Read 1 Timothy 1
Truth. All Christians need to take this seriously (I Tim. 1:8-10). There is One God and One Mediator between God and men, the Man Christ Jesus (2:5). We are the Church of the Living God (3:15). You can't go wrong when you keep this Commandment without spot (6:14).
The Roman emperor Nero was ruthlessly persecuting Christians and condemning many of them to death. Yet, Paul emphasized the importance of Christians praying for those who are in authority. He wrote: I exhort therefore, that, first of all, supplications, prayers, intercessions, and giving of thanks, be made for all men; For kings, and for all that are in authority; that we may lead a quiet and peaceable life in all godliness and honesty (I Tim. 2:1-2). The Bible reminds us that: The king's heart is in the hand of the Lord, as the rivers of water: He turneth it withersoever He will (Prov. 21:1). Only eternity will reveal what impact our prayers will have.
Christians should faithfully witness to the truth as revealed by Christ in His Word, even when speaking the truth could mean imprisonment or death. While many shall turn away their ears from the Truth, we must remain faithful in all things, endure afflictions (II Tim. 4:4-5; see also Matt. 10:28). The number of those suffering affliction (James 5:10) and being martyred for their faith in Christ continues to grow in many countries.
The Apostle Peter emphasized the responsibility of Christians being law-abiding citizens, writing: Submit yourselves to every ordinance of man for the Lord's sake: whether it be to the king, as supreme; Or unto governors, as unto them that are sent by him for the punishment of evildoers, and for the praise of them that do well (I Pet. 2:13-14).
Luke recorded the one exception because it reveals our highest authority. Peter was willing to defend his faith in Christ when he was confronted by the religious Jewish Sanhedrin who warned him that he should not teach in this Name and, behold, ye have filled Jerusalem with your doctrine, and intend to bring this Man's blood upon us. Then Peter and the other apostles answered and said, We ought to obey God rather than men (Acts 5:28-29).
We ourselves also were sometimes foolish, disobedient, deceived, serving divers lusts (enslaved to various self-centered desires) . . . living in malice and envy, hateful, and hating one another (Titus 3:3,5).
Thought for Today:
He that saith he abideth in Him ought himself also so to walk, even as He walked (I John 2:6).
For I Tim. 5:18: See Deut. 25:4.
1:5 unfeigned genuine; without hypocrisy; 1:10 menstealers kidnappers, people who enslave (control) others for their own evil purposes; 2:9 shamefacedness modest behavior, reverence; 2:12 usurp authority comineer; 3:2 husband of one wife married only once until parted by death; vigilant disciplined, self-controlled: 3:8 greedy of filthy lucre craving wealth; 3:13 purchase to themselves a good degree fain a good reputation; 5:11 wax wanton against Christ follow their passions to draw them away from Christ; 6:4 questions and strifes of words controversial, contentious speculations, attacking the authority and reliability of Scripture.
Pray for International Broadcasts sponsored by Mrs. Ann M. Kelley • Government Officials: Rep. Mary Fallin (OK), Sen. Kirsten Gillibrand (NY), Rep. Pete Olson (TX), and Rep. Ciro Rodrigues (TX) • Country: Luxembourg (429,000) in western Europe • Major languages: Luxembourgish and German • Religious freedom • 84% Roman Catholic; 2% Protestant; .1% Eastern Orthodox • Prayer Suggestion: Seek the Lord in prayer, turn from your sinful ways, and God will have mercy and pardon for you (Is. 55:6-7).
Memory Verse for the Week: 2 Chronicles 7:14