Since the first century, the model of “Paul’s and Timothy’s” has been examined, written about, and mimicked the world over. Indeed it has become a New Testament church standard for church leaders to emulate. Let us examine verse two of 1 Timothy and seek to get a better understanding of this paradigm.
(1 Timothy 1:21 Timothy 1:2
English: King James Version (1611) - KJV
2 Unto Timothy, my own son in the faith: Grace, mercy, and peace, from God our Father and Jesus Christ our Lord.
WP-Bible plugin) “Unto Timothy, my own son in the faith: Grace, mercy, and peace, from God our Father and Jesus Christ our Lord.” (KJV)
A Birthed Man
The name “Timothy” literally means “dear to God” according to Strong’s Concordance. Timothy was certainly dear to God as every child of God is. From the next phrase in verse two we see that the Apostle Paul, evidently, led him to Christ personally. We will look at that phrase again, but at this point we see that Timothy was a child of God based upon Paul’s remark about him being “my own son in the faith”.
There is an unmistakable fact about physical birth and spiritual birth that we need to articulate. Offspring will look like its progenitors! We can say, “AMEN!” right there. Timothy looked something like his physical mother and father. After all, he was their child. When it comes to the matter of being born into God’s family, we are going to resemble our Heavenly Father by our new nature.
Timothy, as one will see as they study his life, was a godly young man. He was used in many ways to help God’s people and to be an extension of the aging Apostle Paul. Indeed, he had birthmarks of being a follower of Christ, and so we should as well.
A Broadened Man
The second phrase in verse two, “my own son in the faith” is not only an endearing term Paul used to open his letter, but a window into the kind of relationship Paul and Timothy had. It would seem that Paul personally led him to Christ and then proceeded to disciple him. Can you imagine what this must have been like? To have a great Christian man like Paul to take great amounts of time to teach you God’s Word and how to practically apply it’s precepts to your life. WOW!
This Biblical example of “father/son” discipleship, spiritually speaking, demands considerable thought. So many people attempt to lead people to Christ in our day. This is great, but the soul-winner is somewhat responsible to help disciple and train the new convert.
Another point of application can be made to the pastors, evangelists and missionaries of our day. Yes, we need to train the new converts in the ways of the Lord Jesus, but we should also be on the lookout for young preachers and leaders in our congregations. The best training a man can get for the ministry is one on one with their pastor! So it was with Timothy.
A Blessed Man
The last half of verse two is really special. The Apostle Paul invokes a blessing from our Heavenly Father for young Timothy. He asked for three things. (1) Grace: getting what we do not deserve. “God’s unmerited favor” (2) Mercy: not getting what we do deserve. “Judgment and Hell” (3) Peace: tranquility of soul. “True prosperity” Each of these are needed by every follower of Christ. To my knowledge, though Paul frequently invoked grace and mercy upon his readers, peace was only mentioned in reference to the ministers Timothy and Titus.
Timothy was blessed for many reasons and so are we. Of the many frequently overlooked points of the Christian life is that we have experienced and continue to experience grace, mercy and God’s peace. You cannot buy either of them with money, and they are solely gifts from God! Oh, how BLESSED we are!
We are a product of those we learn from. As my grandma always says, “You learn something new every day!” Oh, how great the weight of responsibility which lays upon our shoulders as parents, mentors, soul-winners, and godly leaders. We are instructing people in ways we do not realize. When it comes to those who are training the next generation of preachers and spiritual leaders in our churches, we must be sure that we who train are of great maturity as Paul was. We need “Timothy’s” to rise to the occasion not “Demas'” who quit!
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A frequent speaker at churches, conferences, and workshops across North America, John Phillips served as assistant director of the Moody Correspondence School as well as director of the Emmaus Correspondence School, one of the world’s largest Bible correspondence ministries. He also taught in the Moody Evening School and on the Moody Broadcasting radio network. He and his wife, Betty, live in Bowling Green, Kentucky.
Originally posted 2011-03-02 00:01:00. Republished by Blog Post Promoter