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1 Timothy

It was the first practice of the football season. The captain of the team was trying to impress his fellow teammates with his leadership skills. Pacing back and forth in front of the team he was doing his best to get them excited. Finally, as his voice reached a level of great intensity, he shouted, “We’ll win because we have the will to win!”
The coach, looking rather amused said, “Don’t fool yourself, son. The will to win is important. But more important than the will to win is the importance to surrender to hard work, sore muscles, aching joints, sweat running into your eyes and long hours of studying our plays.” In other words, it requires hard work plus the will to work.
What is required of athletes who want to be victorious on a football field is true of the Christian who is called to live a victorious life for Christ. Paul said, “Spend your time and energy in training yourself for spiritual fitness. Physical exercise has some value but spiritual exercise is much more important for it promises a reward in this life and the life to come.”
Spiritual exercise – studying God’s Word, praying and serving Him - and the discipline required to achieve success for the Christian does not come easy. It requires a life of discipline and surrender to the will of God. Paul reminds us, however, that we will be rewarded in this life and the life to come – if we endure.
Prayer: Lord, You never promised us a life of ease. But for Your sake we ask for Your strength and power to live a life that is worthy of You and victorious over sin. In Jesus’ Name, Amen.
Scripture for Today: 1 Timothy 4:7-8 Have nothing to do with godless myths and old wives’ tales; rather, train yourself to be godly. For physical training is of some value, but godliness has value for all things, holding promise for both the present life and the life to come.
Alexander the Great left an indelible mark on the world. In his early life he was tutored by Aristotle, the great Greek philosopher, which shaped much of his thinking. By the age of thirty he had created one of the largest empires in the ancient world. He was undefeated in battle and to this day is considered to be a military genius and is remembered as one of history’s greatest commanders. He established over 30 cities as a result of his conquests and was responsible for spreading the Greek language and culture wherever his victories took him.
When individuals died during that period in history, it was customary for their hands to be wrapped in burial cloth. However, he decided that he would not follow that tradition. He said when he died he wanted people to see that his hands were empty.
“After all, we did not bring any money with us when we came into this world and we can’t carry away a single penny.”
Paul echoed the same words. He said we brought nothing into the world with us when we came and we will certainly not take anything with us when we leave. He wants us to understand that one day whatever we have will be left behind when we go to meet our Redeemer. The goal of the Christian is to lay up treasures in heaven by investing our lives in building His Kingdom on earth.
Prayer: Lord, it is natural to want the things of this world. They are attractive and appealing. Enable us to see “things” through Your eyes and use them for Your glory. In Jesus’ Name, Amen.
Scripture for Today: 1 Timothy 6:7 For we brought nothing into the world, and we can take nothing out of it.
All of her life Melissa wanted to be a school teacher. It was a dream come true when she enrolled in college and actually began to prepare for a life of teaching. She wanted to be the best teacher any pupil ever had. 
She decided to write Thomas Carlyle, a world famous historian, and ask his advice. She wrote, “Tell me, sir, what is the secret of successful teaching?” 
His reply was simple, “Be what you would have your pupils to be. All else is unblessed mockery!”
What a reminder for Christians. Though our words are important, our life is a much stronger lesson about who Christ is and what He can do than anything we can ever say. Said Paul to Timothy, “Be an example to all believers in what you say, in the way you live, in your love, your faith and your purity.” 
Timothy was a young pastor and under much scrutiny. Paul knew the pressure that he faced and wanted him to be an example to his church in everything that he said or did. Wisely, Paul warned him that only those who lived lives that were modeled after Christ would be worthy examples and effective teachers of the Good News. 
And if we read Paul’s words carefully, we will notice that every aspect of life is mentioned: speech, behavior, love and faith as well as pure thinking and living.
Prayer: We often forget, Lord, that we are always Your model for the world to see. May our faith be strong, our thoughts pure and our lives modeled after Your Son. In Jesus’ Name, Amen.
Scripture for Today: 1 Timothy 4:12 Don’t let anyone look down on you because you are young, but set an example for the believers in speech, in life, in love, in faith, and in purity.
The military is known for orderliness. Rarely does one see a uniform that is wrinkled or grounds that are unkempt. But there once was an exception.
When General George Marshall took command of the Infantry School at Fort Benning, Georgia before World War II, he found the post in a condition that was unacceptable to him. Having power beyond imagination and control over every individual assigned there, his options were unlimited. He could speak the word and everyone would fall in line and make the installation glow in the dark. But he did not do that.
Instead of issuing orders to get the post up to his standards, he got out his lawnmower, rake, shovel and paintbrushes and began to make his quarters the example.
And it worked. Soon the officers next door did the same. Then their neighbors and on and on it went until it reached the last home on the grounds. Fort Benning became the example for the Army.
Often the best way to encourage someone to do the right thing is to become an example for them to follow. Paul gave that advice to Timothy: “Be an example to all believers.” Paul gives that advice to us as well!
