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QUESTIONS & ANSWERS (9)

Victor M. Eskew

 

INTRODUCTION

 

A.     When questions are asked, they can be answered in a number of correct ways.

1.      With a simple:  Yes or No, or, Right or Wrong.

2.      With a very detailed explanation that covers all the bases.

3.      With a moderate response that establishes the truthfulness of the answer to the question.

 

B.     On our Question & Answers night, I take the third approach.  I do not want to be too detailed, but I do want to accurately answer your questions with enough information.

 

C.     Since we had a guest speaker last week, I decided to do the Q&A lesson this week.

 

I.            QUESTION #1:  Rebuking an Elder

 

A.     Stated:  Please give your interpretation of I Timothy 5:1.  What does it mean to “rebuke not an elder”?  Does this have reference to an elder in the church or an elderly man?

 

B.     Answer:

1.      Let’s read the passage (I Tim. 5:1).

 

Rebuke not an elder, but entreat him as a father; and the younger men as brethren.

 

a.      The context is clear that Paul has reference to older men in the congregation.

1)      He contrasts “an elder” with the younger men.

2)      The next verse contrasts elder women and younger women.

3)      NOTE:  Paul is trying to teach the younger minister, Timothy, how to treat the various age groups and gender groups in the local congregation.

2.      When it comes to the treatment of the elderly men, Paul gives two instructions.

a.      Rebuke not

1)      Definition

a)      The Greek word for “rebuke” involves two Greek words.

-         To distribute

-         To pound

b)      Strong (1969):  to chastise, to upbraid

c)      Thayer:  to chastise with words, upbraid, rebuke

2)      Youth are to demonstrate a healthy respect for their elders. 

a)      They are not the pound upon them and upbraid them with their words.

b)      Their words to the elderly are not to be severe and stinging in nature.

b.      Intreat him as a father

1)      Definition

a)      Strong (3870):  to call near, invoke

b)      Thayer:  to call to one’s side, speak to one in the way of exhortation, entreaty, comfort, instruction

2)      The elderly may need to be addressed.  They can be mouthy, stubborn, confused, etc.

a)      The intreaty should be done with calmness.

b)      It should be done with kind, loving words.

c)      It should be done in a way that seeks to explain, instruct, and teach.

3.      A man who occupies the position of an elder in the Lord’s church, on the other hand, may need to be rebuked (I Tim. 5:19-20).

 

Against an elder receive not an accusation, but before two or three witnesses.  Them that sin rebuke before all, that others also may fear.

 

a.      We know this has reference to one who occupies the office of an elder because of the context (See I Tim. 5:17).

 

Let the elders that rule well be counted worthy of double honour…

 

b.      Three important points:

1)      Before rebuking an elder, the sin needs to be established before two or three witnesses.

2)      His behavior must involve sin, not just matters of opinion or decisions that elders have a right to make for a congregation.

3)      When in sin, the elder is to be rebuked.

 

II.          QUESTION #2:  Comparisons among Men

 

A.     Stated:  Could you please explain II Corinthians 10:12?  Explain how it’s possible for us to have the same attitude of those mentioned in this verse as being NOT WISE.

 

B.     Answer:

1.      Read the verse (II Cor. 10:12).

 

For we dare not make ourselves of the number, or compare ourselves with some that commend themselves:  but they measuring themselves by themselves, and comparing themselves among themselves, are not wise.

 

2.      The book of II Corinthians was written after Paul received news about the church in Corinth when Timothy brought him an update from their reception of I Corinthians.  Paul addresses two things in this epistle.

a.      The positive response the church had given to the first epistle

b.      The fact that false teachers had entered into the church and were attacking Paul’s apostleship and his ministry.

3.      In chapter ten, Paul addresses some of the comments made by the false teachers.  One of the things involved his physical appearance and his speech (II Cor. 10:10).

 

For his letters, they say, are weighty and powerful; but his bodily presence is weak, and his speech contemptible.

 

a.      When a person cannot attack your teaching, he has to attack you as a person.

b.      The false teachers were trying to make personal comparisons between themselves and Paul.

1)      Paul is old.  We are young.

2)      Paul is ugly.  We are handsome.

3)      Paul is rough.  We are polished.

4)      Paul is crude.  We are eloquent.

c.      In II Corinthians 10:12, Paul says:

1)      He will not get involved in a group that seeks to make comparisons.

2)      He also says that the comparisons and measurements they make show that they are not wise.

4.      As humans, we like to make comparisons between ourselves and others.

a.      Preacher comparisons (I Cor. 3:7-8)

b.      Faithfulness comparisons (Luke 18:10-14)

c.      Gift comparisons (I Cor. 12:1-31)

d.      Cultural comparisons (Acts 15:1-4)

e.      Age comparisons

 

III.        QUESTION #3:  Children Becoming Christians

 

A.     Stated:  Is it appropriate for parents to require their children to be baptized at a certain age?  Or, should they be given a choice?

 

 

B.     Answer:

1.      Obeying the gospel is a personal matter.  A person has to believe and obey from the heart (Rom. 10:9-10; 6:17-18).

 

But God be thanked that ye were the servants of sin, but ye have obeyed from the heart that form of doctrine which was delivered you.  Being then made free from sin, ye became the servants of righteousness.

 

a.      The heart is the center of man’s inner being.  It involves the mind, reason, will, motives and the emotions of man.

b.      God appeals to the heart of men through His love.  His love is set forth in the story of the gospel of Christ.

c.      When man’s heart is pricked, he freely, voluntarily obeys the gospel.

d.      Demands by a parent do not involve the heart of the child, nor a voluntary submission to the gospel.

2.      What can parents do?

a.      Start at a young age teaching your children about the need for obedience to the gospel.

1)      Sin

2)      The death of Christ

3)      The steps of the plan of salvation

b.      Live the Christian life before your children with enthusiasm and with great joy.

c.      Encourage your children without being pushy or demanding.

 

CONCLUSION

 

A.     Some of the best questions are those that involve the Biblical text.  We have had two of these tonight.

1.      I Timothy 5:1

2.      II Corinthians 10:12

 

B.     Answers to more personal questions are intriguing.

a.      Why is this being asked?

b.      Have I answered the question properly for the individual?

c.      How will the individual respond to the answer?