Command and Teach (Timothy 10)


(READ 1 Timothy 4:6-11)  Last blog we saw how to spot false teachers.  Paul then told Timothy what to do about them:  “If you point these things out to the brothers and sisters, you will be a good minister of Christ Jesus, nourished on the truths of the faith and of the good teaching that you have followed” (4:6).  Timothy was responsible to challenge false teachers and correct them.  He had to teach the truth to the believers so they wouldn’t be misled.  In order to do this Timothy had to know God’s Word very well.  He had to study it and teach it consistently.

Timothy had been taught by Paul and others.  He needs to put what he has learned into practice in his life and not let fear keep him from facing the challenges of ministry.  He was “nourished on the truths of the faith.”  Now he needs to nourish others so they will be godly Christians and leaders as well.  He had “followed good teaching.”  Now he had to provide accurate, godly teaching for others to follow.  We have been taught and trained by others.  Now we must pass those things on to other Christians.

The best way to spot a counterfeit is to know in detail what the original is like, then you can see where the fake deviates.  That is true in counterfeit money, art or jewelry.  It’s also true with God’s truth.  Anything that isn’t taught by Scripture is to be rejected (4:7a).

“Godless myths” and “old wives’ tales” refer to popular beliefs that aren’t taught by the Bible.  They may seem interesting and get attention from those who don’t know better.  These things may be  debated and argued, but they are not true.  Some people like to look for secret truths that others haven’t yet discovered.  In 2 Timothy 4:2 Paul calls this “itchy ears:” wanting to hear something new and different.  They are looking for a short-cut to spiritual maturity, an easy way to have easy victory in life without learning and growing.  They are bored with the truths of God’s word and want something new and different.

It takes self-discipline to study and teach God’s Word accurately and thoroughly.  An athlete has to have will power to train his body (4:7b).  Physical training to make our body as healthy as possible is good, but spiritual training for our heart and mind are much better (4:8).  This is not just a suggestion; it is a requirement for all Christians (4:11).  “Command and teach these things” (4:11).  If people know the Bible, they will be able to discern error and avoid it.  If they don’t know the truth, they will be open to any and all lies that the enemy spreads.

Timothy was a minister (“diakonos” servant), but Paul said he needed to be a “good” minister.  Anyone can be a pastor, church leader or church worker. But being a “good” one is what matters.  We must be effective in carrying out the responsibility God has given us.

Think of who taught and trained you for ministry?  Thank God for them.  Who are you discipling and mentoring?

Are you a student of God’s Word?  Do you know it better than you did a few months ago?  Do you have a deep desire to know and apply it to your life?  Are you faithful in teaching it to others so they won’t be misled by false teaching?

Would God say you are a GOOD pastor or church leader?  What are your hardest struggles in faithfully serving Him?


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