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Category Archives: 1 Timothy

1 Timothy 1:18-2:4

Timothy, my son, here are my instructions for you, based on the prophetic words spoken about you earlier. May they help you fight well in the Lord’s battles. Cling to your faith in Christ, and keep your conscience clear. For some people have deliberately violated their consciences; as a result, their faith has been shipwrecked. Hymenaeus and Alexander are two examples. I threw them out and handed them over to Satan so they might learn not to blaspheme God. I urge you, first of all, to pray for all people. Ask God to help them; intercede on their behalf, and give thanks for them. Pray this way for kings and all who are in authority so that we can live peaceful and quiet lives marked by godliness and dignity. This is good and pleases God our Savior, who wants everyone to be saved and to understand the truth.
1 Timothy 1:18-2:4

Dear God, the passage today for Bible Gateway was verses 1 and 2, where Paul urges Timothy to pray for all people and leaders. But it’s another instance where we’ve been given false barriers between scriptures for the sake of chapter separations and section headings. They meant well, but they can really change the meaning of a piece.

This one is a good example. Paul wrote these words as one. He connected clinging to faith and being careful about people who blaspheme you with praying for others. He is encouraging Timothy to “fight well in the Lord’s battles.” Do this by:

  • Clinging to your faith
  • Keeping you conscience clear
  • Praying for all people
  • Giving thanks for people
  • Praying for “kings” and those in authority
  • Praying for peaceful and quiet lives (although I have to wonder if sometimes you don’t give us this so we will not be lulled into slumber)

I was speaking Friday morning with a friend and he told me that he has trouble praying for our current president and his administration because he vehemently disagrees with his policies. Now, full disclosure, I don’t pray for any of our leaders very well or often, regardless of whether or not I agree with them, but in this case he intimated that he prayed for the previous president and his administration. I asked him why it was harder for this administration. If anything, I would have thought the parts of this administration that bother him would make praying for them easier.

So what about me? What am I to do about praying for our leaders? Whether they be local community leaders, the members of my board of directors at work (for whom I almost never pray), and then state, federal and worldwide leaders. Also leaders within our church. Even this morning our church asked that we pray for our two main priests as they go to a conference this week. After having read this passage before church, I took note of it and thought that I do need to pray for them regarding this trip and conference. I need to honor that request.

Father, the truth is, I’m terrible about intercessory prayer. It is just not a priority for me and it’s something I do not make a priority. I make times like this a priority, but I do not make other times and types of prayer a priority. Guide me in that. Help me to be better and please help me to also cling strongly to my faith and keep my conscience clear.

In Jesus’s name I pray

Amen

 
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Posted by on November 7, 2021 in 1 Timothy

 

1 Timothy 2:5-6

For, There is one God and one Mediator who can reconcile God and humanity—the man Christ Jesus. He gave his life to purchase freedom for everyone. This is the message God gave to the world at just the right time.

1 Timothy 2:5-6

Dear God, I’m not sure if this goes with this passage or not, but I heard a sermon yesterday that left a couple of things resonating with me.

The first: There is a difference between being a believer in Jesus and a follower of Jesus. There are plenty of Americans who “believe” in Jesus but are not true “followers.” Unfortunately, they do not see the difference. It’s another way of putting the phrase that occurred to me several years ago: Some people have Christianity as their philosophy, but they aren’t following God. When I think about this, I think about the people who identify as Christians and yet stormed the capitol building on January 6. Those people were working through a process of self-righteous anger, but they were not following anything Jesus ever taught.

The second: Temptation will lead us in two areas–gratification and protection. Those two areas are terrible leaders and will cause us to do bad things.

I guess there was a third thing he said that caught my ear. If you have a God that will put up with you just deciding you can sin because he will forgive you later, then you have a weak God who can be hoodwinked and fooled. I’m adding this part to what he said, but when I repent later, I also need to repent and turn from that attitude as well.

So going back to this verse, I am so grateful for Jesus, my mediator. I am grateful for the love you give me, a foolish, foolish man. I am grateful for your forgiveness even when I treat you like you are a fool. I’m sorry when I follow the terrible leaders of gratification and protection. I’m sorry for sometimes acting like a believer and not a follower. I’m sorry, Father. I’m truly sorry.

In Jesus’s name I pray,

Amen

 
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Posted by on March 29, 2021 in 1 Timothy

 

1 Timothy 2:1-2

I urge you, first of all, to pray for all people. Ask God to help them; intercede on their behalf, and give thanks for them. Pray this way for kings and all who are in authority so that we can live peaceful and quiet lives marked by godliness and dignity.

1 Timothy 2:1-2

Dear God, yes, maybe this morning I should just spend some time praying for our leaders and our country. So for what should I pray?

  • Your glory to reign in the hearts of our leaders
  • The pain that is happening right now will be redeemed and fulfill your purposes. That it won’t be wasted. You will. Make it count.
  • Integrity in the process.
  • For the safety of election workers and all political officials involved in the count.
  • Wisdom for the decision makers.
  • That those who are charged with watching out for our safety 24/7 (FBI, CIA, military, law enforcement, etc.) will be given insight, wisdom, and discernment to continue to do their jobs well.
  • That you will give those making decisions about pandemic response the strength and wisdom to lead us as a nation, and that you will spare as many lives and as much pain as possible.
  • That you will give the winners of the elections the wisdom to lead our nation under your guidance, and those who did not win the grace to step aside and be a constructive influence on the future.
  • That our bottom as a nation will not have to go any lower in terms of division and hatred before we start to rebound.
  • That your church will know its role in the country. Where we should and should not be involved in politics. How we should respond to COVID-19. What new roots we should be developing sine our old paradigms have been shattered.
  • That those in need will have their needs met. From housing, to hunger, to medical care, to safety from violence, please raise up your church to meet these needs.

