I Timothy - Qualifications for Leadership

  •  Written by Paul (1:1), an experienced apostle.
  • Written to Timothy (1:2), a young pastor facing responsibility in the church at Ephesus. He was the son of a Gentile father and a Jewish mother (Acts 16:1).
  • His mother Eunice and grandmother Lois were Jewish believers who helped to shape his spiritual life (II Timothy 1:5).
  • As a child, he knew and believed the Hebrew Scriptures (II Timothy 3:15) but was led to the Lord possibly by Paul himself (1:2).
  • He became one of Paul’s closest companions, and to him Paul addressed two of his three pastoral letters.
  • Timothy was in Ephesus where Paul had recently asked him to stay and provide leadership for that congregation (1:3). He was to appoint elders, combat false doctrine, and supervise church life as an apostolic representative.
  • Paul was hoping to soon visit Timothy, who faced all sorts of pressures, conflicts, and challenges from the church and his surrounding culture. However, to counsel and encourage Timothy, Paul sent this very personal letter (3:14).
  • Apparently Timothy had physical problems (5:23).
  • This letter, in the meantime, would guide Timothy in his pastoral responsibilities so that his flock would know how to behave as a church (3:14-15).
  • Paul listed character qualities for leadership, demonstrating how true leadership comes from our walk with God rather than from achievements or vocational success.
  • We might say that I Timothy is a handbook of church administration and discipline.

A suggested outline for the book:

  1. Warning: Dangers of false doctrine (chapter 1).
  2. Worship: Directions for worship (chapters 2-3).
  3. Wisdom: Defense against false teachers (chapter 4).
  4. Widows: Duties toward others (chapter 5).
  5. Wealth: Dealings with riches (chapter 6).