Page images

Best use of riches is charity.

[ocr errors]

We must keep the faith. Which some professing, 21

have erred concerning the faith. Grace be with thee. Amen.

I TIMOTHY VI. 19 willing to bestow; Treasuring up for them- | falsely so called; selves a good foundation against the time to come, that they may lay hold on 'eternal" life. 20 O Timothy, keep that doctrine which is committed to thy trust, avoiding profane and vain babblings, and oppositions of knowledge

[ocr errors]
[ocr errors]

The first to Timothy was written from Laodicea, which is the chief city of Phrygia Pacatiana.


REFLECTIONS UPON CHAPTER VI. 1. The christian pastor ought to regard all under his care, however low they may be in the ranks of society. He is not to forget servants, or even slaves; but to give to them proper directions for their conduct in life, that so the name of God and the doctrine of the gospel may not be evil spoken of. Pastors are both to receive and teach the sound words of our Lord Jesus Christ; and these will be found to comprise that pure doctrine of grace, which inculcates practical godliness. What is there so advantageous to man' as this? United with a humble and contented temper it is true gain, a spiritual treasure which faileth not. When death strips us of all our worldly possessions, and we leave this state as naked as we came into it, possessed of godliness, we are rich. Let us moderate our desires after the world, and having food and raiment, learn therewith to be content; for consider how fatal to the peace and faith of the gospel, the inordinate love of money has been to many. Let all diligently study and practice the duties of piety; and then vain questions, and strifes of words, and perverse disputings, will cease. And let every christian withdraw from men of corrupt minds, who, while they talk and dispute about the subjects of religion, are strangers to its holy, sanctifying power and influence.

19. the true. Griesb.

2. How fervent and earnest was the apostle in his exhortations both to pastors and to people. Let the former remember their charac ter and calling. As men of God, employed by him, and elevated to his service, let them flee from the vices and follies of the world, and pursue and cultivate righteousness, godliness, faith, love, patience, meekness. Called to the hope of the gospel, and having made a confession of Christ being the Messiah and Saviour, maintain this faith to the end of life, and amidst all difficulties; and so lay hold of the everlasting life promised. Let every one engaged in the ministry be animated by the good confession which Christ made before Pilate; and keep this truth without spot, unrebukeable, until the appearance of the Lord Jesus Christ. And let all rest firmly assured, that he will come again and be glorified by the saints, and admired by them that believe; and that this event is secured by the promise of God the Father, and of Christ the blessed and only Potentate, the King of Kings, and Lord of Lords; of him who pos sesses such essential glories, that mortal eyes cannot behold him. Let the rich do good with their property, distributing to the necessitous; and by such good works show the reality of their faith and love. And whatever is committed to our trust, let us faithfully keep; that so we may be preserved from erring concerning the faith.

[merged small][merged small][ocr errors]





WITH Macknight, Paley, and other learned men, I consider this as the last epistle that Paul wrote; and that it was written not long before he suffered death at Rome. This we learn from the epistle itself; and from the persons and circumstances mentioned, we also learn that this was a second imprisonment at Rome which he was then enduring. For the proof of this, see Macknight. The design of the epistle was to encourage Timothy to constancy and perseverance in preaching the gospel, and in instructing others for the ministry. He presses on his attention a diligent observance of all his duties; and particularly to keep in mind his example, sufferings, and labours, and to do the work of an evangelist.

[merged small][merged small][merged small][merged small][merged small][ocr errors][merged small]

CHAP. I. 1,2. As to the promise of life,&c. Made to men, in the promise of a Saviour, and secured in the covenant made with Abraham. He was an apostle for the purpose of publishing this promise of life and salvation to the world.

3-5. After the manner, &c. See note, Rom. ix. 3. As they served God in sincerity, following his revealed will, só do I in preaching Christ; and I am thankful that I have such just reasons, to make mention of thee in my prayers; earnestly longing to see thee, being mindful of thy tears, shed when in providence we were separated; and sure I am I should be filled with joy on seeing thee. This desire is increased, when I remember the unfeigned faith, &c.

