Thursday, November 14. 1 Timothy 4 – 6

Money has been the ruin of many a person – both male and female. If you have too much, you tend to disown God. If you have too little, you tend to dishonor God with your conduct. Middle ground is hard to maintain.

Money is no less a concern for those who serve God full-time. The Lord made provision for those who ministered in the Old Testament to be supported by those they served. Paul used this provision in 1 Corinthians 9:11-14 to support the paying of church servants in the New Testament. But just as Jews in the Old Testament refused to do this properly, it became equally neglected in the New Testament church.

But it wasn’t just being poorly paid that beset ministers in the first century. It was also the allure of money itself, and concern for a more secure future. If you are poorly paid, it’s hard to set aside money for retirement, and when you see others in secular work accomplishing what you cannot, it leads to envy. Some preachers talk about all the good they could do if they were “rich.” Paul warns Timothy, who seems to be struggling with some aspect of this temptation: “the love of money is the root of all kinds of evil” and “those who want to get rich fall into temptation and a trap and into many foolish and harmful desires that plunge men into ruin and destruction” (6:6-10).

Though these words were written for Timothy, they are no less applicable to us all. Faith requires that we work, and work hard. That we be submissive and respectful to those for whom we work. That we save all we can. That we give to help others, and that we give to God in proportion to our thankfulness for his blessings. It also requires that we, having done all these things, trust our future to God.