A Sample Passage from the Comments on First Timothy:
1. Consequently I am habitually calling you alongside to encourage, counsel and exhort you to first of all be constantly making petitions for needs, prayers (speaking, thinking and doing toward things being well), encounters (or: intercessions; meetings within situations to converse or hit and obtain the objective), [and] expressions of gratitude (or: of the goodness of grace and favor) over (or: on behalf of; for) all mankind (humanity) –
Paul is completely inclusive in his exhortation. We should take on the concerns of all humanity, make requests regarding them, project goodness and well being to them, intercede on their behalf by doing something or having encounter with them, and express gratitude over their very existence, as well as expressing the goodness of God's grace over their situations.
2. over (or: for) kings and all those being folks within a position of holding control over (or: above) [others] (or: being in superiority or high station), to the end that we may continuously lead (or: carry through) a course of life that is still – at rest (free from all agitation or disturbance with tranquility arising from without), and also quiet – peaceable (gentle, exciting no disturbance in others, with tranquility arising from within) in all reverence (pious and devout relations with everything) and majestic seriousness (dignity and gravity which inspire awe).
Political prayers are encouraged, so that we may continuously lead a course of life that is still – with no upheavals or turmoiles – as well as prayers that our lives would also be at rest, quiet, and peaceable: "with tranquility arising from within." Now this sounds nice. This is a good goal to have, especially considering his letters to those that are in the midst of persecutions. Reverence and "majestic seriousness" sounds a little stuffy, but in reality if you create in your mind a beautiful quiet scene out in nature, I think we can see what he means. Reverence towards life and seriousness about our environment are good things.
3. This [is] beautiful (fine; ideal) and welcomingly received from the presence of, and in the sight of, God, our Deliverer (our Savior; the One Who heals us and makes us whole, restoring us to our original state and condition),
So vs. 2 describes the "beautiful life." And there is no mention of material goods. This fine and ideal situation comes about from having God's presence with us, and having His "eye" turned on us (speaking metaphorically). We receive this from Him, the One Who heals us, make us whole and restores us.
4. Who is constantly willing (continuously intending and purposing) all mankind (all humanity) to be saved (delivered; rescued; made healthy and whole), and (or: even) to come into a full, accurate, experiential and intimate knowledge and insight of Truth (or: into a realization of reality),
What an intent and purpose – and He wills it to be so, so it will come to pass, for He always does according to the counsel of His will (Eph. 1:11, where we find the noun for of this same word here, in its verbal form). This is a beautiful and ideal plan that He has for humanity. Can we imagine all humanity with a " full, accurate, experiential and intimate knowledge and insight of Truth [and] a realization of reality"? That will be "heaven," my friends, and will make the earth a wonderful place to be. All mankind delivered and made whole! It indeed takes faith in this word from Paul, to really believe it, but this is the final goal of all humanity. Jesus said, "you will come to know the Truth (or: Reality; that which is unsealed, open and without concealment) by intimate experience, and the Truth (Reality) will liberate and make (or: set) you free!"
(John 8:32). This was spoken to Jews who had believed, and thus we can see that God has an intent that all will at some point believe and enter into participation of covenant life.
