Repair maintenance - when things break

3. Usually it is less expensive and labor intensive to do the preventive maintenance than to fix things once they are broke.

4. Illustration: water pump on baptistery

a. The preventive maintenance is easy and quick, oil it once a quarter and blow any excess dirt and dust off of it. Cost: $1.00 for oil, five minutes of time.

b. If you have to replace the pump: 510.00 for the pump plus 70.00 labor = 580.00

B. By the same token it is much easier to maintain church relationships than it is to repair them once they are broken.

1. In 1 Timothy 5, Paul instructs Timothy how certain relationships in the church are to be handled – maintained, if you would.

2. Though there are many types of relationships within the body of Christ that need to be maintained, Paul focuses on three

a. Maintaining Family Relationships

b. Maintaining Widow Relationships

c. Maintaining Elder relationships

C. This morning I want us to realize it is easier to keep our relationships in good order than to try and fix them when they get broke.

D. May God bless us and His church here at First Baptist Church of Mascoutah as we do things his way for His glory.

PRAY

Let’s begin this morning by taking a look at how we are to be

I. MAINTAINING FAMILY RELATIONSHIPS, 1 Tim. 5:1-2 Rebuke not an elder, but intreat him as a father; and the younger men as brethren; The elder women as mothers; the younger as sisters, with all purity.

A. This seems to be pretty straight forward but for some reason it does not happen in the church family

1. A number of relationships are used to explain how we are to relate within the church context

a. Elder men are to be treated as a father

b. Younger men are to be treated as brothers

c. Older women are to be looked upon as one would a mother

d. Younger women are to be treated as sisters with purity!

2. We need to make sure we treat each other as Paul told young Timothy to treat those under his pastoral ministry.

B. You and I would do well to keep this in mind as we relate to one another

1. For instance, a young man has no place to defy authority of his father or mother and therefore should not be in defiance in relation to an elder man or woman in the congregation.

2. A young lady would probably not sit around the youth room hugging on their brother or sitting in his lap

- A key word in connection with younger women (all women really) is purity!

C. One last word on this relational area – keep things cleared up.

1. When there is a problem between people, of any age, God’s word makes it plain on what we are to do.

2. Matthew 18:15-17 Moreover if thy brother shall trespass against thee, go and tell him his fault between thee and him alone: if he shall hear thee, thou hast gained thy brother. But if he will not hear thee, then take with thee one or two more, that in the mouth of two or three witnesses every word may be established. And if he shall neglect to hear them, tell it unto the church: but if he neglect to hear the church, let him be unto thee as an heathen man and a publican.

3. To this Paul would add, do not let the sun go down on your wrath!

4. One last word, Matthew 5:23-24 Therefore if thou bring thy gift to the altar, and there rememberest that thy brother hath ought against thee; Leave there thy gift before the altar, and go thy way; first be reconciled to thy brother, and then come and offer thy gift.

D. Folks, it is easier to maintain our relationships than it is to fix them once they go bad, so keep them in good shape.

We now come to a rather lengthy passage that deals with

II. MAINTAINING WIDOW RELATIONSHIPS, 1 Tim. 5:3-16 Honour widows that are widows indeed. But if any widow have children or nephews, let them learn first to shew piety at home, and to requite their parents: for that is good and acceptable before God. Now she that is a widow indeed, and desolate, trusteth in God, and continueth in supplications and prayers night and day. But she that liveth in pleasure is dead while she liveth. And these things give in charge, that they may be blameless. But if any provide not for his own, and specially for those of his own house, he hath denied the faith, and is worse than an infidel. Let not a widow be taken into the number under threescore years old, having been the wife of one man, Well reported of for good works; if she have brought up children, if she have lodged strangers, if she have washed the saints' feet, if she have relieved the afflicted, if she have diligently followed every good work. But the younger widows refuse: for when they have begun to wax wanton against Christ, they will marry; Having damnation, because they have cast off their first faith. And withal they learn to be idle, wandering about from house to house; and not only idle, but tattlers also and busybodies, speaking things which they ought not. I will therefore that the younger women marry, bear children, guide the house, give none occasion to the adversary to speak reproachfully. For some are already turned aside after Satan. If any man or woman that believeth have widows, let them relieve them, and let not the church be charged; that it may relieve them that are widows indeed.

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