Today’s passage: 1 Timothy 2:1-7
- Paul has just exhorted Timothy to pastor this church at Ephesus well, keeping the gospel message front and center and avoiding pointless controversies. Now he’s going to help Timothy know how to do it.
- Step one: PRAY!
- Paul tells Timothy to pray for people inside the church and outside the church (Including governing authorities). But the purpose of prayer for the government is the benefit of the church. The church comes first.
- The good of the church is the good of all. The healthier the church, the greater evangelistic zeal and the more “salt and light” it is able to be to the world around it.
- There can be a distinction between God’s eternal sovereign will (God’s decree – Ephesians 1:3-5) and God’s desire. God does not delight in the sin of man and we are to preach the Gospel to all. The invitation to come to Christ must be preached to everyone, without distinction.
Questions to consider:
- When we put prayer first as a priority, what does it say about our awareness of God’s role in any matter? When we don’t?
- How does this instruction help us to rightly balance and nuance our understanding and priorities concerning church and the government? What collective group of people will be the greatest force of good for any nation? What would happen if we only desired the government to write and enforce laws without first seeking to see God’s laws written in the hearts of our neighbors?
- God saves sinners, saved sinners proclaim the good news. How many people will you come into contact today who need to hear the good news? Who might you have a good opportunity to share it with?