REPOST Today’s AMI QT Devotional, provided by Pastor David Kwon who heads Journey Community Church in Raleigh, North Carolina, was first posted on June 3, 2014. He is a graduate of Drexel University (BS) and Columbia International University (M.Div.).
Devotional Thought for This Morning
“Visitors with a Strange Message”
1 Timothy 1:3-11
As I urged you when I was going to Macedonia, remain at Ephesus so that you may charge certain persons not to teach any different doctrine,  nor to devote themselves to myths and endless genealogies, which promote speculations rather than the stewardship from God that is by faith.  The aim of our charge is love that issues from a pure heart and a good conscience and a sincere faith.  Certain persons, by swerving from these, have wandered away into vain discussion,  desiring to be teachers of the law, without understanding either what they are saying or the things about which they make confident assertions.  Now we know that the law is good, if one uses it lawfully,  understanding this, that the law is not laid down for the just but for the lawless and disobedient, for the ungodly and sinners, for the unholy and profane, for those who strike their fathers and mothers, for murderers,  the sexually immoral, men who practice homosexuality, enslavers, liars, perjurers, and whatever else is contrary to sound doctrine,  in accordance with the gospel of the glory of the blessed God with which I have been entrusted.
A few days ago, I had visitors come to my house because they wanted to share their non-Christian faith with me. We engaged in conversation and after they were finished, I shared with them about my beliefs and how I thought the Christian doctrine was the right view. I was reminded of the truth of the Gospel message and how important it is to understand doctrine to defend our faith with love and humility.
That is exactly what Paul is charging Timothy in these verses. Paul tells Timothy to remain at Ephesus so that he would “charge certain persons not to teach any different doctrines.” What was the nature of these “false doctrines”? Thinking that it would aid their salvation, some teachers in Ephesus constructed mythical stories based on OT history and genealogies. They embroiled the church in endless and irrelevant question and controversies, taking precious time way from studying the Truth of Scripture. These teachers were not teaching the truth of the Scriptures and that is exactly why Paul writes this.
In these verses, we see Paul’s heart to defend the Gospel truth “with love, which issues from a pure heart.” In the secular and pluralistic world we live in, do we also have that kind of heart to defend the truth of the Gospel? It takes wisdom and boldness but we too should be challenged to share the love of Christ to this unbelieving world out of a heart of love. Take some time and ask God to give you opportunities and courage to share your faith and defend the Gospel truth to those who may not believe.
Prayer: Lord, thank you for opening my heart to the truth of the Gospel. May I be grounded in your Word and may you give me the opportunity to share this Good News with those who may not know you in my life. Amen.
Bible Reading for Today:Genesis 38
Lunch Break Study
Read Galatians 1:6-10: I am astonished that you are so quickly deserting him who called you in the grace of Christ and are turning to a different gospel— not that there is another one, but there are some who trouble you and want to distort the gospel of Christ.  But even if we or an angel from heaven should preach to you a gospel contrary to the one we preached to you, let him be accursed.  As we have said before, so now I say again: If anyone is preaching to you a gospel contrary to the one you received, let him be accursed.  For am I now seeking the approval of man, or of God? Or am I trying to please man? If I were still trying to please man, I would not be a servant of Christ.
Questions to Consider
- How would you describe Paul’s attitude in defending the Gospel?
- Why does Paul bring up v. 10? Is this relevant in your life?
- How can we be bolder for Christ in our lives? What are some of the challenges you face?
- Again, Paul is defending the truth of the Gospel. People in the church of Galatia were preaching a ‘works-based’ Gospel, which is not the Gospel at all. We see Paul’s heart and courage to defend the Gospel truth.
- When we are living for the Gospel, there will always be a temptation to please man over Christ. It could be our co-workers, friend, family, etc. Pray that God would give you the courage to surrender this temptation in your life.
- Personal response
Take some time to pray and ask the Lord for great wisdom and courage so that we can have greater boldness in our faith in Christ.