5. for God [is] One, and One [is the] Mediator of God and mankind, a Man, Christ Jesus (or: for [there is] one God, and one medium between God and humans, [the] human, Anointed Jesus),
We know from John 3:16 that God loves the whole world, and vs. 4 above confirms this. So when we think of a mediator, we must think of humans that are the hostile ones, while God is full of love and conciliation (2 Cor. 5:19). So our Brother, the Man Christ Jesus, mediates this love and conciliation to humanity. And according to my second rendering, the Anointed Jesus is the only medium through which this goodness can come. "For neither is there a different name under the [dome of the] sky (or: heaven) that has been given, and now exists as a gift, among mankind (or: in the midst of humanity) within which it continues binding and necessary for us to be saved (restored to health and wholeness; delivered and kept safe; returned to our original state and condition)!" (Acts 4:12). The Christ/Messiah event was/is the turning point of all of human history. (cf the short study on "A Mediator" added at the end of the comments on this letter)
6. the One giving Himself a correspondent ransom (a ransom in the place of and directed toward the situation) over [the situation of and] on behalf of (or: for) all (everyone; all humanity and all things) – the witness [note: “the witness” is omitted by A; other MSS: the evidence of which] [will come] in its own fitting situations (or: the Witness for their own seasons; the Testimony to and for His own particular occasions; the evidence [appears] in its own fertile moments) –
Here we see inclusiveness again. The ransom fully faced and corresponded to the situation of all humanity, and of the whole creation. The word "correspondent ransom" is the Greek lutron (a price paid for release from slavery or captivity) with the prefix anti- (in an opposite position, facing toward in order to assist in a manner equivalent to the need). He gave Himself as a payment to redeem mankind, placing Himself "over" our situation – a picture of Love covering the multitude of sins and mistakes (1 Pet. 4:8).
The evidence of this will be witnessed in its own fitting situations or fertile moments. This is equivalent to what he said in 1 Cor. 15:23, "each person within his or her own class or division (or: ordered rank; place or appointed position [in line]; arranged [time] or order of succession)."
7. into the midst of which I, a preacher (or: herald) and one sent with a mission (an envoy and representative), was placed (or: am set) – I am speaking truth, I am not lying – a teacher of multitudes (nations; the multiplied ethnic groups; non-Jews), within faith and Truth (or: in union with trust and reality).
Paul was placed into this "correspondent ransom" and was sent by Jesus to be a teacher of multitudes (Greek: ethnos; used of a swarm of bees, thus, a multitude of ethnic groups; often used to refer to the pagan societies that are non-Jewish). He was also "placed" into the environment of God's reign, which is "faith and Truth; trust and Reality." I capitalized Truth and Reality to indicate that this is really referring to Christ, into Whom we have been placed, in covenant relationships – within both His death and His resurrection life, and now within His body which is the called-out community.
8. I am wanting and intending, then, the men (adult males) within every place to habitually pray (constantly think, speak and act toward having ease, goodness and well-being), continually lifting up loyal and dutiful hands that are pure from all crime, apart from impulse of intrinsic fervor (or: passion and swelling desire; or: anger, indignation or wrath) and reasonings (debates; divisions in thinking; dialogues; computations).
He is speaking to the adult men of that time and culture, and he was referring to a way of life: constant or habitual prayer (which literally means: think, speak and act toward having ease, goodness and well-being). This corresponds to 1 Thes. 5:17, "Continuously think, speak and act with a view toward well-being and goodness – unceasingly (or: By habit be praying unintermittingly)." He is not just talking about in an assembly of the community, but within all of life.
Lifting up "loyal and dutiful hands" is a metaphor from the religious practice of that day and culture, but the hand is a figure of what a person does – his work or activities. Just as he is to "continuously pray," Paul is here speaking to his way of life and his activities: he is to constantly lift up (= offer to God) a loyal and dutiful life that is pure from all crime, and apart form impulsive fervor or negative expressions of such, and apart from divisions in thinking, debates and reasoned dialogues that have a negative flavor.
9. Likewise, women to habitually adorn and arrange themselves in an ordered and arranged system of proper behavior and descent clothing: with modesty, so as to be unseen (or: as having downcast eyes), and soundness of mind (sanity and sensibility), not in braids (or: inter-weavings) and in golden ornaments, or in pearls or expensive garments,
In using the word "likewise," we should see that he is speaking to the same level: on the sphere of the spiritual that also is lived out in the practical. The women are to do the same as the men, but instead of using the metaphor of lifting hands, he says "in an ordered and arranged system of proper behavior and clothing: with modesty and soundness of mind (sanity and sensibility)." Here is another cultural metaphor, speaking of an attitude and way of life. As with the men, here he follows with a negative metaphor, this time regarding ostentatious living or personal vanity. In each case the metaphors can also be followed, if the Spirit so leads the individual, but these are not the point, and should not become a religious law.
