- LESSON 41 1 & 2 Timothy
- Titus "I Have Finished
Learn and teach true doctrine.
Be...an example of the believers.
Follow after righteousness and deny
A study of this lesson should encourage
us to learn and teach true doctrine and be righteous examples for others.
Paul's release from prison in Rome.
Luke, in the book of Acts, says nothing
about Paul's release from prison.
Tradition and other indicators point
to the idea that Paul was acquitted after he had been imprisoned for two
Probably released about A.D. 63.
Paul resumed his missionary travels.
a) It is believed that he went to Spain.
Clement of Rome, reported in A.D. 96,
that Paul "reached the limit of the West."
There are additional sources that report
his travel there.
Much of his travel after his release
is left to speculation.
It is presumed that he traveled to Ephesus,
where he left Timothy to minister to the Church.
In Crete he left Titus with a similar
As he continued his travels, he wrote
the letters to Timothy and Titus to strengthen them and to counsel them
in their responsibilities as pastors or shepherds over the Saints.
Because of this, these letters are often
called the pastoral epistles.
Who Was Timothy?
He became the companion, confidant,
missionary associate of Paul.
At the time he received this first epistle,
it appears that he must have held some major position of church supervision
and administration. Paul instructs him in the calling of bishops
and other church officers. He may have been the equivalent of a stake
president or even a member of the Council of the Twelve.
Who was Titus?
Titus must have been a companion to
Paul when he visited the island of Crete.
Titus was left on Crete to set order
in the Church.
Warnings against apostasy and false
READ 1 TIMOTHY
1:3-4. Teach no other doctrine.
Most of Paul's letters include warnings
about apostasy and false doctrines.
WHY WAS HE SO CONCERNED ABOUT THIS?
He knew the time would come when there
would be those that teach the doctrines of men.
READ 1 TIMOTHY
4:1-4. In the latter times some shall depart from the faith.
2 TIMOTHY 3:13: "But
evil men and seducers shall wax worse and worse, deceiving, and being deceived."
READ 2 TIMOTHY
4:3-4: The time will come when they will not endure sound doctrine.
WHAT SHOULD WE TEACH?
READ D&C 88:77-80.
Teach one another the doctrine of the kingdom.
Bruce R. McConkie: "Teachers
in the Church represent the Lord in their teaching. The Church is the Lord's;
the doctrine is the Lord's. Teachers speak at the invitation of the Lord
and are appointed to say what he wants said, nothing more and nothing less.
There is no freedom to teach or speculate contrary to the revealed will.
Those who desire to express views contrary to gospel truth are at liberty
to find other forums or to organize churches of their own. But in God's
Church, the only approved doctrine is God's doctrine." (DNTC
Consider these thought from the talk
given by Elder
Dallin H. Oaks at the most recent (October 1999) General Conference:
teacher of the gospel will teach from the prescribed course material, with
greatest emphasis on teaching the doctrine and principles and covenants
of the gospel of Jesus Christ. This is commanded in modern revelation,
where the Lord said:
"'Teachers of this church shall teach the principles of my gospel, which
are in the Bible and the Book of Mormon, in the which is the fulness of
"'And they shall observe the covenants and church articles to do them,
and these shall be their teachings, as they shall be directed by the Spirit'
are commanded to teach 'the principles of [the] gospel' and 'the doctrine
of the kingdom' (D&C 88:77) should generally forgo teaching specific
rules or applications. For example, they would not teach any rules for
determining what is a full tithing, and they would not provide a list of
dos and don'ts for keeping the Sabbath Day holy. Once a teacher has taught
the doctrine and the associated principles from the scriptures and the
living prophets, such specific applications or rules are generally the
responsibility of individuals and families.
"Well-taught doctrines and principles have a more powerful influence
on behavior than rules. When we teach gospel doctrine and principles, we
can qualify for the witness and guidance of the Spirit to reinforce our
teaching, and we enlist the faith of our students in seeking the guidance
of that same Spirit in applying those teachings in their personal lives."
