As I begin blogging from the teachings of Paul the apostle to his son in the faith, Timothy, I can’t help but get excited about what God is going to show me over the next few weeks. I love reading and learning from God’s Word because it is timeless and ageless and is always current. There is no other book that can boast those qualities, because there is no other book inspired by God. As humans we boast about a lot of things and try to make them pure and timeless, but they all fall short of their boastings because they are temporal. Temporal is an interesting word. You may not know this but temporal in the dictionary is defined as relating to worldly as opposed to spiritual affairs. Isn’t that cool? The dictionary defining a word with two sides; spiritual and worldly. That’s kind of where we are going to go today in my opening blog. This blog will be built around the scriptures found in 1 Timothy 1:1-11 and just some observations I acquired from these beautiful words of truth sent to Timothy by Paul. Paul is so open in his letters to Timothy, and begins by doing some good bragging about his relationship with this young man in the faith. In verses 1 and 2 he addresses the letter by calling Timothy his “true” child in the faith. He does that with sincerity, but not before he makes a very important statement about his position as a person. In verse 1 he states what his existence as an apostle is built upon, the commandments of God. This is very important and need not be missed when he says “The commandments of God.” Why? Because it is his basis for all he is, and all he does, and all he says!! Woh!! We haven’t even gotten past the first two verses and already they are setting up the remainder of his writings to Timothy. Paul has connected who he is in Christ with Timothy. Not just getting together to have a donut, mocha, and talk about God things. He is “pouring his life” into this young man. Why? So Timothy will know the essence of the truth of life in Christ Jesus and live his life based upon it. In the following verses we see the “why” of such a deep commitment to training Timothy.
This type of commitment is very difficult to do and you don’t see it much in our society of “fly by night” wisdom and fleeting truth. One example in our society that is parallel to such a commitment is medical school. My son Ty decided he was going to be a doctor when he was 10 years old. He went in and out of what kind of doctor he was specifically going to be but never stopped working toward that initial commitment of all the schooling and years of study required for such a calling. I use the word calling because it takes a great commitment to “go the extra mile” and becoming a doctor. I admire Ty’s tenacious attitude in getting it done and marvel at how much he learned and how he uses it for God’s Glory. But as good as Ty’s commitment was, he wouldn’t be the doctor he is today but for those who went before him and instructed him in the ways of medicine. He has countless stories of college professors, instructors, and many more who poured their time and lives into him to allow him to bloom into the doctor he is today. He knows how fortunate he is and mentions them frequently in conversations. Why? They “poured” themselves into his life so that he could carry on what they were teaching him. He will never forget it…..
Because of Paul’s commitment to do the same with Timothy, he buried deep into Timothy’s life the truth of the commitment made by Christ to insure his freedom from the penalty of sin. I guess you could say, “Timothy was pre-med in heart surgery.” His heart surgery would not deal with physical aspects of the heart, but the spiritual aspects of it. He learned from Paul how to recognize the symptoms of the patient and how to administer the right cure to make the heart new and vibrant. He learned how to share God’s truth as any good heart physician would and showed people their desperate need for a new heart given by Christ. If not for the training from Paul, he would falter and even fail, but…..He didn’t!! The pre-med years started to pay off and Paul is ready to let him go and come into his own. When we read Timothy he is reaffirming something already done, already shared. He is giving him a nudge of instruction, because now Timothy is a doctor too and there will be tough times ahead. In verses 3 -7 he tells Timothy to forget the teachings of the world and trust his instincts based on a sincere faith. In verses 8-11 he reminds Timothy that if you have Christ you are free from the law, but if you don’t the law applies to you. He is calling Timothy and us to live above the wisdom of this world and tap into the wisdom from God. I wish I could explain it in more detail, but it is one of those things you have to experience for yourself. Which brings again to mind the word TEMPORAL. The truth of the world will always be subjective and fleeting, not satisfying completely. It is TEMPORAL TRUTH! It is from a fallen world. It cannot heal what ails you. The truth of God is ETERNAL TRUTH!! It is from Almighty God. It will always heal you. Timothy followed God’s truth and impacted the world he walked and lived in, and the world was never the same. Paul passed this truth down to Timothy and loved him like his own child. Paul the heart surgeon, sharing truth with Timothy, the graduated medical student as he started his pilgrimage to minister to the world. Wow! Great Truth. Are you sharing it? if not, why not? Now is the time to “school” someone with what it takes to be that “bearer of the truth.” Why not start now, here.
The Pilgrimage continues…. David Warren