Father, these are just some of the things I can pray. I could sit here all day. Holy Spirit, move in our land. Take the Father’s presence into every office, every home, every business, every government agency. Bring repentance first to the church and then to the nation. And that starts with me. I’m sorry for the hate in my heart. I’m sorry for how I’ve judged people. I’m sorry for my hubris. I’m sorry I not been as grateful to you as I should be. I’m sorry I haven’t given you the glory you deserve. I love you, and I am sorry.

In Jesus’s name I pray,

Amen

 
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Posted by on November 7, 2020 in 1 Timothy

 

1 Timothy 2:1-4

I urge you, first of all, to pray for all people. Ask God to help them; intercede on their behalf, and give thanks for them. Pray this way for kings and all who are in authority so that we can live peaceful and quiet lives marked by godliness and dignity. This is good and pleases God our Savior, who wants everyone to be saved and to understand the truth.
1 Timothy 2:1-4

Dear God, I prayed just the other day about Christians complaining about perceived persecution. And maybe I don’t appreciate what might be happening it other parts of our country that I don’t see, but it feels like we 1.) don’t know what real persecution is and 2.) don’t follow the example of our persecuted biblical ancestors when we experience it. They considered it all joy. We whine and complain.

I think the same can be true for our leaders. I’ve never prayed for our leaders as much as I should. I’ve grumbled about them plenty. I’ve insulted them to others. I think we all have, on either side of the aisle, Christian and non-Christian. I’ve judged. I’ve even hated. I’m so sorry.

Father, I commit to you right now to pray for leaders across the spectrum. From my local ones to the national and international ones. I pray for those who conduct the actual business under them. My prayer is Proverbs 21:1 for everyone from our local city council to the president.

The king’s heart is like a stream of water directed by the Lord; he guides it wherever he pleases.
Proverbs 21:1

Whether they know they are being led or not, let your kingdom come and your will be done on earth as it is in heaven. And show me my role in your plan.

In Jesus’s name I pray,

Amen

 
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Posted by on November 7, 2019 in 1 Timothy, Proverbs

 

1 Timothy 2:1-6

I urge you, first of all, to pray for all people. Ask God to help them; intercede on their behalf, and give thanks for them. Pray this way for kings and all who are in authority so that we can live peaceful and quiet lives marked by godliness and dignity. This is good and pleases God our Savior, who wants everyone to be saved and to understand the truth. For, There is one God and one Mediator who can reconcile God and humanity—the man Christ Jesus. He gave his life to purchase freedom for everyone. This is the message God gave to the world at just the right time.

1 Timothy 2:1-6

Dear God, I wish I really understood you. I have nearly 50 years of things that people have taught me, Bible verses that sometimes contradict each other, and then the whispering sin my own heart that I use to try to mold a picture of you, but there are too many potential problems in all of that. I can receive bad teaching and not know it. I can misinterpret what Scripture is telling me. And you know how wrong I can be. And yet, this seems to be part of your plan for all of us working out our faith with you. You’ve left it intentionally vague.

Rich Mullins once said in an interview, “I don’t read the Bible to know truth. I read it to know God.” I blanched when I first heard that, but then it started to make sense. I THINK you are probably too big and complicated for me to understand, even if you explained yourself as clearly as you could. So your solution is to give us an idea of who you are and then allow us to continue to seek after you and, when we are ready, to reveal a little more to us.

Father, my fear in all of this is that I will go off the theological deep end and start to allow too much of my own sinful, imperfect mind to form my theology. So, please, Holy Spirit, guide me and direct me in the way I should go. Help me to recognize when it is you talking and when I am being deceived by Satan. Be glorified in my life.

In Jesus’ name I pray,

Amen

 
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Posted by on March 28, 2018 in 1 Timothy

 

2 Timothy 1:6

This is why I remind you to fan into flames the spiritual gift God gave you when I laid my hands on you.

2 Timothy 1:6

Dear God, what is it that I bring to the table in terms of your Kingdom coming and your will being done on Earth as it is in Heaven? Am I missing opportunities that pass by me each day? Well, of course I am. But still, what is it i should be doing that you have given me to do?

I think one of my problems tends to be that I have some great thoughts (at least I think they are great) about how to address some of the ills of our community (e.g. early childhood development, domestic violence, teen pregnancy, substance abuse, etc.), but I get so overwhelmed by the work I have to do in front of me that I keep allowing days of inaction to go by. I have a hard time discipline myself to really engage in one or two of these problems in a timely way. In the meantime, days of people suffering keep slipping by.

Father, show me what you would have me to do today. Not tomorrow. Not next week. Today. When something comes up, please whisper in my ear and don’t let me miss an opportunity that is of you because I only have so many days to be contribute to your Kingdom while I’m here on Earth. I don’t want to miss any of them.

In Jesus’ name I pray,

Amen

 
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Posted by on February 28, 2018 in 1 Timothy