Prayer: Help us, Father, to live as You lived, to walk as You walked and to talk as You talked so that we will always be Your examples in this world. In Jesus’ Name, Amen.
Scripture for Today: 1 Timothy 4:12 Let no one despise your youth, but be an example to the believers in word, in conduct, in love, in spirit, in faith, in purity.
A lady was traveling in Europe with a group of her friends. On one of their shopping trips she discovered a beautiful diamond and ruby bracelet that captured her heart. She sent a message to her husband that read, “Have found a beautiful bracelet. It costs $75,000. May I buy it for our anniversary?”
He responded, “No, price too high.”
Somehow, in the transmission, his comma after the “No” was deleted. She read it as “No price too high” meaning that she was worth it. So she purchased the bracelet. 
In a letter to Timothy, Paul wrote, “Focus on reading the Scriptures to the church.” The “Scriptures” that Paul was talking about were the writings of the Old Testament. It was all that the early church had to read at that time. But they read them carefully and faithfully to learn of the Messiah who had been sent from God.
We, too, must do the same: focus on reading the Scriptures. We need to read the Old as well as the New Testament for there are rich rewards to be found in both. It is necessary for us read, focus, study, understand and apply the principles of His Word that God has revealed to us for our daily walk.
Prayer: Help us, Heavenly Father, to hide Your Word in our hearts that we might not sin against You and live our lives as Your disciples. In Jesus’ Name, Amen.
Scripture for Today: 1 Timothy 4:13 Till I come, give attention to reading, to exhortation, to doctrine.
Once, while walking through one of his factories, Henry Ford stopped to talk with an engineer. “Tell me,” he asked, “what is your ambition in life?”
With no hesitation he answered, “To make money and become rich!”
A few days later he returned to talk to the engineer. He paused for a moment and then handed him a pair of glasses.
In place of the lenses were silver dollars. “Put them on,” he said. “Now, what do you see?”
“Nothing but money,” he replied
“Maybe,” said Mr. Ford, “you should rethink your ambitions.”
Many people believe that money can bring happiness. Although there is evidence to prove that this is not true, it is a belief that drives many people to try to acquire more and more. It seems to lead to an endless cycle and life without peace.
Paul gives some us some guidelines to keep us focused. One day, whatever we have will all be gone. We will take nothing with us.
In view of that, we are to be content with what God gives us. We are to love people more than money and share what God has given to us with others when they have needs.
God has promised to give us what we need, not want.
Prayer: Thank You, Father, for supplying our every need. May we learn to be content with what You graciously give us each day. In Jesus’ Name. Amen.
Scripture for Today: 1 Timothy 6:6-10 For the love of money is the root of all evils; it is through this craving that some have wandered away from the faith and pierced their hearts with many pangs.
Can you believe that street lighting was first introduced in Antioch, Greece in the fourth century? But it was Benjamin Franklin, the famed inventor, who introduced it to America. Other countries had street lights in their cities as early as the eighth century.
While serving as the postmaster in Philadelphia, Franklin urged the city fathers to install street lights in their city. The city fathers refused because they believed it was too costly.
Franklin refused to give up and hung a beautiful lantern on a bracket in the front of his home. As the people walked by, they realized the difference it made. They no longer stumbled or fell because it provided light for their path. It was not long before his neighbors recognized the value of the light and soon the entire neighborhood, and then the city, had lights in the dark places. Franklin achieved his goal, not by argument, but by example.
People everywhere are looking for ideas that work. If they make sense people will adopt them and apply them to their lives. That’s why Paul encouraged Timothy to “set an example in speech, life, love, faith and purity.”
God’s Word works! When we apply it to our lives people will soon see that the Light of our lives makes a difference and follow our example.
Prayer: Lord, whenever our lives fail to live up to Your standards, give us no peace until we change. In Jesus’ Name, Amen.
Scripture for Today: 1 Timothy 4:12 Let no one despise your youth, but be an example to the believers in word, in conduct, in love, in spirit, in faith, in purity.
A professor was known to ask his students questions to make them think. On one occasion he stood before the class and wrote on the chalkboard, “Who’s more content – the man with six million dollars or the man with six children? Now think!” he challenged them.
After a few moments one of the students raised his hand and answered, “The man with the six children.”
“Oh. Why?” asked the professor.
“Well, the man with the six million dollars would always want more!” came the reply.
True contentment is always independent of “things” – whether possessions or pleasures. It only comes from an inner attitude toward life. That is why Paul said, “True religion, with contentment, is great wealth.”
This does not imply that being a Christian means living in poverty or wanting to be poor. But it does mean that the power of “things” will never bring happiness and that the Christian must always focus on things that are eternal. In the final analysis, we can only take two things to God: Ourselves and what we have done with our lives.
So, we must live our lives with one goal that we can reach: to present ourselves to God without shame!
Prayer: Help us, Father, to realize that life does not consist in the abundance of things, but in pleasing You. In Jesus’ Name, Amen.
Scripture for Today: 1 Timothy 6:6 Now godliness with contentment is great gain.