6. The free gift, &c. The spiritual gifts imparted at thy ordination to be an evangelist. Paul conferred these gifts, whatever they were, though the elders joined in laying on of hands. See 1 Tim. iv. 14, aud note, To confer any spiritual gift was the prerogative of the apostles.

mother Lois, and thy mother Eunice; and F am persuaded that it dwelleth in thee also. Wherefore I remind thee that thou stir up 6 the free gift of God, which is in thee by the putting on of my hands. For God hath not 7given us a spirit of fear; but of power, and of love, and of prudence. Be not thou there- 8 › fore ashamed of the testimony of our Lord, nor of me his prisoner; but suffer with others for the gospel, according to the power of God; Who hath saved us, and called us with a 9.. holy calling, not according to our works, but according to his own purpose and grace, which

[ocr errors]

was bestowed on us in Christ Jesus before the world began; But hath now been made manifest 10 by the appearance of our Saviour Jesus Christ, who hath abolished death, and clearly dis

7. Spirit of fear. Amidst our persecutors; " but of power" in working miracles, and in the exercise of other gifts; " and of love" to the souls of men, seeking their salvation; “and of prudence" in the discharge of our arduous duties.

8. Suffer with others for, &c. That is, come, and if necessary, suffer with me for this blessed cause; and do this encouraged by "the power of God". exerted so remarkably on our account.

9. Before the world began. Whitby, Macknight, and others, object to this version. Lock would render, "before secular times," that is, before the Jewish jubilee began, which Newcome gives in his margin; but in his text, "ancient dispensations." Macknight, "times of the ages," which he explains, "long before the times of the Mosaic dispensation." He refers it to the promise of the seed of the woman. But it may be said that promise was made according to God's purpose, which had been formed before he made the world. Comp. Eph. i. 4, and 1 Peter i. 20. So that I conceive our translators

Gospel must be kept pure.


Men able to teach others. covered life and immortality by the gospel || find mercy of the Lord in that great day. 11 Of which I have been appointed a preacher, And in how many things he ministered to me and an apostle, and a teacher of the Gentiles. at Ephesus, thou knowest very well. 12 For which cause I suffer also these things: nevertheless I am not ashamed: for I know in whom I have believed, and am persuaded that he is able to keep what I have committed to him against that great day.

[blocks in formation]

REFLECTIONS UPON CHAPTER 1. 1. The blessed gospel is deserving of our highest regard, as it reveals so fully and clearly the future state of happiness and glory. Let no professor then be ashamed of it, or afraid to bear testimony to it, whatever sufferings may be the consequence. Let every believer consider the source of all his privileges and blessings, which is God's eternal purpose and grace in Christ Jesus. Agreeably to this he has been called with a holy calling, and is now saved from guilt and misery; and he has received a new spirit of power, love, and prudence. Let us ever remember such as are partakers of this heavenly calling, and who show their faith by their works; and let our prayers for their welfare be unremitted. What is so valuable to us as our soul and its salvation? And to whom can we commit it, with all its eternal concerns, with perfect confidence, unless to our Lord and Saviour? What a privilege to know in whom we have believed, and that he is able to keep what we commit to him.

have given the sense. Were we to render, "before the ancient times," it amounts to the same thing. Luther and others render as ours have done.

10. Abolished death. By his own death and resurrection, he has abolished it as to himself, and will do so as to others. Clearly, &c. Doddridge, "thrown light on." As I am satisfied that both eternal life and a resurrection of the body were revealed, though but obscurely, in the writings of Moses and the prophets, this sense of the verb seems necessary. Luke xx. 37.-Life and immortality. Some consider the words a Hebraism for "an immortal life." But if the latter be properly rendered, (see Parkhurst,) they refer to a future life, and to the resurrection of the body. Comp. 1 Cor. xv. 52-54. 11, 12. Of the Gentiles. See Acts ix. 15. Rom. i. 5.-Able to keep, &c. Though I suffer for preaching to the Gentiles, I am confident that Jesus, in whom I have believed is able to keep, and to realize my future hopes and happiness.