"As I have
visited in quorums and Relief Societies, I have generally been pleased
and impressed at how these Teachings of Presidents of the Church are being
presented and received. However, I have sometimes observed teachers who
gave the designated chapter no more than a casual mention and then presented
a lesson and invited discussion on other materials of the teacher's choice.
That is not acceptable. A gospel teacher is not called to choose the subject
of the lesson but to teach and discuss what has been specified. Gospel
teachers should also be scrupulous to avoid hobby topics, personal speculations,
and controversial subjects. The Lord's revelations and the directions of
His servants are clear on this point. We should all be mindful of President
Spencer W. Kimball's great instruction that a gospel teacher is a 'guest':
"'He has been given an authoritative position and a stamp of approval
is placed upon him, and those whom he teaches are justified in assuming
that, having been chosen and sustained in the proper order, he represents
the Church and the things which he teaches are approved by the Church.
No matter how brilliant he may be and how many new truths he may think
he has found, he has no right to go beyond the program of the Church'."
HOW CAN WE BE SURE WE TEACH THE
D&C 52:9: "And
let them journey from thence preaching the word by the way, saying none
other things than that which the prophets and apostles have written, and
that which is taught them by the Comforter through the prayer of faith."
WHAT DID PAUL
MEAN WHEN HE REFERRED TO ENDLESS GENEALOGIES?
Smith: "The Jews had scrupulously preserved
their genealogical tables, till the advent of Christ; and the evangelists
had recourse to them, and appealed to them in reference to our Lord's descent
from the house of David: Matthew taking this genealogy of the descending,
Luke of the ascending line. And whatever difficulties we may now find in
these genealogies, they were certainly clear to the Jews; nor did the most
determined enemies of the gospel attempt to raise one objection to it from
the appeal which the evangelists had made to their own public and accredited
tables. All was then certain; but we are told that Herod destroyed the
public registers: he, being an Idumean, was jealous of the noble origin
of the Jews: and that none might be able to reproach him with his descent,
he ordered the genealogical tables, which were kept among the archives
in the temple, to be burned.... From this time the Jews could refer to
their genealogies only from memory, or from those imperfect tables which
had been preserved in private hands; and to make out any regular line from
these, must have been endless and uncertain. It is probably to this the
apostle refers; I mean the endless and useless labor which the attempt
to make out these genealogies, must produce; the authentic tables being
"So we may well conclude that Paul's denunciation was towards doubtful
and untruthful genealogies which had been tampered with for improper purposes."
(Answers To Gospel Questions, 1:214-215)
Paul may also
have had reference to the Jewish tendency to take great pride in their
ancestry and in their belief that genealogical descent was a proof of God's
1 TIMOTHY 2:1-4. Prayers be made for all men.
WHY IS IT IMPORTANT
FOR US TO HEED PAUL'S COUNSEL TO PRAY FOR ALL PEOPLE?
See v3-4: It is
good in the sight of the Savior. He desires to have all men come
to him and be saved.
If we are to become
like God, we must develop a love for all men and wish for all to be partakers
of eternal salvation.
WHAT BE MIGHT
SOME CHALLENGES TO DOING THIS MEANINGFULLY?
HOW CAN WE OVERCOME
Paul says that
we should pray for kings and all that are in authority.
WHY SHOULD WE
PRAY PARTICULARLY FOR THE LEADERS OF NATIONS?
See v2: That we
may lead a quiet and peaceable life.
That the doors
of missionary work may be opened.
So that men can
fulfill their religious duties without interference.
founder of the Methodist Church in America, once stated: "If
the church is ever going to get done in the world what God wanted it to
get done, there has to be a wall of separation between church and state
and that will keep the government out of the church, but allow Christian
principles to remain in the government."
encroach on the liberties of men. Williams knew this, and knew that
in order for the will of God to be accomplished in the world, that the
power of governments would need to be checked. The founding fathers
believed this and thus the First Amendment contained the provision protecting
religious freedom and its exercise. There are those today who are
using government to encroach on this protection and thus the continuing
need to pray for those who lead our nation.