A professor was known to ask his students questions to make them think. On one occasion he stood before the class and wrote on the chalkboard, “Who’s more content – the man with six million dollars or the man with six children? Now think!” he challenged them.

After a few moments one of the students raised his hand and answered, “The man with the six children.”

“Oh? Why?” asked the professor.

“Well, the man with the six million dollars would always want more!” came the reply.

True contentment is always independent of “things” – whether possessions or pleasures. It only comes from an inner attitude toward life. That is why Paul said, “True religion, with contentment, is great wealth.”

This does not imply that being a Christian means living in poverty or wanting to be poor. But it does mean that the power of “things” will never bring happiness and that the Christian must always focus on things that are eternal.

In the final analysis, we can only take two things to God: Ourselves and what we have done with our lives.
So, we must live our lives with one goal that we can reach: to present ourselves to God without shame!

Prayer: Help us, Father, to realize that life does not consist in the abundance of things, but in pleasing You. In Jesus’ Name, Amen.

Scripture for Today: 1 Timothy 6:6 Now godliness with contentment is great gain.


Alexander the Great was a Macedonian king who conquered Persia, Greece and Egypt. He was considered the “conqueror of the world.” It was the custom in his day that when a person died their hands would be wrapped so no one could see them. However, prior to his death he asked that his hands remain unwrapped.

When they asked why, he replied, “I want everyone to see that they were empty.”

In his letter to Timothy, Paul said, “After all, we didn’t bring anything with us when we came into this world, and we certainly can’t take anything with us when we die.” This is a popular verse, used by many, but accepted and followed as a guide for living by only a few – judging by the way that most of us live!

In three short verses, Paul gives some astounding advice to all of us. He begins by saying that true religion can be very valuable if it brings one contentment. Might he be saying that if we are not content with what we believe, no amount of money will bring us peace? Then he reminds us that we “can’t take it with us.” And then he concludes this bit of advice by saying, “And by the way, if you have enough food and clothing, be content. And if you are not content with what God’s given you, you will be tempted and trapped by foolish desires that bring ruin and destruction.” We must always consider what is in our hands.

Prayer: It’s easy, Lord, to want what has no eternal value. Place in our hearts a desire for what matters most. In Jesus’ Name, Amen.

Scripture for Today: 1 Timothy 6:6-10  Now godliness with contentment is great gain.
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