Thursday, January 07, 2010

1 Timothy 5:1-2

V1-2 – 1Do not rebuke an older man harshly, but exhort him as if he were your father. Treat younger men as brothers, 2older women as mothers, and younger women as sisters, with absolute purity.

Here in v1, Paul balances what he had told Timothy in 1 Timothy 4:12, and where that passage implied an ongoing action that was to be stopped, this command implies something that hasn’t happened yet, something that shouldn’t start to happen. The young minister should not abuse his authority with the congregation as a whole, or specifically with other leaders within the congregation, but he should lead by example, treating his congregation like he would treat his own family (Leviticus 19:32). And people within the congregation, like family members, need to be handled differently.

In v2, Paul treads carefully. Because of Timothy’s young age and because of the likelihood that there was sexual exploitation taking place by the false teachers (2 Timothy 3:6), he urges Timothy to maintain “absolute purity” in his dealings with older women and younger women, treating them as mothers and sisters, respectively.

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