Summary: Final advice for Timothy by Paul. (Powerpoint slides to accompany this talk are available on request – email: firstname.lastname@example.org)
(1). Flee (vs 11a).
(2). Follow (vs 11b):
(3). Fight (vs 12-16)
(4). Faithfulness (vs 20-21).
• In September 194 the Sunday Mail newspaper reported that;
• George and Tina Rollason, of York, Pennsylvania;
• Have steered clear of Biblical names in naming their new baby daughter.
• In fact they have gone to the other extreme and called their baby girl:
• ‘Atheist Evolution’.
• In verse 11 the apostle Paul gives Timothy a new name – ‘Man of God’
• Technically it is a title, a description of his character.
• Now Paul wasn’t suggesting he drop his first name Timothy;
• And from now on use ‘man of God’ as his regular tag,
• Rather he is saying that Timothy should live up to being a man associated with God.
• Verse 11 starts with the words, “But you”;
• There is to be a marked contrast between Timothy & the false teachers mentioned earlier
• They are men and women who follow the ways and attitudes of the world;
• But you Timothy are to follow the ways and attitude of God!
• Man of God’ is quite a title;
• And was used in connection with some Old Testament greats.
• Moses – Deuteronomy chapter 33 verse 1.
• Elijah – 1 Kings chapter 17 verse 18.
• David – Nehemiah chapter 12 verse 24.
• So Timothy was in very good company!
In tonight’s section of First Timothy:
• The apostle Paul gives Timothy four instructions;
• To help him maintain success in his ministry;
• And to help him keep his testimony as a ‘man of God’.
(1). FLEE (VS 11A).
“But you, man of God, flee from all this…”
• Sometimes running away is an act of cowardice;
• ill: Nehemiah asked the question; “Should a man flee?”
• In Nehemiah chapter 6 verse 11 – in the context of fleeing and cowardice.
• ill: I don’t think it is an exaggeration to say:
• That the frightened disciples ran away at the cross - Matthew chapter 26 verse 31.
• Again the context of fleeing would be fear & failure.
• Yet other times running away is a sign of wisdom.
• ill: Joseph ran away when tempted by Potiphar's wife (Genesis chapter 39 verse 12).
• ill: David fled when king Saul tried to kill him (1 Samuel chapter 19 verse 10).
• When in danger it may often be best to just simply ‘flee’ to ‘run’.
Note: The Greek word translated into English as ‘flee’ does not mean literal ‘running’:
• It refers to ‘separation’.
• Paul is telling Timothy to:
• Separate himself from the attitude that godliness is a means to getting rich.
• As mentioned in verse 5b
• Separate himself from the drive for wealth.
• As mentioned in verses 9-10.
• Separate himself from the teaching, lifestyle and attitude of false teachers;
• As mentioned in verse 3.
Christians are commanded to ‘flee’ to ‘run’ to ‘separate’ themselves from all these things:
• In fact in the original Greek language the command is in the present imperative;
• Which literally means to “Keep on running, keep on fleeing, keep on separating”.
Reader's Digest story:
• While my wife and I were shopping at a busy supermarket;
• A shapely young woman in a short, tight-fitting dress strolled by.
• My eyes followed her.
• Without looking up from the item she was examining,
• My wife asked, "Was it worth the trouble you're in?"
Paul says to Timothy:
• If you want to avoid trouble and be a man of God;
• Then “Keep on running, keep on fleeing, keep on separating”.
• Yourself from the lifestyle and attitude of the world and of false teachers.
(2). FOLLOW (VS 11B):
“…and pursue righteousness, godliness, faith, love, endurance and gentleness.”
• Separation without positive growth becomes isolation;
• If we do not cultivate these characteristics in our lives;
• Then we become known only for what we oppose rather than what we propose.
• At the Church B-B-Q did you notice Jack (the terrier dog);
• He wanted some food and he pursued people until he got some.
• He just went and sat by person after person after person until he got what he wanted;
• If anyone refused him, then he got up and went somewhere else.
• Transition: You and I are called to pursue, to seek after until we find it certain traits;
• Certain characteristics, certain God-like qualities.
• (A). RIGHTEOUSNESS.
• If you want to know what the word ‘righteousness’ means them cut it in half!
• ‘Right’ – Right with God and living a right lifestyle.
• Here it refers to our character – that is living a lifestyle that is pleasing to God.