2:5: "For there is one God, and one mediator
between God and men, the man Christ Jesus".
IN WHAT WAYS IS
JESUS THE MEDIATOR BETWEEN US AND THE FATHER?
John 14:6: "Jesus
saith unto him, I am the way, the truth, and the life: no man cometh unto
the Father, but by me."
We cannot achieve
eternal life with Heavenly Father without the intervention of Jesus Christ
on our behalf.
"And for this cause he is the mediator
of the new testament, that by means of death, for the redemption of the
transgressions that were under the first testament, they which are called
might receive the promise of eternal inheritance."
WHAT IS A MEDIATOR?
One who brings
two sides of an issue together in hopes of find resolution.
As an elected
union official for the past 18 months, I have spent a lot of time
in labor/management relations. In my position, I often have the opportunity
to be a mediator between an employee and management. In order to
avoid the filing of grievances, and the costly process of arbitration,
I try to work with the two disputing parties to resolve their differences.
I recall a situation where the employee was frustrated because she had
not received promotion to the next level in the career level. The
employee blamed the employer for being unfair and cheating her out of the
promotion. In contrast, the employer maintained that the employee
was not performing in all areas up to the standard required for the position.
The two sides were at an impasse. As a mediator, I brought both sides
together to discuss the situation. A three month performance plan
was mapped out, to which both sides agreed. If the employee adhered
to the plan, the employer agreed to make the promotion. The plan
was executed and the employee received the promotion at the end of three
Christ is our
mediator with the Father. In a sense, we are like the disgruntled
employee. Our performance level is such, that we are unable to achieve
the lofty goal of eternal life with Heavenly Father. We cannot overcome
the penalty of sin on our own. We need a mediator to step in and
help us. Jesus Christ is the mediator. He overcame physical
death and through the atonement bridged the gap between us and eternal
life with the Father. He stepped in, provided what we could not provide,
and has now put us on a performance plan. Like the frustrated employee,
if we follow through on the performance plan (keeping the commandments
and living the gospel of Jesus Christ) we will receive the eternal promotion.
1 TIMOTHY 2:8-10. Adorn in modest apparel.
HOW DOES PAUL'S
COUNSEL ABOUT MODEST DRESS AND BEHAVIOR COMPARE WITH THE COUNSEL OF MODERN
DAY CHURCH LEADERS?
Smith: "The standards expressed by the
General Authorities of the Church are that women, as well as men, should
dress modestly. They are taught proper deportment and modesty at all times.
It is, in my judgment, a sad reflection on the 'daughters of Zion' when
they dress immodestly. Moreover, this remark pertains to the men as well
as to the women. The Lord gave commandments to ancient Israel that both
men and women should cover their bodies and observe the law of chastity
at all times."
- For The Strength of Youth, page 8.
WHY HAVE OUR LEADERS
PUT SUCH AN EMPHASIS ON THIS COUNSEL?
WHY DO YOU THINK
PAUL WARNED US AGAINST WEARING COSTLY APPAREL?
Bruce R. McConkie:
"Worldly styles and fashions in women's
dress, whatever they may happen to be at any moment, being of the world,
which those who join the Church are commanded to forsake, are improper
and to be avoided. Almost always the apparel so involved is excessively
costly, with those who wear it being lifted up in the pride of their hearts.
The Nephite prophets repeatedly identified the wearing of costly clothing
with apostasy and failure to live by gospel standards. (Jac. 2:13; Alma
1:6, 32; 4:6; 5:53; 31:27-28; 4 Ne. 24; Morm.8:36-37.) The love of precious
clothing is one of the desires of the great and abominable church. (1 Ne.
13:7-8.) In this dispensation, the Lord has commanded: 'Thou shalt not
be proud in thy heart; let all thy garments be plain, and their beauty
the beauty of the work of thine own hands.' (D. & C. 42:40.)"
Be An Example.
1 Timothy 4:12:
"Let no man despise thy youth; but be thou
an example of the believers, in word, in conversation, in charity, in spirit,
in faith, in purity."
