Wednesday, May 28, 2014

1 Timothy 6:1-5 -- On Honoring Those We Serve

"Let as many servants as are under the yoke count their own masters worthy of all honour, that the name of God and his doctrine be not blasphemed.
And they that have believing masters, let them not despise them, because they are brethren; but rather do them service, because they are faithful and beloved, partakers of the benefit. These things teach and exhort.
If any man teach otherwise, and consent not to wholesome words, even the words of our Lord Jesus Christ, and to the doctrine which is according to godliness;
He is proud, knowing nothing, but doting about questions and strifes of words, whereof cometh envy, strife, railings, evil surmisings,
Perverse disputings of men of corrupt minds, and destitute of the truth, supposing that gain is godliness: from such withdraw thyself."
1 Timothy 6:1-5

It struck me today as I was reading this that these verses actually apply to all of us, and are probably something we need to think about and work on.  At least I do.  True that we don't call ourselves servants in our several occupations, but we do all serve someone, and in that service these verses apply.  It's really easy to forget "thou shalt not covet" in our daily service.  Whether it is a paid job or some other service, we often want what someone else has, and we encounter power games or overt comparisons aimed in our direction... which it is difficult not to respond to, at times. 
If we apply these verses to our lives, then we need to count our employers, or whoever we serve, as worthy of all honor.  We need to work on not despising them, and on doing service specifically for them... and in doing so, we can avoid envy, strife, railings, evil surmisings, and perverse disputings. :)  Those seem like pretty good things to avoid, and perhaps we know just how hard those things can be if we've been party to those kinds of things in the past.  God doesn't want our jobs or other service to keep us up nights either.  He wants us to be happy and content... and we can do a lot about that, in the way that we think about the people we serve.
Let's not be the men (or women) of corrupt minds, who are destitute of the truth and who think that gain is godliness. :)  ... Because that is what we become when we allow envy and covetousness in, and criticize and complain and engage in the power games. Gain isn't just about profit, but about power and position.  Our lives can't be about winning or losing, or we are totally playing the wrong game.  Our lives should be about service and love and helping people.  They should be about becoming the best people we can be rather than climbing the ladder as far as it will go.  ... And not saying any of this is easy, but today, let's try.  Let's take a step in the right direction, and do as God advises.  Let's count the people we serve as worthy of all honor.  Let's treat them with respect and deference, and let's put people before power and pride.  As we do, the strife in our lives will lessen, and we will become more content and at peace.


  1. This reminds me of David Bednar's recent talk where a truck with no load gets stuck in the snow; but when loaded with wood ... gains traction, and is able to move. I like to think that the yoke that we bear is our load in the service of God's will. So, every time that we wave to a neighbor, shakes hands with our friends (or others) with a warm greeting, or serve our fellow man/woman in some way ... we are on the path of righteousness, and more active missionary work and service is always appreciated. David Bednar also points out that sometimes we can get "distracted" ... which can mean many things (where we're not always in the center of the path, or sitting on a rock somewhere (doing nothing)). The Lord gives us the load that our backpack (yoke) can handle; but if we fill up the backpack with stuff we don't need (rocks, extra cans of lima beans), we may feel over-burdened and not always able to be "my brother's keeper."


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