13, 14. Form of sound words. Which thou hast heard, when I have


A. D. 66. He exhorts Timothy to constancy and perseverance, rightly di viding the word of truth; cautions him against Hymeneus and Philetus Į and points out what he should follow, &c.

THOU therefore, my son, be strong in the 1 grace which is through Christ Jesus. And 2 the things which thou hast heard from me among many witnesses, these commit to faithful men, who shall be able to teach others also. Wherefore endure thou hardships as a 3 good soldier of Jesús Christ. No man that 4 warreth entangleth himself with the affairs of this life, but is free from them that he may please him who hath chosen him to be a soldier. And if a man contend also in the games, 5 he is not crowned, unless he contend lawfully. The husbandman must first labour, and then 6

2. While we should be sound as to doctrine, we ought to exercise the faith and love which Christ requires. However sound and excellent may be the form of words we profess, if unaccompanied with faith and love, they will avail nothing. The doctrine of the gospel is indeed good in itself; but to be the instrument of saving the soul, it must be received by faith. How lamentable is it, when any who profess to belong to Christ, turn aside, because of trials and persecutions. Such conduct shows the weakness of their faith, and the strength of their fears. But if some shrink in the day of trial, like Phygellus and Hermagenes; there are others, who like Onesiphorus, are bold and courageous, and on no consideration will be induced to forsake the Saviour or his suffering servants. How affectionately does the apostle remember Onesiphorus! And may his request for him be granted to my reader and myself, that we may find mercy of the Lord in the great day; in the day of the final judgment of all men.

preached the doctrines of the gospel, with the exercise of that faith and love which are in Christ Jesus.Good doctrine. The doctrine of grace before called "the form of sound words." The word literally signifies, “good deposite," which the preceding verse, as well as the subject in general, limits to the sense given.

15. They of Asia. Those who were at Rome from Asia, being afraid, left Paul and fled in this season of persecution.

16-18. Onesiphorus, &c. Paul prays for his family, and assigns the reason of it, next for him who was then probably absent from his family. CHAP. II. 1. In the grace, &c. Maintain strenuously, by preaching the grace of God made known by Christ in the gospel, against all opposers. 2. The things which, &c. The leading facts respecting our Lord, and the design of his coming into the world, life, death, resurrection, &c. These facts were established by the testimony of many witnesses, and heard in the course of Paul's ministry.Commit to faithful, &c. Instruct such that there

[blocks in formation]

7 be partaker of the fruits. Consider what I say; and the Lord give thee understanding 8 in all things. Remember Jesus Christ, of the seed of David, who was raised from the dead, according to the gospel which I preach: 9 For which I suffer hardship, as an evil-doer, even unto bonds; but the word of God is not 10 bound. Therefore I endure all things for the sake of the elect, that they may also obtain the salvation, which is through Christ Jesus, 11 with everlasting glory. This is a faithful saying: For if we die with him, we shall 12 live also with him: If we suffer, we shall reign also with him: if we deny him, he will 13 also deny us: If we be unfaithful, yet he abideth faithful: he cannot deny himself.

[blocks in formation]

may be a succession of able, pious, faithful preachers in the church. On this principle christians and ministers have ever acted.

4. That he pleuse, &c. He that chooses him, does not require him to be occupied with business, foreign to his profession; but as a soldier to be at his post and ready to repel the enemy.

5. Contend lawfully. Or, "according to the laws;" and can a minister of Christ expect to please him and receive the crown, unless he faithfully discharge the duties of his office.

6,7. First labour, &c. He must sow, and afterwards reap. Consider these things, &c.

8-10. Remember Jesus, &c. Remember thy Lord and his sufferings, and this will tend to support thee under all hardships as it does me, who am treated as an evil-doer, or malefactor, (see Luke xxiii. 32, 33, 39,) and now in bonds; but the word of God is not bound, but does and will spread. And what I suffer is to promote, as an instrument, the salvation of God's chosen people. 11-13. This is a faithful, &c. I consider what follows as meant. For if we die, &c. As martyrs for his gospel and his name, we shall live also, &c.—Deny him, &c. When brought before kings and councils he will deny us hereafter. Matt. x. 33.-Cannot deny himself. By acting contrary to his own public and solemn declarations.