10. but rather – what is suitable (proper; fitting; becoming) in (or: for; to) women giving instruction on reverence for God [note: refers to women who taught “God-fearers” in synagogues, to prepare these folks for conversion] – through good works and virtuous actions.
Here is the general category to which he is leading: good works and virtuous action. This is like what Jacob (or: James) said, that for faith to have life it must be joined to works and thus bear the fruit of love. It is interesting that he parenthetically refers to a specific situation: women giving instruction on reverence for God. The subject concerned a way of life that was being taught – reverence for God. So like the other cultural examples, he is referring to our inner lives which bear fruit in our outer lives.
11. A woman (or: wife) must be habitually learning – within calm quietness (without making a fuss; in peaceableness and gentleness, exciting no disturbance in others, and with tranquility arising from within) – in union with every humble alignment while giving support (or: within every subordinate arrangement).
Once again, we need to be aware of the cultural environment. What he is saying is contrary to how he was raised in Judaism: a woman was not to be taught Torah. But we are now in the new creation – all has changed, and these folks needed to know that culture, class and gender prohibitions no longer applied. But it was not a revolution, for what he says here regarding women and wives also applied equally to men: humble alignment to Christ, while giving support to one another (cf Eph. 5:21 and Rom. 12:10).
12. Now I am not turning upon a woman, so as to direct her to be habitually teaching (or: Yet I do not habitually turn on a wife, to regularly teach [her]) – neither to continually act in self-authority to use arms for murdering an adult male
(or: = habitually to be a self-appointed master to domineer over a man [note: this may have been an exhortation against Gnosticism, and a possible rendering could be: And I am not permitting a woman to teach that she is the originator of a man]) – but rather to exist (or: be) within quietness (gentleness, exciting no disturbance, with tranquility arising from within) –
Paul is not now putting a burden upon women to do things that they don't feel ready to do – he is not "turning upon" them. And he is not promoting a gender revolution to symbolically "murder a man." He is instead calling them to the same thing to which he called all, in vs. 2, above: a quiet, tranquil life of gentleness.
13. for you see, Adam was molded and formed first, thereafter (or: next), Eve.
14. Also, Adam was not seduced and deceived, but the woman being completely cheated out by seduction (or: thoroughly deluded) has come to be and exists within deviation (transgression; a stepping by the side),
15. yet she will be delivered (rescued; saved; made whole and restored to her original state and condition) through the Birth (or: birthing) of the Child – should they dwell (abide) within faith (and: trust) and love and the results of being set-apart (holiness), with soundness of mind (sanity; sensibility).
The Word [is] full of faith! (or: Trustworthy [is] this message.)
As above, I suggest that Paul is speaking with metaphors in 13-15. He is speaking to the human condition. The female aspect of the nature of every human is the deceived, estranged soul which listened to the carnal wisdom within us (figured by the serpent in the Garden, which Garden was a figure for our internal life). To be carnally minded is death (Rom. 8:6), just as to partake of the tree of knowledge of good and evil (to have a legalistic mindset; to live from the Law which tells us what is right and what is wrong, and that we must do works to be right) within us brings death.
Adam is a figure of Christ (Rom. 5:14), and Eve a figure of His body. We all, His body, were "cheated out by seduction" and had come to "exist within deviation" (we side-stepped away from the Way pointed out, the tree of Life, the Christ). But Christ, like Adam, took on our transgressions, and we are delivered when the man-child (Rev. 12:5) was given birth within us. That birth comes from living with Christ, dwelling in the faith which He is, and in the love which He is, and the state of being set-apart, which He is, with the "soundness of mind" which He gives, which is the mind of Christ. His Word is crammed full of His faith. And this is a trustworthy message!
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GOD'S MESSAGE OF
WHICH BRINGS GOD'S
GIFTS OF HIS SPIRIT,
HIS LIFE, HIS GRACE,
HIS POWER, HIS
FAIRNESS, HIS PEACE
AND HIS LOVE