WHAT DOES PAUL'S
COUNSEL TO TIMOTHY TEACH US ABOUT THE WAYS WE SHOULD BE AN EXAMPLE TO OTHERS?
Paul says that
we are to be an example of the believers. When others view us they
should see within us the characteristics of a true follower of Christ.
We should be upbeat
and optimistic. We should have the greatest hope of all men.
In word and conversation:
The way we write and speak says everything about our character and what
we truly believe.
In charity: How
do we treat others? Do we follow the example of Christ.
In spirit and
faith: Are we true to the church and the gospel. Do we radiate the
spirit. Do we keep the commandments.
In purity: We
talked about modesty. What do we read? What kind of television,
videos, and movies do we view?
WHY SUCH EMPHASIS
ON SETTING A PROPER EXAMPLE?
We are an advertisement
for the gospel, either positive or negative. Billions are spent each
year to advertise a multitude of products and services. I think most
any organization will admit that the best kind of advertising is also free,
"word of mouth". We are the "word of mouth" advertisers of the gospel.
"Let your light so shine before men, that
they may see your good works, and glorify your Father which is in heaven."
As Paul said to
the Galatians (5:7), "A little leaven leaveneth
the whole lump." We can make a difference
in the world.
1 TIMOTHY 6:7-10. The love of money.
It is important
to note in verse 10 where Paul say that it is the "love of money", not
the money, that is the root of all evil.
Dallin H. Oaks:
"There is nothing inherently evil about
money. The Good Samaritan used the same coinage to serve his fellowman
that Judas used to betray the Master. It is 'the love of money [which]
is the root of all evil.' (1 Timothy 6:10) The critical difference
is the degree of spirituality we exercise in viewing, evaluating, and managing
the things of this world." (Ensign,
Nov. 1985, p63)
WHAT ARE THE DANGERS
OF BEING OBSESSED WITH RICHES?
According to Paul:
One may fall or
be snared into temptation.
One could be led
into foolish and hurtful lusts.
Once we have fallen
into temptation and partaken of foolish and hurtful lusts, we are on our
way down the slippery slope which can drown men in destruction and
Those who covet
after money have erred from the faith.
It has led to
piercing one "through with many sorrows".
IN WHAT SENSE
IS THE LOVE OF MONEY THE ROOT OF ALL EVIL?
2 Nephi 9:30:
"Wo unto the rich, who are rich as to the
things of the world. For because they are rich they despise the poor, and
they persecute the meek, and their hearts are upon their treasures; wherefore,
their treasure is their God. And behold, their treasure shall perish with
According to this
verse, their hearts are upon their riches. When are hearts become
focused on anything besides the gospel, we can be led away from that which
is good and right and eternal.
Money has the
allure of security, of things, of power, and fame. It has the potential
of leading us into all kinds of sins.
HOW CAN WE BE
SURE THAT WE DO NOT BECOME CORRUPTED BY THE DESIRE FOR MATERIAL WEALTH?
Time after time
after time, we discuss the question of how we resist influences that can
lead us and our families away from the gospel and its saving principles.
The answers remain basically the same: feast on the word of God, prayer
and meditation, repentance, service to our fellow men, commune with our
fellow Saints, and the variety of other activities involved in gospel activity.
"But before ye seek for riches, seek ye
for the kingdom of God.
"And after ye have obtained a hope in Christ ye shall obtain riches,
if ye seek them; and ye will seek them for the intent to do good--to clothe
the naked, and to feed the hungry, and to liberate the captive, and administer
relief to the sick and the afflicted."
Bruce R. McConkie:
"One of the great purposes of this mortal
probation is to allow men to choose between the riches of the world and
the riches of eternity. Those who set their hearts on the things of this
world lose their souls. 'Wo unto the rich, who are rich as to the things
of the world. For because they are rich they despise the poor, and they
persecute the meek, and their hearts are upon their treasures; wherefore,
their treasure is their God. And behold. their treasure shall perish with
them also.' (2 Ne. 9:30.) 'For what shall it profit a man, if he shall
gain the whole world, and lose his own soul? Or what shall a man give in
exchange for his soul?' (Mark 8:36-37.) Those who set their hearts on the
things of the Spirit inherit eternal riches which consist of eternal life."
