1 Timothy 6* The duty of Christians towards believing, as well as othermasters. (1-5) The advantage of godliness with contentment.(6-10) A solemn charge to Timothy to be faithful. (11-16) Theapostle repeats his warning to the rich, and closes with ablessing. (17-21)1-5 Christians were not to suppose that religious knowledge, orChristian privileges, gave them any right to despise heathenmasters, or to disobey lawful commands, or to expose theirfaults to others. And such as enjoyed the privilege of livingwith believing masters, were not to withhold due respect andreverence, because they were equal in respect to religiousprivileges, but were to serve with double diligence andcheerfulness, because of their faith in Christ, and as partakersof his free salvation. We are not to consent to any words aswholesome, except the words of our Lord Jesus Christ; to thesewe must give unfeigned consent. Commonly those are most proudwho know least; for they do not know themselves. Hence comeenvy, strife, railings, evil-surmisings, disputes that are allsubtlety, and of no solidity, between men of corrupt and carnalminds, ignorant of the truth and its sanctifying power, andseeking their worldly advantage. 6-10 Those that make a trade of Christianity to serve theirturn for this world, will be disappointed; but those who mind itas their calling, will find it has the promise of the life thatnow is, as well as of that which is to come. He that is godly,is sure to be happy in another world; and if contented with hiscondition in this world, he has enough; and all truly godlypeople are content. When brought into the greatest straits, wecannot be poorer than when we came into this world; a shroud, acoffin, and a grave, are all that the richest man in the worldcan have from all his wealth. If nature should be content with alittle, grace should be content with less. The necessaries oflife bound a true Christian's desires, and with these he willendeavour to be content. We see here the evil of covetousness.It is not said, they that are rich, but they will be rich; whoplace their happiness in wealth, and are eager and determined inthe pursuit. Those that are such, give to Satan the opportunityof tempting them, leading them to use dishonest means, and otherbad practices, to add to their gains. Also, leading into so manyemployments, and such a hurry of business, as leave no time orinclination for spiritual religion; leading to connexions thatdraw into sin and folly. What sins will not men be drawn into bythe love of money! People may have money, and yet not love it;but if they love it, this will push them on to all evil. Everysort of wickedness and vice, in one way or another, grows fromthe love of money. We cannot look around without perceiving manyproofs of this, especially in a day of outward prosperity, greatexpenses, and loose profession. 11-16 It ill becomes any men, but especially men of God, to settheir hearts upon the things of this world; men of God should betaken up with the things of God. There must be a conflict withcorruption, and temptations, and the powers of darkness. Eternallife is the crown proposed for our encouragement. We are calledto lay hold thereon. To the rich must especially be pointed outtheir dangers and duties, as to the proper use of wealth. Butwho can give such a charge, that is not himself above the loveof things that wealth can buy? The appearing of Christ iscertain, but it is not for us to know the time. Mortal eyescannot bear the brightness of the Divine glory. None canapproach him except as he is made known unto sinners in and byChrist. The Godhead is here adored without distinction ofPersons, as all these things are properly spoken, whether of theFather, the Son, or the Holy Ghost. God is revealed to us, onlyin and through the human nature of Christ, as the only begottenSon of the Father. 17-21 Being rich in this world is wholly different from beingrich towards God. Nothing is more uncertain than worldly wealth.Those who are rich, must see that God gives them their riches;and he only can give to enjoy them richly; for many have riches,but enjoy them poorly, not having a heart to use them. What isthe best estate worth, more than as it gives opportunity ofdoing the more good? Showing faith in Christ by fruits of love,let us lay hold on eternal life, when the self-indulgent,covetous, and ungodly around, lift up their eyes in torment.That learning which opposes the truth of the gospel, is not truescience, or real knowledge, or it would approve the gospel, andconsent to it. Those who advance reason above faith, are indanger of leaving faith. Grace includes all that is good, andgrace is an earnest, a beginning of glory; wherever God givesgrace, he will give glory.
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