1 Timothy 1God our Savior. The title of Savior is more usually given to Jesus Christ, though God the Father is in several instances so designated. (Luke 1:47, 1 Tim. 4:10, Tit. 2:10, Jude 25.)
Charge some, &c. The false teachers condemned in this passage (3-7) were evidently those who insisted strenuously upon the obligations of the Jewish law. This class of men seem to have been a very general source of difficulty in the churches; their attempts to encumber Christianity with the burden of Mosaic rites, often occasioned the apostle great solicitude, and are the subject of severe rebuke in many of his Epistles.
Fables and endless genealogies; idle and puerile superstitions, originating either in the traditions of the Jews, or in pagan philosophy.—Minister questions; promote disputes and contention.—Which is in faith; which simple faith can produce.
The end of the commandment; the whole design and object of it.—Charity out of, &c.; kindness and good-will to man springing from, &c.
From which; that is, from the promotion of kindness and good-will between man and man, mentioned above as the end and aim of the divine commands.—Vain jangling; useless and irritating disputes.
Desiring to be; pretending to be,—desiring to be so esteemed.
The meaning seems to be, that the Mosaic law, with its onerous rites and threatened penalties, is not now to be pressed upon those who have abandoned their sins, and are looking for salvation through faith in Jesus Christ. Its hard conditions may be urged upon those who still continue in sin, and of course reject every other ground of salvation; but they must not be brought in to burden and oppress those who have turned from the law to the gospel.
According to, &c.; referring to the doctrine mentioned at the close of the preceding verse. The meaning is, contrary to the requirements enjoined by the gospel, &c.
Faithful; worthy of being intrusted.
Compare Gal. 1:13, and Acts 8:3.—I did it ignorantly, &c. It was not done with open and designed hostility against God as God, and therefore did not come under the condemnation denounced by the Savior against the sin not to be forgiven. See Matt. 12:31, 32, Mark 3:28-30, and notes.
I am chief. This is evidently not to be understood in a literal sense. He means thus to acknowledge the greatness of his guilt, which otherwise his expressions in v. 13 might perhaps have been supposed to deny.
For a pattern to them; for an example to them,—that is, an example of the long-suffering of Christ, that future sinners might not be discouraged from coming to him.
The prophecies which went before on thee. This expression seems to refer to certain divine indications by which the future fidelity and success of Timothy's ministry were made known to the church.
Holding; holding fast.—Concerning faith have made shipwreck; that is, have made shipwreck of their faith.
Hymeneus and Alexander. The same individuals, apparently, are mentioned in 2 Tim. 2:17, 18, and 4:14. An Alexander of Ephesus is spoken of as taking an active part in the disturbances produced by Demetrius; although whether his action in that case was intended to be friendly or hostile to Paul, seems to be uncertain.—Delivered unto Satan; to the kingdom of Satan; that is, he had excommunicated them from the kingdom of Christ.
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