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Reese Commentaries

1 & 2 Timothy and Titus

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"Letters to Young Preachers" is a good way to designate the New Testament writings of 1 & 2 Timothy and Titus.  The churches where these young preachers were ministering were of different ages (the Ephesian church was about twelve years old, while those on the isle of Crete were more recently planted), but both faced certain similar needs if they were to continue growing.  These letters contain timeless instructions to preachers about what to emphasize in their ministries so the churches they serve and to whom they preach will be what Christ wants them to be.

The Introductory Studies address questions raised about the Pastoral Epistles by recent higher criticism – specifically, the historical, theological, ecclesiastical, and literary/linguistic arguments adduced against the genuineness of these epistles, and especially against Paul’s authorship of the Pastorals.  Also included in this commentary are several Special Studies which address important topics germane to the Pastoral Epistles.  What did Paul teach about the role of wives and women within the church?  What is the role of elders and deacons in the church?  What is an evangelist’s work, and is that role still relevant in the 21st century?

The Restoration Movement, which delights to restore things the way they were done in the church we read about in the New Testament, surely needs to hear what these Pastoral Epistles say about public worship, the "must" of qualified elders and deacons, sound doctrine, Christian lifestyles, opposition to false teachers, and the qualifications and work of an evangelist.  These epistles offer guidelines concerning the lifestyle the preacher is to live, and the epistle to Titus even offers a series of topics the preacher should address as he tries to nourish and help individual Christians and the congregation to grow.  If preachers, elders, deacons, and church members will do things like the Pastoral Epistles suggest, then perhaps the church in our time will have fewer spots and blemishes, and will be closer to the holy and blameless bride whom Jesus would present in all her glory to Himself (Ephesians 5:27).  Leaders who want growing churches, and churches who want solid and lasting growth, would do well to hear what God through Paul has said in these epistles.


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