[blocks in formation]


as doth a gangrene of whom are Hymeneus and Philetus; Who have erred concerning 18 the truth, saying that the resurrection is past already; and overthrow the faith of some. Nevertheless the foundation of God standeth 19 firm, having this inscription, "The Lord knoweth those that are his." And, "Let every one that nameth the name of the Lord" depart from iniquity." Lord" depart from iniquity." But in a great 20 house there are not only vessels of gold and of silver, but also of wood and of earth; and some to honour, and some to dishonour. If a man therefore cleanse himself from these 21 things, he will be a vessel to honour, sanctified, and fit for the master's use, and prepared unto every good work. Flee also youthful desires; 22 but follow righteousness, faith, love, peace, together with those who call on the Lord out of a pure heart. But foolish and unprofitable 23 questions avoid, knowing that they beget contentions. tentions. And the servant of the Lord must 24 not contend; but must be gentle to all men, apt to teach, patiently bearing evil, With 25 meekness instructing those that oppose themselves; if, by any means, God may give them

19. Griesb. Others, Christ.

16-18. Vain babblings. About things of no moment, such as many, called teachers, do; for they will tend to increase, and not to check, ungodliness.The resurrection, &c. Hymeneus is noticed, 1 Tim. i. 20. Philetus is not elsewhere mentioned. They most probably held that there was only to be a spiritual resurrection; and that as to believers this was already past; and by this they had overthrown the faith of some, in respect to the resurrection of the body.

19. Foundation of God. The promise and hope of a future life and resurrection, standeth firm, as secured by the mediation of Christ; having this inscription, as it were, engraved on it, as on a seal, "The Lord knoweth those that are his," (see Numb. xvi, 6,) his faithful servants, and will honour them. Again on this foundation is inscribed, "Let every one that nameth the name, &c." that professeth his name, and acknowledges him as his Lord, &c.

20. In a great house. There are vessels made of the richest materials, and some of the meanest; so in the visible church are men truly excellent, for their faith, knowledge, piety, zeal, &c. and others worthless, on account of their errors, self-will, and even vices.

21. From these things. From these errors, vain babblings, and hold the pure doctrines of the gospel, he will be a vessel of honour, like those of gold or silver, &c.

22-26. Youthful desires. Not only those of a sensual kind, but ambi

14. Put men in, &c. Every where inculcate these things, and charge tion, love of power, confidence in themselves and in their talents, &c. and folpreachers not to contend about words, &c. See 1 Tim. vi. 4.

[blocks in formation]

low rather righteousness, faith, &c.—Unprofitable, &c. Questions which convey no profit or instruction to others.— The servant of the Lord, &c. Of him, who was so meek, so kind, so full of love, and who has set us such a fine example; but must, like him, be gentle to all, &c.- -Recover themselves. Regain as it were their senses and reason, and so escape from the snare, &c. To do the will of God. Greek, -" unto the will," See Bowyer's Conj. 393

[ocr errors]
[ocr errors]

Men will become corrupt,


[merged small][merged small][merged small][ocr errors][ocr errors][merged small]

REFLECTIONS UPON CHAPTER II. 1. How necessary is it to be strong in the grace of Christ, in order to discharge either the duties of our christian calling or of the ministry. His grace only affords adequate strength; and for this we should look, and in this confide. We have engaged in a holy warfare, with sin, the world, and our own depravity; and let us endure the hardships which may befall us with manly fortitude, as good soldiers of Christ. Called to the high privilege of serving under the banner of the great captain of salvation, let it be our concern to 'please him. And especially let ministers of the word, carefully avoid entangling themselves with worldly business, lest they should become negligent in their work; but let them imitate the husbandman, labouring with perseverance, and then may they hope to be partakers of the fruit. Let us meditate on these things; and may the Lord grant us an understanding to comprehend them, and a heart to practice them.


