Today you should read: 1 Timothy 5:1-16
How should a young pastor treat people in the church? How should various types of people in the church be treated? Paul gave Timothy the answers to these questions in our passage today.
(vs. 1)Older men: Don’t sharply rebuke, but appeal to him, or exhort him, as a father. This doesn’t mean that a young pastor should never rebuke an older man. By all means, some older guys need some rebuke, but the rebuke should not be harsh or disrespectful. This is the only instance in the Bible where this Greek word for “rebuke” exists. It’s different than all of the other “rebukes” in the Bible. This word means “to strike upon, or to beat down.” In other words, don’t give a very harsh rebuke that tears one down instead of builds one up.
(vs. 1) Younger men: Treat them as brothers. In other words, treat them as partners in the ministry. Timothy wasn’t to lord his authority over them, but to work alongside of them as he shepherded them.
(vs. 2)Older women: Treat them as mothers. A young pastor should gladly accept some “mothering” that comes from older women. It’s honorable to receive this treatment from older women, and respect and honor should be returned to these women.
(vs. 2)Younger women: Treat them as sisters. In other words, treat them as partners in the ministry, but be careful to stay above reproach with them. A pastor working alongside a woman needs to take extra precaution with his emotions and conduct towards her. There have been too many instances in our society of pastors and church leaders having affairs with women in their church. This ought not to be.
(vs. 3-16) Widows: The main idea here is to help widows who are truly in need (vs. 3). If a widow has legitimate needs, her immediate family has the responsibility to assist her before the church does (vs. 4). A widow who has no family and is alone, but fixes her hope on God is considered a widow indeed (vs. 5, 10, 16) and the church should be quick to assist her. A widow who is actively involved in wanton pleasure is not to be put on the list of those needing assistance (vs. 6-7, 11-15).
How are we as the church to make application of this passage and glorify God?
- Treat older men and women with respect and honor. Their life experience is very valuable for younger people, and I, personally, have much to learn from those older than me.
- See our younger brothers and sisters as co-workers for the kingdom. None of us are greater or more valuable than the other. Be intentional to work well together as brothers and sisters, but stay above reproach.
- Families of widows in the church must be quick to help the widow in their family.
- The church must take on the responsibility of helping widows in need, particularly older widows.
Posted by:Rich Duffield