Lesson 02 “Paul’s Testimony and Charge to Timothy” 1 Timothy 1.12-20
ID: Inductive Questions (Asking the text questions like who, what, where, when, why, & how?”)
CR: Cross References (Comparing Scripture to Scripture, understanding the vague by the clear.)
WS: Word Study (Understanding definition, theological meaning, and usages in other passages.)
The WORD: What does the Bible say?
Context: Read 1 Timothy 1:8-2:7 to help understand the context. Read the passage for this lesson again in a more literal or more dynamic translation than you usually use.
1. ID: (1:12-14) What was Paul thankful for?
2. ID/WS: (1:13, 16) Why did Paul say he obtained mercy (eleeō)?
3. ID: (1:17) What attributes of God did Paul feature in this “doxology?” Why those?
4. ID: (1:18-19) What did Paul charge Timothy to do?
The WALK: What should I do?
1. What are you thankful for? How does your list compare with Paul’s?
2. (v. 15) In what sense can we all be the chief of sinners? How do you think it would affect our relationships with others if we really took that to heart?
3. What effect would Hymenaeus’s teaching have on the everyday hope and walk of the Christian?
4. What encouragement does Paul’s incorrigible opposition to Christ before his conversion give us for our prodigals and spiritually antagonistic associates? Spend some time praying together for people you know that are hardened to the Gospel.
5. Can our past struggles or present sin put us beyond the reach of God’s grace and mercy? How does your testimony demonstrate God’s mercy and grace?
6. CSBI: Do you agree with this statement? Why not?
“…since the church established the extent and scope of the New Testament and Old Testament canon there is a certain sense in which the authority of the Bible is subordinate to and dependent upon the church’s approval.”
Going Beyond: 1. Memorize the faithful saying in 1:15 and/or the doxology in 1:17
2. What areas of theology are touched on in this passage?
The Bible (Bibliology)
God (Theology Proper)
The Father (Paterology)
The Lord Jesus Christ (Christology)
The Holy Spirit (Pneumatology)
The Church (Ecclesiology)
Angels & Satan (Angelology)
Future Things (eschatology)
ARTICLE I: AUTHORITY
We affirm that the Holy Scriptures are to be received as the authoritative Word of God.
We deny that the Scriptures receive their authority from the church, tradition or any other human source.
The initial article of the Chicago Statement is designed to establish the degree of authority that is to be attributed to the Bible. This article, as well as Article II, makes the statement clearly a Protestant one. Though it is true that the Roman Catholic Church has consistently and historically maintained a high view of the inspiration of Holy Scripture, there remains the unresolved problem of the uniqueness and sufficiency of biblical authority for the church.
Rome has placed alongside of Scripture the traditions of the church as a supplement to Scripture and, consequently, a second source of special revelation beyond the scope of Scripture. It has been a continuous assertion of the Roman Catholic Church that since the church established the extent and scope of the New Testament and Old Testament canon there is a certain sense in which the authority of the Bible is subordinate to and dependent upon the church’s approval. It is particularly these issues of the relationship of church and canon and of the question of multiple sources of special revelation that are in view with both Article I and Article II.
In earlier drafts of Article I the extent of this canon was spelled out to include the 66 canonical books that are found and embraced within the context of most Protestant-sanctioned editions of the Bible. In discussions among the participants of the Summit and because of requests to the drafting committee, there was considerable sentiment for striking the words “66 canonical books” from the earlier drafts. This was due to some variance within Christendom as to the exact number of books that are to be recognized within the canon. For example, the Ethiopic Church has more books included in their canon than 66. The final draft affirms simply that the Holy Scriptures are to be received as the authoritative Word of God. For the vast majority of Protestants the designation “Holy Scripture” has clear reference to the 66 canonical books, but it leaves room for those who differ on the canon question to participate in the confession of the nature of Scripture. The specific question of the number of books contained in that canon is left open in this Statement.
The whole question of the scope of canon or the list of books that make up our Bible may be one that confuses many people, particularly those who are accustomed to a clearly defined number of books by their particular church confessions. Some have argued that if one questions a particular book’s canonicity this carries with it the implication that one does not believe in a divinely inspired Bible. Perhaps the clearest illustration of this in history is the fact that Martin Luther at one point in his ministry had strong reservations about including the book of James in the New Testament canon. Though it is abundantly clear that Luther believed in an inspired Bible, he still had questions about whether or not a particular book should be included in that inspired Bible. Several scholars have tried to deny that Luther ever believed in inspiration because of his questioning of the book of James. Here it is very important to see the difference between the question of the scope of the canon and the question of the inspiration of the books which are recognized as included in the canon. In other words, the nature of Scripture and the question of the extent of Scripture are two different questions which must not be confused.
A key word in the affirmation section of Article I is the word “received.” The initial draft mentioned that the Scriptures are to be received by the church. The phrase “by the church” has been deleted because it is clear that the Word of God in Holy Scripture is to be received not only by the church, but by everyone. The word “received” has historical significance. In the church councils that considered the canon question the Latin word recipimus was used, meaning “we receive” the following books to be included in the canon. In that usage of the word “receive,” it is clear that the church was not declaring certain books to be authoritative by virtue of the church’s prior authority, but that the church was simply acknowledging the Word of God to be the Word of God. By the word “receive” they displayed their willingness to submit to what they regarded to be already the Word of God. Consequently, any notion that the church creates the Bible or is superior to the Bible is eliminated. If any ambiguity about the relationship of Scripture to the church remains in the affirmation, it is removed in the subsequent denial: the Scriptures receive their authority from God, not from the church nor from any other human source.