yet call themselves christians.

sures more than lovers of God; Having a 5 form of godliness, but denying its power: from such turn away. For of such are those 6 that enter into houses, and lead captive weak women laden with sins, led away by many. evil desires, Ever learning, and never able 7 to come to the knowledge of the truth. Now 8 as Jannes and Jambres withstood Moses, so do these also resist the truth: men of corrupt minds, reprobate concerning the faith. But 9 they shall not proceed far: for their folly, shall be manifest unto all men, as that of the others also was.

But thou hast fully known my doctrine, 10 manner of life, purpose,, faith, long-suffering, love, patience, Persecutions, sufferings; what 11 things befel me at Antioch, at Iconium, at

Even the bonds and sufferings of believers tended to make it known; and it will at length obtain a glorious triumph. Let us ever remember the faithful saying, "that if we suffer with Christ and for his sake, and for the sake of his cause and people, we shall reign also with him." Our sufferings indeed will be of short duration; but our reign will be for ever. Let us abide faithful to him, as he does to his own promise. 3. From the precepts given to Timothy, we learn what every minister of the gospel should aim to be, and in what manner he should both teach and conduct himself. How unprofitable is contention about words! Such contentions are only profane and vain babblings, and injure the cause of truth, and promote ungodliness. Let every man of God, follow righteousness, faith, love, peace; and if called to converse with men who are opposed to the truth, let him be gentle, with meekness instructing those who oppose themselves, if by any means God may give them repentance. Let him study to be a workman 2. "Remember Jesus Christ," &c. Alas, that there should be that needeth not to be ashamed, rightly dividing the word of truth. any need for such a precept! But what believer is there, who re- Let both ministers and people daily reflect on the double inscription. members him with the constancy, affection, and gratitude that he recorded. If we are truly devoted to him, the Lord knows and loves ought? Who remembers his condescension, in becoming the seed us, and will protect and save us; but if we are his enemies and working · of David, his love in dying on the cross, and his power, in rising unrighteousness, he will hereafter say, "I know not whence ye are.” from the dead. These are the great facts of the gospel, and for pub-"Let every one that nameth the name of the Lord, depart from lishing which Paul was in bonds; but the word of God was not bound. iniquity;" for this only will prove the reality of his faith and love.

I consider e as referring to feos, God, and not to the enemy; and so Hammond, Whitby, and others, construe and explain the words.

CHAP. III. In these last days. Under the gospeldispensation, which already experiences some obstructions, but still greater will arise.

2--5. For men will be, &c. Selfish, avaricious, boasting of their talents or their privileges, and proud on these accounts; evil-speakers against the truth, and disobedient even to their owu parents; unthankful even to God and to man, and unholy or prophane; given up to the evil desires of the flesh and the mind; yet having a form of godliness, outwardly professing it, while practically denying its power. From any of these turn away; renounce all christian fellowship with them.

6-9. Weak women, &c. Women of little knowledge, and of less virtue, who are led away by many evil desires, and who, though ever hearing the

gospel, yet never attain the knowledge, &c.As Jannes and Jambres, &c. These were the names of Pharaoh's chief magicians, handed down by tradition, though not mentioned by Moses. See Chaldee Para. Exod. vii. 11. As these resisted Moses, so do those teachers who insinuate themselves into families, resist and pervert the truth. This conduct applies to corrupt deceivers of every age; and especially to all the arts of monks, friars, &c.— Not proceed far. A time will come, when their folly and sin will be made manifest, as those of the magicians were.

10-13. Manner of life, persecutions, &c. Acts xiii. 50.; xiv. 2—6.; xxi. 20.In Christ Jesus. As believers in him, and whose desire is to obey his will, must suffer persecution of one kind or other; and evil men, persecu tors, and seducers, will grow worse, &c.

14, 15. Continue thou, &c. Retain the instructions given thee, remem

« PreviousContinue »