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. Chapter 4.

Prediction of Apostasy

1 THE SPIRIT SAYS EXPRESSLY that in after times some will desert from the faith and give their minds to subversive doctrines inspired by devils, 2 through the specious falsehoods of men whose own conscience is branded with the devil's sign. 3 They forbid marriage and inculcate abstinence from certain foods, though God created them to be enjoyed with thanksgiving by believers who have inward knowledge of the truth. 4 For everything that God created is good, and nothing is to be rejected when it is taken with thanksgiving, 5 since it is hallowed by God's own word and by prayer.

A Good Minister of Jesus Christ

6 By offering such advice as this to the brotherhood you will prove a good servant of Christ Jesus, bred in the precepts of our faith and of the sound instruction which you have followed. 7 Have nothing to do with those godless myths, fit only for old women. Keep yourself in training for the practice of religion. 8 The training of the body does bring limited benefit, but the benefits of religion are without limit, since it holds promise not only for this life but for the life to come. 9 Here are words you may trust, words that merit full acceptance: 10 'With this before us we labour and struggle, [Some witnesses read: suffer reproach.] because [Or: since 'It holds promise ... to come.' These are words ... acceptance. For this is the aim of all our labour and struggle, since ...] we have set our hope on the living God, who is the Saviour of all men'—the Saviour, above all, of believers.

11 Pass on these orders and these teachings. 12 Let no one slight you because you are young, but make yourself an example to believers in speech and behaviour, in love, fidelity, and purity. 13 Until I arrive devote your attention to the public reading of the scriptures, to exhortation, and to teaching. 14 Do not neglect the spiritual endowment you possess, which was given you, under the guidance of prophecy, through the laying on of the hands of the elders as a body. [Or: through your ordination as an elder.]

15 Make these matters your business and your absorbing interest, so that your progress may be plain to all. 16 Persevere in them, keeping close watch on yourself and your teaching; by doing so you will further the salvation of yourself and your hearers.

<< | I Timothy: 4 | >>

NEBNew English Bible: © The Delegates of the Oxford University Press & the Syndics of the Cambridge University Press 1961. This Webpage layout © Paul Ingram 2009. Any mismatches, truncated verses, other mistakes? Please e-mail me.