Evils of the
2 TIMOTHY 3:1-5. Perilous times to come.
ARE WE EXPERIENCING
THIS IN OUR TIME?
Lovers of their
own selves - the time we are living in is a time of the "me".
parents - there seems to be a great turning away from parental authority
and teaching as we see with so many children.
affection - many seem to have no concern for others. Consider the
increasing rates of violence, particularly within homes.
- consider the lawsuits and counter suits within society.
according to McConkie this means "Without
self-control; failing to restrain appetites and passions, especially sexual
appetites." (DNTC 3:109)
Having a form
of godliness, but denying the power thereof - consider the multitude of
churches and religions professing the path to salvation, but lack the power
Bruce R. McConkie:
"Paul speaks here of the direful spiritual
darkness that covers the earth in the dispensation of the fulness of times,
the seeds of which were even then sprouting among the meridian Christians.
This apostasy, spawned by Satan and nurtured in lust, has increased and
abounded for two millenniums -- until it is universal and all pervading;
until God himself has quoted Paul's very words in describing it; until
the perilous times following the restoration of the gospel; until this
final period of the earth's temporal continuance in which we now live;
and it shall continue until the cup of iniquity overflows; until the Lord
shall return to take vengeance on the wicked; until he shall come to destroy
and burn and consume every ungodly thing and to usher in his own era of
millennial righteousness." (DNTC 3:107)
AGAIN, HOW CAN
WE PROTECT OURSELVES FROM THESE EVILS?
The same basic
steps as noted above and we need to learn to turn away from the allure
of evil and avoid the temptation.
We must seek to
know the Lord as never before.
Study the scriptures.
2 TIMOTHY 3:12-17. Scripture inspiration from God.
A study and knowledge
of the scriptures make us wise regarding the principles of salvation.
They teach us
the correct path and may reprove us at times.
Teach us how to
Lead us towards
discourse on the Last Days, Paul says in 2 Timothy 3:7 that men are "Ever
learning, and never able to come to the knowledge of the truth."
IS THIS HAPPENING
IN OUR DAY?
It is another
evil to be wary of in our day.
2 Nephi 9:28-29:
"O that cunning plan of the evil one!
O the vainness, and the frailties, and the foolishness of men! When
they are learned they think they are wise, and they hearken not unto the
counsel of God, for they set it aside, supposing they know of themselves,
wherefore, their wisdom is foolishness and it profiteth them not.
And they shall perish.
"But to be learned is good if they hearken unto the counsels of God."
2 TIMOTHY 4:6-8. Paul has fought the good fight.
makes reference to athletics. I don't know that he is doing that
in this case, but one might draw that conclusion when talks of fighting
the good fight and finishing the course.
9:24: "Know ye not that they which run
in a race run all, but one receiveth the prize? So run, that ye may obtain."
"...let us run with patience the race that
is set before us."
I have made reference
in past weeks to my experience in running a marathon. Such a race
is a capsule of what we are attempting to do in this life. Over 26.2
miles, one goes through many struggles including the desire to quit.
For most, success in a marathon is simply in finishing the race.
We don't need to be the first across the finish line. But as Paul
stated to the Hebrews, we need to run with "patience the race that is set
before us." We want to "finish the course". Running a marathon
is sometimes an exercise in patience. When one begins the race, there
is a lot of adrenaline and energy. If one runs too fast, he or she
will collapse before the race is finished. We want to be consistent
in our efforts throughout life, doing the best we can at the time, so that
we can endure to the end, finish the course, and win the prize.
HOW CAN WE RECEIVE
THIS SAME ASSURANCE THAT PAUL SEEMED TO HAVE NEAR THE END OF HIS LIFE?
Fight a good fight:
To stand up to evil.
Finish the course:
Endure to the end.
Keep the faith:
Do those things we have talked about that keep us focused on the gospel.
In his letter to Titus, Paul gave many
instructions about living righteously. Consider these: