contentment or controversy


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contentment or controversy

1 Timothy 6:3-10 (JDV)

1 Timothy 6:3 If anyone teaches differently and does not agree with the wholesome words of our Lord Jesus Christ and with the teaching that promotes godliness,

1 Timothy 6:4 he is conceited and understands nothing, but has an unhealthy interest in disputes and arguments over words. From these come envy, quarreling, slander, evil suspicions,

1 Timothy 6:5 and constant disagreement among humans whose minds are depraved and deprived of the truth, who imagine that godliness is a way to material gain.

1 Timothy 6:6 But godliness with contentment is great gain.

1 Timothy 6:7 You see, we brought nothing into the world, and we can take nothing out.

1 Timothy 6:8 If we have food and clothing, we will be content with these.

1 Timothy 6:9 But those who want to be rich fall into temptation, into a trap, and many foolish and harmful desires, which plunge humans into ruin and destruction.

1 Timothy 6:10 For the affection for money is a root, producing all kinds of evil things, and by craving it, some have wandered away from the faith and pierced themselves with many griefs.

contentment or controversy

What Paul had just instructed Timothy is that he should teach Christian slaves not to revolt against their masters, but to respect them, love them as brothers and serve them well. By contrast, there must have been some in the congregations who were teaching Christian slaves to ignore or disrespect their masters. This was discrediting the name of God and Christian teaching (6:1).

We need to be suspicious anytime controversy emerges in our ranks. We should be careful not to be the cause of such controversy. How can we avoid this kind of activity, particularly since there are areas of legitimate disagreement among believers, and the need to deal with heresies and false teachings?

  1. This particular teaching was causing ungodly discontentment.
  2. It was motivated by personal greed.
  3. It distracted believers from the pursuit of personal godliness.

Before weighing in on any controversy of dispute, we should ask ourselves is this causing actual harm, or is it merely a disagreement. We should also ask whether a teaching actually contradicts the teaching of Jesus on the subject.

About Jefferson Vann

Jefferson Vann is pastor of Piney Grove Advent Christian Church in Delco, North Carolina. You can contact him at -- !
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