Daily Devotional: 1 Timothy 1:3-7
Words are important. They have power to influence for either good or bad and the power to lift up and tear down. Words are very important. Recently we completed a series on the family at Indian Trail Church. Little did I know, at the time, that I would have the opportunity to put into practice what I learned within the setting of being at home with my family 24/7! The greatest challenge for me during this time is using my words for good and not for evil. Amidst an awareness of constant failing, God has given me an encouraging reminder from 1 Timothy 1:3-7 to help me have words that edify. I pray this text helps you as well.
In 1 Timothy, the apostle Paul writes Timothy to tell him to remain at the church in Ephesus because there is work to do. Timothy has the monumental task of calling out false teachers who were spreading false teaching that was contrary to the gospel and doing it for their own personal gain, whether that be some sort of financial gain or just simply boasting rites. Furthermore, the false teachers mused about speculative things, debatable matters that didn’t matter, and these only caused controversy among fellow Christians because they were sourced in pride. Timothy was to command these false teachers to stop these vain discussions. Not an easy task.
In contrast to the false teachers, we see another model of how to use our words. First we see that the best words we can speak are ones that promote “the stewardship from God that is by faith” (1 Timothy 1:4). This stewardship or administration from God is a reference to the gospel, or God’s plan of salvation that he has brought about in Christ which is received by faith. So, the best words we can speak are gospel words, truths about God’s salvation plan that resonate from every page of your Bible, meant to reverberate through us. So, brothers and sisters, let us speak gospel truths to one another.
Second, the best words are words that have a goal or purpose, and that purpose is love. Paul says, “the aim of our charge is love” (1 Timothy 1:5). Many times our words are self focused, meant only to serve our selfish desires. The best words are words which have the goal of building up others, helping others, and encouraging others. Even when speaking difficult words where we admonish, correct, and even rebuke, love mediates how and why we do this. The aim of our words needs to be for the betterment and growth of the other person, spoken in a way that shows we care for them (Ephesians 4:29).
Praise God he has given us such nourishing words in his Scriptures! May we use every opportunity to pass on these words in love for one another. May God strengthen us to speak the best words.